Tips On Soap Making
Essential Tips on Soap Making
The hobby of soap making is so vast that it's quite easy to get lost. Getting some essential tips on soap making is the best and easiest way to ensure that you are constantly on top of things. Every single hobbyist who makes soap on their own has an idea of how the process works and what is the right way to do things. In the end, you have to come down to your own process but that only comes through with time and practice.
Here are some essential tips on soap making that can help you get started in the process of soap making. If you have already been involved in the hobby for a while now, maybe you can use these tips to fine-tune your process.
1. Knowing when the soap is ready for use is always a hard thing. What you need to look for is something called "Trace". When you place soap into a pot, it needs to stay vertical for as long as possible. Think of a drop of water and what happens when you place a drop of water on a table-top. It immediately starts flowing to the sides and flattens out. Now, think of a drop of honey and how it reacts. Honey will slowly flatten out, maintaining that drop-like shape when you place it on the table. That is how soap needs to react when it's almost ready for use. It should stick up for as long as possible, and the longer it stays up, the closer you are to completion of the process.
2. When you heat up the oil-mixture, you need to do it very slowly, raising the temperature to about 110 degree Fahrenheit. The slow-heating is applied to ensure that the oil doesn't catch fire while being heated. Even though most of the oils generally used have a higher heating point, you can never be too careful.
3. The lye and the oil need to be at the same temperature when you mix them together. That means, your lye also needs to be cooled down to about 110 degree Fahrenheit before you can start mixing them together.
4. A hand blender is the best way to mix the oil and lye mixtures together. You need to keep blending the mixture together, scrapping out the sides of the bowl, until you get the "peaks" or "trace" that you are looking for. Once that is achieved, you know that the right consistency has been reached. Using the hand blender is always better than using a hand-whisk - that could mean hours of work before you get close to the results you want.
5. Always keep a thermometer handy because you need to keep an eye on the temperature. A meat-probe or a regular candy thermometer is available easily and can be a life-saver when it comes to getting your temperatures perfect
6. After you have poured the soap into the mould, make sure you wrap it up nicely and snugly to trap that warmth. The warm temperature helps with the chemical processes within the soap and if you keep things tight, it will help the soap harden quicker
7. Once the soap has hardened completely, it still isn't ready to use. You need to pull it out of the mould and cut it into the shape of the bars you want before leaving it out to dry. Putting it on newsprint paper or brown paper will ensure that you don't have to worry about any residue moisture spreading out onto the work-surface or storage shelf. Also, these papers absorb the moisture without letting the soap-bar remain moist. After about a couple of weeks or so, just turn the soap over and let it sit again for a couple of weeks
8. Finally, stick to natural materials when it comes to choosing your ingredients for making soap. There is plenty of evidence to suggest that natural materials are better for the skin, in terms of fragrance and in terms of lasting effects as compared to synthetically produced materials. So, if you are using natural ingredients, you are guaranteed to end up with a better product. What's more, you will always find that natural ingredients are cheaper than the cheap substitutes they sell in stores today
These essentials tips on soap making can really make a difference to the way you work on soap making. No matter how long you have been a part of this hobby, some things can get overlooked or forgotten. If you have this list of essential tips on soap making in front of you at all times, you are guaranteed to find the right mix every single time!