Handmade soap is a very old craft. Soapmaking was even a social event
for the pioneers of this great nation. Although, making handmade soap
uses basic ingredients and a fundamental process, it is by no means
easy to make a high quality bar of handmade soap. Handmade soapmaking
has been refined, but the craft itself has not changed much.
Handmade soap's cold process uses the basic ingredients of fat and
lye. Lotion Lady® handmade soaps do not contain
animal products for the fats. Only high quality vegetable oils are
used. Added to the ingredient list are quality essential and natural
fragrance oils. The goal is to create a bar of handmade soap that
performs well, has a natural scent and is good for your skin.
The lye solution must
be made using cold water. It will heat up to
200 degrees. So, it must cool while the oils are gently
heated to the precise temperature for mixing. You'll
need a laboratory thermometer.
The lye solution should be poured into the oils,
not the reverse. A stainless steel or enameled pot should
be used, not aluminum nor iron.
Not to be confused with melt-and-pour glycerin, this is soapmaking
using the cold-process method. It requires patience, concentration
and safety. Lye burns. Protective gloves and clothing should
be worn including a face shield. Vinegar should be kept handy to rub
on your skin should it come in contact with the lye. Keep children,
pets and all distractions away during the entire process!
Once the lye solution and oils are combined, the tedious process
of hand stirring begins which can take over an hour. This is a lengthy
step, but very important. If not done properly, the batch will be
When the mixture is ready, it will be poured
into a mold similar to the one on the right. It must then
be carefully moved to a place where it can saponify undisturbed.
It can still cause severe burns, if it spills during this
After saponification, the caustic alkali (lye)
is neutralized. The result of this chemical reaction is soap.
to Part 2>>>