Monday, July 30, 2012

Lemon Zinger

I'm almost out of Lemon Zinger soap so it was time to make more. The first time I made this I added ylang ylang essential oil to lemon and litsea cubeba and must admit, I wasn't a fan of the scent at all. Ylang ylang sounds so exotic I couldn't imagine not loving it when I bought it online. With great anticipation I removed the lid, anxious to sniff and was rather disappointed. But I needed to use it so into the Lemon Zinger it went. After sitting on the curing rack for a while it was time to try it out in the shower. Wow! was I surprised. The tart lemon scent was just delicious, and the ylang scent was hardly even noticable. I went in search of more information on ylang ylang and found that it is sometimes used to anchor other scents in cp soap. I may not right off this essential oil after all. And yes, this current batch has an essential oil blend of lemon, litsea cubeba and ylang ylang.

Monday, July 23, 2012

In the Limelight - Avocado OIl

Avocado oil is a deeply penetrating oil obtained from the pulp of the avocado. This easily absorbed oil is rich in antioxidants and vitamins A, B, D and E. Vitamins and antioxidants work together to prevent and repair damage. Avocado oil softens tissue, soothing skin that is dry, irritated or sensitive, and aids in the healing of damaged skin and cell regeneration. Avocado oil hydrates the cells, providing greater elasticity which promotes the reduction of fine lines and wrinkles, firmer younger skin, and an overall improvement in skin tone. With this in mind it's easy to see that avocado oil and products containing it may be beneficial for those with:
  • sensitive skin
  • mature skin
  • sun or climate damaged skin
  • dry skin & skin conditions such a psoriasis
I love using avocado oil. I've incorporated it in a number of my soaps, as well as my eye serum, lotion and lip balms.

Friday, July 20, 2012

I was Wrong

In my last post I was sharing my incredible distaste for partial gels. And in that post I said that I didn't care for the look of rebatched soap and would probably shred the offending bars and incorporate them into a new batch. Well it didn't take long to realize that I'd have to make a LOT of batches to incorporate all those shreds so, I bit the bullet, pulled out my soaping crock pot and set those shreds to rebatching.
Well aren't I just feasting on those words now. I really like this new look! Once the shreds were well on their way to melting down I added some lavender coloured chunks from some small colour experimenting bars. The texture is much smoother than I had anticipated. I just may have to do this again sometime.

Here are a few more bars that I made this week.
Peppermint Patti - with real chocolate, peppermint essential oil and tussah silk

Cherry Blossom - with tussah silk. This fragrance oil is subtle but very yummy.

Hearts-A-Swirl makeover - goat milk with a delicious scent of chocolate, strawberries and grapefruit.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Partial Gel - I REALLY hate it!

My new wooden soap molds have created a new problem for me - their capacity for insulating is far too good! The other day I made my Bamboo & Grapefruit Aloe & Yogurt soap and this is what I got.
Grrrrr! I tried a quick hanger swirl and then ran it - literally - to the freezer, where I left it until I went to bed about 6 hours later. That's when I transfered it to the fridge. The next day I let it sit on the counter in the mold until it was room temperature. I thought it looked beautiful, just what I was going for, until I pulled the freezer paper off the bottom and saw a nice bright stripe right down the entire length of the log. I waited until this morning to cut it.

So why bother preventing gel? My milk soaps tend to heat up so much that I end up with a deep cavernous crack down the middle of the log, even when soaping at low temps. Not at all like the notch in this particular bar - that just happens to be a dip in my textured top. Nope, cracks aren't pretty either.

I know - partial gels are purely asthetic, the soap is perfectly usable and I have to say, this soap feels great. But I think it looks ghastly! I really don't like the look of rebatched soap either so I think these will be shredded and added to another batch. I wonder what other soap makers do with their partially gelled soap.

On a brighter note, I also made a small batch of Goatmilk, Honey 'n Oats. I lined the bottom of the mold with bubble wrap so I could pour and run it to the freezer. Not having the bubble wrap on top to seal in the heat probably helped.

These are the 4th of my Milky Way quad paks that I'll be putting together.

Monday, July 9, 2012

New Shapes, New Sizes

I am so blessed to have a hubby who is happy to help me with whatever project I have in mind. Recently we made 5 new soap molds, and I couldn't be happier with them. Here are some of my latest soaps made in my new molds.

Baby Rose
Not crazy about the crackling - overhaeated t.d. perhaps??

Amaretto Almond
A remake of the Great Cakes Soap Challenge Bar - I added
the top layer in hopes that it would not become as dark as last time.
Dead Sea Bar

This is one big block of soap! Haven't decided if I like this shape/size yet

Man Pak - My first quad pak for men.
l-r: Light Beer (scented with litsea cubeba), Drakkar (inside a soap net),
Dark Beer (scented with coffee and amaretto fos), Green Irish Tweed.
Drakkar & Green Tweed are goat milk soaps - put them in the freezer right
away and still got a huge partial get - grrrrrr!
Perfect size for a soap net, though.

Milky Way Pak
l-r: Amaretto Almond (with almond milk), Ginger Yogurt (with greek yogurt),
Strawberry Cream (with coconut milk)