Wednesday, 25 January 2012

How to Make Soap

There's a Spring Fayre coming up at work next month and I have decided to take up a stall. I had one at the Christmas Fayre which was a surprise success. At Christmas I made sample decorations and took orders so that I didn't end up with lots of something no one wanted. I probably spent about £20 on materials - I already have a lot of craft stuff at home, and I took about £100 so not a bad profit.
This time around, I am making soaps and lavender hearts and maybe some other bits (but I haven't quite decided yet).
Here's how I make my soaps.

You will need:
Soap base
heatproof jug
essential oils for scent
colour (optional but don't use food colouring if you don't want to dye people's faces)
botanicals (flowers, salt/scrub granules, cocoa butter etc)

First, take the soap base and cut it into small even sized pieces (I got my base from Hobbycraft, it cost about £6 for a big block and I use about half a block at a time)

Put the pieces into a plastic jug and melt in the microwave - stop it and check every 15 or 20 seconds, you don't want to boil the soap base because this can discolour it and you seem to end up with lots of bubbles in it.

When all of the base has melted, you are ready to pour it into moulds. At this stage, add any scent or colour, you don't need very much unless you want really strong fragrances/colours.

Pour the liquid soap into your chosen moulds - I use silicone cupcake cases.

If you are adding any dried ingredients, only fill the moulds half way and let the soap set. Then add the dry ingredients and another layer of liquid soap to fill the mould. Leave about half a centimetre at the top of the mould to make it easier to get out once it has set.

If you want to, you can decorate the tops of your soaps with anything you like.

I have made 3 different kinds of soap for the Fayre; coconut and cocoa butter (the cocoa butter makes your hands feel really soft), lavender and rose, and elderflower and lemon with nutshell exfoliants.
I'm hoping everyone will like them (or I will have a lot of soap to get through!).

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