You wouldn’t read about it…

May 05 2012 Published by under daily soap stuff,hot process soap

After my last post talking about my soap crackling, l took on board every single comment and suggestion. I narrowed my issues down to a combination of all of the following possibilities:

  • too much water – l normally soap at a 20% water discount, and had stopped doing this so that l had a better chance of swirling.
  • soaping too hot – my inability to wait for things to cool down long enough is the reason why things go badly and also why l generally do terrible swirls – even a 20% water discount should still leave me long enough to swirl, except that l need to soap cooler to stop everything from taking off on me and setting in the bucket. I’m sure l’ve mentioned this about a gazillion times here before, you think l’d have learned by now.
  • a new fragrance that l hadn’t tried before (so it was bound to misbehave and l really shouldn’t beat myself up too much about it), combined with soaping too hot.
  • possibly – just possibly, the Rice Bran Oil. I’m going to make some non swirled soap with it today and see what happens. One of the crackled batches is my ‘meditate’ soap so l am going to try a new batch of it…soap it cooler, use the RBO and see what eventuates.
  • still being unsure about how long and hard to let the soap gel. I watched last night’s batch like a hawk. I normally let it go for the full on ‘hot translucent gel’ effect, where you can actually see the gel forming from the centre of the soap and spreading outwards to the edge of the mould. I suspect this may be a bit too hot? Last night this batch of hippy chick (above and below) was very hot, in fact still warm this morning, but l didn’t let it gel to the point where l got that ‘hot patch’ that spreads. I think just underneath the top surface of the soap it had still fully gelled, but l uncovered it before it got any hotter. Of course then l was scared of incomplete gelling and the ‘bullseye effect’ which l also dislike. l just can’t win!

But…it turned out perfectly. Like the title of this post says, you just wouldn’t read about it. I was SO NERVOUS last night, and almost too scared to get out of bed this morning and slice it.

But l am totally in awe of the smoothness of colour…and complete lack of crackling. Not one little crack, anywhere. Maybe the soap fairies were just feeling sorry for me.

Before l made the Hippy Chick last night, l also made this lovely yellow Passionfruit soap. It’s hot process, ie: cooked in the crockpot. Yes, l was so nervous of making cold process soap last night that l resorted to the failsafe and trusty crockpot to make a batch. l guess l really needed the reassurance of knowing *something* would work, and hot process is pretty bulletproof. This one has rice bran oil in it. I think there might be a couple of HP batches coming up, because l have a heck of a lot of RBO to get rid of, and if this is the only way l can do it safely without risking the crackles, then so be it.

It smells so good, and if l had a bigger crockpot, and three arms to help me empty hot heavy soap into the mould, l would be very, very tempted right now to only ever make HP soap. I’ve always loved it. Might go and make another batch now!

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