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soap calc help please


Craftedinthewoods
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I'm sure I'm really missing something... I decided to play around with the soap calc page (soapcalc.net) and I just can't see where the amount of lye is given for a recipe. :confused: I'm sure it is there somewhere! I'm sure I'm going to feel pretty stupid for missing it.

I just looked again before posting this but I just don't see it!

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Once you hit 'calculate recipe', click on 'view or print recipe' and it will open another page where you can see all amounts of everything.

Thank you for answering my silliness! I have just been playing with the numbers and haven't yet 'viewed' a recipe.

I've been very interested in plugging in different recipes and watch the soap values change and then adjust them so the numbers improove. Everyone should study that. It's facinating! But then again, I'm a newbie soap 'geek'.:P

I wonder when this romance will wear off?

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I've been very interested in plugging in different recipes and watch the soap values change and then adjust them so the numbers improove. Everyone should study that. It's facinating! But then again, I'm a newbie soap 'geek'.

Be careful about those values. You're more likely to improve your soap on your own. After all, only the "conditioning" number beckons with better soap. But you're smarter than that. Based on what you already know, tell me what's wrong with SoapCalc's arithmetic:

Hardness = %lauric + %myristic + %palmitic + %stearic

Cleansing = %lauric + %myristic

Condition = %oleic + %linoleic

Bubbly = %lauric + %myristic

Creamy = %stearic + %palmitic

See how misleading that this?

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After all, only the "conditioning" number beckons with better soap.

What do you mean by the cond. number beckons with better soap?

But you're smarter than that. Based on what you already know, tell me what's wrong with SoapCalc's arithmetic:

Hardness = %lauric + %myristic + %palmitic + %stearic

Cleansing = %lauric + %myristic

Condition = %oleic + %linoleic

Bubbly = %lauric + %myristic

Creamy = %stearic + %palmitic

See how misleading that this?

Ok - I gave this a go, but I'm not there yet. I'm afraid I don't see what you mean.

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What I'm talking about is that idea of playing with the numbers to make them better (it's definitely fun and I did a lot of that when I was starting out). There are various ways the values could look better, but the one that tends to call out to people is the "conditioning" number. SoapCalc is a great lye calculator, but that particular number tends to mislead people big-time into making mediocre recipes.

It's really misnamed based on a myth. It should be called "softness" or something like that, because it's just the sum of all the unsaturated fatty acids in the recipe (just as "hardness" is the sum of all the saturated fatty acids). Mostly we're talking about oleic acid and linoleic acid.

You already know that oleic oil is useful in a soap recipe, but also that too much can throw it out of balance. That might be apparent if it said "softness," but since it says "conditioning" the recipe tends to look better and better the more you add. It really has nothing to do with conditioning, or with good skin-feel.

You also know than linoleic oils aren't good soaping oils, or at least not in more than small quantities, but "conditioning" doesn't distinguish between good oleic and sketchy linoleic. You can substitute soybean oil for olive oil and SoapCalc doesn't tell you that your "conditioning" bar of soap will now turn out totally different, work crummy, and be prone to DOS.

So just keep in mind that SoapCalc isn't very smart at all. Experimenting with the principles you already know will help you more in recipe design than SoapCalc will.

Actually, the numbers below the soap qualities are the ones that might help you if you get used to reading them.

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What I'm talking about is that idea of playing with the numbers to make them better (it's definitely fun and I did a lot of that when I was starting out). There are various ways the values could look better, but the one that tends to call out to people is the "conditioning" number. SoapCalc is a great lye calculator, but that particular number tends to mislead people big-time into making mediocre recipes.

When I've played with numbers in soapcalc, the higher the conditioning number coinsides with a lower the cleansing number. Also, it seems that the lather numbers are not very balanced. The high oleic oils for example will give a higher creamy lather, but low bubbly lather and of course a lower cleansing number.

So, using the priciples I'm learning, it seems the soap calc numbers would be very helpful if you don't focus too much on one area, but rather try to find good numbers in each area.

One example of this, I plugged in a modified castile recipe I made up. I added coconut oil, lard and castor oil. (I made the recipe using a different lye calc.) Anyway, the numbers of the soap I made show a very low cleansing number, super high conditioning, very low bubbly, med. low creamy, and a low hardness.

Yes the conditioning looks good, but I'm very disapointed in the overall numbers for this recipe. And I think the numbers match what I've learned about the oils so far.

I can't wait to try the bar and see if the numbers match the actual performance. Right now, I'm actually wondering why anyone wants to use castile soap since it's cleansing properties and lathering qualities are so poor?

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I can't wait to try the bar and see if the numbers match the actual performance. Right now, I'm actually wondering why anyone wants to use castile soap since it's cleansing properties and lathering qualities are so poor?

If you ask me, it's a bit of a fad.

Cultures all over the world soap what they've got. Regions that are swimming in craploads of olive oil obviously will make soap out of it.

Castile soap has a reputation for being mild, which is true because it cleans so poorly. If you like the feel of oil and soap scum on your skin, it's perfect. But even though it doesn't clean well, oleic soap is fairly soluble and turns into slime in the shower. Castile bars will get nice and hard if you dessicate them for a year, but they still soon turn to slime when they meet water again.

People compensate for all this by adding in coconut oil and whatnot to make it more like ordinary soap, but I figure go all the way and make balanced ordinary soap.

On the other hand, some cultures (like ours) traditionally used animal fats to make soap. You can make a 100% lard/tallow soap and that will be mild too. In fact, it'll be better all-around soap because animal fats are just better balanced oils for soaping at 100% than olive oil.

Everything is worth making for the fun of it and the history of it. It's just that the information about these things is often distorted.

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