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Author Topic: Crisco for longer lasting bars???  (Read 2949 times)
lavendersudz
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« on: July 07, 2011, 10:22:07 AM »

Hello everyone! I have been soaping for a few months now and I find that my soaps do not last for long. I think I need a harder bar. I use 30% coconut oil and 20% palm oil in most of my recipes. Olive,  sweet almond, or other vegetable oils fill out the other 45%. I have tried using saturated fats like Shea or cocoa butter (too expensive) for the last 5% of my recipes, but my bars are still not lasting very long.

Any suggestions or advice about working Crisco into my recipes to make a harder bar of soap? The Crisco that I can get has hydrogenated soybean and palm oils in it. Thanks Smiley

PS-Generally speaking, is soybean oil better than Crisco in soap making recipes?
« Last Edit: July 07, 2011, 11:00:09 AM by lavendersudz » Logged
soapbuddy
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« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2011, 11:30:29 AM »

Try adding 1% beeswax or sodium lactate.
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brnicholas
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« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2011, 11:39:47 AM »

Have you tried running your recipe through SoapCalc yet? http://www.soapcalc.net/calc/SoapCalcWP.asp. It will give you an idea of what hardness to expect. I think you might find you need more coconut oil and palm oil.

I tried Crisco once but I didn't like listing it as an ingredient on the labels. Some people also shy away when they see anything hydrogenated on the label. People do read the labels. The bars did come out nice and we are still using them from several years ago.

Br Nicholas

PS -- I also make my lye solution 39% lye. If you try this be aware that the lye is much stronger so you need to be more careful and it also speeds up the process of saponification. But the bars are harder because there is less water to evaporate.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2011, 11:43:43 AM by brnicholas » Logged
lavendersudz
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« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2011, 12:18:27 PM »

I was really concerned about the drying effect from using more coconut oil. Any suggestions? I also had concerns about making others weary about using soap made with "Crisco" vegetable shortening.

I tried 1% beeswax with one batch and the oils gelled in the center, but I was confused because I thought it was the beeswax. That was months ago with my second batch of soap. I think I'll try using the beeswax again.

Has anyone ever used carnauba or candelilla wax in soap? Thanks for sharing Smiley
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BizzyBeesSoap
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« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2011, 04:59:52 AM »

Instead of messing with your oils, try adding 1tsp salt per pound of oil/fats to your liquid before adding the lye. 
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Hazel
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« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2011, 05:21:07 AM »

I used to use Crisco a lot but I never found it helped to increase hardness. I thought it made my soaps softer than a combo of coconut and palm. You could try upping palm oil or adding tallow or lard.

Soybean oil is unsaturated so it's more for adding extra conditioning to soaps. It doesn't contribute much to hardness.
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CGimenez
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« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2011, 05:48:39 AM »

I've been taking an online soap making class and the instructor says she has made every batch for 14 years using a 50% coconut oil base for hardness and lather.  She says she's 40 years old and her skin feels softer now than when she is 20 so she doesn't believe the coconut oil is that drying.  So far I have been following her suggestions and haven't noticed any drying feeling in any of my soap either.  I add the remaining 50% in softer oils mostly but have used soybean oil, palm kernel oil and olive oil along with softer oils and butters and have been fairly happy with the results. 
Has anyone had other experiences with using higher percentages of coconut oils being very drying?
Charlynn
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brnicholas
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« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2011, 06:21:50 AM »

I found a page that has very good information at http://www.wholesalesuppliesplus.com/FAQ/CP-Soap-Making.aspx. It wouldn't hurt to give it a read if you haven't already.

We use 30.6% Coconut Oil and 32.71% Palm Oil for hardness. Our hardness, according to SoapCalc, is 45 out of a range of 29-54. Cleansing is 21 our of a range of 12-22. Conditioning is 51 out of a range of 44-69. Our INS is 161 out of a range of 136-165. We are a little low in Bubbly and Creamy but you have to sacrifice something to get the results you want most. That being said, our soap is bubbly and creamy except in very hard water.

I suggest playing around with SoapCalc until you get the formula you want. It's sort of fun. When you get the recipe you like you can save it on their website and recall it later when you want to print it out or make adjustments.

Good luck.

Br Nicholas
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Hazel
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« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2011, 04:19:08 PM »

I've been taking an online soap making class and the instructor says she has made every batch for 14 years using a 50% coconut oil base for hardness and lather.  She says she's 40 years old and her skin feels softer now than when she is 20 so she doesn't believe the coconut oil is that drying.  So far I have been following her suggestions and haven't noticed any drying feeling in any of my soap either.  I add the remaining 50% in softer oils mostly but have used soybean oil, palm kernel oil and olive oil along with softer oils and butters and have been fairly happy with the results. 

Has anyone had other experiences with using higher percentages of coconut oils being very drying?
Charlynn

Everyone is different. When I first started soaping, I used 30% CO and found it too drying but I have dry skin. I now use 20%-25% except for in soaps in which I use heavy cream. I use 30% CO and the heavy cream helps to up the SF and makes the soap less drying.

Of course, salt bars are an entirely different critter. lol I use 17% to 20% SF.
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CGimenez
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« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2011, 06:25:53 PM »

Hmmmm.... this might explain why I've felt the need to add lots of butters and softer oils.  If you keep your CO at that 30% approx. would it eliminate the need for so much other moisturizing oils and butters?  I too have very dry skin.  I learn something every day here!  Thanks!
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ceebee2001
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« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2011, 08:47:02 PM »

I don't think you mentioned, is this a cold process soap?  And how long have you cured it?
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lavendersudz
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« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2011, 12:28:49 PM »

Thank you for all of your suggestions! I think I'll try making two small experimental batches: one with sea salt and the other with beeswax. I have tried SoapCalc, but it kind of confused me as a beginner. I will go back to it and also learn more about the properties listed since I am only familiar with the very basics.

@ceebee2001 It is CP soap and I cure them for 4-5 weeks. Sometimes they sit in storage for longer depending on how fast they go.  Smiley

Thanks for sharing everyone! I can't believe how much there is to learn. The good thing is that we can come up with whatever works best for our needs.

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Hazel
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« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2011, 12:59:57 PM »

Hmmmm.... this might explain why I've felt the need to add lots of butters and softer oils.  If you keep your CO at that 30% approx. would it eliminate the need for so much other moisturizing oils and butters?  I too have very dry skin.  I learn something every day here!  Thanks!

It depends on your skin type and what you prefer. Some people may absolutely love a bar made with 30%-32% CO, other people won't. When I first started soaping, I read to use CO around 30%-32% so I did. I liked my soaps but I was disappointed by how much they dried me out. On the other hand, my BIL really liked them.

After reading and asking questions, I dropped my CO %, upped the castor oil % and upped the SF just a little to 7%-8%. I was much happier with the results. The downside to this is it did make my soaps a little softer but not enough to bother me.

When I started to use dairy products in my soaps, I found I could raise the CO % because the dairy seemed to offset the drying effects of the coconut.

This is just what I experienced. There really isn't any right or wrong amount. You'll have to experiment and try batches with different % of CO and see what works for you.

HTH
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