Orange & Cranberry

April 1, 2014

Fragrance: Freshly squeezed oranges kissed with tart cranberry.

Technique: Embeds

I was less than pleased with this soap.  It just didn’t quite work the way I wanted.  I was playing around with a new way to do embeds.  I made a bunch of round embeds to start.

circles

Then I cut them in half or left them whole and placed them throughout the loaf.

loaf embeds

Pictures:

cranberry-orange2


New Recipe for Shaving Soap

March 8, 2014

I never really LOVED my previous shaving soap recipe.  It worked, but I just didn’t love it.  I finally got around to reformulated it.  It’s a blend of coconut oil, palm oil, olive oil, Shea butter, castor oil, and apricot oil.  I also tried something a little different.  Instead of making them bars, I put them in twist tubes.  I’ve seen shaving soaps made both ways and I know I always drop mine in the shower.  I think the tube will make it easier to apply the soap.  I also think it work well for men.

Because it’s a new recipe and a new “container” I would like a few testers.  I have three scent options: Bay Rum, Old Spice, and Arabian Spice.  (All geared towards men.)  If there are any men out there who would like to test a sample bar let me know (or women if you know of a man who’d like to try it out) let me know.  I’ll send you a free bar.  All I ask is that you pay for the shipping cost.  I will include a questionnaire with the soap.  The questions will just be a guideline for you and it will give me feedback so I can see if I need to make changes or if it’s liked as is.

Email me at: JenniferSoap [at] gmail [dot] com if you’re interested or comment here with your email address. I have a limited number available.


Strawberries & Champagne

February 27, 2014

Sometimes I get the prettiest soaps when I’m not trying (and when I do try things turn out less than pleasing…go figure).  I has some left over heart embeds from a previous batch so I decided to use them up.  I had some Champagne fragrance oil on hand and the embeds were scented with strawberry.  I know the fragrance wouldn’t discolor so I decided to just do a white batch and embed the hearts…nothing to fancy.  The day before I had stumbled over dusting mica on soap (not in the traditional method everyone uses to create mica lines) and I thought let’s try and do this between layers and see what I get.

I LOVE this soap.  I’m going to play around some more with this technique.  It’s not really a dusting of layers between soap like you typically see when creating mica (colored) layers/veins.  It’s more like veins.  I am calling it: MICRO MICA VEINS. (Since they’re a take on the traditional mica vein technique.)

Enjoy the pictures! (I had to work really hard to get these haha…I REALLY needed a tripod when I was taking these…of the 100 plus I took I managed to get a few good ones.)

champagne1

champagne4

champagne5

champagne8

champagne6


Dusted Mica Top

February 22, 2014

I’ve seen soaps that have dusted their tops with a thin layer of mica.  I’ve tried multiple times to mimic the look and I’ve never quite been able to and in the process I make a massive mess (because it always involved me blowing…and blowing on mica…not the smartest idea!)

The other day I wanted to try and dust layers of mica on a batch I was making and couldn’t find the sifter tool I typically used.  So in a pinch I grabbed a bottle I had sitting around and filled it with some mica hoping it might work in a pinch.

It didn’t quite do what I wanted for the layers in the soap, but oh my word it gave me that shimmery mica top finished I’d tried and failed to do soooooo many times before!!

Find a bottle like this: (sorry picture is awful!)

Mica Squirt Bottle

I get my bottles at US Plastic (if you’re interested).

Fill it with some mica.  Gently squeeze puffs out of it over your wet soap and you will get a nice coating like this!  So simple! So pretty!  I love it when I randomly stumble upon ways to do things!

TIP: Do this outside (if you can).  I’m still cleaning up pink mica!  It gets in the air and it settles all over the place!

mica dust top

champagne6


Soap Embed Challenge

February 18, 2014

If you know me at all you know I LOVE embeds.  Probably half the soaps I make include embeds.  They’re a lot of work, but there’s just something about the finish soaps that I LOVE!  And so I continue to use embeds.  I’ve been playing around with a new technique:Dusting Embeds.  I’m having so much fun with it.  I didn’t just make one soap for this challenge. I made a bunch.  Here are some of the soaps I made over the past two weeks:

Berry Mimosa: This soap came about because I was dying to make a soap that was gray, black, and pink.  I simply split the batch and colored one half gray and the other black and then dusted the pink embeds in white and embedded those in the middle to separate the layers.  Simple but I really like it.

berry mimosa2

Passionfruit Nectarine: This one I was experimenting with my “Micro Mica Veins” technique.  I do like the simplicity of this design.

passionfruit3

Yuzu & Grapefruit: This one was a result of having left over hearts from some other batches.  I was playing about with them and discovered that they looked cool stacked on top of each other and I just embedded them in a simple white base to make the hearts stand out.

yuzu1

Pink Sangria: All I did here was make a partial loaf of black and white. Then I sliced them into thin strips, made a new batch and embedded the strips into it.  I actually really like how it turned out!

pink sangria3

pink sangria1

This one isn’t part of the challenge since it’s got MP embeds in it, but it’s a new soap I’ve made and it’s got embeds so I’m posting pics :)

Margarita Lime: I used both CP and MP embeds in this soap.  I was trying to make it remind you of the drink with the MP ice cube look on top and the salt.  I wanted a contrast between all the green in the soap so I used brown embeds that I dusted in a dark green. I do like how the soap turned out, but I wish I’d made the brown embeds smaller.

margarita lime9


Geometrical Embeds

February 13, 2014

I had some leftover soap from a batch of embeds I was making.    I’d been wanting to try to do some geometrical/vertical piece embeds so I poured the batch into a loaf mold and cut it up in to pieces the next day to embed into a new batch.  The idea’s been going a round a bit.  I have to say my results were less than inspiring! :P  I needed to cut it differently than I did, but when I did I ended up with odd size bars and so yeah…not overly impressed with this one.

Embeds are in the mold and ready:

geometric design

24 hours after pouring. I chopped off the excess pieces and cut the soap:

IMG_6982

Final bars:

spring1


Facial Scrub…to save me from this dry winter weather!

February 9, 2014

I have such dry dry skin.  In the summer it’s not bad.  In the winter my skin gets so flaky and so dry.  I’ve been using a sugar scrub for my body for the past couple years and I’ve seen a big difference.  So, I thought, why not try a facial scrub.  I have a facial butter which I like and I think a scrub would really help.

I took one of my favorite recipes and altered it a bit.  It’s gentler for the face and includes some skin loving oils that my face loves!  What will you find in it? Shea Butter, Coccoa Butter, Argan Oil, Avocado Oil, Jojoba Oil, sea clay, and tea tree and lavender essential oil!

I’m in love with it!  I’m currently having it tested by others.  Most are loving it (especially those who have naturally dry skin) .  It definitely helps with flaky skin and is moisturizing.  It’s different from typical scrubs.  It leaves a thin film of oils/butters on the face after using and it does take 10-20 minutes to fully absorb in.

cubes

Packaging: Facial Sugar Scrubs

facialscrub1


Design ideas…

January 20, 2014

Over the next month I want to work on some new soaps.  I have to restock on standards, but I want to do some new scents for February and March. I’m going to try making a beer soap again this year.  I’m going to use Irish Tween Fragrance Oil for it.

Spicy-sweet blend of French verbena and lemon, a green Florentine iris and violet leaves, and sublime notes of Mysore sandalwood and ambergris.

Yeah…that description just made me go yes! I want to kind of do a tweed pattern design for the soap, but as of yet I’ve now quite figured out how to do it…I’ve still got some time to play around.  It will be interesting to see what I ultimately end up with.

I’ll be making some Valentine’s Day soaps too.  I’ve got a variety of fragrances to choose from.  I can’t seem to narrow it down.  I have some design ideas though.  One of course involves a heart (just not my typical design).  I’m hoping inspiration comes back once I start working on soaps again!  I’m feeling a little alone without my creative side.  It’s normally on overdrive, but lately has been quiet. :(

Possible Valentine’s Day Fragrances I might use:

  • Amazon Lily & Rain Fragrance Oil
  • Amber& Orange
  • Relaxing (A relaxing blend of French Lavender and Fir Pine, enhanced with Egyptian Jasmine and sweetened with pure Vanilla, softened with delicate Musks.)
  • Champagne Pomegranate
  • Twilight in the Woods

I also want to come up with some new all natural (essential oils and natural colorant) soaps.  I always have a hard time with these soaps.  I don’t know why, but they never seem to be anything special.  I mean they’re awesome soaps, but visually I always feel like they’re lacking.  I want to add a couple new goat’s milk soaps to my line too.  Any suggestions on essential oil blends?  Natural colorants you really like?

Techniques I’m going to attempt this year:

  • funnel pour (yes, I know, not hard to do, but I’ve avoided it mostly to date)
  • Stain glass (a variation from Anne-Marie’s tutorial in her new book)
  • Squirty Swirls (I’ll do this on a day when I have patience :D  As it’s not a “quick” design)
  • Fondue Mat Embeds
  • Petrified Rock (for my sister)
  • Dust Painting tops

Yup! That’s quite a list of things to do.  Now it’s time to get started!  Just wanted to give you guys an idea of what’s to come in the next few months.  Stay tuned!  You can be sure pictures will be coming!


Deodorant Test Results

September 5, 2013

I have also been experimenting with deodorants.  I tried three different recipes.  Two were solid bars and one was a cream.  And the overwhelming favorite of everyone who tested it was the cream/paste.  And I’m in totally agreement there.

  1. It’s a deodorant, not an antiperspirant.  I do still sweat some, but I don’t smell.  Even when I work out.
  2. It’s not sticky or clumpy and it doesn’t leave a residue.
  3. I actually found I didn’t mind the cream. I know most people cringe when they hear they have to apply it with their finger…but really I actually kind of liked it over the stick.  And if you think about it, we use our hands to apply every other product to our body.

I’ve gotten a lot of good feedback on it too:

Worked all day. It smells a tad strong but I like the consistency. – Shielagh

I preferred test sample #3.  I didn’t mind it being in a jar.  I actually preferred the jar over the tube, because I noticed I didn’t use as much.  I liked the light fluffy feeling of the deodorant.  It did burn, but only a mild burn more like a tingling.  I did use it right after shaving.  Even after sweating a lot after a workout I didn’t smell and I didn’t feel sticky. There was no residue on my clothing either. – Jessica

I’m super excited about this.  I did have a mild burning sensation when I used it right after shaving.  Which is probably my only complaint about the deodorant, but I also have super sensitive skin.  I actually was able to kind of work around it too by shaving at night. Then by the time I used it in the morning I didn’t have that problem.  All in all I’m really excited about the deodorant.  I now have an all natural deodorant!  Which was the last item I really needed to add to my skin care to completely switch over from store bought/chemical products.

I’m still having more people test it.  I want to see what people think over a long span of time, but I’m hoping that I can add it to my product line sometimes this year.


Bamboo & White Grapefruit

August 10, 2013

As I was in bed (trying very unsuccessfully to fall asleep) I did what I normally do…think about new soap designs.  I had some extra heart soap embeds I needed to use (I’d had some left over soap and I’d poured it into my heart mold).  I wanted to do something different with them.  Amy’s third monthly challenge had also just been posted and I thought it would be really cool to try and embed the hearts at the bottom of the batch and then do an in the pot swirl and dump that into the main batch (with the embedded hearts).

It turned out really neat!  Not 100% what I was going for but every bar is different and fun!

Bamboo (14)

Bamboo (10)

Bamboo (21)

Bamboo (1)


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 162 other followers