This is my basic cold process coconut milk recipe. Coconut oil, olive oil, palm oil, avocado oil, castor oil. Then mix the sodium hydroxide with coconut milk.
I split the batch and used some round molds and a new half loaf mold. My sandalwood colorants we’re gold mica and cocoa powder and used the half loaf for that.
The Tropical Jasmine I left plain.. because I have soaped with it before and I knew it was going to rice and need extra blending.. then would harden as soon as it stopped being stired. I love this scent in soap but it’s solid before I can get to tapping out air bubbles. I quickly glopped this stuff into round molds.
My hobbies have grown so my project list needs categories now, here’s what I’ve got in the works, who knows what I will get to, I should have some free time in a few weeks.
Cold Process Soap Making
Idea: I made a lot of soap last year, I have isolated my favorites and will be recreating some variation of them. All of my soap sold or was given away last year so I only have the newer two that I made in November that were curing at the time I ran out.
- Charcoal soap split (Lavender/Rosemary Soap, Cedar/Bergamot)
- Breton Sea Salt Bar
- Coconut Milk split scent ( hawaiian jasmine, sandalwood)
- Beer Soap (new soap type)
- Shaving Cream (will run out soon)
- Laundry and Dish Soap ( will run out soon)
This is meant to be as a set for holiday presents but it didn’t happen. I will be infusing the black tea into the oils.
- Black Tea & Lavender
- Black Tea & Peppermint
- Black Tea & Bergamot
I might make these with Black Tea Infused Oil as well.
- Apple/Sage Conditioner
- Apple/Sage Lotion
I’m an extreme beginner, I still cant sew a straight line or understand some terms and instructions. The seam ripper is my best friend and I keep stabbing myself with pins and burning myself on the iron… but I have determination.
- Jean Quilt
- Tri-Fold Wallet
- Handmade Paper with Botanical Imbeds
- Hardcover hand made blank journal
- El Pollo Loco Chicken ( pineapple and lime glaze)
- Teriyaki Tofu ( I can’t get it right!! Eventually…)
- Corn Tortillas
I am using the other half of my frozen coconut milk cubes for this recipe. so half coconut milk half distilled water. Because of the sugars it should reach a higher temperature, hence the freezing of the coconut milk. The soap wont be insulated at the end because I don’t want a mess, I find that my soap mold fits perfectly into the door part of my freezer so I will place it there until it cools off.
This soap will have two layers that are both going to discolor so I am not particularly worried about scorching. I expect it to darken considerably from the fragrance oils. I will be using pearly white mica to bring it down to a lighter brown vanilla layer and tan espresso layer with flecks of finely ground coffee. Because the fragrances will discolor differently I will have twice as much Mica in the Vanilla portion. I am also hoping to get a nice jagged look between the layers. For my extra leftover soap I made individual Vanilla and Espresso soaps without mixing them(much).
10.25 oz Coconut Oil
10.75 oz Palm Oil
10.25 oz Olive Oil
2 oz Castor Oil
1.75 oz Cocoa Butter
4.99 oz Sodium Hydroxide
5.77 oz Distilled Water
5.77 oz Coconut Milk
2-3 tablespoons Bentonite Clay
Pearly White Mica
1.2 oz Espresso Fragrance
1.2 oz Vanilla Fragrance
one pinch of Espresso, fine ground
I added the clay to the oils before the lye and I added the frozen coconut milk cubes to slushy, near frozen distilled water just before incorporating the lye into the water.
At light trace I separated the batter and added the mica then added the fragrance oil to the bottom layer, and brought it to a fairly thick trace in an attempt to make jagged edges that wont squash as soon as I layer on top of it. Once the bottom layer is poured and ready to go I added the fragrance to the second batch then layered it gently on top. In reality my technique evolved into using a spatula to create channels to pour soap into. I’ll have to regroup and try that technique again some time.
Cut Bars & Discolor Progression
I always expect the worst with new techniques and scents. I am using a bamboo scent for this one. I expect it to rice so I will take an extra step to blend the fragrance into a small portion of batter before fully incorporating it. It’s my first coconut milk soap and I expect heating. I am also a little worried to put the soap in the fridge/freezer with my food. So I’ve sort of created a quarantine area of the fridge where the soap mold will be held prisoner in it’s own little soap containment unit until it cools off. I generally am making a soap that I would apply heat to so cooling is a bit of a difference for me. Also I would recommend being careful with strong scents because your leftover takeout rice could absorb some scent and for example become ‘bambooed rice’.. or you’ll have ‘bambooed-butter’ or something awful so take this into consideration scent by scent, this one didn’t cause any trouble.
I am making this soap with palm, coconut, olive, castor and avocado oils. about 60% of the water was substituted with coconut oil and I added bentonite clay. I ended up using an in the mold swirl: which is two colors divided and then poured into the mold half the batter at a time, swirling the colors in together.
I added a portion of the batter to the fragrance oil and it didn’t know if it wanted to become solid or rice or both and I mixed like crazy, divided it into the separated portions and I had to blend it until it was at a thick trace before it smoothed out so I ran a chopstick through it since it was very gloppy when poured and I wanted to ensure it mixed enough. I hope I pounded the majority of the bubbles out after that.
This particular green mica goes through some interesting shades of vibrant green to grey color transformations.
I did have a few blemishes, the top of the soap had two small cracks, I got almost a complete gel so the two end pieces aren’t as pretty, the bubbles were about what I was expecting for how thick it was. Here we are unmolded and cut. The white still may yellow a bit from the fragrance oil. We shall see. At this point the green color change is nearly complete and the grey is almost gone.
I have my Salt Bar recipe built and I’ve taken a few days to watch all of the YouTube video’s on it I can find. I need the volume of my silicone molds calculated and I think I will have enough for my sheet of round molds and a bit of overflow to my plastic molds.
A few lessons I have learned from observing other soapers are as follows.
- Most soapers are using a near equal amount of salt to the amount of oil used. Salt kills most bubbles and coconut oil is an exception so you need to use a high amount of it in your recipe. 60-80% seems most common.
- That much coconut oil will be very drying so the superfat must be somewhere between 10-20%
- Add your fragrance to your salt and add your salt at thin trace, it will thicken quickly so work fast.
- Use silicone molds if you have them, the soap will be hard and brittle from all the salt so cut your soap as soon as 2 hours after pouring. almost everyone I observed waiting 24 hours to mold had broken loaf soaps.
So.. with these guidelines in mind I begin.
I am using 80% Coconut oil, then Palm, Avocado and Castor Oil’s for the rest. For the salt I am using Breton Sea Salt at 75% to the weight of the oils. I will be superfatting at 15%.
I will be splitting the batch in two and making 2 separate scents. Peppermint(2X) Essential Oil, and Apple Sage fragrance oil a sample I got from Brambleberry.
I will in the pot swirl each with one of my new micas. I selected Caribbean Blue for the Peppermint, and Kelly Green for the Apple Sage.
I added the fragrance to the salt before hand. The peppermint was pretty intense in my tiny kitchen for a while.
I let everything cool to about 100 degrees and then tried to work reasonably fast.
Here was the result. (Half of my kitchen light is burnt out so it’s a little dim)
After a few hours it was still pretty soft so I let it go longer. I tried to unmold the next morning, they were crumbly but firm, so I added them to the freezer before unmolding the rest.
Not perfect but it was about what I expected for my first try.
For fun I used my new Dash Cam to record the making of this soap so I may post that as soon as I figure out what software to use and get it edited.
After a walk with Drew yesterday I made a valencia orange loaf of soap with a spoon swirl design. This soap is primarily palm, coconut and olive oil with the addition of castor oil, sweet almond oil, shea butter and nettle extract, it has a superfat of 7%. I added bentonite clay to help hold the scent since I am using a citrus essential oil, it is said that citrus oils fade in cold process but this one has good reviews from soapers. I was also careful of the flash point.
I cut them this morning. The round soaps have pieces of loofah in them. Their scent is quite strong.
I am now at 20 bars made this last week, I think I am good until those are cured at least.
I made a divider for my soap mold and split the batch into two different soaps. On one side I was expecting trouble with the Pikake or Hawaiian Jasmine scent I picked and while it didn’t thicken as fast as I expected it did rice and have to be blended out. I picked a pearly white mica and tossed in some of my rose gold mica which discolors in cold process but I wanted to see what I would end up with, I was hoping for a very soft pink or at least some gold sparkle but it seems to have completely disappeared.
On the other side of the divider I used a ginger and patchouli scent. The bottom layer is grey with activated charcoal and I added black tea. Then I blended cocoa powder for brown, Moroccan red clay blended with brick red oxide for red and drop swirled those into a plain batter and layered it over the grey layer. The top is a solid pearly white.