6 Things I've Learned After a Year of Soaping

This is not intended to teach you how to make soap, it is just a list of things I've learned after I started studying and making soap.  I actually haven't even been making soap until the beginning of this year, but I did an extensive amount of studying months before I made anything.  That counts right?  Anywho, These are just a few things I've learned for your entertainment.

  • There is a big Difference between hot process soap and cold process soap
When I was first looking up different ways to make soap (also how to make it without lye, we won't get into that) I saw two different methods, hot and cold.  My understanding at the time was if your oils and lye were at room temperature, it was cold process; and if you heated your oils and lye it was hot process.  So, at first I was thinking, "Oh cool I'm making hot process." Yeah, not really.  Hot process involves crock pots and hours of waiting, stirring.  Boy was I wrong.
I have made an actual batch of HP soap since, and it was riveting.  I especially loved that I didn't have to wait almost a month to use it.

  • Essential Oils and the popper use 
  I had an extremely limited knowledge on this subject.  I had never even used them- properly.  I won't get into the story about me covering myself in undiluted peppermint oil.  Since then I have educated myself!  Before I even invest in a new bottle of essential oil, I do my homework and make sure I know if they are safe for children, skin, and what could cause allergic reactions.  I should also add there are a great number of opinions out there about EO's.  If you want to start a comment war on a soaping group just post the word essential oil. Tread lightly folks.

  • Food grade lye vs drain cleaner
This is yet another controversial subject in the soap world. Which is better.  Well, PERSONALLY, I like food grade.  I say better safe then sorry.  Even if the package says, "100% LYE" still better to get food grade in my opinion.  There are tons of juice container out there that say"100% juice (with added ingredients)" or "198% vitamin C" or "100% natural" you get my point.  Besides all that, I noticed a big difference in my soap after I switched.  I just feel better giving away soap that I know for sure doesn't have any other weird chemicals added to it.

  • The big bad FDA
Ok, I guess they aren't bad, but still big.  I had an ample amount of ideas about how to market my soaps.  However, one must be cautious not to use words like "heals," "soothes," "treats," and anything that could make your product sound medicinal.  Saying things like "moisturizing" aren't that big of a deal as long as you label your soap as a cosmetic. The FDA website goes into greater detail. If you are a new soaper be sure to look at the website for how to properly label your soaps!

  • The Dollar Store!

Ya'll, there is some great stuff there, spatulas, mixing bowls, pitchers, spoons, card board boxes just waiting to be your next soap mold!  You need some #5 polypropylene bowls, they got it.  Except, parchment paper, they never have parchment paper.  For real, this new hobby has taught me to look out side the box and then use it as a soap mold.
Other good places are Micheal's, Hobby Lobby, and Bed Bath and Beyond.  So many things intended for baking can be used for soap.

  •  Drama, Drama, Drama
Well, really this happens everywhere you go, especially, in a large group of people who are passionate about what they do.  To be on the safe side it's best to avoid conversation about fragrance oils vs essential oils, PALM OIL, vinegar on lye burns, coffee grounds, and other controversial subjects. The best advice I've heard about drama is just to delete comments and move on with your life.

There is so much more out there for me to learn, and more mistakes out there for me to make. Not EVERYTHING I've learned is on this list, because it would just be too long, and kinda boring.  In the future, after I get more experience under my belt, I look forward to adding some tutorials and sharing some recipes on this blog. Have yourself a lovely day or evening!


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