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Little Bit of Soap Lunacy

Forbidden Pink Grapefruit Soap

I’ve been watching videos made with my free soap dough recipe. These videos have at least one step missing, if not more. Each step is very important.

I have made soap dough many different ways and condensed all my experience into the easiest most sure-fire way of making smooth soap dough recipes, books and video tutorials.

Many soap makers are jumping on board with the soap dough phenomena. I strive to master the craft of soap dough. This is a life-time endeavor. To begin to master something, anything, it has been said it takes a minimum 10,000 hours of apprenticeship. Just doing one’s time, having the hours under one’s belt, does not automatically make one a master. I practice my soap-craft daily and have since I began. I share this to let you know where I stand, how dedicated I am to understanding this soap-craft and to sharing my experiences.

Soap Dough Points

Touching soap dough with bare hands hours after it is poured is not safe. No matter if the soap dough seems firm. (This holds true for cold process soap as well, which is one-in-the-same. Curing is how cold process and soap dough are different.)
 
Un-molding hours after the soap dough is made is not going to show the best soap dough results. Waiting 3 days to work with it after pouring soap dough WILL work. And still, I leave my soap dough for a week in a bag before I use it. Patience is also a valuable tool to this, or any, craft one is striving to master.
 

Trace is not as important as some think. Trace is defined as leaving “traces” of soap lines, or evidence of soap, that drips off of the mixing tool (spoon or stick blender) on the top of the soap batter. Emulsion IS important. Trace is a sign of emulsion. “An emulsion is a mixture of two or more liquids that are normally immiscible (un-mixable or un-blendable). The word “emulsion” comes from the Latin word for “to milk”, as milk is an emulsion of fat and water, along with other components.”

Seahorse Soap
Seahorse Soap

Here is where the rubber meets the road – examples of Sorcery Soap embellishments. If you like what I create, and see the potential of soap dough please follow the directions and you, too, will have smooth, pliable SAFE soap dough.

Knowing the difference between “saponification” and “curing” is important. Full saponification can take 3 days, and evidence of using an orange or yellow mica. The color will not fully change from the ugly orange it originally is to the intended color for 3 days. The question is, why?

Curing is water evaporation. That’s it. Full stop. Soap dough does NOT cure until used and exposed to air, continuously. Air exposure causes water to evaporate. Soap dough does not cure in its pliable state, it is the opposite of traditional cold process soaps in this respect. Soap dough stays pliable because the crystalline structure of cold process soap is kept from locking by maintaining the water. Each time soap dough is molded, mashed, the structure is broken. Until the very last time, when the embellishment/figure is created and left to CURE with continuous air exposure. This is why soap dough is kept sealed or in an air tight container, to inhibit or retard water evaporation.

I have also discovered a different, undesirable, texture to soap dough when gelled. Gelling takes place when the soap is insulated or kept from cooling to ambient air temperatures by being in small container. Gelling is maintenance of heat generated from the saponification process, which is exothermic. If your mold is wooden, or in a container that is smaller/condensed, unlike a longer silicone mold in a wire cage (giving the over all soap more exposure to cool) the soap dough will gel. 
ex·o·ther·mic
CHEMISTRY
  1. (of a reaction or process) accompanied by the release of heat.
    • (of a compound) formed from its constituent elements with a net release of heat.
 
I have tried making small amounts of soap dough in bags and then placing them in mason jars. Guaranteed gel, which produces a sticky soap dough. A controlled, small amount of evaporation is necessary to have the perfect consistency to smooth, pliable soap dough. 
 

I hope this helps you on your soap dough making process.

Bee

Much of this information is discussed in greater detail in the Sorcery Soap Books, all but just the Soap Dough Recipes, which are ONLY the recipes, offered at $1 each. The soap dough recipes are offered as a favor, for those experienced soap makers.

Basic Soap Dough FREE Recipe

Lard based Soap Dough Recipes

Palm based Soap Dough Recipes

Sorcery Soap Dough book Set

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FREE Sorcery Soap Dough Recipe

Witch's Broom Sorcery Soap Cookie

Moldable Soap Recipe by Sorcery Soap™

Sorcery Soap Dough 

 This information is meant to help expand your soaping repertoire, explore more creative options (sans silicon molds) and to inspire you to new creative worlds! 

*Critical piece of information: Soap temperatures 70-85 degree fahrenheit. 

A few things to keep in mind:

  • Always keep the soap covered and sealed from air. Saponification does not need air, but curing does.
  • The amount of water in soap is important. It keeps the soap pliable and soft. This is the water percent I use, however, I live in the desert.
  • Keep the new soap sealed.
  • Wait at least 24 hours to unmold, then place soap dough in a plastic bag and wait 3 more days (at least). Learn more about this process here!
  • Test your soap by rolling a small ball, examine how it feels. Is it sticky?
  • Exact measurements are very important, which is different than making say, actual cookies, which can be off just a tick. I’ve found when making soap dough, at 1 pound or 2 pound amounts, there is little room for error.
  • Use in 3-5 days.
  • Your soap dough should be ideal to use.

 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

When Working With your Soap Dough

  • When working with soap, use a muslin bag filled with corn starch to keep the soap from sticking to the work surface and itself. Too much corn starch will leave your soaps looking powdery so use with frugal care.
  • Spraying tools with 91% alcohol will keep cutters and plungers from sticking.
  • Spraying with water will make soap dissolve. Remember how soap behaves in the shower? Use water to stick pieces of soap together sparingly.
  • Once removed from the sealed container, soap will begin evaporation and curing, therefore hardening.
  • Be patient with yourself, if you want to make embeds by hand, it will take time to learn.

See this video for consistency:

 

Soap Dough Moldable Soap Recipe by Sorcery Soap

 

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Sorcery Soap Dough Moldable Soap Recipe

Sorcery Soap Dough

Moldable Soap Recipe by Sorcery Soap™Herb Garden Soap

When making soap dough, or moldable soap there is, like all other soaps, a balance of water.

For the first few times using any recipe its a good idea to avoid fragrance oils, just so you know how the base recipe preforms.

Your own moldable Sorcery Soap Kit here!

Sorcery Soap Dough and Sorcery Products™ Kit 2 here!

Sorcery Soap Dough 

For advanced Soap Makers

This recipe is for advanced soap makers only. If you do not know about soap safety, or how to handle lye, please visit SoapQueenTV or any number of soap teachers on youtube. Google is your friend, just ask her and she’ll point you in a direction.

I’m sharing this information, not because I think of myself as a teacher, but to help those who want to expand their soaping repertoire, explore more creative options and those who are inspiring themselves. 

*Critical piece of information: I always soap at room temperatures: 70-85 degree fahrenheit. 

A few things to keep in mind:

  • Always keep the soap covered and sealed from air. Saponification does not need air, but curing does.
  • The amount of water in soap is important. It keeps the soap pliable and soft. This is the water percent I use, however, I live in the desert.
  • Keep the new soap sealed. If you are using a mold after 12-24 hours, unmold and put in a sealed plastic bag.
  • Test your soap by rolling a small ball, examine how it feels. Is it sticky?
  • Use in 3-5 days.
  • Your soap dough should be ideal to use.

I will be posting another “lard free” recipe soon!

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

When Working With your Soap Dough

  • When working with soap, use a muslin bag filled with corn starch to keep the soap from sticking to the work surface and itself. Too much corn starch will leave your soaps looking powdery so use with frugal care.
  • Spraying tools with 91% alcohol will keep cutters and plungers from sticking.
  • Spraying with water will make soap dissolve. Remember how soap behaves in the shower?
  • Once removed from the sealed container, soap will begin evaporation and curing.
  • Be patient with yourself, if you want to make embeds by hand, it will take time to learn.

See this video for consistency:

 

Soap Dough Moldable Soap Recipe by Sorcery Soap

 

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Tiny Soap Flowers

How to Make Tiny Soap Flowers

A video and instructions for making tiny soap flowers, from Sorcery Soap.

*For more information about soap molding, see: Resources.  For simple recipes see this simple soap recipe.

Fondant Plunger Used

To make molded soap flowers, it is a good idea to use a soap recipe that produces a smooth soap. I have posted some easy to use soap recipes for this purpose.

Ingredients for Simple Soap Recipe for Soap Molding

  • Lard – 50%
  • Coconut Oil – 30%
  • Soybean Oil – 20%
  • *Soybean oil can be substituted with castor oil or olive oil.

In the video the color has been adjusted, as the warm lights made all things orange, but in adjusting the color all the color of the yellow soap dough has been eliminated.  It is a bright yellow color.

The “flour” used for dusting is cornstarch, in a muslin bag. More corn starch would generally be used, for example, when making cookies, however, with soap its ideal to avoid over use, as it dries soap and could produce cracks. So, the soap appears to be a bit sticky, however, produces a much nice result.

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Simple Soap Recipe

Simple Soap Recipe

gumdrops #soap #handmade #handmadesoap #handcraftedsoap #handcraftedbath #artisansoap #beautyandbath #sorcerysoap
The body of this soap and the marshmallows were made with this recipe.

I see so many new soapers ask for a simple soap recipe, so I decided to share one of my best go-to recipes. This recipe is ideal for new soapers and new to the art of hand molding cold processing soap.

A few things to keep in mind:

#1. Watch your oil and lye temperatures. The best results I’ve gotten so far have been at room temperatures. For Arizona that is generally about 85 degrees Fahrenheit. I have soaped colder, but this temperature is convenient. I don’t have to chill it, just mix oils/butter, lye and leave it for a few hours.

#2. Mentally walk yourself through your recipe, no matter how simple, and get all your duck in a row. This tip has helped me so many times I have to stress the mental state you are in when soaping (unless you’re on automatic pilot) is the type of soap you’ll get. This is why this soap recipe is so good for new soapers, not much to think about.

#3. Follow general safety guidelines for lye handling, covering exposed skin, eye safety and closed toe foot wear. I once got one grain of lye between my toes while wearing flip-flops. Last time I’ll do that.

#4. I used soybean oil for this recipe, although it can turn if you keep the soap for too long, because its easy to get and good for practice. No pressure about expensive oils and butters. All these ingredients can be gotten from just about any local grocery.

Never, ever add water to lye! Always add lye to water. 

 

Simple Soap Recipe
Recipe Type: Cold Process Soap
Author: Bhakti Iyata
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Water: 33%
Water : Lye Ration: 2.298 : 1
A simple soap recipe for your rotation, to build on, or a good go-to. An ideal soap recipe for cold process hand molding soap.
Ingredients
  • Lard – 50%
  • Coconut Oil – 30%
  • Soybean Oil – 20%
  • *Soybean oil can be substituted with castor oil or olive oil.
Instructions
  1. Melt the lard and coconut oil in microwave or double boiler to incorporate these ingredients.
  2. Add your liquid soybean oil (or other liquid oil) to the heated mixture. This will help cool the oils.
  3. Add lye water to your oils, not the other way around (please read about how to handle lye).
  4. Stick blend your oils and lye until trace.
  5. Add colorants.
  6. Pour into mold.
  7. Cover with plastic wrap.
  8. Twenty four to 48 hours later, un-mold.
  9. Wrap in plastic.
  10. Place in sealed plastic bag.
  11. Use as needed to make your hand molded cold process soap!

 

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Triangle Soap Recipe

Soap Recipe

How I made this soap:

Triangle Soap #handmade #handmadesoap #sorcerysoap #handcraftedsoap #handcraftedbath #beautyandbath #artisansoap

I was inspired to use this recipe because I wanted a simple recipe for a more complex design. I had an idea about the slanted design, but hadn’t tried it yet, so I just held the idea loosely. I had to see how the soap preformed to know for sure.

I approached the recipe with a color scheme in mind. I wanted blue and purple with some bright white. I would use the white as a line, since I’m terrible at doing line of powder. I did once with a cocoa dusting that was just ok, but it smears when I cut it and that goes against my desire for neatness.

Super Fat & Water Reduction

This is cold process using Lard, Olive Oil (inexpensive pomace), Palm Oil, Coconut Oil and a touch of silk.

You can superfat this at your desired amount. I used 5% superfat. I also did not reduce the water from the SoapCalculator’s default settings. I need time to work, and water buys time.

I made the recipe using a general cold processing method. If you need help with the recipe you can write me directly, but there are great videos already on how to make cold process.Triangle Soap #handmade #handmadesoap #sorcerysoap #handcraftedsoap #handcraftedbath #beautyandbath #artisansoap

I made the batch and added Pink Grapefruit fragrance oil to the entire batch before I colored it. I like this fragrance oil since I know it preforms well, does not discolor or accelerate trace. Its a bright clean fragrance and one I rely on for producing stable results.

Setting the Mold

Setting my 4 pound silicone mold on an angle, I leaned it on a towel and propped it up with another towel so it wouldn’t slide. I poured the purple amount, which I guessed at, and dropped in a few hand rolled embeds. I tapped it, I did not pound it, to get the air bubbles out. Its too delicate to pound. When I was satisfied, I sprayed with alcohol and put it in the freezer for a few minutes. I set the mold the same way, on a tilt, in the freezer.

When I could jiggle the mold, and the soap didn’t move, I proceeded. I pulled the soap out of the freezer and put it on a tilt again on my soap table. I spooned a thin layer of white batter and put it back in the freezer. Now, my soap is beginning to firm. The saponification process is happening so the soap is beginning to harden, which always causes a bit of anxiety in me. Patiences, I tell myself. I take a breath and wait a few more moments while this soap stiffens.

Design

I remove the mold and set the mold level on the table, and spoon the rest of the soap on carefully and smooth the entire layer out. I now can tap the entire mold a little harder to try and release any trapped air bubbles. When I say, spoon carefully, I mean that literally. I am extremely gentle to not penetrate the bottom layers.

I spray the top liberally with alcohol and stick the finished soap in the freezer for about 30 minutes. No longer because I don’t want to freeze it. Remember, there is still water in it and it will freeze. I just want to hinder the heat from full saponification. I don’t want cracks or gelling in the center.

I take it out and spray the top again. I don’t mind ash on the top and don’t want to chance gelling, so I leave it uncovered to evaporate and minimize heat. I’ve seen soap, after removing it from my chilling-process, heat up to 180 degrees. I’m cautious to control the heat in the direction I want it to go.

I unmolded the next day and cut it. Its a smooth, hard bar now after 4 weeks. I have it for sale, yet I want to keep this one. 🙂

Soap Recipe –Purchase this Soap Here

How to Make Triangle Soap
Recipe Type: Cold Process Slow Trace
Author: Soap Witch
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 10 bars
Cold process slow to trace soap. Used for time consuming designs.
Ingredients
  • 40% Lard
  • 30% Olive Oil
  • 20% Coconut Oil
  • 10% Palm Oil
Instructions
  1. Make as a traditional cold process recipe, adhering to your own safety procedures.
  2. Add 1/3 teaspoon of powdered silk amino acids to lye solution for a 2.5 pound loaf.