Posts Tagged ‘soap making’

Monster Snot Soap Jelly

Friday, August 29th, 2014

slide9Monster Snot Soap Jelly

 

Fall is fast approaching, and you know what that means! Halloween is right around the corner! With the thought of ghouls and goblins on our brains, we have created the Monster Snot Soap Jelly. Monster Snot Soap Jelly holds true to its’ name with its’ tart green apple scent. It is a Nature’s Garden creation that will bring back all of your childhood memories of fall time and Halloween with candy and costumes as well as your first taste of a tart ripe apple. It is also a fun reminder of your first experience of bobbing for apples or your first taste of some hot apple cider. Monster Snot Soap Jelly is sure to be a Halloween favorite that you will want to make over and over again for years to come.

 

 

Ingredients:

69 grams of SLS FREE Glycerin Melt and Pour Soap

187 grams of warm distilled water

4 grams of Optiphen

12 grams of Tart Green Apple Fragrance Oil

Blue Da Bomb FD&C Soap Dye

Yellow Da Bomb FD&C Soap Dye

8oz Clear Bullet Bottle

One 24/410 Black Fine Mist Sprayer

8oz Clear PET Jars

Black Dome Lid 70/400

One thermometer

Rubbing Alcohol

Googly Eyes

 

Directions:

  1. Weigh out and melt down 69 grams of the SLS Free Glycerin Melt and Pour Soap in a clean bowl in the microwave. This will take about 30 seconds. If it is not completely melted, you can put it back in for another 15 seconds. Then measure out and add in 187 grams of warm distilled water. slide1 (1)
  2. Then, add 4 drops of yellow Da Bomb Soap Dye and then 2 drops of blue Da Bomb Soap Dye. slide2 (1)
  3. Using a thermometer, make sure that the mixture is between 120 to 140 degrees. If it is at the correct temperature, add in the 4 grams of Optiphen and then mix thoroughly. slide4
  4. After the Optiphen is mixed in, carefully add 12 grams of our Tart Green Apple Fragrance Oil. slide6
  5. With a clean spoon or utensil, mix it all together. slide7
  6. After you have achieved your snot color, spray it with the rubbing alcohol. This will get rid of all of the air bubbles.
  7. Let the mixture set up for a few hours in the refrigerator to cool or it can just sit out overnight, until it is a gooey, almost jelly-like texture.
  8. This step is completely optional and just for pure fun. Now that your Snot is finished, add googly eyes or some kind of Halloween decoration to the outside of your jar like we did to make it look like a monster! slide8

 

9. Your Soap Jelly is now ready to use! Have fun with your scary new friend!

We hope you have enjoyed making our awesome Monster Snot Soap Jelly! The smell of the tart apples will surely remind you of your own candy filled memories. It is sure to be a fun project for your kids or even a great Halloween feature to add to your own house of haunts for the season! Are you ready for some more fragrance fun?  Visit our free recipe box for many more awesome ideas!

 

Blueberry Cheesecake Scent

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

 

Blueberry CheesecakeBlueberry Cheesecake Scent

Blueberry Cheesecake- Fragrance Oil Spotlight

Blueberry Cheesecake Scent is a warm and delicious mouthwatering scent.  In products, this blueberry scent perfectly balances notes of ripe blueberries, warm buttery vanilla, and scrumptious graham crackers.  In fact, many of our clients say this fragrance is a bestselling scent all year.  Some have even said Natures Gardens Blueberry Cheesecake scent draw customers in.  This scent is not only loved by all, but is a fabulous bakery scent that lovers of food type scents.  According to our clientele this amazing food scent is good enough to eat.  This is a spectacular scent and is a must have in your stock.

What does Blueberry Cheesecake Smell Like?

This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is the scent of sweet, yummy decadence starts with Tahitian vanilla, rich creamy butter and ripe blueberries atop a crumbly graham cracker crust.

How Do Our Customers Use Blueberry Cheesecake Fragrance Oil?

For those of you that are candle crafters; this scent is amazing; especially if you are just starting out.  Our customers use this great food scent in their soy, Pillar of Bliss, Joy, paraffin, and palm waxes.  This fragrance is fantastic in candles, and has terrific hot and cold scent throw.  Blueberry Cheesecake scent also works well in tart, oil burners, and reed diffusers.

For bath and body crafters, this fragrance oil smells like freshly baked blueberry cheesecake.  The usage rate is 5%, and this fragrance has a vanillin content of 7.5%; so vanilla white color stabilizer is highly suggested to help stabilize discoloration in finished products.  This yummy fragrance can be used to scent: melt and pour soap, lotions, bath bombs, body butters, and spray.  Finally, for those of you that are cold process soapers, this fragrance is so worth the discoloration.  Here are the official testing results:  No acceleration, no separation.  Great strong scent!  Discolors to a dark chocolate.  Yummy!  .

 

Absinthe Scent

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

Absinthe Scent

Absinthe Fragrance Oil- Fragrance Oil Spotlightabsinthe

Absinthe scent is a strong spicy scent that our customers have called both dark and hypnotic. Many of our clients have had huge success with absinthe being one of their bestselling fragrances. So if you are looking for that must have fall fragrance, look no further. Absinthe scent will have your customers coming back for more.

What does Absinthe Scent Smell Like?

Natures Garden’s Absinthe fragrance oil is an aromatic blend of just the right combination of star anise, fennel, spicy cinnamon cassia, nutmeg, melissa, fresh green herbal notes, with base notes of amber and woods.

How Do Our Customers Use Absinthe Fragrance Oil?

For those who are candle crafters and room scenters; this Absinthe fragrance is used in soy, soy blends, Pillar of Bliss, Joy, and tart waxes. This dark scent is extremely strong and has excellent hot and cold scent throw. Natures Garden’s Absinthe fragrance oil also works well for air fresheners, whether it is aroma beads, room sprays, or oil burners.

For the bath and body end of products, our absinthe scent has a usage rate of 5%. This dark fragrance is used to make a variety of personal care items like: lotions, melt and pour soaps, perfumes, and body wash. And, for those of you that are cold process soapers, our customers love this spicy scent. Here are our CP findings: Moderate ricing, trace acceleration, cinnamon may have caused ricing and acceleration. Cinnamon pops after adding soap. No discoloration

Apple Pie Scent

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

apple pie scent Apple Pie Fragrance Oil (Our Old Version) - Fragrance Oil Spotlight

There is nothing like the scent of apple pie.  A true American classic, Apple Pie scent is the aroma of fresh crisp apple intermingled with warm and mouthwatering spices.  This delicious scent in products is a big seller too.  This apple pie scent is fantastic for lovers of food type fragrances, or anyone who just enjoys an all around good apple aroma.  According to our clientele this great dessert scent is addictive, and they find their clients always craving more.  This strong and delicious scent is a wonderful addition to any product line and makes for truly yummy and scrumptious smelling homemade products.

What does Apple Pie Smell Like?

This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is one that although we have had many apple scents to choose from, this apple pie has been with us since we started making candles.  This scent is not the same as our Hot Baked Apple Scent, as this one has more of a cinnamon “kick” to it.

How Do Our Customers Use Apple Pie Fragrance Oil?

For those of you that are candle crafters, this scent comes highly recommended!  A perfect apple pie scent for anyone looking to add bakery type scents to their line; Apple Pie Fragrance Oil smells just like apple pie fresh out of the oven.  Our customers use this apple pie scent in their soy, WOW, Pillar of Bliss, Joy, and paraffin waxes.  With an all around amazing scent throw, this fragrance is wonderful in both the hot and cold throw.  As for home scenting ideas to make your house smell good, this apple pie scent works phenomenally well in tart and oil burners, smelly jellies, liquid potpourris, sachet beads, room sprays, and reed diffusers.

For the bath and body crafters, this delicious apple pie scent is so realistic you can even smell the crust.  The usage rate for this fragrance is 1% in bath oils, soaps, and bath gels; and carries a .5% usage rate for lotions and perfumes.  Apple Pie Fragrance Oil also has a .5% vanillin content, so vanilla white color stabilizer is highly suggested to help stabilize discoloration in finished products.  This mouthwatering fragrance can be used to scent: body scrubs, body butters, perfumes, bath bombs, melt and pour soaps, salt bars, lotions, whipped body butters, and foaming hand soaps.  Finally, for those of you that are cold process soapers, this fragrance is great.  Here are the official testing results:  Very slight acceleration.  No separation.  Discolors to a tan color.  Yummy scent!

If you are interested in using this apple pie scent in a candle recipe, please click on this link to view Natures Gardens Independence Day Candle Recipe.

Cookie Scent

Saturday, May 24th, 2014

Cookie ScentPeanut Butter Cookie Fragrance Oil-Fragrance Oil Spotlight

The peanut butter cookie was invented by a gentlemen named George Washington Carver.  In fact, George came up with over 103 recipes that included peanuts.  The first peanut butter cookie was rolled thin and cut into shapes, just like your sugar cookies of today.  Eventually by the 1930’s they were “dropped” into balls and pressed with fork tines in a crisscross pattern.  Technically, there was no real reason for this additional step but it became the style peanut butter cookies became known for.  And, just like a freshly baked platter of peanut butter cookies, there is no denying the authentic aroma of this cookie scent.  It is so unbelievably real you may just think somebody baked a large batch of cookies.  This cookie scent is comforting, inviting, and so yummy; leaving quite the impression.  Peanut Butter Cookie Fragrance Oil is a very true scent to the real cookie.

What does Peanut Butter Cookie Fragrance Oil smell like?

This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is simply amazing!  Peanut Butter Cookie fragrance is a rich, buttery, freshly baked aroma of real peanut butter cookies! You will not believe how true to name this scent is! A Best Seller!

How do our customers use Peanut Butter Cookie Fragrance Oil?

For candle crafters and home scenters this bakery delight is a huge hit.  Our customers use this cookie scent in their soy tarts, tea lights, Palm Container wax, WOW wax, Joy wax, and soy.  And, Peanut Butter Cookie Fragrance Oil has great throw too.  As for other home scenting ideas; this scent has been used in oil diffusers and electric burners.

On the bath and body end of products, the usage rate for this fragrance oil is 5%.  This cookie scent does contain a vanillin content of 1.6%, so using Vanilla White Color Stabilizer is highly recommended to offset discoloration in your finished products.  This wonderful cookie scent is used to make:  melt and pour soaps, bath bombs, lotions, and body butters; all with a delicious buttery scent.  And, for those of you that are cold process soapers, this cookie scent soaped beautifully.  Here are the official results:  No acceleration at all.  Scent sticks.  Soaps great.  Discolors to a caramel color.

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.

Color Dispersion

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

color dispersionColor Dispersion in Soap

This picture shows the same exact recipe using two different methods of color dispersion in soap. Once the soap was poured, we noticed that some of the colorant was still on the sides of the bowls instead of actually incorporated into the soap (as shown in the soap on the right).  In addition, we noticed concentrated pockets of colorant in this cut soap.   Mainly, it is the difference between hand stirring the colorants in verses stick blending the colorants in, and failure to scrape the sides of the bowls to incorporate all of the coloring.  Regardless of the method that you choose, there are distinct advantages and disadvantages. The key to knowing which method works best for you is knowing your soap recipe and the time that it allows you.

Color Dispersion in cold process soap making can be a tricky aspect. After you figure out your color scheme for your recipe and the technique as to how you are adding your color, it then comes down to the actual challenge.

Really there are three options to color dispersion in your soap. They are hand stirring the colorant into the batter with a spoon, stick blending the colorant in, or the combination of both. The correct decision relies on a few factors though. These factors are: your recipe, time, and the number of colorants you want to add.

Hand Stirring
The best advantage of hand stirring colorants into soap is that it does not speed up trace. This allows you the perfect fluid soap batter for accomplishing a multi color swirl in your soap. But, hand stirring the colorant into your soap batter is slightly more time consuming because you really have to stir for some time to get the colorant dispersed. So, this is where knowing your recipe and window of time, especially if you are using multiple colorants, comes into play.

You will also have to be ready to move. When hand stirring, you have to stir, and stir quickly to get the full color dispersion of the soap colorant. And, do not forget to have your spatula ready to clean the sides and rotate the soap from the bottom of the bowl to make sure all of the colorant is evenly dispersed.

However, not all colorants can be hand stirred. Some of the colorants do not disperse as well as others with this method. The examples of these types of colorants would be titanium dioxide and the ultramarines. Colorants like these often need to be stick blended in order to get the full color dispersion among all of the soap.

Stick Blending
Stick blending your colorants in soap batter is ideal for true color dispersion. But, with stick blending time is a major factor. Stick blending will speed up trace (or the saponification process) in your soap. If too much time elapses while stick blending your colorants into the batter; certain swirling techniques cannot be accomplished. This is because the soap batter will be too thick, especially if you are using more than two colors in your soap recipe.

Besides speeding up trace, there is another factor to consider. When using multiple soap colorants and stick blending you will have to quickly clean your stick blender in between colors. But, you do have a few options when it comes to this. Some soapers keep a small bowl of water by their coloring station to quickly clean their stick blender in between colors. And, some just stick blend their colors in the correct order, but gently tap the stick blender to remove as much colored batter as possible before moving on to the next color. For example if you are coloring your soap green and yellow; you would start by stick blending the yellow first. This is because the yellow color is the lightest, and then move to the green.

The Combo
For the situations where you want to use ultramarines which almost require a stick blend to get the best color dispersion, but you still want several other colors in your soap; you can combo the blend. You would start by stick blending the colorants that need it, and then move on to the hand stirred colorants. If the stick blended colorants become too thick, simply stir them by hand and the soap batter will thin out slightly (or enough to pour). Just remember, you must move quickly.

What this really all comes down to is testing. Through making various batches of soap, you will be able to find exactly which method of color dispersion is best for you and your soaping recipe. There really is no right or wrong answer as to which method to use. Each soap recipe will vary.

Natures Garden offers FUN Soap colorants for soap making.  We even carry multiple neon colors to really make your soap “come alive”.

Insulating Soap

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

insulating soap In an earlier blog post, we discussed how insulating soap to promote gel phase was a matter of personal choice. Whether you insulate or choose not to, your soap will still be soap.

When it comes to whether you choose to insulate or not, really there are only two factors that will change. The first is the amount of cure time. Due to the fact that the saponification process is slowed down by the prevention of gel phase, your soap may need extra cure time before use. On the other hand, promoting a full gel phase for your soap means an accelerated saponification process with a normal cure time. And, the second difference is an aesthetic one.

The finished look of your soap will differ slightly based upon whether you choose to prevent gel phase or encourage it. By preventing gel phase (sticking your molded soap in the fridge or freezer), your finished soap will have a matte look to it. By promoting gel phase, your finished soap will have a slight translucent, shiny look to it. Again, however, please remember regardless of which method you choose either method results with finished soap.

When making soap, it is important to remember that the gel phase occurs during the saponification process. While your soap is in the mold, the various soaping ingredients react with the lye mixture, and heat is used to help the acceleration of the whole saponification process. When choosing to promote gel phase during saponification, it can be accomplished through means of insulation.

Insulating your soap means wrapping the soap with various layers in an attempt to keep the heat within the soap. Because the saponification process is endothermic (meaning the process pulls heat from its surroundings), keeping the soap insulated is the best means to successfully promoting gel phase throughout your whole soap. It will also help to prevent a partial gel. If you remember, a partial gel is where the center of your soap achieves gel phase, but the outside areas do not. This typically occurs because the outside of the soap looses heat in a quicker fashion therefore inhibiting the ideal environment for a full gel phase to occur.

Through the means of insulation, you can provide your soap with its ideal environment (heat wise).  And, when it comes to insulation for your soap, there are many different items you can use.  These items would include: newspaper, cardboard, blankets, towels, etc.  Practically, you can use any layer type material that will keep the heat in the soap (but never aluminum foil).

Many soapers will use various items in combination such as: wrapping the soap with saran wrap (especially if the soap has a decorated top), then covering it with newspaper, surrounded by towels, and finally placed under a box. There really is no limit for insulation. And, many believe that over insulating can never be done. Remember the key to insulating, if you are choosing to promote the gel phase; is to keep as much heat in the soap as possible.

However, please note: If you are soaping a recipe that does contain sugar or dairy products, you may want to go a little on the lighter side of insulating due to the fact that these items in your recipe will increase heat during the saponification process. Extreme insulating in these examples may cause the ingredients to “burn”, possibly resulting in discoloration and an off smell in your finished soaps.  It can also cause your soap batter to begin to bubble out of your mold.  You do however have the choice of preventing the gel phase for these types of recipes, and sticking your molded soap in the fridge or freezer.

Gel Phase

Saturday, April 26th, 2014

inhibited gel phase soap In an earlier blog post, we briefly discussed insulation of cold process soap. Through insulating your soap, you are encouraging the best environment for the gel phase to occur during saponification. Keeping the soap evenly heated using insulation will prevent a partial gel from occurring. But, still there are no guarantees. Even with the best insulation, you may still end up with bars of soap that have partial gel evident.

So, what if you prevented the gel phase in your soap?

Although this is possible, it is still not guaranteed. It can be very tough to prevent the gel phase. But, there are some factors that need to be noted to help you in your quest to stop the gel phase. These factors are: the size of your mold, and the various ingredients in your recipe. The saponification process involves heat; it is the nature of the soaping beast. Choosing to eliminate the gel phase will change some elements to your soap and soaping process.

But, before we get to that information, let’s look at some specific reasons to prohibit the gel phase.

First, since you are decreasing the amount of heat that is in your soap, this will allow you to introduce certain soaping ingredients that normally would be finicky. Examples of these heat sensitive ingredients would be: dairy products, heat sensitive colorants; prone to morphing, and fragrances or essential oils with a low flashpoint.

Dairy Products
Soaping with ingredients such as creams, milks, and butters for example will provide your finished bars with rich, extra moisturizing elements. However, soaping with dairy products can be tricky. With the heat that is involved with the saponification process, there is a chance that dairy products will burn. This results in both discoloration and an off smell in your soap. By preventing the gel phase from occurring, you allow these ingredients a fighting chance in soap. And, you can even produce a creamier bar of finished soap.

Colorants
Whether you are deciding to go the natural route with herbs, or using colorants that you worry may morph; preventing gel phase allows the window of opportunity to stay open. Certain herbs discolor or darker from the saponification process. The same is true for some colorants that completely alter like deep purple to brown.

Now, for the colorants in the finished soap when the gel phase is eliminated: the bar colors are bolder and more vivid. Even if you choose not to color your soap batter, the elimination of the gel phase stops the darkening of the fats and oils in your recipe, allowing for a “whiter” finished bar.

Scenting Options
If you do not want to rebatch your soap recipe, preventing the gel phase in your cold process soap may allow you to scent your soap with low flashpoint oils without worrying that the saponification process will eliminate the scent. It is also possible for fragrance or essential oil scents to come through stronger in the soap because of the reduction of heat.

As for what preventing the gel phase means for your soaps, there are key points you should know. First, you must keep your molded soap chilled for the full 24 hours. Depending on your recipe, you may have to keep the soap chilled for an additional 24 hours as well.

Now, when you are ready to unmold your soap, it is crucial to let your molded soap reach room temperature before trying to slice it. Not allowing your soap to be at room temperature before cutting may result with your bars being brittle, and breaking apart as you slice them.

As for the saponification process, since you inhibit the gel phase, it will take your soaps longer to complete the saponification process. What this means is that the soap will need additional cure time before it will be ready to use.

So, whether you choose to insulate or prevent the gel phase, it is really up to personal discretion. Regardless of the method, the result is the same; a finished bar of soap. The only variables that change are the molding environment and the cure time.

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.