|Salt is a very diverse product. I use it for cooking, topping popcorn, mixing scrubs and even making salt potpourri. Salt potpourri is a simple way to incorporate your favorite scents into any space. I think that salt potpourri makes it so you don’t have to worry about hiding the bottle of room spray because the scent is coming from a part of your decor!
I enjoy walking into a softly scented room. It is so pleasant and refreshing, and it feels like a miniature celebration. Today I am going to make several jars of salt potpourri and use some of our recently released fragrance oils. Let me tell you about these yummy fragrances!
Amazon Fragrance Oil
Coconut Cassis Fragrance Oil
Dirty Mimosa Fragrance Oil
Napa Valley Vineyard Fragrance Oil
Cabana Boys Fragrance Oil
After describing all these fragrances, I’m feeling a bit like a mixologist. Are you getting the sense that cocktails are the word of the day?
Take the size of salt you desire, either Jumbo or Extra Large, and place enough salt that will fill your container(s) of choice into your strainer. We want to do a quick rinse of the salt to remove the powdery coating on the salt. Check out the photos and you will definitely see how the rinsed salt has more shine.
After the salt has dried, it is ready to place into your container. I have shown two options 1) glass jar with a lid that has holes (I’m using those small glass cheese containers) and 2) jute burlap drawstring bags. If you prefer any small open bowl or container can work as well. Always choose a glass container or natural fabric bags for displaying your salts. Fragrance and Essential Oils are strong solvents and will break down plastics.
Once the containers are filled with salt, then you add 1-2 ml of any fragrance or essential oil of your choice directly to the salt. Place the lid on the glass cheese containers and give a little shake when you want to freshen up your space. For the jute bags close the drawstring and give it a squish. I placed the jute bags onto a cardboard piece until ready to use.
When your salt potpourri starts to lose its scent, then add another 1-2ml of the same fragrance or essential oil or use a complementary new fragrance oil and start the fun all over again.
Enjoy the Salt!
I love the holidays and they are fast approaching which means plenty of preparations need to be made. This is the time of year where my UPS man and Postal Lady become very familiar with each other. I have plenty of gifts or the materials to make gifts that start arriving in the mail. It also means that I do what I can to make sure that my money is being stretched as far as I can. This is why I am delighted to announce we are having a Dayglo discount!
The manufacturer of the Dayglo colors has discontinued this particular line of colors but not to worry. They are going to be releasing a new line of very similar colors. So what do this mean for you? This means that you get awesome colors at amazing prices! Don’t wait! These prices will only last as long as our limited stock. Treat yourself to some budget friendly fun!
If you are looking for some inspiration, I recommend checking out Andee’s Music Inspired Swirl Soaps. If you have your own ideas, share them. We would love to feature you and your soaps. Happy soaping!
I love to learn. It is my passion. It is what gets me so excited to get up in the morning and start my day. And you, dear readers, contribute so much to everything I am exposed to. You also encourage me to continue to the question the “familiar”. I have some exciting news to share with you. Are you ready? Drum roll please.
Rosemary Oleoresin 2% and Rosemary Oleoresin 5% both have saponification values. Now what does this mean for you if you add it to soap? Well, this is dependent on how much Rosemary Oleoresin you are adding to your soap. Anything that is added 2% or more will greatly affect the superfat of your soap. This means unless you account for the saponifation value of the Rosemary Oleoresin, you are actually superfatting at a higher rate than what you may realize. It doesn’t mean it is bad, it is just something for you to be aware of.
If you make soap with either Rosemary Oleoresin, you may notice that batches that use it have creamier, silkier lather. Later this week I will be making soap with Rosemary Oleoresin versus without for you to try in samples. Request a comparison in your order! Don’t wait though. I only have a limited amount of samples.
If you don’t want to wait, make your own comparison batches to see the difference. And before you go off to make those tests, allow me to tell you the saponification values. Are you ready?
Rosemary Oleoresin 2% has a saponification value of 260 mg KOH / g of Fat.
Rosemary Oleoresin 5% has a saponification value of 295 mg KOH / g of Fat.
Wow! Can you believe those numbers? I was pretty astonished myself. Those numbers are pretty high compared to what we generally deal with. See how that can make such a difference in your soap? I am getting more excited for this comparison batch. Stay tuned to see what happens!
My experiences in China have opened my eyes to how location changes the ingredients that are viewed as specialty and/or exotic ingredients. Here in the USA, we often use ingredients that bring exotic and unique locations to mind. Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter, and Argan Oil are all oils that we consider to be specialty ingredients due to their exotic origins and the higher prices that are needed to bring them to the USA. Marketing for big cosmetic brands has also helped bring these ingredients to the forefront of our minds (and our customers too).
Yet in other countries and even regions within the same country, different ingredients may or may not be considered to be specialty ingredients. Here is a comparison for you. Soybeans grow in most of the USA and we use a lot of soybean oil in cooking and frying. It is easy to purchase anywhere, including most grocery stores. While I was in China I could not easily buy any type of Soybean Oil, liquid or hydrogenated. They eat lots of soy based products, but they don’t use the oil in cooking. When I did find it, the price was almost triple the price of Coconut Oil! Sometimes we don’t think about the oils that we find locally as special and it takes new experiences to remind us how special that oil is.
Do you remember my blog post about Snake Oil? Many of you commented about how you found the snake oil to be interesting and some of you even said it had you grossed out! Do you remember Jerry helped me get some Snake Oil so I could try making my own hand cream and soap? Here in the USA, we consider Snake Oil to be a specialty oil because it is something so unique to our markets.
Would you want to try a small amount of Snake Oil? I’ve been able to get a small amount of it for testing purposes and I would like to share it with you! It isn’t something that we will add to the catalog so when my *very* limited supply runs out, I won’t be able to get any more. How do you get some? Here are the steps:
- Go to the Contact Us page and select Blog Team.
- Send a message including your Name, Address, City ST ZIP, and a comment telling me what you want to do with the Snake Oil. Click SEND MESSAGE.
So, what happens after all of this? Well, I send each valid MMS customer who submitted information, a 2 fl oz sample of Snake Oil AND a handwritten note. (See the catch? You must be a Sage in order to participate.)
I hope I’ve given you some food for thought and even something to play with!
Birthdays are so much fun! Since it is our 18th birthday, I couldn’t resist doing something special for all of you!
We are offering a shipping special ALL month to you to celebrate our 18th birthday. If you were thinking about placing an order, then this month is the perfect time to do so!
- Any orders that have an item total of $150 or more will have a $10.00 shipping discount.
- Any orders that have an item total of $200 or more will have a $20.00 shipping discount.
- Any orders that have an item total of $300 or more will have a $40.00 shipping discount.
- If your shipping is less than the amount discounted, you get FREE shipping!
How do you get this awesome special? Enter the code 18-BDAY into the Item Code field in your shopping cart, then choose a quantity of 1 and you are ready to go!
This special ends on September 30th at midnight Mountain Time.
Don’t miss out on this awesome shipping special! Don’t have enough on your order to qualify? Get together with your friends, sisters-in-law, sisters, and even your neighbors to place a qualifying order! This special is the perfect reason to get stocked up for your holiday gift giving and/or sales. What will you get?
Somehow, Labor Day was able to sneak up on me this year. I don’t know why! It’s always the first Monday in September. I’m popping in to wish you a wonderful day and to remind you that MMS is closed today for the holiday.
We will be back tomorrow to process your orders and ship as many of them as possible. (We’re hoping to ship all of the orders placed over the holiday weekend!) We’ll also be back helping answer any questions you might have about products, recipe troubleshooting and more.
All orders placed after 12:30 P.M. Mountain Time on Friday, August 29th will be processed on Tuesday, September 2nd. Remember that UPS and USPS will be closed today and will not be able to pickup or deliver any packages. Both will resume their shipping services tomorrow.
If you need to travel today, please travel safely. I’m going to be staying home and enjoying a glass of Fresh Fruit Punch while I hang out with my family. I hope you enjoy your day and we will see you tomorrow!
P.S. Don’t forget to tune in tomorrow because I have some really awesome news for you! I’m so excited that I’ve barely been able to keep this news under my hat for as long as I have and tomorrow I can finally share it with all of you!
|I love lip products. Ask me how many lip balms I currently have in my purse. Okay, okay… I’ll just tell you. As of today, I currently have 3 lip balms, 2 lip tints, 3 lip glosses and 1 tube of lipstick stashed in my purse. If you ask anyone who sees me dig through my purse on a regular basis, they will tell you that this is a very small number. I love to have a collection of creamy, silky, smooth feeling lip balms at my fingertips. Today I am going to share how I make lip balms that have sufficient color to lightly tint the lips.
I will be using one of our lip balm solutions so we can keep it simple. Today I will be using our Soy Lip Solutions. If you want a more glossy product, I highly recommend using my personal favorite, the Mango Lip Solutions.
Recipe: (Fills 10 regular lip balm tubes)
Weigh 1.5 oz of Soy Lip Solutions into a small microwave safe. Heat the material gently until it has melted. At this time, I added approximately the same amount of two large peas of Red Lip Balm Color and one medium pinhead of Blue Lip Balm Color. Stir the material well. Place one drop of the mixture of the lip tint onto a cool plate. This is what we call the plate test. This helps you to make sure you have the desired color.
After my first round of the plate test, I added one large pinheads worth of Coral Lip Balm Color and tested the color again. Then I added about one medium pinhead of Yellow Lip Balm Color and the tip of a pin of Blue. Play around with adding various amounts of color until you are satisfied with the finished color. My finished color works for me, but your personal preferences may change the amounts used.
Once I was satisfied with the color, I added the Silver Mica to give my lip tint a shimmer. For this particular batch, I added 1 of our .15 cc scoops to the mixture. Stir well and fill your desired containers. Allow to cool and enjoy!
|One thing I really enjoyed during my stay in China was visiting all of the beauty and personal care shops. Some of the items seemed normal, while others were very exotic. I saw products that were to help lighten the color of your skin. I saw additives like lotus extract, snail secretions, and even hydrolyzed bird’s nest. Needless to say, shopping in these stores was an adventure. Since my return, I have been talking to my coworkers about my adventures overseas. One of the gals on staff, Hyun, is from Korea. Just the other week we got talking about the differences and similarities of Chinese, Korean and American beauty trends. We have embarked on a rather exciting project. We will be making some recipes that are common among handcrafters from each country. If you have recipes from abroad, please share them! We would love to post them on our blog.
One thing that Hyun had mentioned that I had noticed but never paid much attention to was an after-exercise massage oil. After exercising and getting all hot and sweaty, people was up and then apply a massage oil that gives a cooling sensation to the skin. I have seen people applying it after going hiking, running, dancing, etc. However, I never really thought of the specifics of the product. Come join Hyun and I as we make a wonderful after-exercise massage oil.
Weigh the Calendula Extract and Jojoba Oil into microwave safe container. Heat them gently until they are warm. Add the essential oils and menthol crystal. Stir until everything is cohesive. Pour into bottles. Cap and label. Enjoy!
|When melting a jar of Lip Solutions, I often recommend using the microwave to melt it quickly. However, I’ve now lived in places where I did not have easy access to a microwave. A recent question to our Technical Support Team reminded me that sometimes we don’t have access to a microwave and yet we still need to melt a jar of Lip Solutions. Let’s talk about how this can be easily resolved!
Today I’m going to use the Soy Lip Solutions to make a batch of lemon flavored lip balm.
Collect all the equipment you will need. I’ve used the Lip Solutions for many years now and I still forget one item or another. So while you are collecting your equipment and ingredients, I just hang out here!
Got everything? Good! Begin by placing the wire rack/perforated plate in the bottom of your pan. The goal is to prevent the jar from sitting on the bottom of the pan and prevent it from cracking due to uneven heat. The last thing you want is to have a broken jar of Lip Solutions that is no longer usable and leaves a mess in the pot.
Add enough water to the pot to fill the pot till is is about one third full. Your jar of Lip Solutions should not be submersed more than 2 inches. If you need to pull out your measuring tape and mark the side of the jar, go ahead and do it! Then you can add water to the pot until you have reached the mark on the side of your jar. If you add too much water you could cause the water to splash and get inside the jar of Lip Solutions. Remove the lid from the jar of Lip solutions and place the jar in the pot. Turn the stove burner heat on to medium low and allow the water to gently heat. The water will have eventually heated enough to simmer, but not enough to be at a rolling boil. The Lip Solutions will melt as the surrounding water heats. Do not leave the stove unattended to prevent any accidents!
As this method takes time, I HIGHLY recommend using this time to clean the kitchen, label items, knit or any other small tasks that are not attention hungry projects. Do not start a project that needs all or most of your attention. My jar of Lip Solutions had melted in about 10 minutes, but times will vary based on your stove, size of your pot and amount of water.
Once the Lip Solutions is mostly melted (a few small solid chunks), turn off the heat and remove the jar from the water. Stir until the remaining chunks have melted. If you overheat the lip balm, this will cause your pipette to melt, bend and no longer work! Then you will need to wait for it to cool completely and Add any of your desired flavors, extracts and/or colors. I added the Lemon Essential Oil and Sugar Baby Flavor. After stirring well to ensure the flavors had been mixed in completely, I filled my lip balm tubes and allowed the filled tubes to cool before capping.
Don’t forget to check the consistency of your lip balm with the Plate Test before you fill your lip balm containers. This will save you from discovering that your lip balm is too soft or too hard!
I have more photos for our Fragrance Testing Series! While these tests are a good indicator of how these fragrances will behave, this does not eliminate the need for you to test each fragrance with your own particular formulas.
Our first fragrance in Cold Process Soap is Emmett. According to our catalog, Emmett is a “very masculine scent of bay, rum, lime, mahogany, amber, vanilla and bergamot.” Emmett is a smooth and clean scent that makes me think of mountain air . This masculine combination of wood and citrus makes Elements of Bamboo bring peace, tranquility and balance to mind.
There was very slight discoloration of note, a light tan color. We used the maximum suggested usage rate of 2.5%, which is 0.4 ounces of fragrance in our 1 pound test batch.
Our second fragrance in Cold Process Soap is Osmanthus. According to our catalog, Osmanthus is “sensual, fresh, fruit and herbaceous and wonderfully calming. I think it is the best ever! It can be a personal signature scent so easily.” Osmanthus is a charming fragrance and is one of our most popular scents when we have personal projects that we need to find a scent that almost everybody will like. This fragrance is incredibly true to the fresh Osmanthus trees that I got to smell at the Summer Palace in Beijing!
There was not any discoloration of note and this means you can make any swirl you have always been dreaming of without worrying about the fragrance causing discoloration. We used the maximum suggested usage rate of 2.5%, which is 0.4 ounces of fragrance in our 1 pound test batch.
Our third fragrance in Cold Process Soap is Cucumbers & Melons. According to our catalog, Cucumbers & Melons is “A perfect blend on melons and cucumber with incredible results in cold process soap!” I find Cucumbers & Melons to be … indescribably refreshing. I know the scent is a combination of melons with cucumbers, but this fragrance always makes me smile and feel like I can tackle my day head on!
There was not any discoloration of note and this means you can make a green and yellow swirl without worrying about the fragrance causing discoloration. We used the maximum suggested usage rate of 2.5%, which is 0.4 ounces of fragrance in our 1 pound test batch.
Our fourth fragrance in Cold Process Soap is Frosted Cupcakes. According to our catalog, Frosted Cupcakes is a “blend of sugar, cinnamon, caramel and pecans. Imagine a German chocolate cake (without the cake) in a graham cracker crust. That caramel scent seems like home-baked fun.” This fragrance is one of my favorites! I love using it in room sprays and salt potpourri because it makes the kitchen smell like I’ve been slaving away over dessert when in reality, it only took me a few minutes to pull something from the freezer and pop it in the oven!
There is a moderate amount of discoloration of note, a very nice shade of soft brown hues. We used the maximum suggested usage rate of 2.5%, which is 0.4 ounces of fragrance in our 1 pound test batch.
Here are the details about our test batches before we added any fragrances!
Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
Microwave Safe Container
|Recipe in Grams
170 grams Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
142 grams Coconut Oil
113 grams Olive Oil
29 grams Shea Butter
64 grams Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
177 mL Water
|Recipe in Ounces
6 oz Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
5 oz Coconut Oil
4 oz Olive Oil
1 oz Shea Butter
2.26 oz Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
6 fl oz Water
|Recipe in Percentages
37.5% Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
31.25% Coconut Oil
25% Olive Oil
6.25% Shea Butter
Q.S. Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
Our temperatures for lye and oils are between 125°F and 130°F.. We make our soap with a 6% superfat. All of the batches we make are mixed to light trace and then the fragrance is added. After the fragrance is added we mix until the fragrance is incorporated and then we pour into the mold.