A couple weeks ago I decided to remake a soap I had made several times before without any problems. It's my Green Tea Soap which has a slightly floral note to it. It might have thickened up my batter before when I made it, but it was not bad at all and I soaped it quite easily.
I got my supplies and ingredients together and started my soaping. I used a slightly different recipe than I did before and decided to add coconut milk to this soap this time. Also I soaped at a slightly cooler temperature than before, about 90 degrees.
I added my matcha green tea to my lye water. I added the fragrance oil to my oils. I added the lye water to my oils. I blended just slightly and immediatley noticed it accelerating. I added my small amount of coconut milk and blended some more. It was getting thicker really fast. I glopped some batter into another container and added some green to the main container. I added some titanium dioxide to the second container to whiten that part for the top of the soap. I tried to mix the batter in each container but this is what I had within seconds!
|looks like mashed avocado|
|soap on a stick|
|very naughty soap|
I used my big spoon and started mashing it and smashing it trying to get it to mix and soften up. It was quite funny and I was sort of laughing while fighting with the batter. The green batter was getting hotter by the second, and within minutes it started gelling right in the container while I was mixing it! That's what I wanted. I added a little water and stirred, stirred, stirred. My arm was getting tired and I was getting really hot fighting with the batter. The green completely gelled and softened right up while I mixed, and I was able to easily glop it into the mold.
|green layer in the mold|
Now for the white part. I tried to do the same thing with the white batter, but it didn't work quite as well. I added water and stirred, smashed, mashed, added more water, stirred, etc. It didn't want to give in. It started gelling a little but not completely like the green. I finally used the stick blender on it and got it soft enough to glop it on top of the green layer. It was still quite hard though, so I sort of dropped it with a spoon onto the green and mashed it down into the green to make sure it would stick together. When I got all the white layer into the mold, it sort of looked like green tea ice cream to me! I added iridescent glitter on the top even though I usually don't use glitter on this soap because, well, glitter makes everything better, right?
I unmolded the soap the next day and cut it into bars. It looks ok, not great, but ok for a soap that did not want to cooperate. The layers are holding together, colors are nice, and it smells really good! I already used an end piece in the shower and it feels great! So I am happy to say that the naughty soap did not beat me even though it tried it's hardest! I won! Yay!!!
|cut bars top view|
Soooo, the moral of the story is: If you have naughty soap that seizes on you, 1. Don't panic. 2. Add some water and stir, stir, stir. It may take a while. 3. Let it gel in the pot. 4. Once it gels and softens up, get it into the mold. 5. Be happy!
Just remember that no matter what the soap batter does, as long as your recipe and measurements are correct and the soap is not lye heavy, you can pretty much always save your soap, even if it means rebatching! But that's another story!
Take care and until next time, Happy Soaping!