Have you finished reading your Sept./Oct. edition of the Saponifier yet? I confess that I haven’t either. Not from lack of interest, mind you, simply from a lack of time! What I have read, however, has been fantastic.
Having recently purchased argan oil, the Miracle from Morocco, I couldn’t wait to read Marla Bosworth’s, Moroccan Gold: The Beauty of Incorporating Argan Oil in Soaps and Skincare Products. She reminded me why I wanted this oil so badly, given its high vitamin content and polyphenols, not to mention its cachet in high-end cosmetics! You too, will enjoy learning about this amazing oil and trying out the formulas she provides.
I was actually excited reading, Growing as a Soapmaker, by Jean Broughton. It’s a little sappy, I guess, but when I read of another soaper’s success, whether a good first batch of soap or a big account like Joan’s, it just makes me smile. Joan’s frank account of her experience, from first phone call to delivery, was thrilling to read. It was instructive too, you’ll find, as she recounts the steps involved and doesn’t hesitate to inform us of just how hard she worked and how much help she needed to pull it off.
Have you read these articles? Tell us what you think!
Authors and editors are working hard on the next issue of the Saponifier! It’s due to be released on September first, but here’s a sneak preview:
Have you been hearing about Argan Oil recently? It’s one of the trendy oils, but for good reason. Read Marla Bosworth’s article, Moroccan Gold: the Beauty of Incorporating Argan Oil in Soaps and Skincare Products, to find out what’s behind this newly re-discovered, yet ancient oil. It’s use in the Middle East continues, but is fast becoming popular in the US. You’ll even find formulas for face, body, hair, scalp and soapmaking.
Start your own product line with this goldmine!
You might remember guest author Larry Strattner, and his humorous article involving learning to make soap. You’ll be happy to note that he is back again with yet another article, My Soap Went Up in Smoke. A title like that will lead your imagination everywhere! I can’t wait to hear about his latest episode in soapmaking with his mentor, Liz.
Stay tune for more previews!
Adding herbs to soap is nothing new, but always fun to experiment with!
They are added for the color they impart, as well as for the attributes they contribute to soap. They can be added using several different methods, as well.
Among the herbs I’ve used in soapmaking, using one method or another, are the following. In parentheses are the reasons I’ve used them.
- Comfrey (skin)
- Parsley (color)
- Dill (color, exfoliant)
- Marshmallow Root (mucilage, exfoliation)
- Calendula (skin, color)
- Chamomile (skin, exfoliant)
- Sandalwood Powder (skin, color)
- Cornsilk (skin, color)
- Plantain (skin)
- Chickweed (skin)
- Turmeric (skin, color)
- Paprika (just a touch for color!)
- Lavender (skin)
- Annatto Seed (color)
- Green Tea (skin, color)
- Rooibos Tea (skin, color)
- Poppy Seeds (exfoliation)
- Cornmeal (exfoliation)
The methods for using herbs in soap:
1. Make a tea with the herb and use it as the water amount.
2. Powder the herb and add it at trace
3. Make an oil infusion with the herb. Make it 4 – 6 weeks ahead by infusing the herb in the oil and then using it as one of your soaping oils, or add the herb as you heat the soapmaking oils and remove the herbs once infused.
You might be asking why soapmakers use different methods, rather than choosing one. The answer is complicated, but in short, the method is chosen because it yields the best results–the best color, the strongest infusion, or is easier to use a certain way.
For instance, Marshmallow root is best extracted in water, so soaking the material in water overnight yields the best mucilage that will make the soap most gentle on the skin, rather “slippery,” if you will. Of course, powdered root will add exfoliation, so if that’s your goal, simply add it at trace.
The possibilities for using herbs in soapmaking are virtually endless. We’d love to hear what herbs you use and how you use them!