Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Ice Cubes & Soap

When mixing my lye into my water I have found that if at least half of my water is ice cubes I get little to no fumes when the lye and water react.  I like this since its not always practical for me to mix the lye/water outside and I hate walking around with a pitcher of lye, even if it's covered.  Normally I just use the ice cubes we make with water from our Brita.  But because I'm not all that great at remembering to change the filter and I have distilled water that I buy specifically for soap, I thought I would make ice cubes with the distilled water.  This is what I got..... 

Can you see the icicle growing UP out of the ice cube?!  My kids thought this was pretty neat, so of course we had to investigate why this happened.  I figured it had to have something to do with the distilled water, since I've never seen this with any other ice cubes.  After some 'Google-ing' we found this blog post that explains why this happens.  It has to do with the way the water freezes.  The water starts freezing all around the edges, top and bottom, as this happens it causes pressure on the water, tiny holes can form on the top and as the pressure increases little drops of water will squeeze out of the holes.  As more water is pushed out it adds to the little icicle and it will continue to grow.  There are other factors involved as well, such as the water used (I was right!!) and how quickly it freezes.  Well, now I have another thing to add to my 'What I've Learned From Making Soap' list!

Friday, October 1, 2010

I LOVE Eucalyptus!

I love the smell of Eucalyptus, it just seems so fresh and clean.  I use it in laundry soap, household cleaner, in a diffuser.  The only question is what took me so long to use it in soap?  Well I was waiting to get some French Green Clay to use as a colourant, but I think its mostly because I forgot..gasp!  I finally got around to making it (and posting about it).  Here's how it turned out...

Once I had all the oils and lye combined I scented the whole batch, then I pour 1/3 of it into another bowl.  I added the green clay to 2/3 of the batch, its a brighter green than what it looks like in the picture.  I poured the green part into my mold, then sprinkled some more clay on top to get that line.  I then poured the uncoloured 1/3 of the batch on top.
I really like how it turned out!  Next time I'll have to work a bit faster because it started to set up on me, especially the top part.  I had to 'glop' and 'smush', those are technical terms ;) it into the mold, so there are a few pockets where it didn't fill in all the way.   They still look and smell great.
I was a very good girl and I waited a whole FOUR weeks before I tried one.  Ooooo it's so nice, lots of bubbly lather a scent that I love.  I've heard that green clay can be drying and is good for oily skin, I haven't noticed it drying my skin.  I have an oily t-zone so maybe 'i should use this as a facial soap.