Soap making is kind of a weird hobby.
Don't get me wrong, it's a great way to practice your inner Chemist from High School or Junior High, but how often do you want to eat up two hours doing that?
First of all, you can go to a market almost anywhere in the world and pick some soap up cheap. Pennies. If you are paying more than $3 an ounce I need you to commission me to make the stuff for you.
Really. That's a massive rip-off.
Second of all, since it is so cheap, people don't value what it is doing for you or really give it a second thought.
I don't want to be near anyone who doesn't use the stuff, but when is the last time you picked up a bar and thought what it takes to make it.
It makes modern society possible along with dogs and other social constructs.
Third, you look the fool if you make it yourself.
I call it my "Breaking Bad/Walter White Routine". I'm mixing Lye into Ice and doing so in my front yard. I have on gloves and a pair of safety goggles. I'm mixing chemicals outside because there is no stove hood in my house, and it can make nasty chemicals when the magic happens.
I got a raised eyebrow today when the Postie rolled up to my mailbox and I was standing in front of my porch dressed for this. Mixing and stirring in a plastic Red Solo Cup, I was peering into a milky white toxic witches' brew.
"Hi, Soap Making Day today. Thanks!"
She got back in her truck after handing me the mail with a shrug.
I then married that witches' brew with the oil mixtures and mixed for a while.
Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Grapeseed Oil, and Shea Butter.
Add Lye and Water.
Mix with a stick blender for 20 minutes until pudding consistency and you can draw lines on top.
Then add Cinnamon and Cinnamon Essence.
Pour into molds.
Fourth, it takes at least a month before you can test your results.
Yep, your pudding needs to cure. It gets warm, hardens, and needs to evaporate off most of that water.
But I waaa-naaa!
Nope. Even at a month, I'm rushing it a bit. Second Week In March today's batch will be ready.
When the soap is hard enough to unmold, I will stand it up on a side on paper in the bedroom to let the drafts waft away the extra water. Weigh one. When it stops losing weight, we can use it.
Finally, I have caught myself lecturing the TV.
Remember Beverly Hillbillies? Granny is always out back by the Cee-Ment Pond? Makin' her Lye Soap?
Granny, you have Lye or you have Soap. If you have Lye in the mix when you are done, then you put too much in it. You will burn when you use it. Too much Lye bad. In fact you actually want to go low, leave some of the oils non-reacted so they can moisturize and sooth your skin.
Also, Who on Earth needs a three foot tall cauldron of "Lye Soap". You will be using the stuff for ages, and if it is a three foot tall cauldron, can you imagine how much of the stuff she's making?
But really, then there's the soaps that scream "VEGAN". Yeah, the soap probably should be vegan. Small V. Because the better recipes are. Olive Oil for cleansing, Coconut for Conditioning and lather, some other oils for moisturizing.
If you look at that label and it says "Sodium Tallowate" you are washing yourself with Lard. Sodium Palmate comes from Palm Trees and is killing Orangutans, as is Sodium Palm Kernelate.
And so on.
Rather a lot from a hobby that people would not give a second thought to.
Oh and skip that Liquid Soap. Way too many chemicals in it to be pure. You'll end up having cracked skin and blisters. They try to sell it as a premium product but one average sized bottle cleans like one bar of solid soap.
Don't get me started on that stuff, Liquid Soap is the absolute worst.
So if you see me standing on the front porch with a red solo cup in hand, dressed in protective gear, stirring obsessively, you know what's up!