Homemade Natural Remedies: 80 Organic Beauty Recipes On A Budget For A Healthy Life - Lora Brenner (2016)
Book 3. Soap Making: Essential Guide For Absolute Beginners. 20 Homemade Organic Recipes
Chapter 2. Cleansing Coconut Oil Soap
12.54 ounces water
4.83 ounces lye
33 ounces coconut oil
0.5-1 ounce essential oils (optional)
Step 1: Prepare the water/lye mixture
Add the water to a ceramic or glass bowl of medium size. Take the bowl outside (and bring the lye as well). This way, you will reduce the chances of inhaling the vapors.
Then, slowly add the lye to the water and mix gently. You should be careful here because it will get hot.
Leave the mixture to clear out before you bring it inside. Leave to cool for about 10 minutes.
Step 2: Melt the coconut oil
In a saucepan, add the coconut oil and heat to 120F. When checking the temperature, pay attention that your thermometer does not touch the bottom of the saucepan.
Step 3: Combine the oil and lye mixture
Transfer the coconut oil to a crockpot and set it to low. Carefully add the lye and give it a few gentle stirs.
Step 4: Blend
Combine the mixture with a stick blender. The texture and thickness you want to achieve are that of a light pudding.
Step 5: Cook
Cover the crockpot and leave to cook on low. While it is cooking, you will notice how the oils rise up the sides of the crockpot resembling waves and then fold back.
This process of cooking usually takes from 45 minutes to an hour. If it appears that the mixture may flow over the sides, just quickly stir it, and it will reduce in volume.
Step 6: Checking if the soap is ready
You will know that the soap is ready when there are no oil puddles in the middle of the mixture, and it is semi-translucent and looks like vaseline.
If you don’t have much experience in soap making, you can rely on two other ways to test if your soap is ready.
The first way is to use a PH test strip. Simply dip it into the soap mixture and leave for a few minutes until it fully changes its color. The test strip should read between 7 and 10. The soap is not done if the test strip reads higher than 10.
Another way is to rub a little of this soap mixture between your fingers. You should feel how it is a bit waxy, and if you touch it to your tongue, and it‘zaps’you, it is not done.
It is really important that the lye you use for your soap is converted because if otherwise is the case, the soap may burn.
Step 7 (optional): Adding the essential oils
This is an optional step where you can add some essential oils. If you choose to do so, you should wait for the mixture to cool a bit because if you add them earlier, the essential oils can lose their fragrance.
Step 8: Molding
Prepare the molds you have and spoon the mixture carefully into the molds. Leave to cool. If you can’t wait, you can keep the soaps in the fridge.
Step 9: Cut the soap into bars
Since coconut bars can be really hard to cut when they are left to dry for too long, you should cut them into bars as soon as the soap firms.
Step 10: Leave the bars to cure
Place the bars on a rack and keep in an area with good air flow. Although they will harden after a few days, it is better to let the bars sit for about 2 to 3 weeks because the conditioning properties will fully develop during this time.