Natural soap for Soap Challenge Club
This blog is a presentation of my entry for June's edition of the Soap Challenge Club. Amy Warden created this Club with the intention of giving the opportunity, for the soap makers of the world, to have a place where to learn different techniques, to experiment and develop, and to communicate and share with each other.
The Challenge, that our host, Amy (founder, teacher), offered us, this month, is a technique called "One Pot Wonder". The source of Amy's inspiration came from a video posted, on Instagram, by Tania from Soapish. The technique consists in layering four colours in a pot, followed by a wall pour along the edge of the log mold.
There are two categories: Regular and Advanced. I am participating in the Advanced category that has the following rules:
- Entire soap must be made with cold process or cold process/oven process.
- There have to be five or more layers and colours. (Each colour will be poured in a pot one over the other one.)
- The pouring will be done back and forth, along the long side of the mold, in one pouring session.
- The colours and the scent has to be a result of using only 100% natural colours and essential oils.
- The top's decoration should not include embellishments after the soap is cut, otherwise there are not any restrictions.
There is a Sponsor of the competition, that will offer prizes to the best creations. I love that, this month, Baraka Shea Butter is the sponsor. All my soaps are made with Baraka Raw Shea butter and their Organic Coconut oil. Their products are amazing! Beside their great quality, everything is Sustainable, Fair Trade and produced with traditional techniques by the women from northern Ghana. The founder, Wayne Dunn created a wonderful relationship with the community helping with the children's education and with economic development in the region
My "One Pot Wonder" soap entry for the Soap Challenge Club
My road to create this soap started with another batch.
The reason I did not use this soap for my entry to the June's Challenge was that I considered that the "feathers" are a little too thick and that the six natural colours could not be easily identified. Even if I formulated a slow moving recipe and hydrated the clay and powders a day before, the batch got thick when I poured the layers. I may have mixed too many powders and clay to create the desired nuance and, probably, this accelerated the thickening. For example: I mixed two infusions - Alkanet and Maddar Root with Beet Root powder and added White Kaolin for a lighter nuance.
Ingredients used in both batches
Oils & Butters: Almond oil, Avocado oil, Castor oil, Cocoa Butter, Coconut oil, Mango Butter, Olive oil, Rice oil, Shea Butter.
Natural Colours for the First Batch: Spinach powder with Mint leaf powder and Activated charcoal; Carrot, Beet, Alkanet, Turmeric powders; Kaolin Clay (white and pink), Bee Pollen grounded. Infused oils in Olive oil - Madder Root, Indigo, Rose-hip.
Hydrated Clay and Powders
For the second batch I used: Indigo infusion, a mixture of Rose-hip, Mint and Activated charcoal for a darker green; Coconut Cream and White Kaolin for white; Turmeric, Pumpkin powder, Light Pink Clay, Red Brazilian Clay.
Essential Oils: Lavender, Bergamot, Lemongrass, for the first batch, and Lavender, Grapefruit, Bergamot, for the second one.
The second batch was much better. I increased to 33% the amount of Distilled Water and I did not add White Kaolin Clay to the Essential oils, counting on the other powders and clay to help in holding the scent.
The pour was fluid, making it possible to pour from higher point. My thought was that the feathers will be finer if I increase the height. And, indeed, they got finer than the previous experiment. I tried to move very quickly, back and forth, over the length of the mold to create the movement of this technique.
This was a great learning experience and fun. Among the things that I have learned (beside the ones mentioned above) creating these soaps, was that I needed all six pots with colours to have the same consistency, before I poured them on the side of the big pot. Otherwise, even if their weight is equal, some will extend more than others over the previous colour or they will submerge in the thinner ones (because of the thickness).
Thank you Amy Warden for all amazing work you do, making it possible for us, every month, to learn and experiment with new ways of creating beautiful soap designs.