Seaweed Soap

September 12, 2016

Seaweed!  NDA describes seaweed as follows:

Ascophyllum nodosum – a brown seaweed commonly known as knotted, knobbed or bladder wrack, or kelp – is one of many species which form part of the botanical order or algae.

I dislike the smell of seaweed.  So why I had this burning desire to use it in my soap I’m not sure, but I did.  The seaweed powder isn’t too bad (smell wise), but the instant it gets “wet” – as in it mixes with the oils/lye or the bar itself is used after it’s cured – it stinks!  That, I realize, is probably a personal opinion that not everyone will agree with me on, but I think seaweed stinks.  Even NDA describes it as having a “pungent odor.” (Notice they had a much nicer way of saying it stinks! Ha!)

Appearance: Greenish brown powder with a strong pungent odor.

New Directions Aromatics says the following about seaweed:

Benefits: Seaweed Powder is a rich source of vitamins including vitamins B12 (not found in land plants), vitamin E, amino acids, minerals, trace elements, and other nutrients. Seaweed powder makes for an effective cleansing and exfoliating agent. When applied to the skin, Seaweed treatments act as a powerful detoxifier that draws out toxins and impurities while adding beneficial nutrients. It helps to stimulate the body’s metabolism and circulation which gives skin a healthy, revitalize and glowing appearance. Seaweed contains fatty acids to combat skin irritation and inflammation; and may assist with skin ailments such as acne, psoriasis and eczema. Seaweed Powder is suitable for all skin types.

Application: Seaweed Powder can be used in face masks, detoxifying body wraps, soap making, body scrubs and bath powders.

Caution: Persons with an allergy to iodine should avoid using this product. This powder has a strong pungent odor that some may find offensive, so test product before using.

I don’t know what it was that initially made me want to use it in my soap.  I just know about a year ago I had the urge.  And I think after reading the benefits of seaweed I was sold.  I mean did you read the above benefits?  It just makes me sigh in delight when I read about all that natural goodness!  So, while I might dislike the smell I love it in my facial soap.

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These are the facial bars. Large and a travel size.

I couldn’t leave it at a facial bar though, no!  I decided to make a batch of body soap with seaweed. I scented it with eucalyptus and peppermint (two rather strong essential oils) hoping it would subdue the seaweed smell. I can’t say it does, but I think if you dislike a smell you pick it up more than any other smell.  The bar itself is a very nice bar!

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This bar smells like eucalyptus, peppermint, and seaweed! There’s no getting around that smell!

If you’re interested in trying some in your soap I used it at similar usage rates to clay.

I used about ½ to 1 teaspoon per pound of soap.  I premix it with a little bit of distilled water, but I’ve also just added it straight to my oils and used the stick blender to mix it in with great results.

I can say I love it in my facial soap!  I can’t quite deal with the smell as a body soap, though it is a nice bar.  And I haven’t been brave enough to make a mask of it yet.  😉

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Fall Soaps: Rice Milk

September 8, 2016

This is a flower scent.  Probably not what most people will expect from the name of the fragrance. I went with it because other soapers at the conference really loved it.  I can’t be trusted when it comes to floral scents because I dislike most.

Here’s how Lebermuth describes it:

Soft, sheer milky floral fragrance.

I think that’s about as accurate a description as you’ll get.  It’s unlike many other scents I’ve smelled before and I think overall it will appeal to the flower liking crowd.

I wanted blue for this soap.  I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to do it as I knew the fragrance would discolor (just wasn’t sure how much).  I worked the design to be a deep blue/gold/white theme (hoping to work with the fragrance if it did discolor too much.  A lot of work to make, but I’m happy with how it turned out. Here are some behind the scene photos!

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Unscented white soap, chopped up into tiny cubes.

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Embeds where then dusted in Gold Mica.

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I did a dark blue bottom layer then added the dusted embeds on top of them. From there I’d pour the second layer (a lighter blue).

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To finish it off a gold mica swirl on top (to pull everything together.

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Fall Soaps

September 7, 2016

It’s that time again: Fall Soaps are here!  What did I make this year?

Some classics are returning:

  • Pumpkin Spice
  • Turkish Mocha
  • Almond Biscotti
  • Applejack Peel

And some new ones of course were added:

  • Cinnamon & Hazelnut Coffee
  • Plum Spice
  • Hawaiian Jasmine
  • Cranberry Fig
  • Autumn Woods
  • Rice Milk
  • Loganberry & Sage
  • Oatmeal Stout
  • Pumpkin Lager

I can tell you right now I was disappoint with my Cinnamon & Hazelnut, Hawaiian Jasmine, and Autumn Woods soaps.  They totally didn’t work how I wanted them to.  And that frustrates me.  I’m not even bothering with special posts for them!  You can see all the (not so glorious) creations here:

Autumn Woods

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Hawaiian Jasmine

jasmine1Cinnamon & Hazelnut Coffee

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Cocktails by the Pool

July 22, 2016

Oh my word! This soap was a PAIN to make.  But you all know me.  Once I get an idea in my head I pretty much can’t let it go until I try it.

Cocktails by the Pool: Top Notes: Sparkling Lemon, Honeydew, Pear. Middle Notes: Vibrant Orange, Pineapple, Nectarine. Base Notes: Lily of the Valley, Jasmine, Sandalwood, Vanilla.

Here’s the pretty soap!

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cocktails

Available on my webpage!

Here’s all the behind the scenes it took to make this soap!  It’s safe to say that this is a one time design and you’ll likely never see it again (but then again now that the mold is made…)

First, I had to make a silicon mat imprint of the sea creatures/shells.  This was not an easy process and what I ended up with was far from perfect.

I made MP piece of the shapes.
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Then I had to get them to stay attached to the bottom of freezer paper so I could pour a flexible silicon over them to create a reversed mat imprint.

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As you can see some of the silicon seeped under the MP piece (even though I did tape them down).  They were a pain to get out (and that’s putting it nicely).

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When it was all said and done I had an imprint mat, but it wasn’t clean or perfect.

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Second, I then had to pour CP soap into the mold.  Once that harden up I made a new batch of soap the next day and made my loaf (in this case a tiger swirl).

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Then I also make MP pieces to place on top of the mold so I’d have sea shapes on the top and bottom.

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Here’s the soap once I unmolded.  Imprints on both the top and the bottom.  The CP imprints aren’t perfect, but overall I think it’s cute enough.

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Way too much work!  That’s all I can say about this soap!


Poison Crocus

July 17, 2016

I REALLY like this fragrance!  I know, I know! I never say that about floral scents (which I typically shy away from).  This scent isn’t overpowering and doesn’t have a typical flowery smell to me.

I love the colors in this soap.  It was exactly what I was going for…an elegant and subtle color combination!

Poison Crocus: Bright citrus notes of Bergamot, and Sweet Orange Oil lead this deceptively delicate fragrance with mid notes of Iris, White Rose and Mediterranean Fig. A soft powdery finish of Woods, Musk and Vetiver finish this intriguing floral blend. Top: Bergamot, Lemon, Orange, Lime. Mid: Iris, Rose, Mission Fig. Base: Sandalwood, Musk, Vetiver.

poisoncrocus

Available on my webpage!


Jamaica Me Crazy

July 13, 2016

This too was a happy accident!  I found the palm tree when I found the shells and it turned this two color (gradient) soap into something so much more!

Jamaica Me Crazy: begins with top notes of mandarin, Mexican lime, tangerine, and kumquat;  middle and base notes of watermelon, tart green apples, cantaloupe, and honeydew melon.

jamaicamecrazy

Available on my webpage!


Ocean Breeze

July 5, 2016

I AM IN LOVE WITH THIS SOAP!  Yup, so much so that that first sentence required all caps to write.  I had this vision for a beach scene soap.  While I was looking for a stamp for a different summer soap design I came across the shell and starfish and I knew that they were the “extra” step that would make my beach scene go from good to amazing!

Ocean Breeze: A fruity floral blend of peach, watermelon, neroli and jasmine on a dry down of aquatic notes and musk.

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Available on my webpage!