Starting with Soap – Day 9 4


Finished Beeswax Soap

Finished Beeswax Soap

Today I wanted to work with what can be a rather finicky material, Beeswax.  Why is Beeswax finicky? Well, it is extremely temperature sensitive and we recommend no more that 0.5 ounce per pound of fats. That is a tiny amount!

While Beeswax contributes this amazingly creamy sensation, it can do some strange things to your soap. A tiny amount can help you make a harder bar but the more Beeswax you add, the more spongy your soap becomes. Why? Beeswax is really high in unsaponifiable material. The more unsaponifiable material there is, the more it affect the texture. This is a great example of where less is more.

Weighing Coconut Oil

Weighing Coconut Oil

Beeswax can also be a bit of a lather killer. For this reason, I will be using both Palm Kernel Oil and Coconut Oil because I want lots of lather. Remember that Palm Kernel Oil and Coconut Oil can make a hard bar. To offset that, I will be using lots of Olive Oil. Let’s go make soap!

Ingredients
Coconut Oil
Olive Oil
Palm Kernel Oil
Beeswax
Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
Water
Equipment
Scale
Microwave Safe Container
Spoons
Pipettes
Thermometer
Immersion Blender

Recipe:

Recipe in Grams
113 grams Coconut Oil
184 grams Olive Oil
142 grams Palm Kernel Oil
14 grams Beeswax
67 grams Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
177 mL Water
Recipe in Ounces
4 oz Coconut Oil
6.5 oz Olive Oil
5 oz Palm Kernel Oil
0.5 oz Beeswax
2.35 oz Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
6 fl oz Water
Recipe in Percentages
25% Coconut Oil
40.62% Olive Oil
31.25% Palm Kernel Oil
3.12% Beeswax
Q.S. Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
Q.S. Water

 

Weighing Oils

Weighing Oils

Now to make soap. Weigh your oils into a microwave safe container. While the oils are heating in the microwave, weigh out your lye and mix with your water. Remember to add your lye to your water, not the other way around. Safety first!

Allow your two mixtures to cool. I like to put away my oils and set up my mold during this period. This helps keep my counters clean and my distractions to a minimum. When your oils are around 100°F-110°F, add your lye solution to your oils.

Heating Oils (Make sure your beeswax melts all the way!)

Heating Oils (Make sure your beeswax melts all the way!)

Remember that Beeswax is far better behaved when you use lower temperatures. You will also get a smoother texture if you use lower temperatures. One thing that is a little hard about making a Beeswax soap is that your oil mixture will get hazy and cloudy and it will STILL be too hot! There will be a little voice in your head screaming that you either need to make soap right now or reheat your oils. Ignore it. It will make you crazy and more antsy than being a teenager waiting for a date but do your best not to worry or pace while you wait. (It is super hard, I know. Guess who ended up walking laps around the building…)

Cooled Oils, Ready to make soap

Cooled Oils, Ready to make soap

Using your immersion blender, mix your soap until you reach a light trace. Remember, trace doesn’t denote a viscosity, it just means that we aren’t seeing the oils float to the top and separate out. Often we pour our soap into the mold when it is the viscosity of whole milk not cooked custard. That is pretty fluid!

Mixing Soap

Mixing Soap

Allow your soap to sit in the mold undisturbed for 12-24 hours. Then cut into bars and place out on a shelf where they can dry. I like to use cardboard boxes under my soap so I don’t damage my shelves. You can use your soap immediately but it will last longer if you allow it to dry completely. A great aid in determining if your soap has fully dried are our Cure Cards. We can send some to you for free! (I like to tape them next to the recipe in my trusty notebook. It is super helpful!)

Taylor

Mixed Soap

Mixed Soap

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wow! It get thick very fast!

Wow! It gets thick very fast!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beeswax soap in Mold

Beeswax soap in Mold

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About Taylor

I'm a twenty something happy, animal loving, curious experimenter. I love reaching back into history and trying old recipes for cosmetics or foods. I'm constantly asking "Why?" My curiosity has me trying new things. I love taking walks with my dog as well as staying at home to cuddle with the dog and my cats. Some of my favorite scents include Hinoki Wood, Rose Garden, Jasmine and Gladiator.


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4 thoughts on “Starting with Soap – Day 9

  • Grey Dove

    Thank you so much for creating this fantastic informative series! I cannot tell you how much I wish it had been there when I began my soap making journey! It would have been an immense help. It is a terrific resource and a wonderful gift to all soapers at all levels!

    And a more personal thank you for this specific post, I was planning some beeswax and honey (probably not in the same batch, I know I’m not that brave and suspect that would be foolish) soap batches to go along with a honeybee awareness campaign we are planning on our blog. So I’m greatful to have the correct percentages to hand, and will begin formulating later this week.

    Yours sincerely,
    Grey Dove

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  • Terri

    Just noticed that you are using plastic wrap to line your mold. I use freezer paper and it is difficult to get smooth. Is there a trick to using the wrap? Thanks

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