A year ago yesterday, I met someone and made a plan to make soap for the first time. This year, we got together to celebrate our Anniversary by doing some color testing and had a lot of fun. From Left to Right, we tested these colors as follows in 100% coconut oil soap with 20% superfat:
- Indigo powder, 1/2 tsp. per pound down to 1/16 tsp. per pound.
- Spirulina powder, same method
- Red Oxide, 1/2 tsp. of a mixture of 1 Tbsp. in 4 oz. of glycerin per lb., and diluted down to 1/16 tsp. per pound.
- Activated Charcoal in glycerin, same method.
We did this to figure out the best amounts to use. I had several batches ruined by using too much oxide or charcoal. Testing at somewhat higher levels seems to be indicated because I would still like to get better blacks and reds rather than pinks and greys but the results were great and now I have the information I need to more reliably reproduce some colors in my soaps! The soaps partially gelled (became soap at a higher heat level) so I got to see the colors in both gel and non-gel states.
The colors suspended in glycerin came out with a smoother look while powders added directly had dots and streaks, which was fine and actually gives some texture in appearance.
The round soaps were non-gelled. Indigo came out greyish purple and I’m not a fan but gelled indigo may be more blue. Further experimentation is necessary. The spirulina gave a nice range of colors.
Next project is to get all the colors in the range into one soap. That would be an “ombre” soap. “Ombre” is the French word for color that is shaded or graduated in tone.
My rectangular soaps are now cut and will be distributed as samples. My friend’s round soaps are destined for who knows where! If you are reading this, you may be the lucky recipient! They are scented with Eucalyptus and Rosemary. My pink ones are unscented and the grey ones have Anise Essential Oil.
It was a very Happy Anniversary! The traditional gift for the First Anniversary of a wedding is paper. I think maybe it should be soap.