Tag Archives: lye

Jul
22

Soap Making: Never Add Water to Lye

This entry was posted in all natural, cold process soap, Fragrance Oils, handcrafted soap, homemade, Natures Garden, soap fragrances, soap oil properties and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , on by .

lye volcanoWhy You Never Add Water to Lye in Soap Making

Caustic Soda or lye is a necessary ingredient in the soap making process.  However, it is this same ingredient that prevents most people from attempting cold process soap making.  Most lye solutions consist of lye and distilled water.  When making the lye solution there are a few key tips you want to remember.  They are:

Wear your safety gear: safety goggles, mask, long sleeve shirts, pants, and gloves.

Always mix your lye solution in a well ventilated area (open windows, outside, garage, turn on the exhaust fan).

NEVER use glass or aluminum items for your soap making mixing containers or utensils.  Glass can break, and aluminum does not play nicely with lye.  It will cause a toxic, chemical reaction.

Lye is extremely caustic and can do severe damage.  When water and lye are mixed together this is known as a lye solution.  This mixing will also cause an exothermic reaction, this means that heat is given off as a byproduct of the chemical reaction occurring.  Once the lye and water are stirred to make the lye solution, lye solution will become very hot, sometimes reaching 200 degrees.

When you are ready to make the lye solution, ALWAYS pour the lye into the water.  One of the best tips that we have found to remember the order is to envision “a light snow falling into a pond.”

When incorporating the two ingredients together you want to do it in a slow manner.  You must sprinkle the lye in small doses into the water.  In between each sprinkle, you will want to stir, stir, and stir.  The lye mixture will become cloudy, and may give off fumes.  Do not inhale these fumes.  They are extremely hazardous.

NEVER POUR WATER INTO LYE!!!  And NEVER ADD TOO MUCH LYE TOO FAST!!!  Doing either one of these things will create a violent reaction known as a volcano effect.  This happens because the water starts to dissolve the lye, forming a crust.  This crust then seals in the chemical reaction occurring beneath it.  The reaction can only handle being restrained from its own crust before the build-up of pressure and heat creates a burst or eruption.  Hence the term- volcano effect.

If a volcano effect does occur, immediately spray your work area with vinegar.  Vinegar will neutralize the caustic lye.  Proceed by washing the area down with hot soapy water.  Rinse area, and wash again with hot soapy water.  Use paper towels to dry area.

So, to sum up this lesson in soap making:  NEVER POUR WATER ONTO LYE….YOU WILL CREATE A LYE VOLCANO!!!!  Create your lye solution by adding small amounts of lye to water and stir.

May
16

Bath Bombs and Luxury Soaps

This entry was posted in all natural, bath and body, bath bombs, bath products, cupcake soap, essential oils, Fragrance Oils, Natures Garden, sugar scrubs and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , on by .

fragrance oils1. What is your name and Your Company Name: Marlene Nicosia/Spa Girl

2. Why did you decide to go into business? What was your motivation? How long have you been in business? Meeting at a crossroad several years ago with decreasing demand for what I had been doing for the previous 35+ years (medical transcription), and also going to be relocating to the Chicago area as my daughter was having a baby and I would be full-time babysitter, I met with a couple of ladies who had successful soap companies and was awestruck by the concept of making handmade soaps from oils and lye. I had always been in love with essential oils and natural products and this was a perfect fit. I began my journey in 2009 into handmade. Although I have seemed to find my niche with bath bombs, my goal is to continue to add a KidSpa and SpaPure line that is fragrance-free with natural colorants, essential oils and beneficial clays.

3. What products do you make and sell? Bath bombs, luxury soaps, Kids Spa line including sugar scrubs, cupcake soaps, bubble bombs, glycerin soaps.

4. What are your business goals? We are working on our website and hope to have it ready in the next few weeks. I would also like to establish wholesale accounts for handmade soaps including our SpaPure natural line of products.

5. What are some products you use from Natures Garden? What are your favorite products from Natures Garden? I love the products, pricing and service from Natures Garden. We carry over 50 fragrance oils from Natures Garden. I love to check out the Best Sellers section and know when I’m adding them to my line; they are guaranteed to be received well by my customers and will become my best sellers. I have purchased soap molds, soap making supplies, and always pick up a few new fragrances with every order.

Your Website: http://www.spagirlsoaps.etsy.com

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/spagirl.soaps

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SpaGirlSoap