Daily Archives: August 22, 2010

Misadventures in Soap Making


Recently, I mentioned that I had some wonderful rose petal infused oil and I asked readers what they would make with it. My best buddy Kathryn suggested some soap, and being a soapmaker, I was more than happy to oblige.

I decided to make a cute pink and white soap using the rose petal infused oil and added some blueberry seeds for exfoliation and a little rose geranium essential oil to enhance the rose petal scent. I couldn’t wait to unveil and cut into the soap to see how it turned out.

And then…

Ai-yah, what happened here?

My heart sank a little when I saw the top layer of the batch. The blueberry seeds had bled and there was a layer of soap ash over the top. Soap ash is harmless, it just detracts from the soap’s aesthetics. I was still hopeful that the rest of the batch would look good, so I continued to unmold the soap.

This is why soap making keeps me humble.

Oh man, another boo-boo. I probably should have left the batch sitting in the mold for another few days, because as you can see, it’s still very soft. I did a little clean up and decided to cut into the soap anyway.

Hey, not too shabby after all!

Cut, the soap reminded me a bit of pastry. It looked like a cream cheese filling in a cake or muffin. Unfortunately, I couldn’t smell much of the rose petals anymore, but the rose geranium scent was still strong and quite pleasant. (I’m not sure why I thought rose geranium E.O. would enhance the rose petal scent, but at least the bars smelled awesome.) These bars are going back to the curing rack to harden, but I’ll probably pull them out in about a week to clean them up a bit (remove the soap ash and smooth out any holes/ridges).

I’ll post pictures once the bars are fully hardened and ready to use. I’m still hopeful they will turn out great and not totally land in the “misadventure” file. Ah well, that’s what learning and experimenting are all about right?