Vanilla Oleoresin in Cold Process Soap 11

Yesterday, I promised that we would make some cold process soap and test the Vanilla Oleoresin. Well, today I’m following up on my promise.

We made three batches of soap to test usage rates of 1%, 2% and 3%. The recipe we used was the standard MMS test batch.
Collect needed items:

Coconut Oil
Olive Oil
Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
Sodium Hydroxide
Vanilla Oleoresin
Soap Spoon
Rubbermaid Drawer Organizer #2915
Immersion Blender
Time spent:
Weighing time: 8 minutes
Adding lye to water: 15 seconds, followed by 60 seconds of stirring
Heating of oils time: 2 minutes
Pouring lye solution into the fat mixture: 10 seconds
Using immersion blender to mix soap solution: 90 seconds
Adding Vanilla Oleoresin to the soap: 60 seconds
Stirring to completely blend: 30 seconds
Pour into mold: 10 seconds
Allow soap to rest: 24 hours
Recipe in ounces:
4 oz Coconut Oil
4 oz Olive Oil
8 oz Hydrogenated Soybean Oil

2.2 oz Sodium Hydroxide
6 fl oz water

Weight for Vanilla Oleoresin:
1% Batch: 0.16 oz
2% Batch: 0.32 oz
3% Batch: 0.48 ounces

Measure oils on your scale. Warm on the stove or in the microwave. I melted the oils in the microwave. Add sodium hydroxide to the water. Mix well. The temperatures were near 160 ° F. See the beginning of the blog on making Cold Process Soap to understand our thermometer-less method.

Combine oils and lye solution. Stir until thin trace. Upon trace weigh the Vanilla Oleoresin right into the mixing vessel. If your scale can’t handle the total weight of the batch, then measure the vanilla into a wide spoon. This product is too sticky to try to remove from a cup. Stir well. Pour soap into molds. Allow to sit until soap is firm.

Tomorrow we will cut these test batches and share pictures of the cut soaps with notes about these batches.

See you tomorrow!

Adding the lye to the water.

Mixing the lye solution.

The oils and lye solution are ready to be mixed.

Adding the lye solution to the melted oils.

Mixing the lye solution and oils together.

Adding the Vanilla Oleoresin to the soap.

Pouring the soap into the mold.

This batch has almost reached trace.

Stirring the Vanilla Oleoresin into the raw soap.

Completed soaps as they rest for 24 hours.

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Vanilla Oleoresin in Cold Process Soap, 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating

About Andee

Director of Happiness. I'm a thirty-something soap snob. I've grown up with handmade soaps, and I love them! I really like making lotions, soaps, and perfumes. I adore mixing scents to come up with something new. My favorite scent is either Wicked or Cotton Candy. I tend to hoard fragrances, I even have an Earl Grey Tea from the MMS catalog. I won't tell you how old it is, but it sure is good!

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11 thoughts on “Vanilla Oleoresin in Cold Process Soap

  • Karen

    Hi, I’m wondering what it would have looked like had the molds been put in the fridge after they were poured, would they have kept an even caramel color, they looked really nice right until you cut them lol. I have Vanilla Oleoresin 10 fold, I’m going to experiment, wondering how much you would recommend for a 32 ounce recipe or maybe I should try one smaller since it’s likely to not work, maybe 24. I also read if you add cocoa butter it will smell like chocolate chip cookies, have you had any luck adding it? I don’t mind the dark brown at all, I think it would great with a mint green swirled through or blue aquamarine or something. Thanks for the demo, I’ve been pondering whether or not to try it given the cost of the 10 fold, I love, love, love vanilla and do not like fragrance at all, gives me headaches. Again, thanks for all your tips and expertise – K 🙂

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    • Tina

      Karen, the brown color will happened just from oxidation. The refrigerator will not stop the discoloration. It would be fantastic it it did however. I agree that the odor of the vanilla is so good that the color is just overlooked. Vanilla = yum!


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  • salina

    I don’t understand w the vanills 1 2 3 % is thet a choice od how much u want to add, because your pics show the loaves at different colors labeled 12ans 3 %…or are you showing what it would look like if u added the different percentages.

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    • Andee Post author

      We were testing the different usage rates of our Vanilla Oleoresin in Cold Process Soap. We made three test batches using 1%,. 2% and 3%. Our final evaluation showed that the vanilla scent did not vary much between the different usage rates and was not a strong scent. I hope this helps!

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  • Joanne LaPomarda

    I like the color of the 2%, but do agree that it would look a lot more interesting with a nice turquoise color being swirled through it! I’ll be curious to hear how good the vanilla smells in a few days. If the wonderful Vanilla Scent comes through, then the color really doesn’t matter!! And, although this Vanilla is very expensive it seems like a little goes along way & that’s a good thing!

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    • Taylor


      The colors are fun, aren’t they? Unfortunately, when we cut the soap, we found that the scent was very faint. I cannot tell you how crushed we were. We had been hoping for a bold, unmistakeable vanilla scent. We felt that had we been able to achieve the scent, the cost would be worth it. For the results we got, we feel using vanilla oleoresin is soap is too cost prohibitive. At the end of the experiment, we felt that the Vanilla Oleoresin is better used in things like lotions, creams, scrubs and the like. If you would like to hear more of our thoughts on the Vanilla Oleoresin in soap, check out this post of when we cut the soap.


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  • jnl

    Can you test it with hot process soap to see if the scent holds in HP? Some essential oils fade in CP but work in HP. Thanks!

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    • Tina

      We aren’t fans of hot process soap because this seems to compromise the stability of the finished soap. I think the very nature of vanilla makes this an overly costly possibility. When it comes to everything on Earth there is a limited supply, using this treasured resource as a treasure that shouldn’t be squandered means it really isn’t compatible with soap. Now, lotion is another story.


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  • Cheryl

    How did the 3 batches of vanilla oleoresin turn out? Was the scent coming through for all??

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  • Lisa

    Thank you! This has been helpful as I try to figure out how to instill a natural vanilla scent into my cold process soaps.

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