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bktolbert

Soap drying too quick?

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This is my second attempt at making soap, and I've run into a similar issue. I'm trying to make hot process soap, and I doubt when the soap is "done" to the point it's dried out so much that I can't cleanly fit it in the mold. Wondering what I'm doing wrong/how I can improve? (How do you know when your soap is "done?")

 

Here's my recipe:

55% mango butter

32% olive oil

13.48% safflower oil

2.5% rosehip seed oil

1.25% sodium lactate

 

IMG_20190419_224116.jpg

IMG_20190419_224132.jpg

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Part of the texture issue, IMO is the high stearic content on the mango butter.  It’s just a hard, dry ingredient in soap. I keep those high stearic types low... like 5%. 

 

hot process is “done” when phenolphthalein tests with no pink. That indicates no free lye. To use pheno drops, take a pea sized amount of soap from the pot and smear on a paper towel. Add a drop of the pheno. If pink it’s still lye active. If clear it’s done. I find with hot process, though, even if it tests a little pink by the time it cools it’s a non issue since saponification continues after the cook, just faster than with cold process. 

 

Note about pheno: don’t touch it bare handed.  Toss the test soap with pheno right in the garbage immediately. You don’t want to contaminate your self or soap with it.  If I remember right it is sold with pool chemicals. IMO, you don’t really need it, but newbies sometimes like a tool available to help learn timing.

 

A couple of tricks that may help (assuming your saponification calculator is right, and measurements are right):

you can try adding a tablespoon of sugar dissolved in water at the beginning for a more fluid pour. 

You can try adding a milk, like goat, coconut or yogurt at the end of the cook.  The fats and proteins can sometimes help loosen the mixture a bit.

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Ahhh, hot processed soap! 🌸

Made my fair share of this soap. Something that helped me was to find a recipe that was already successful, there are many on line I’m sure. Also, watching a tutorial, there are a few out there as well, because hot processed soap goes through several stages and it’s important know what they are. Once you learn the stages it’s all up hill most of the time! And of course run everything through soapcalc.

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12 hours ago, TallTayl said:

Part of the texture issue, IMO is the high stearic content on the mango butter.  It’s just a hard, dry ingredient in soap. I keep those high stearic types low... like 5%. 

 

hot process is “done” when phenolphthalein tests with no pink. That indicates no free lye. To use pheno drops, take a pea sized amount of soap from the pot and smear on a paper towel. Add a drop of the pheno. If pink it’s still lye active. If clear it’s done. I find with hot process, though, even if it tests a little pink by the time it cools it’s a non issue since saponification continues after the cook, just faster than with cold process. 

 

Note about pheno: don’t touch it bare handed.  Toss the test soap with pheno right in the garbage immediately. You don’t want to contaminate your self or soap with it.  If I remember right it is sold with pool chemicals. IMO, you don’t really need it, but newbies sometimes like a tool available to help learn timing.

 

A couple of tricks that may help (assuming your saponification calculator is right, and measurements are right):

you can try adding a tablespoon of sugar dissolved in water at the beginning for a more fluid pour. 

You can try adding a milk, like goat, coconut or yogurt at the end of the cook.  The fats and proteins can sometimes help loosen the mixture a bit.

Thank you for the explanation. I'm currently trying a formula with a way lower mango butter concentration, and it's cooking a lot more reasonably.

 

I have pH strips but didn't think of phenolphthalein. Thanks again! Am also learning about "superfats," so that may also help!

2 hours ago, CandleRush said:

Ahhh, hot processed soap! 🌸

Made my fair share of this soap. Something that helped me was to find a recipe that was already successful, there are many on line I’m sure. Also, watching a tutorial, there are a few out there as well, because hot processed soap goes through several stages and it’s important know what they are. Once you learn the stages it’s all up hill most of the time! And of course run everything through soapcalc.

Yes, there are a lot of stages. The online tutorials make so much soap at one time, it's hard to compare what my 1 bar of soap looks like to their huge crock pots lol. Have been using soapcalc and Bramble Berry's to double-check. Intent on making this work... different beast than candles for sure.

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2 hours ago, CandleRush said:

Ahhh, hot processed soap! 🌸

Made my fair share of this soap. Something that helped me was to find a recipe that was already successful, there are many on line I’m sure. Also, watching a tutorial, there are a few out there as well, because hot processed soap goes through several stages and it’s important know what they are. Once you learn the stages it’s all up hill most of the time! And of course run everything through soapcalc.

 

Watching a video tutorial (or ten) helped me a lot. I definitely needed to see the stages.

Also, I agree with @TallTayl, all that mango can't be helping the issue. Is that a recipe of your own creation? The proportions seem odd to me. Also also, I personally would skip the rose hip oil. That stuff costs a pretty penny, and between the low percentage, the soaponification process, and the fact the it washes off, I don't see how it would have much benefit. Maybe if you added it at like 5% after the cook... Just my opinion though!

 

Where's @Sponiebr?? He's the Prince of HP! 😆

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16 minutes ago, Sarah S said:

 

Watching a video tutorial (or ten) helped me a lot. I definitely needed to see the stages.

Also, I agree with @TallTayl, all that mango can't be helping the issue. Is that a recipe of your own creation? The proportions seem odd to me. Also also, I personally would skip the rose hip oil. That stuff costs a pretty penny, and between the low percentage, the soaponification process, and the fact the it washes off, I don't see how it would have much benefit. Maybe if you added it at like 5% after the cook... Just my opinion though!

 

Where's @Sponiebr?? He's the Prince of HP! 😆

It is my own monstrosity. I'm trying to make it vegan without coconut or palm oil.

 

Third attempt attached. It was going SO well until the very end. I think I let it cook maybe 5 minutes too long. I used this new recipe. (I ran out of mango butter.)

 

70% olive oil

20% safflower oil

8.75% shea butter

1.25% sodium lactate

 

I will be trying this recipe before giving up for today

 

50% olive oil

33.75% safflower oil

15% shea butter

1.25% sodium lactate... I think I added .25% more b/c I read it might help with keeping things fluid

 

Fingers crossed

IMG_20190420_124150.jpg

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I'm not an HP expert, but recipe #2 looks good to me! Do you happen to have soybean oil? It's Vegetable Oil at the grocery store. I like that oil so much more than safflower in soap. Sorry, I know I'm being nit-picky with your recipe!!😅😅

A couple tablespoons of yogurt will help with the fluidity too. Add after the cook.

You're doing great! Experimentation is how we learn!

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55 minutes ago, Sarah S said:

I'm not an HP expert, but recipe #2 looks good to me! Do you happen to have soybean oil? It's Vegetable Oil at the grocery store. I like that oil so much more than safflower in soap. Sorry, I know I'm being nit-picky with your recipe!!😅😅

A couple tablespoons of yogurt will help with the fluidity too. Add after the cook.

You're doing great! Experimentation is how we learn!

Don't have soy oil (have lots of wax lol), but I'll be on the lookout! I have rice bran oil though, hmm...

 

Yogurt is also a good idea, and I could see how that would help.

 

4th time is the charm, I guess? This is the texture I was aiming for. I know it passed the "mashed potato" phase, but I'm uneasy about knowing if it went into the Vaseline phase... the soap wasn't too translucent when I molded it, but I was afraid it'd dry out if I left it much longer. Will get some phenolphthalein tests to put my mind at ease. (Soap did pass the zap test lol.)

IMG_20190420_135640.jpg

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You should try regular cold process with your recipe. Easy to pour and soap will look nicer. High oleic sunflower oil is nice. Coconut oil is vegan by the way and makes great lather. Rice bran oil is great for soap. It’s really nice for the skin. Maybe try a go at plain cold process.

its easy to see when you should pour, it’s way more fluid than hot process and end result will look nice. I only hot process if I have made a flubbed soap.  Just my humble soapy opinion. You need something for bubbles traditionally coconut oil, palm kernel, castor oil. Recipes online. Brambleberry three oil soap recipe something like that.

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I’m just wondering about your recipe though, your numbers don’t add up to 100%. Maybe recheck them on soapcalc. Also soapcalc will show you the quality of your soap by looking at their calculations once you’ve entered your percentages. Their recommendations are only a guide but I find it very useful. I’m not sure how hard your soap will be or how much lather you’ll end up with. Coconut oil will add both hardness and lather. A small amount of castor oil will also add lather. Large amounts of olive oil are great for the skin but won’t harden your soap or produce bubbbly lather. It’s true coconut oil can be very drying to the skin so a balanced recipe can remedy that. If you use harder oils, you won’t need sodium lactate. Palm oil is another hard oil that contributes firmness and lather. Many won’t beaches it’s unsustainable but it is excellent in soap if you balance it with nourishing butters like Mango or Shea. 

Its great fun trying and with so many variations! Good job!

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OH MY! MY MY MY... (Sorry 'bout not being around..) I'm here... So HP goes MUCH MUCH better if it's HOT and you use A LOT OF WATER. THe trick to getting it t stay fluid is keeping your utensils/ingredients/ molds HOT while you are putting it into the mold. THE OTHER trick is KEEPING the WATER IN THE SOAP while it cooks. The NEXT big secret is WHEN and WHAT to add to your soap during the process... I USED to be 100% SOLD on the high temp fluid hot process that I learned from Valerie Mosher but TT has CONVERTED me back to CP. 

The MAJOR problem I had with HTFHP was the months long cure time and how badly the soap would shrink during that period. Right now I have 2 soaps that I use HTFHP with and one is a SPECIALTY soap (pine tar) and the other is a seasonal soap so I can MAKE it up MONTHS in advance so that it will be cured when Christmas finally rolls around. (I'm not joking AT ALL when I tell you I've got to get THAT Christmas soap made THIS MONTH if it's going to be ready by Christmas.) 

Ok Basically it starts out like this: 38% or 40% water soap formula Super fatted to about 1% or even 0% but I'd suggest newbies going ahead and doing 1% in the soap calc... Now figure out what 5% (not including the 1% you already HAVE in the formula) but what 5% of the TOTAL SOAP Weight would be. Weigh out THAT amount in what you want your super fat to be. (OO is WONDERFUL feeling SF in soap) 

You see in HP YOU choose what the SF will be. NEXT! 
I use a crock pot for my HP.

Heat your oils to around 178 F... 

Next make sure that your water and SF oils and colorants in oils are ALL kept VERY WARM ( I put mine in a warming oven) I ALSO put my pyrex measuring cups in the warming oven (usually with the individual colorants in the bottoms with a dip of the oil from the pot to wet them down and get them in solution. (I use micas) 

You need to save out about 1/3 of your total water content and set it aside MIX in 1 tbsp per pound of oil (PPO) of PLAIN WHITE SUGAR into that water and dissolve it completely. Cover it with plastic wrap and maybe mix in your clay and 1 tbsp PPO  into the water as well. 

NEXT go ahead and dissolve your lye into the 2/3 remaining water and get that going. (I like adding silk to my lye water) 

After you've got that mess all dissolved and your oils are NO MORE than 180F you're gonna go ahead and soap it. Just hit it with the SB until it's light trace and then cover with plastic wrap and let it sit cooking for about 5-10 minutes. 

IMPORTANT!!!! DO NOT LEAVE THIS UNATTENDED IT WILL VOLCANO ON YOU. MAKE SURE YOU ARE GLOVED UP AND HAVE YOUR SAFETY GEAR ON BECAUSE YOU WILL BE BATTLING A VOLCANO IN A MINUTE. 

YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED! 

THE INSTANT it starts swelling beat the HELL OUT OF IT with a spoon and make it GO BACK DOWN. (I like to turn my pot off at this point) 

YOU KEEP BEATING IT until it STAYS IN THE POT. 
Once it goes back down cover it and cook for another 5-8 minutes  or until it volcanoes again (keep the stuff off the sides of the pot or it'll leave ugly lumps in your soap). 

At some point here it should go to vaseline stage and when you hit that you turn the pot off completely and let it start cooling down to around 175 to 165 or so... KEEP IT COVERED to keep the water in the soap. 

as soon as you have about 175F (it needs to be WELL BELOW 200F so anything below 190 is fine for this step) 
Add in your milk/sugar/clay water (it's hot remember?<---- That's important that it's NOT COLD) 

Now beat that in with a spoon/dough whisk until it's smooth looking and then recover it. 

When the soap is around 140-150F you are going to add in your superfat and FO and 1 tsp PPO of sodium lactate. <---- THIS IS CRITICAL TO GETTING FLUID HP SOAP... 

You'll find it's VERY fluid after a few minutes of stirring it. SO fluid you can use a SB on it again. DO THAT. 

Next portion out your batter into your HOT pyrex or whatever mixing containers (I know you're NOT supposed to use glass in making CP soap but this is HP soap and it's FINE because there is NO active lye in the soap at this point) 

Mix in your colors and then I like to layer in the pot so that it's basically an in the pot swirl and you're gonna pour it at this point into a hot/warm mold. 

As soon as the soap cools to the touch (all the way through) it's DONE and you can start using it immediately. It will harden up a tad over a 2 day drying period and that will improve the lather a bit as well...Clean up can be done with your bare hands (except for your lye container) because all that you have in the pot now is FULLY saponified SOAP. 

Basically the key is the sugar/SL/SF and FO at the end of the cook and NEVER pouring at less than say 130F... (I've gone as low as 110F but trust me YOU DON'T WANT TO DO THAT) 
As long as you follow THAT method and those temperature and sugar and SL portions and you keep it HOT and Keep the water IN THE SOAP you should get a REALLY nice looking batch of soap. You WILL HAVE to pour QUICKLY so individual cavity molds are REALLY not going to give you as nice a looking soap as a log mold would. You've literally only got 3-8 minutes to pour and swirl and tamp... 
 

Tops are ALWAYS FUGLY on HP... It's just the way it is... 

It's a little dangerous because you HAVE to battle multiple volcanoes, there's NO getting around it with the fluid hp... Your total COOK time is around 15 min. Cool down will take maybe a half hour from pot to mold. Uh go a little lighter on how much FO you use, you don't have to use as much in HP soap because there's no lye to fade the scent.

That's how you do it though. You can get as beautiful and intricately swirled soap with HTFHP as you can from the slowest CP out there. 

1350687644_FiasDreamHTFHP.thumb.jpg.1e80cc680461efce91a3332ac0a768cf.jpg


GOOD LUCK! 

Sponiebr
THE Executor of Bad Ideas and Sundry Services.  

 

 

Edited by Sponiebr
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Prince of HP!! 👑👑

I swear @Sponiebr, every time I see one of your HP soaps, it makes me want to take a whack at it again. It's just so time consuming! Maybe if I have a few hours to kill this summer. 😆😆

I do have a couple FOs that I adore, that don't survive the soaponification process... Might be worth it!

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11 hours ago, Sarah S said:

Prince of HP!! 👑👑

I swear @Sponiebr, every time I see one of your HP soaps, it makes me want to take a whack at it again. It's just so time consuming! Maybe if I have a few hours to kill this summer. 😆😆

I do have a couple FOs that I adore, that don't survive the soaponification process... Might be worth it!

 

10 hours ago, CandleRush said:

Just gorgeous!

Great instructions on your process!

For me, I love cp and cpop methods. 🌸



Thank you both. 

Here's my current HTFHP formulation: 

863603634_0_SF_HTHP_Soap_Formulation.thumb.jpeg.527682d7bf19cb31f72e0881fdb81ed9.jpeg
That method listed above is the BEST way to do it, the trick is in the resting of the soap between each step of the process with the SL and FO at the end. Actually, now that I think of it, (its' been awhile) I use the SF (68g) to mix up my micas in... 

Have fun! (and DO NOT GET HURT) 

Sponiebr
The Executor of Bad Ideas and Sundry Services. 

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36 minutes ago, NightLight said:

Whoa. Sticking with CP or CPOP. 😳

It's REALLY not that bad... Not exactly something for beginners though... 

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On 4/24/2019 at 7:18 PM, NightLight said:

Whoa. Sticking with CP or CPOP. 😳

My thoughts exactly.  I'm tired just from reading sponiebr's instructions. 😫

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