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Make Your Own Shredded Soap for Handmilling


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Handmilling - the process of rebatching or remelting freshly grated soap with various scents and ingredients. An advantage to handmilling soap is that you can make several different types of soap from just one batch and use a variety of different mold shapes as well.Supplies needed for Handmilling only:

Any base Cold Process Soap Recipe


Medium size pot

Wooden spoon

Whole milk or distilled water

Essential or fragrance oils

Additives such as grains, botanicals, soap colorants, etc.

Plastic container with a lid

Cheese grater

A variety of molds of your choice

Coffee bean grinder (optional)

1. Follow the directions for any basic cold process soap recipe omitting the scent, grains, botanicals or colorants that may be in the recipe. You are now making plain soap free from any scent or additives other than oils, water and lye.

2. Remove your freshly made soap from its block mold and allow it to air dry in a warm dry room for 3-7 days.

3. Cut soap into chunks or bars and grate into your plastic container. You can store the unused portion in the container until you're ready to handmill. The grated soap should have a consistency of mozzarella cheese. If the soap seems so soft to grate, let it air dry a few more days.

4. Use the grated soap within a 4 month period. Store in the container in a cool dry place.

5. Ready to handmill: Over medium/low heat, add some of the grated soap to your pot filling it to about 3/4 of the way. Add 1/4-1/2 cup of milk or water to the pot, adding more or less if necessary. Stir gently.

6. The soap should begin to melt down and have the consistency of soft mashed potatoes. Stir occasionally adding more of the liquid if necessary. You do not want the soap to become runny, but all of the gratings should melt to a fairly smooth consistency.

7. When your soap has melted down, remove it from the stovetop and let cool awhile. Prepare your ingredients and molds. If you are scenting all the soap in the pot with the same scent, add your essential oil, fragrance oil, or even perfume directly to the soap. If you're making several different scents, then remove the portion needed for that particular scent. The amount of scent will depend on your liking, but as a guideline, about 1 oz per pound of soap. Scents will fade slightly over time, so its better to start out a little stronger.

8. Add any additional ingredients such as botanicals, grains, colorants at this time. Stir in well.

9. Pour into mold/molds. Handmilling allows soap makers to make a variety of soap scents and shapes from just one batch. The soap can also be poured into loaf molds and sliced into bars. Allow molded soap to harden uncovered overnight or several days. The freezer will also help to harden the molded soap and make the release much easier.

10. Finished bars should cure (air dry) for several weeks.

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