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Author Topic: cocoa powder for color  (Read 7070 times)
ionagrace
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« on: January 15, 2012, 10:58:06 AM »

How do you add cocoa powder (for color) to soap?  What do you mix the powder with (some of the melted oils from your soap recipe or some water?)  And how much cocoa powder per pound of soap do you add? 

I know you should add the coloring after trace. If I remove some oil to mix the powder before  I add the lye-water, does that affect trace?  And if I mix the powder with water to make it liquid to mix to the soap, what does that do to soap at trace?

I just made my first batch of CP soap and scented it with chocolate fragrance oil.  I wanted to add cocoa powder for coloring but didn't because I couldn't figure out how to mix it and was afraid of ruining an entire batch of soap. 

thanks!
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falldowngobump
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« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2012, 03:34:37 PM »

I use some of my melted oils to mix with the cocoa powder--It only takes a teaspoon or so.    I add the lye solution to the remaining oil, blend to light trace and then add the cocoa powder/oil to how ever much soap batter I'm trying to color. I have never had this to affect trace, it's such a small amount. Hope this helps and good luck!
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ionagrace
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« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2012, 03:50:49 PM »

Thanks! I was going to do that.  I started to remove a little bit of the oils but didn't know how much cocoa powder or oil to use.   I realize it's all relative to the size of the batch, but I've never added a powder for color before.   (It was a 7 lb batch.)

How much cocoa powder did you use?   
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sudsmum
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« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2012, 03:51:55 PM »

Hi!  I have only added cocoa at thin trace by pouring about a cup or so (enough to be able to emulsify well with a stick blender) of it in a seperate container.  Once mixed thorougly, I add it back into the rest and blend.  My cocoa tends to lump so it really needs the stick blender to break it up well.  I use about 1 tsp. per lb. of oils.  That is for dark European cocoa.  Might use more with others.  Haven't had a problem with speed up of trace.  I wait to add the fragrance last since likely that will speed up trace.  Seems about the same result as using madder root added by same method.  I am very intrested in the result of other methods though.  I am glad that you asked the question.
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falldowngobump
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« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2012, 05:19:13 PM »

I usually only do swirls with the cocoa powder--I start with a teaspoon or so to darkly color a couple of cups of batter.  The cocoa powder is a little clumpy when mixed with the oil, I stir and stir and mash it around to fully dissolve it.  I think the amount you would need to do a whole batch of soap would depend on how dark brown you want to go.  You could try mixing a tablespoon or so in a little oil and adding it to the the batter till it looks like the right shade.
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StampinFairy
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« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2012, 08:25:19 AM »

I'm glad you asked this question.  I was making a chocolate mint soap with about 2 TBS or more of cocoa for the 5 lb batch.  I did it the way the others suggested, pulling some oil aside to blend it with, and adding it at trace.

While this soap does sell, it sells very slowly! My own mother complained about this soap and returned to me a bar of cocoa soap because she said it "dripped a brown stain down the side of the shower wall" (I guess from the shelf it rested on).

Others suggested that if I named it something other than chocolate that it might sell faster, but I really don't know if I want to keep this one in my line.  I used to tell people (plus its on the label) that it is made with real cocoa, as if that was a good thing.  People picked it up and sniffed, probably got a nose full of mint and no cocoa, then put it down. 

But, for you, if you are using it for color only, then you probably won't have this issue.  hmm, I wonder now if my comment is even helpful to you, or if I just spent this time whining about my failed chocolate mint. hahaha

best of luck
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soaplover
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« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2012, 12:26:01 PM »

I have a chocolate bar too in my line that is one of my slowest sellers.  Either thinking of taking it out of my line altogether, or make a change to it and see if I can get it to sell better......hmmm.
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riverhouserustics
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« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2012, 01:04:15 PM »

I made a couple of chocolate soaps this week- my sister wanted them to sell in her shop for Valentine's day.  2 Tbs of cocoa powder gave me an amber color (in 5 pounds CP)  4-5 Tbs is very dark and chocolatey looking.  I used fragrance from sweetcakes.com (chocolate Amber and a Cinnamon/hazelnut coffee.   BUT after hearing about the brown drippage I fear this is going to happen - actually I know it will because it happens with the nag champa that I have do.  I know it will. LOL  Oh well. At least they smell good so far.  I am starting to lean toward no color in my soaps.  The natural colorants are causing me havoc- color drippage- to suds color- to eating up the fragrance and also killing the sudsy action.  Would plain old soap colored soap that smells great be bad for sales you think? 
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StampinFairy
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« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2012, 01:53:43 PM »

Would plain old soap colored soap that smells great be bad for sales you think? 

OF COURSE NOT!

I use no colorants, not even natural ones.  Of course all my soaps look somewhat different, but that comes from the EO combination, which tends to give off some kind of color shading.  I do use botanicals in many of my soaps, or nearly all of them. that helps me visually tell them apart, hahaha


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riverhouserustics
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« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2012, 02:57:47 PM »

I am going to have to make some naked soap.  Where do you sell your soap?
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ionagrace
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« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2012, 07:35:59 PM »

I'm not sure I will be making chocolate soap again - I'm really not sure what I've done wrong and I'm disappointed with it so far.

Right now, it's a creamy color with brown splotches - not sure if thats the soap going through gel phase still or if the fragrance oil isn't mixed very well and is turning the soap brown already in concentrated areas.  The soap seemed to get to trace rather quickly and I didn't want to speed up trace any further by using the stick blender to blend the fragrance oils, so I hand-stirred the fragrance in instead. 

Also, it doesn't really smell like chocolate now that it's interacted with the soap oils (I can't quite figure out what it does smell like, but I don't think I'll call it chocolate).  I'm not a fan of fragrance oils.  I'd prefer to stick with essential oils.   I probably should've tried a much smaller batch. 

If I can figure out how to do it, I'll post a picture.  I appreciate everyone's comments and suggestions.

thanks!
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StampinFairy
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« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2012, 03:27:47 AM »

I am going to have to make some naked soap.  Where do you sell your soap?

is this for me?  I'm in New Jersey, central -Mercer and Burlington Counties

ionagrace:
Cocoa powder doesn't really have a chocolate scent, or flavor for that matter. I always say to folks holding that bar "It contains baker's cocoa. you know how when you bake with cocoa, it doesn't really have a chocolaty smell..."
Which really prompts me to ask... why in the hell am I using it in my soap?  Does it contribute to any skin loving aspects? I think not. Does it make my soap smell like chocolate? no.  It does make my soap LOOK like a bar of chocolate, but who cares?  Oh well.  I'll have to give this some research and thought.

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StampinFairy
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« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2012, 03:32:21 AM »

the photo in the above comment was my first batch.  see how nice and dark and evenly distributed?

this is my second batch. I did the same thing (as far as I know).  IT came out a bit swirly and not as dark.

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soap1967
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« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2012, 04:45:18 AM »

SF - It does have skin loving benefits - cocoa powder contains the highest percentage of caffeine, next being baking chocolate.  Caffeine is the "hot" ingredient in skin care right now.

http://www.energyfiend.com/caffeine-and-skin-care-products

Loev the soap very nice!
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riverhouserustics
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« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2012, 04:46:54 AM »

Well, that soap certainly looks good enough to eat!  Trouble with chocolate scented soap is that when I sit here and type I am surrounded by the wonderful scent of (curing) coffee- and also cappuccino scented soap, and chocolate/cherry soap, and chocolate/amber musk .... and I WANT TO EAT ALL DAY!  
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