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Friday, October 16, 2015

October Soap Challenge - water replacement and natural colors.

 Hello my name is Eva, and here's my final entry photo for Amy Wardens October Soap Challenge: Water replacement, and Natural colors.
I'm calling it 'Calico Lemongrass'.

 It's time to tell all about my adventure with my all natural batch with 100 percent water replacement for my lye solution.

 Wow, what a roller-coaster ride it ended up being - and I have pictures to prove it!
For the scent I chose 'Mother Earth' blend - an all essential oil blend from Wholesale Supplies Plus.
The batch Oil was 100% Olive Oil. 

I chose Cucumber juice as my water replacement. Cucumbers are part of the squash family and are known to have many health benefits. 
Benefits include: antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. 
*The vitamin nutrients most likely will not survive the Lye however I am curious what color and texture qualities this will add to my soap.

 Here are links for a breakdown of Cucumber nutrients and research... (you may need to copy and paste)


 Since I wasn't sure my Cucumbers had been sprayed in cultivation, I chose not to include the skin in my juice, to avoid contaminates. I used a juicer that separated the pulp, so this was fairly clear juice. 
 I froze the juice before adding the lye. 
 For the color layer I chose, to add:
*Kale juice to my green to try as it seems to have such a deep color to it. I did not reduce any liquid from this juice.
*Carrot juice that I reduced down to remove some water - on the stove -to strengthen the color. I like the thought of it being a nutrient rich food, that is great for the skin as well having Retinol and multiple minerals. 
 Info on carrots can be found at:
*Lemon zest - about 1 tsp. - steeped in 1 Tbsp. of water to release some color, then reduced water by 1/2.
* t tsp. Paprika steeped in 1 Tbsp. of water then reduced to a thin paste. 

I didn't see alot of color definition when I put the colors into the soap batter. 

I decided after molding to put my loaf in a warm oven to assist complete gel stage as I had combined at a low temp. It seemed a good idea at the time. However, my bottom / green layer that had the most liquid, well .... liquefied so badly, I could actually see bubbles move around in the mold. Egad!
I un-molded th next day and cut off most of the green. The other layers seems solid and salvage worthy.  Note to self - less liquid in colors - and maybe no added heat - ill have to experiment with that another time.
 Then I had the thought to speed up the drying out of the trimmed loaf by setting it in the sun for 'a bit'. A few hours later, before going to work I remembered my loaf. Meltdown!!! NEVER leave soap in the direct sun and forget about it!
After letting the loaf set overnight to solidify, I cut it up into chunks to use as embeds. 
The colors seem to be darkening slightly from what they originally looked in the batter. Hooray!

I again used Cucumber juice as my lye liquid replacement, and Olive Oil. I did combine at a higher temp this time - 105 degrees.
 I did not have any Mother Earth EO left - so I used Lemongrass, and Lavender to complement the embed scent.
 The top was too plain, so I zested some lemon peel and sprinkled it on top. 
I can't wait to see how it turn out when I cut!

Here are expanded views of the loaf as it was cut:

I've really enjoyed this challenge! I feel more inspired to experiment with my Lye liquids, and natural colors. I look forward to seeing what everyone else came up with and reading how they did it!
 Thank you & Happy day to all!


  1. Oh my goodness! You really took that first loaf through the wringer!! I'm so glad you were able to salvage parts of it for the next batch! All of your research and planning really looked like it was going to work! Glad you made something beautiful out of it. :)

    1. Thank you! I have learned sooo much from this challenge. Arise, go forth and conquer! : )

  2. I love the delicate yellow with the darker embeds! Superb!

  3. Thank you! I was relieved something good turned off of it : )

  4. I admire your perseverance. And it payed off in the end because your soap turned out beautiful! Well done!

    1. Thank you Anna! I've learned bunches from my own 'adventure' and everyone else's experience! : )

    2. Wow that was quite and experience Anna! It turned out so pretty too! It is nice that you learned so much and you shared with us your experiences.

    3. Thank you , I appreciate your encouragement!