Archive for the ‘soap’ Category

Our First Stick Blender

Monday, May 5th, 2014

our first stick blender

 

This blog is dedicated in remembrance of our first official soap making utensil, Mr. Smooth Operator.

3 years ago, we started to dabble into the wonderful world of soap making. As we learned all about this art, researching the steps, ingredients, and supplies; we welcomed a new soaping utensil into our lives. It was lovingly named: Mr. Smooth Operator. He was our first stick blender.

Today, with tears in our eyes; we lay Mr. Smooth Operator to rest.

Mr. Smooth Operator was an extremely hard worker, who took on each soaping endeavor with vigor and vitality. He was there for us through thick and thin batch, and never blinked an eye when it came to having to put forth extra effort; asking for nothing in return.

Looking back, there were times when we took Mr. Smooth Operator for granted; especially early on when we were new to the soaping game. But, he never held that against us. He was a happy, go getting fellow, who lived a life of sacrifice. He would take on the task of hard labor and getting dirty; all in order for us to be clean with our soap.

He was the best stick blender.

Strongly rooted in a family that strives on performance, the Cuisinart Smart Stick Immersion Blender series should be proud. Not only did Mr. Smooth Operator fulfill his calling as a stick blender, but he willingly exceeded expectations every day. And boy, were there some days that he put in the overtime.

Through all of these amazing qualities, Mr. Smooth Operator quickly became a part of our soaping family. He has set the standard of quality work (and easy clean up), leaving behind an awful big pair of shoes for the next stick blender to fill.

Mr. Smooth Operator will truly be missed by everyone on the creative team at Natures Garden.

We hope that in his passing, he is out there somewhere blending huge batters of joy and happiness. Achieving immersions, young and fresh as the day he was first opened and used.

Insulate Soap

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

insulate soap As soap crafters, there are hundreds of variances allotted to us that allow our soaps to be special. Maybe it is the combination of oils in your recipe, the process to which you soap, your unique scents, your particular decorating method, or really any number of things that makes your soap exclusive. Well, in this blog post, we are going to throw a new option into the mix.

To insulate or not to insulate that is the question.

As with many aspects of soap making; when it comes to insulation, it is really a personal preference.

Being new to soap making, a lot of research is involved. You read, read, and read some more in order to learn everything you can about soap making. Well, as many of us found, insulating is always advised.

The insulating step involves taking your freshly poured, molded soap, and surrounding it with layers. These layers help to keep the soap at an even heat while the batter goes through the saponification process. During the saponification process, as the lye reacts with the various soap making ingredients, soap (and glycerin) is produced. The process itself is an endothermic reaction, meaning that it absorbs heat from the surroundings.

This “heat stage” of soap making is commonly called the gel phase. During the gel phase, saponification works at an accelerated rate, hardening the fats of your recipe. This phase will also be the time where any discoloration of ingredients or colorants will occur from the heat.

Keeping the soap uniformly heated will prevent a partial gel from occurring. Not keeping the soap uniformly heated allows for the soap that is in the center of the mold to stay hot, while the soap on the outside loses heat rapidly. And, since the saponification process is endothermic, it needs to be able to draw heat from its surroundings. What this results in is an off colored look in the center of your soap, usually in an oval like shape. This shows that the center of the soap gelled, and the outside of the soap never reached gel phase.

Speaking in terms of soap, gel phase or not reaching gel phase does not harm the soap itself. The soap will still function after cure; it is only an aesthetic issue. So, it is for this reason that it is often believed that insulation is vital to an amazing looking bar of cold process soap. But, there is an alternative.

Lets look at the flip side.  If you do not want to insulate the heat in the soap, what would happen if you chilled the soap instead?

Chilling your molded soap would prevent the gel phase from occurring. This would be a handy trick of the trade for a few reasons. It should however, be noted though that in order for the gel phase prevention to occur, you need to be able to control the area. Operating out of a loaf mold for example, still allows enough soap in the middle for a partial gel to occur. You want to keep the size of the soap easily manageable for temperature reasons. Remember, because saponification deals with heat, while the lye and fats are reacting, heat will be present. To completely increase your chances of preventing the gel phase, you must minimize the area that needs chilled, aka use smaller molds.

Not insulating your soap, and instead placing your freshly molded soap into the fridge or freezer for 24 hours will help to prevent the gel phase from occurring. But, please note the size of your soap will directly determine whether the gel phase will occur or not.   This also rings true for the soaping ingredients that are in your recipe. Chilling your soap is not a guarantee, partial gelling can still transpire.

In closing, there is another option if you choose not to insulate your soap. There are benefits and drawbacks to chilling your soap. Stay tuned for a future blog posts discussing preventing gel phase and what the outcome will be.

 

Argan Soap

Friday, April 11th, 2014

argan soap Hello everyone, today I made Argan Soap!

I am here to share my recent adventure in the world of soap making.  Today I made CP soap.  For those of you that are new at this, CP means cold process.  This is soaping without adding any additional heat.

I made this soap by creating my own recipe using the soapcalc.  This wonderful soaping tool was able to help me find ingredients and exact percentages for my homemade soaping recipe.  All of this information assisted me in producing my latest project.

For this soap cleverly named “Argan Soap”, I used Mango butter, Avocado oil, Coconut oil 76, Argan oil, and Sunflower oil.  To add a vibrant and tropical look to my soap, I selected Fun Colorants:  Neon orange and Neon blue.  I thought that these colors would look nice in combination with white.  So, I decided to also use titanium dioxide to get a nice bright white soap color.  I really felt that these colors captured the tone of the scent Kulu Bay, which I was using to fragrance my soap.

Due to the fact that I am SO over winter (clearing throat); I decided to try a soap with a summery feel.  Sorry, was venting (smiley face).   Also, I was going to try something new with this soap recipe.  For my very first time, I was doing the “in the pot swirl” technique using 3 colors.  I do have to say, I was beyond excited to get this going since I created this soap from beginning to end all by myself.

That is the moment I quickly became aware that I was DOING THIS BY MYSELF….Oh boy I thought.  No supervision, no guidance, nobody standing next to me for support, only my directions.

Ok, so, after getting all of my supplies, I put on my safety gear and began the first step.  Lye and water.  I want to caution any new soapers reading this:  Please remember to wear your gloves, mask, and safety glasses when handling the Lye and lye solution.  It is also just as important to have vinegar by your side (as your best friend) throughout your whole soaping process.  Vinegar is used in case the Lye or soap batter gets on your skin.

Once I melted all of my oils and butter, I waited for my Lye solution and oils to reach their desired temperature.  I then proceeded to put it all together and stick blended quickly to emulsification.

Being it was an in the pot swirl soap, I did have to put some of my soap batter into 2 smaller bowls and mix my colors really good.  That way I was ready to accomplish the swirl.

Moving quickly, I “plopped” globs of the orange and blue soap batter into the white batter.  I did this until it was all gone.  And, let me just tell you how fast you have to move to color, mix, and plop when using more than one color…holy cow!  You need to fly!  At this point, I was wondering why I used 3 colors….what was I thinking?  Creativity, that’s what!  Now not all recipes will do this, but it seems the one I chose was just that…FAST!

I did however get everything together and really enjoyed seeing my white, neon blue, and neon orange soap come together as I “swirled” around and through my colors.  After using my spatula to make this pretty cool design, I poured it into my silicone mold.  But, I poured it slowly back and forth from end to end.  I was mesmerized at how cool the colors were as they moved about inside the mold.

After the soap  in the mold had set up enough, I used the remaining batter to get an awesome heaping loaf of soap.  When I was done, I was happy with what I created.  A little stressed but only because I wanted it to be perfect.  I strive for perfection and unfortunately for me, I will fail at this (and have) a few times before I perfect it.  I am glad that I will fail however, only because it will make me a better soaper.  This is how you will learn, right?

When I tell my friends what I do here at Natures Garden, they are like, “wow, that sounds like so much fun”, and it is, creating and making your own stuff, heck ya!  Sometimes these recipes may seem a bit intimidating, but, be aware of your ingredients, and know their personalities and how they work together.  We have “fool” proof instructions, we HAVE failed too.  This is the best ways to become experts on what works.  When it comes to the free recipes that Natures Garden provides, what we present to you, is easily understood with virtually no guess work needed.

If you would like to see the full Argan Soap Recipe, please click on this link.

In closing, I can still say, it was a lot of fun making this soap; even if I did stress myself out.

We kids, until my next adventure, have a FABULOUS day!

Cindy

Sinus Relief Scent

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Sinus ReliefSinus Relief Fragrance Oil- Fragrance Oil Spotlight

Sinus Relief scent is great for personal use or for scenting your marketable products.  In fact,  this fragrance is considered a must have by many of our clients because it works in everything from candles to bath and body products.  This highly recommended sinus relief scent smells just like the popular rub.  Many of our customers state not only do products scented in this fragrance oil sell out, but it also brings many people coming back for more.  If you are looking for a soothing type fragrance oil that really impresses, sinus relief should be on the top of your list.

What does Sinus Relief Fragrance Oil Smell Like?

Ever smell the scent of Vick’s Vapor Rub?  This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is a cool, crisp blend of camphor, eucalyptus, and mint. Great for stuffed up noses!

How Do Our Customers Use Sinus Relief Fragrance Oil?

For crafters in the candle making realm or home scenting realm; Sinus Relief is a definite for anytime of the year!  Many of our customers rave about this fragrance oil and use it in their Joy wax, WOW wax, palm wax, and Soy waxes.  Both the hot and cold scent throw are nice and strong, filling the whole house!  As for other home scenting ideas; this fragrance oil has been used to make aroma beads, reed diffusers, smelly jellies, and works exceptionally well for oil burners too.

On the bath and body end of products, the usage rate for this fragrance oil is 5%.  Sinus Relief fragrance is used to make:  bath salts, bath bombs, shower steam melts, body rubs, and body creams.  For those of you that are cold process soapers, this fragrance is soothing and performed very well.  Here are the official results: Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration.  Scent is wonderful.  The perfect soap for sinus problems.  No discoloration.

If you want to try an amazing recipe using this great sinus relief scent, please click on this link to view Natures Gardens Sinus Relief Bath Bomb Recipe.  These bath bombs are quite simply the best. 

Top Fragrance Oils for CP Soap

Saturday, November 2nd, 2013

eaarly-sunsine-soapWhen it comes to cold process soaping, there are several factors that many soapers take into consideration.  The ingredients of each soap recipe is well thought out, calculated, and tested to ensure the very best end bar.  However, sometimes when fragrances are introduced to the mix, there are still even more factors that need to be considered.

How will the fragrance oil perform?

Depending on the components that actually comprise the fragrance oil, several things can occur to your soap batter.  Sometimes, fragrance oils are considered “Perfect Pours”.  This is the introduction of the fragrance to the soap batter that does not change the physical consistency.  Perfect Pours are great.  They are easy to work with, giving a nice amount of time for beautifying the batter with color, micas, or swirls.  But, on the other end, there are some types of fragrances that will cause the batter to change.  These main effects are ricing, acceleration, seizing, separation, and discoloration.

Now, in order to ease the minds of many soapers, Natures Garden has tested every fragrance oil we carry in the cold soap process.  If you are interested in reading these results, you can click on this link or find it on the Natures Garden’s website under Fragrance Oil Testing Results in Cold Process Soap in the Fragrance Classes.

But, in order to further help you find great fragrances that perform well we have researched, asked, and polled many CP soapers for their opinions.  Here is a list of the top 35 Natures Garden fragrances for soaping.  These fragrances have great scent retention, are easy to work with, and were selected as favorites among crafters in the soaping community.  We hope you enjoy!

Please Note:  These fragrances are documented in alphabetical order, not in order of popularity.

Name of Fragrance Oil Description of Fragrance Oil Performance of Fragrance Oil in Cold Process Soap
Bamboo Hemp Fragrance Oil An incredibly well-balanced blend of bamboo stalks, vetiver, and patchouli, with undertones of hemp seed and oakmoss. No ricing, slight acceleration, stick blend and soap at cooler temps. Discolors to a cream color.  Very well liked, especially by males.  Fresh and clean. 
Black Raspberry Vanilla Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is an enticing blend of blackberries and raspberries, with middle notes of white floral greenery, and bottom notes of musk and vanilla.  Highly requested fragrance!
Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, no discoloration, scent is good. 
Bite Me Fragrance Oil Fresh citrus notes of lime and orange sparkle with effervescent highlights as they lead to a luscious blend of berry and cherry in this playful scent. Leafy green accents add intensity as a base of vanilla creates sweet tones for the fragrance.  An NG Original Fragrance! Wow, Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, no discoloration, very strong, a must have for all lines.   
Camu Camu Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is sweet and tangy.  The scent is an abundance of tart red berries, juicy orange and peach nectar blended with a twist of lime.  Perfect pour.  No acceleration, no ricing, no separation.  Discolors to a butter color.  Smells AMAZING in cured soap!
Capri Olivo Fragrance Oil Capri Olivo is a culturally complex aroma of tart Japanese grapefruit, Fresh Osmanthus (Sweet Olive), and dew-covered watercress;  followed by middle notes of rose, jasmine, and cassis.  To create subtle ecstasy, Capri Olivo sits on a dry down of fresh amber and myrrh.  An NG Original Fragrance!  Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, no discoloration.  Excellent spa scent. 
Champagne Pear Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is an effervescent blend of citrus and melon notes that are accented with crisp greens to create a champagne accent for this fruity scent. Orchard pear and fresh apple balance at the heart of the fragrance, while a hint of apple blossom creates texture for the fruity accord. Luxurious musk undertones soften the blend.  An NG Original Fragrance! Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration.  Thought it may separate but it held together great!  This is tart and effervescent… nice!!  No discoloration.
Coconut Lime Verbana Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is very fresh! A citrus bouquet of lime, kumquat, grapefruit, lemon, with a soft floral undertone of jasmine, on a background of musk and sandalwood. Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, no discoloration, smells just like the original, very clean and very fresh. 
Country Bumpkin Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is a wonderful complex blend of apples, candied yams, marshmallows, sweet cream butter, brown sugar, nutmeg, crushed cinnamon bark and fresh cloves.  Bring the country home to you.  An NG Original!  No ricing, no acceleration, discolors to a reddish orange. 
Country Garden Fragrance Oil This fresh, romantic, floral fragrance oil by Natures Garden is fantastic during the whole year! This fragrance begins with top notes of fresh green clover, and ivy with middle notes of romantic snapdragon, rose petals, and carnations; ending with base notes of white musk and fig leaves.  An NG Original Fragrance! Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration.  Immediately turned to a lemon pudding color, but it will likely have a final discoloration to a beige.  This is super strong and really rich.  Quite Gorgeous!
Cracklin  Birch Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is outdoors on a winter day…Simply amazing if we may say so ourselves!  Cracklin Birch fragrance begins with top notes of bergamot, orange, and lemon; with middle notes of geranium, lily, and rose; and base notes of patchouli, vetiver, and tonka beans.  This fragrance is one of the most well-rounded fragrances we have ever smelled. An NG Original Fragrance! No ricing, no acceleration.  Scent retention is very strong.  Discolors to a very light beige.
Cucumber Wasabi Cilantro Fragrance Oil A refreshing spa-like fragrance oil by Natures Garden with top notes of aldehydic fruit notes of grapefruit and lime, with middle notes of fresh cucumber, guava, and passionfruit, and base notes of wasabi, cilantro, and fern.    Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, interesting and many layered.  Yummy scent.  Fragrance is nice and strong.  No discoloration.
Dragon’s Blood Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden smells just like the essential oil. Dragon’s blood truly has a smell all its own.   Very, very strong scent.  Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration.  Final discoloration is a nice milk chocolate.  Beautiful. 
Grapefruit Ruby Red Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is a juicy, ruby red grapefruit aroma. Very true to its name!   Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, no discoloration, perfect scent. 
Goldie Dreadlocks Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is our rendition of a famous scent.  A complex arrangement of citrus top notes, combined with fruity florals, while sitting on sweet vanilla bean and a faint woodsy patchouli base. This fragrance does not smell like oatmeal or porridge, and is not a bakery type fragrance. We would consider this a complex fruity floral arrangement. Some acceleration.  Scent stays strong.  Final discoloration is a peanut butter. 
Honey Vanilla Love Dust Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is the incredibly sexy aroma of raw honey, cocoa butter, and chocolate. No acceleration, may be oily in CP, discolors to brown. 
Hot Pink Lime Fragrance Oil This refreshing fragrance oil by Natures Garden is an accord of Kaffir lime, Japanese grapefruit, tangerine, and lemon; middle notes of bergamot and strawberries; sitting on base notes of brown sugar and oakmoss. An NG Original Scent!  Slight acceleration.  No separation.  No discoloration.  Yummy scent of sugared lime.
Lavender Martini Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is where Gin martini meets lavender in this creative aroma.  We’ve successfully captured the effervescent carbonation in this unique fragrance.  Natures Garden’s lavender martini fragrance begins with top notes of tangy lemon zests, orange, and carbonation; followed by middle notes of spicy bergamot, mint, and lavender; sitting on a base note of rosewood.  Perfect Pour.  No ricing, no acceleration.  Very great unique scent.  No discoloration.  Scent is clean. 
Lotus Blossom Fragrance Oil The lotus flower is a symbol of beauty, purity, and fertility.  Lotus flowers are water-fresh, clean, and slightly powdery in nature.  Not too sweet, absolutely perfect!  Even people who do not like florals will love this aroma!  This unique floral aroma is used in many upscale fragrances to create the most luxurious blends.  Soaped like a dream!  No ricing, no acceleration, scent holds beautifully, a very popular seller.  Very true scent and very strong also. This scent is gorgeous!  Final color after cure is a very light pale beige. 
Mango Papaya Fragrance Oil A tropical delight fragrance oil by Natures Garden! You will fall in love with this fruity blend of ripened mango and juicy papaya. Your product line is not the same without this fragrance!  Soaps with a little acceleration.  Soap at a lower temp.  Final scent is a yummy, fresh, mango papaya.  Nice and strong.  No discoloration. 
Misbehavin Fragrance Oil A flirtatious, fruity, sexy fragrance oil by Natures Garden. A tantalizing aroma of sweet juicy candied apples and pomegranate, with nuances of fresh ivy and oakmoss.  Wonderful in cp.  Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration.  Final color after cure is a medium beige.  Scent stays strong and lasts in cured product.  A must have.  
Nag Champa Fragance Oil This wonderful fragrance oil by Natures Garden has the aroma of incense; patchouli, sandalwood, and dragon’s blood working together to create this wonderful blend. A very nice Nag Champa!  Not too overpowering, not too medicinal, not too powdery.  Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration.  Discolors to a light beige color.
Nectarine Mint Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is the shimmering citrus blend of lemon and orange which is cooled with a hint of mint as this fruity blend begins its enchantment. Fresh juicy nectarine gets natural accents of leafy greens for the fragrance signature. Woody undertones support the fruit sensation with deep richness as a base of musk finishes the fresh blend. No acceleration.  No discoloration. Very strong when cured.
Oatmeal Milk-n-Honey Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is the wonderful fresh aroma of hawthorne, with nuances of creamy French vanilla, soy milk and a base note of nutty almond.
Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, honey really popped when added to the soap, discolored to a golden yellow, scent is rich and delicious. 
Pearberry Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is a  Bath and Body Works duplication. A fruity fresh fragrance blend of ripened pear, raspberries, strawberries, and gooseberries, with slight musk undertones. An old favorite that is dead on to BBW.  Absolute perfect pour!  Scent is nice and strong.  There is minimal discoloration to a light creamy color.
Pink Sugar Type Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is a rendition of Pink Sugar Type. A fruity blend of cotton candy, lemon drops, caramel and raspberry jam on a dry down of musks.  Soaps beautifully, no ricing, no acceleration, discolors to a dark chocolate brown. 
Rainbow Sherbet Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden was tested by over 80 customers of ours who gave it fabulous reviews!  The aroma of fresh lime, pineapple, orange, and raspberry, with creamy base notes of vanilla.  Mouth watering! Very slight acceleration.  No separation. No ricing.  No discoloration.  Fabulous scent retention.
Sea Salt & Lotus Blossoms Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is the scent of fresh air, sea salt, ocean mist and aquatic florals which come together to create a sexy, modern twist on this fresh & clean fragrance, complete with tender green notes and beachy musks. An NG Original Fragrance!  Soap beautifully!  No acceleration.  No discoloration.  Very strong!
Snowman Balls Fragrance Oil Snowman balls fragrance is a sexy, spicy blend of peppercorns, nutmeg, and fresh clove; embodied with notes of elderberries, blackberries, plums, and fresh green oakmoss; with magical, effervescent top notes of carbonated fizzy pop and just a hint of cool mint.   NG Original Scent!  Soaps great, no ricing, no acceleration, discolors to a reddish tan.
Strawberry Cheesecake Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is the perfect aroma of cheesecake with nice thick strawberry sauce. Handles very well, no ricing, no acceleration.  Discolors to a light beige.
Strawberry Rhubarb Pie Fragrance Oil In this fragrance oil by Natures Garden, southern baking comes alive! The aroma of sweet fresh strawberries mixed with sour rhubarb marmalade, with a base note of flaky pie crust. Very unique!  Not only does this scent not accelerate, but it slows down trace.  Very strong scent retention.  No discoloration.  Wow! 
STUD Fragrance Oil A raw, yet reserved fragrance oil by Natures Garden with notable masculinity that draws you in. A true classic, fresh and fruity male fragrance of watery top notes, and citrus nuances infused with white flowers of muguet and jasmine. Undeniably sexy notes of coumarin and fresh mint finished with soft woody notes of sandalwood and sweet musk. An NG Original Scent! Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration.  This is a very sexy scent.  Very indepth.  The final color is a pale beige.  Scent stayed super strong throughout cure and is amazing.
Sweet Orange Chili Pepper Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is the sassy, saucy combination of Valencia Orange, Sparkling Bergamot, Tangerine Zest, Tart Cassis, Orange Juice, Neroli, Ground Pepper, Fiery Chili Pepper, and Sheer Musk. Awesome soap scent, no ricing, no acceleration, no discoloration.
Teakwood & Cardamom Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is our rendition of Partylite’s Teakwood & Cardamom fragrance.  An exotic, masculine blend of teakwood surrounded by rich spices of cardamom, cinnamon, and clove; sitting on base notes of cedar, amber, sandalwood, and patchouli. A masterpiece scent.  Perfect Pour.  No ricing, no acceleration.  Soaps like a dream.  Very strong during the gel phase.  A high end luxury fragrance.  No discoloration.
The Perfect Man Fragrance Oil  The Perfect Man fragrance begins with fresh, daring notes of Japanese grapefruit, bergamot, and lemon; followed by middle notes of peppercorn, ginger, jasmine, aquatic marine notes, and a hint of peppermint; sitting on expensive base notes of natural patchouli, cedar, vetiver, labdanum, and frankincense.  Now this is The Perfect Man! An NG Original Scent!  Perfect Pour.  No ricing, no acceleration, no separation.  The scent is to die for!  An awesome,  PERFECT man fragrance.  Discolors to a light beige.
Wild Elderberry Fragrance Oil This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is delicious and fruity; a fragrance to make your mouth water with notes of tart, wild elderberries and huckleberries, combined with the sweet nectar of peach and apricot. A floral woody heart of violet and white florals, wrapped in a sandalwood base balances the natural, fruity goodness of this yummy blend. Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, juicy sweet when added to the soap, fabulous scent.  Discolors to a creamy beige.

Top 50 Soap Making Blogs

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

soap making blogs

Soap making has grown from a hobby, to a seriously competitive trade that attracts new talent all the time. The trick is finding the right soap making blogs to get the best recipes, ingredient list, tutorials, and expert advice to learn the pro’s tips on soap making. What I have created is the ultimate online resource that compiles the best of the best soap making blogs into one post.

I wanted to create a quality resource for people seeking information about soap making so I’ve collected what I believe to be some of the top soap making blogs out there. I endorse them so much that I’ve created a badge for them to display and be endorsed as one of the top soap making blogs on the Internet. The order below is not in any particular order. They are all #1 in my eyes.

Best Soap Making Blogs

1. Evik – The Curious Soapmaker – Evik has been making soap since she accidentally discovered a natural soap making book while browsing her favorite book store. Suddenly, she became more interested in a natural lifestyle and became a vegetarian and started learning more about the products and ingredients she was using in her every day life. Learn from her passion for soapmaking, the importance of selecting the proper ingredients, and basic recipes tutorials and principles.

2. Jennifer Young – Jennifer has a successful business of soaps, lip balms, salves and more. What makes her, and her blog, stand out are the four principles she runs her business by: she enjoys what she does, only uses natural ingredients in her products, supports the local community and economy, and treats the environment well. Kuddos to you Jennifer!

3. Amanda Griffin – Amanda shares her passion for soap making, and her gratitude for being a part of the “soaping” community. She loves all things soap, including talking, sharing, and teaching soap making. Follow her site for handmade soap, bath and body products, reviews, interviews, how-to’s and more.

4. Ruth Esteves – Ruth was trained as a laboratory assistant, and found herself craving more creativity in her life. She fused her passion for soapmaking with a career, and has successfully combined her talents for a business that “feeds her soul,” since 2006. Now she sells, teaches, and speaks about soapmaking and has even recently published her first eBook.

5. Rebecca Dillon – Soap Delicatessen is a one woman operation that has been running since 2001. She started out making soap as an alternative to commercial brands that often irritated her very sensitive skin. Over a decade later, now she creates her own unique recipes for various skin and bath products and sells them on her site.

6. Rene Whitlock – Rene started with aromatherapy and essential oils before she discovered her love for soap making. Now she passionately shares her discovery for better ingredients, natural products, and converting commercial product consumers to products more beneficial for their skin and the planet.

7. TheSoapBar.com – The Soap Bar is a fun spot for the soap makers out there. This site is loaded with contests, challenges, creative new tips and ideas, and wonderful tutorials to keep your soap making fresh and inspired. Follow along for wonderful recipes and a fun community of soap makers.

8. TheSoapMagician - Sharon has done her homework and has plenty of certificates to prove it. She has been making soap for well over a decade, and has no plans on stopping. Share her fountain of knowledge from aromatherapy to holistic uses of herbs, and how she incorporates all that into soap making.

9. TheSoapSister.com – This country gal loves her handmade soap and she can’t deny it! Her soap, Heirloom, is featured in local shops and on etsy. She shares the joys of soapmaking, making a messing, learning the tricks, and more on her oh-so-passionate blog.

10. TierraVerdeSoaps.com – A true self-proclaimed soap nerd, this mom has an entrepenurial spirit and a true talent at that. Follow her exploration of soap making where art meets science. Beautiful pictures are always the end result that you’ll find yourself wishing you could smell through your computer screen.

11. Stacie – Another successful business created as the result of a suffering tale of overly sensitive skin. Stacie’s first line of products resulted in her true love for sharing her results with others and the benefits she discovered in natural soaps. Share her recipes and learn about her new products, and cute crafts, on this charming site.

12. Angela – Angela, and her husband Brian, are the savvy creators of this blog that will educate and inspire you to spend more time together creating healthier, more natural products for you and your family. Browse their recipes and tutorials; it’s a great place to get started at making your own soaps.

13. SoaphisticatedLady.com – Beginner soap makers rejoice; here is the perfect spot for you to try your talent at soap making. Learn the basic process of melt-and-pour (MAP) soap making, and new tips and tricks “not available anywhere else.” A wonderful place to learn recipes, colors, and fragrance tips for your first, or twentieth batch of soaps.

14. Gavin Webber – Gavin’s site is delightfully personal, refreshingly real, and absolutely inspiring. He deems himself an ordinary man that had a sudden epiphony while watching a documentary and seriously overhauled his life. Follow his progressively shrinking carbon footprint, and marvel at his conversion to a green life.

15. TheNerdyFarmWife.com – A true self-proclaimed soap nerd, this mom has an entrepenurial spirit and a true talent at that. Follow her exploration of soap making where art meets science. Beautiful pictures are always the end result that you’ll find yourself wishing you could smell.

16. Tiggy – Future Primitive Soap Co.’ is Tiggy’s blog to share, and sell, her fine bath goods and aromatic oils. With names as catchy as the ingredients list, you will likely be as intrigued as you are curious. Inspire the soapmaker in you, or buy from the creator of soaps like, “Mama Didn’t Listen So I Told The Bees soap.”

17. Annie – Follow Annie’s adventures through soap making and “other things.” Shop her homemade lip balms, custom cupcake soaps, and body butters. She posts her creations on her blog, often swaying reading over to her “shop,” section linking to her good-enough-to-eat etsy store where she sells all of her fabulous creations.

18. Jenny – From melt-and-pour soap making to cold process soap, Jenny shares her hobbyist adventures in all things soapy. Follow her recipes through candle making, soaps of all colors and styles, and even men’s shaving cream.

19. BurntMill.com – This busy crafter may slack on the updates, but certainly not on the content. Follow some amazing recipes for colorful soaps. Learn how to make soap for a baby or bridal shower from start to finish, or give soap to friends and family and save some money this holiday.

20. SoapAndRestless.com – Did you know pictures of soap could literally make your mouth water? If you don’t believe me, check out ‘Soap and Restless,’ and just scroll through the photos. Those soaps are so beautifully made they honestly look good enough to eat. What’s not to love that the recipes, and plenty of tips and tricks, are shared for readers to delightfully attempt to recreate.

21. Erin Nute – Erin has learned the in’s and out’s of soap making and is happy to share her successes, and failures, so that you can create your own natural products. She’ll teach you layering techniques, color tips, and even how to make a long-lasting bar of soap. If you like what you read, you can pick up her new book, “Soap Making Made Easy.”

22. Patrice – Even those that don’t make soaps will fall in love with Patrice’s blog. She shares her passion for soap making, candle making, bath goods, and oil, but her personality is what keeps you coming back for more. Patrice has been at it for years, so share what she’s learned and have fun!

23. Bianca – This Brooklyn-based beauty is a full-time designer and hobbyist soap maker. Her blog is a meeting place for the best of both of her talents; where soap making meets design. Eye candy for the masses here, but definitely visual inspiration for the soap makers and designer readers.

24. Claudia Mold – Follow a busy mom of six through crafting projects, soap making, cooking, of raising her kids. Learn the recipe behind her “happy,” rainbow soap, or her mouth-watering handmade cheeseburger.

25. Erica Pence – Erica’s blog is more inspiration than the secrets of soap making, and if I were you, I’d listen. This business woman is savvy, successful, and passionate about what she does. She shares all of her interests from bath and body, to candles and business advice. Need more? Check out her tutorials and contests.

26. HorseOPeaceRanch.com – What a fun story behind this successful soap making business. After deciding to use some leftover goat’s milk to make some soap, an event 10 days later led to the first selling and teaching of soap making. Business officially began just months later, and has been a success ever since.

27. Magdoline – Addicted to Soap,’ started out of a mom’s need to help her eczema diagnosed children heal their sensitive skin. An encouraging husband pushed her to start selling her beautiful creations, and alas, a business was born. Browse the site, take a class, discover the joy of soap making.

28. LionAndRoseSoap.com – Handmade soap is an art, a hobby, but most importantly a passion. ‘Lion and Rose Handmade Soap,’ has them all. Share in the day-to-day family life behind this soap-making mom, and enjoy her honest opinion, recipes, and delightful creations on her site.

29. Aunt Nancy – Aunt Nancy’s blog is chock-full of homemade soap recipes. From pumpkin soap, to oatmeal & honey goat milk soap, you’ll have enough recipes here to keep you busy for an entire year (and more!)

30. Amy Warden – Amy’s soap is a work of art. If you have a few minutes and want some inspiration, I highly recommend going to her website and reviewing the amazing concoctions she has created. Absolutely stunning!

31. Tatania – Tatania’s soap is so beautiful it looks more like artisan fudge. I’d caution you against making her banofee pie soap as you really might confuse it for fudge!

32. Cee – Cee’s soap recipes are so unique! Pumpkin maple soap… Doesn’t get any better than that for fall, does it? How about a gift for mom of cocoa butter soap with lavender and lemon infused oil? My goodness! A must bookmark blog.

33. Jennifer – Add Jennifer to your list of soap blogs you must follow. From peppermint bark soap to polka dot themed apple, peach & cinammon, her soap recipes will inspire you for hours.

34. HomeMadeBathProducts.com – HomeMadeBathProducts is a site I know you will love! The writers feature great recipes and products from around the web.

35. Angela – Jamaican vanilla café, Hummingbird, Hula Hula… Angela’s soap names are as unique as the soap itself. Great photos and great blog… Just wish she provided more of her recipes.

36. Sabons Carmeta – This Spanish soap blog features beautiful soap recipes… From lavender and shea to Marigold… You won’t be disapointed by Sabons Carmeta.

37. Celine – Celine’s soap looks like it could be decoration in a pop movie. Full of sparkles, ridges & beauty, you’ll be hard-pressed to find more bubbilicious soap photos than hers.

38. Sue – Although the content has rarely been updated over the last few years, this blog features beautiful soap that you just must look into.

39. T.A. Helton – I Just love what T.A. Helton does with her blog. Occasionally you’ll see her featuring ‘soap porn’ so you can admire the greatest soaps she makes on her site, from apples & oak to bay rum spice… we love it all!

40. Elizabeth – Elizabeth shares her soap making adventures on this blog and we love it! She even shares how she uses her Vitamix for soap making (And for smoothies!).

41. Julia – Julia’s Spanish soap making blog is amazing. Beautiful designs, photos, packaging… You get the entire package here.

42. Milla – Milla not only shares photos of her end results, but even creates videos of how she prepares her soap. Definitely worth a read!

43. Super Soapers – Super Soapers is amazing: They feature soap artists every month to help inspire and educate you. This is one you must bookmark.

44. Ana Maria – Ana Maria shares her soap making adventures in this Spanish soap making blog. Just wish there were more recipes to accompany her beautiful photos

Our Favorite Soap Recipes

45. Nina Nelson – Nina shares her recipe for a homemade herbal bar soap here. She uses marshmallow root and calendula petals to make this bar soap very soothing and healing.

46. Allyson – Allyson shares 3 homemade dish soap recipes. They are all natural and quick and easy to make. She leaves out essential oils, but you can easily toss some lavender, cinnamon, peppermint or anything your heart desires in and it will work perfectly.

47. Stephanie – Pink grapefruit soap! Love it! Stephanie shares this unique soap recipe idea here. We definitely encourage you to try it.

48. Liz Marie – Liz has been using a DIY laundry soap recipe for over a year. After a year of refining her recipe, she finally has made it perfect and shares her secrets with you.

49. Clare – Another goat milk recipe! This time with orange and calendula. Thanks, Clare, for the great inspiration!

50. Brandy – Brandy shares her homemade poppy seed soap recipe here… I can’t wait to give this a go. Her photos are beautiful and the end result is even more gorgeous.

Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil

Tuesday, July 16th, 2013
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If you are seeking out that extra special sweet scent to add to your product line; a scent that is very similar to lemonhead candies; Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil may be your answer.

Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil

Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil- Fragrance Oil Spotlight

Recently, Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil was a top 10 Customer Selected Favorite Fragrance Oil.  This was not without good reason.  Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil truly captures the sugary sweetness of youthful memories with a twist of tart lemon harmoniously joined together for one fragrance that will keep you coming back for more again and again.  Nothing says summer sweetness like Natures Garden’s Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil.

What does Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil Smell Like?

Natures Garden Lemon Sugar Fragrance: A Fresh Duplication.  Remember the taste of childhood lemonhead candy? This fragrance takes it up a notch with citrus top notes of real lemon, and warm base notes of vanilla and sugar.

How Do Our Customers Use Lemon Sugar Fragrance Oil?

Many of our candle crafters use this fragrance oil in their Joy Wax, Wow Wax, and Soy Wax.  Great reviews were also given on scented aroma beads with this fragrance oil, as well as using this fragrance oil to make Air Fresheners and Odor Eliminators since it has a very clean fresh aroma to it.

For you bath and body crafters out there this fragrance oil is right up your alley.  The usage percent for this fragrance oil is 5%.  Many of our customers love this fragrance and use it to make lotion bars, lotions, melt and pour soap, body butters, perfume, and body sprays.  For the cold process soapers, reviews came back with high recommendations such as; “rocking in CP soap”, soaping “like a dream”, “the best lemon scent”.  One of our customers was even able to make leopard spots in her cold process soap.  The official results for this fragrance oil are:  Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, discolors to a cream, great lemon scent retention.

Homemade Soap No More Allergies

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

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I am Victoria Cangelosi, and I’m the owner and SoapMaster-in-Chief of Smelly Cat Soaps.
I am allergic to soap – or so I thought for the first twenty-something years of my life. I would break out in a terrible rash each time I used soap, even the hypoallergenic stuff. I subsisted on exactly one brand of rather boring body wash I found that didn’t cause breakouts like the others.

But each time I entered shops like Lush or Bath and Body Works, I found myself entranced by all the delicious smells. It was a cruel, cruel existence.

One day, I came across a soap mold for sale online that I fell in love with. I was so inspired that I decided I was going buy it and try my hand at making soap. How hard could it be?

At first, my only goal was to create soap that I could use without getting a rash. Much to my delight, I quickly found success. It turns out I am not allergic to soap after all! What I’m allergic to is the preservative that soap companies add to their soaps to prolong their shelf lives.

I shared my newfound love for soapmaking with my family and friends, and showed them what I had made. Several high pitched Ohmygoshes and Thatsadorables later, I realized I may be onto something. I already had one shop on Etsy; I make jewelry and sell it over at www.CrowCanyonJewelry.com. I opened a second shop just for selling the soap, and decided to take custom orders instead of pre-making soap and listing it for sale. It seemed less risky; I didn’t have to buy supplies or make anything until I received an order. And I don’t add any preservatives to my soap.

The name Smelly Cat Soaps is homage to one of my all time favorite television shows, “Friends.” I love when I am selling soap at craft shows and people read my shop name, smile, then start to sing the Smelly Cat song a la Phoebe Buffay. I also love to hear the squeals of excited children as they proudly yell the names of all the little soap animals I have out on my table. “Mommy look, it’s a hedgehog! Mommy Mommy, an elephant! Mommy, she has turtles and puppies” etc.

I am enjoying this business and I love being my own boss. I get to be as creative as I want, and that is AWESOME! I don’t have to answer to anyone but my customers, so if I want to get crazy silly and fun in my automatic “Thanks for your order” message, (hint – it is actually pretty hilarious) there’s no one to tell me I can’t!

Right now, this is just a small business I do on the side. But I believe my soap has the potential to really take off. I love helping customers make bath time fun for their kids, create the perfect gift, or order truly unique wedding or shower favors. Please keep me in mind for all your future soaping needs.

I use a lot of Natures Garden scents in my soaps. You can’t smell them from here, but the soaps in the picture are:

- In the Mood fragrance oil

- Misbehavin fragrance oil

- I’m Too Sexy fragrance oil

- Princess type fragrance oil

- Cashmere type fragrance oil

 

Your Website: www.SmellyCatSoaps.com

Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/SmellyCatSoaps

Marketing Your Soap to Men

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

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It’s a mistake not to market soap to men

It’s super easy for us women to get excited over beautifully-smelling soap, and we get even more excited when the soap has fancy designs.  What woman can resist cupcake soap with a mountain of soap frosting on top of it?  What woman can resist how wonderful her bathroom smells after using a bar of homemade soap?  Not to mention how wonderful we smell after using one of those fabulous bars!  We women like those little extra luxuries; they make us feel good.

But, what about men?  Do they like homemade soap too?  You betcha!  Last summer, I brought some homemade cold process soap to the moms on my son’s baseball team.  I figured that they would be excited, and they were.  However, the person who seemed to enjoy the soap the most was not a woman at all; t was Brett’s coach.  Before a game, he pulled me aside and asked if he could buy some homemade soap from me.  He said he had never used soap like that before, and liked it much better than the store bought soap.  As most of you know, I do not sell finished cold process soap, but I did give him a few more bars of my soap that I made for testing our fragrances.

Just the other day, my cousin’s husband was visiting from Baltimore and he asked me if I had anymore of the homemade soap I had given him the last time they were in Ohio.  He is in construction, and his hands get extremely dry and callused. He said that my homemade soap made his hands much softer than the store bought soap he had at home.  I gave him a few bars and he was thrilled!  Not only that, but he has been trying to get my cousin to start making soap for him.  Of course there is nothing stopping him from making it himself.  Soap making is not a science/craft reserved for just women you know.

So, you see, women like the homemade soap primarily for the smell &  aesthetics, and secondarily for the skin softening.  Men like homemade soap primarily for the skin softening qualities.  Men like their skin to look and feel young too.  My point is:  If you are not targeting men in your marketing strategy, you are missing an entire market sector that is actually showing growth.  While men may not insist that the soap you sell them has pretty swirls or fancy designs, they love homemade soap just as much as women do.  It is a mistake not to market your soap to men.

Natures Garden sells soap making supplies for making cold process soap.  We also sell an entire line of melt and pour soap bases for those of you who do not want to work with lye.  Whether you choose to make your own soap from scratch, or make soap with melt and pour soap bases, either of these products will be much better for your skin than store bought brands.

Happy Soaping!

Have a Bubbly Awesome Day!

Deborah Ward

www.naturesgardencandles.com

 

Where Can I Buy Soap Making Supplies

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013
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If you are looking for high quality soap making supplies, Natures Garden is your solution. We offer everything you need whether you are just starting your soap making craft or if you are a veteran soap crafter!

Where Can I Buy Soap Making Supplies

Deciding to venture into soap making can sometimes leave you with more questions than answers.  Where do I begin?  Where can I find informative classes and recipes?  Where is the best place to purchase soap making supplies?  We can understand that there are probably tons of these questions whirling around in your head.

Well, at Natures Garden Candle and Soap Supply; we have your answers.  Our staff has put in countless hours testing, researching, and writing informative soap making classes, tried and true soap recipes, and in the case of Cold Process Soaping; even tested every fragrance oil that we carry so that you have some insight as to how the fragrance oil behaves.

Providing soap making supplies to everyone- hobbyist and small business owners alike, if you are in the market for soap making supplies, Natures Garden is your answer.  We carry many soap making supplies like fragrance oilssoap colorants, molds, waxes/ butters/oils, additives, equipment, and even herbs and spices.

In fact, Natures Garden also carries several varieties of melt and pour soaps where the saponification process has already been done for you.  With melt and pour soap, it can be as simple as using the soap as is, or scenting and molding the soap to give it your true unique touch.

If you are still are seeking a place to start your soap making skills, a great place to start looking is at Natures Garden’s Soap Classes.  Not only are they super informative, they are FREE, and free reputable information is never a bad thing.