Starting with Soap - Day 1
Summer is coming and our Technical Support Team is getting some fabulous questions regarding how to get into soap making and how to make great soap. I am always thrilled when I hear another person is wanting to learn how to make soap. If you are just starting on this journey, welcome. I am glad to have you with us. Over the next two weeks we will discuss how to make superb soap without breaking the bank and keep the hobby sustainable. Are you ready? Let’s get started!
Learning to make soap is thrilling, overwhelming and just a little scary. While there does need to be respect of the materials and the process, don’t let it scare you. If you can make a cake with Betty Crocker™, you can make soap. Here are some things I consider really important/helpful to making soap.
All of these items make it much easier to make soap. However if you are on a limited budget and can only choose a few things from this list, my top three items will be goggles, a notebook and a good scale. I consider goggles a must because your vision is so important. A notebook is very important because when things go right, it allows you to duplicate what you did and when they go wrong, we can figure out how and fix it. The scale is also important. Soap is just one of those things you can’t make using volume measurements. Getting a good scale means you can make consistent batches of soap. The rest of the items do make life a lot easier but are rather flexible. You can always use recycled items. Your mixing bucket could be an old ice cream bucket or other container. If you reuse a food container make it large, don’t use drinking cup and remove food markings. Write SOAP ONLY on your containers.
You also don’t need a fancy soap mold. I use a drawer organizer lined with plastic wrap as my mold. (It is my most used mold.) Look around. There are lots of things that can be used. I have used milk cartons lined with bags, shipping boxes, PVC pipe, shoe boxes and even pencil organizers. Have some fun searching for your mold!
Another thing that I consider a must is keeping your soaping equipment and your cooking tools separate. When you get to using fragrance and essential oils you will find that they “stick” to all things plastic, silicone, wood and rubber. You do not want your spaghetti sauce tasting like lavender or patchouli, no matter how much you love how it smells. Check out this blog on how to protect your dishwasher from contamination as well.
Tomorrow we will talk about creating our formulations, calculating the capacity of our found molds and safety. This will allow you to collect the items you need and from there we can get started!