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What is true cold process soap?

Updated: Sep 2, 2022

(Activated Bamboo Charcoal Christal Clear Soaps)

Soap, is a word we hear every day but may never have even given a thought about what it really means or what it actually is. To me, soap is beyond the definition within the webster's dictionary. To me, soap is heart and soul. Each and every bar of soap created by me have a piece of my life in it, flowers from a friend's garden, sand from our vacations, pine, pink sand from my Montana road trip with one of my best friends. Each bar of soap is processed by me and made from my heart. Being able to share my world with others is an amazing feeling.

The definition of soap "a cleansing and emulsifying agent made usually by action of alkali on fat or fatty acids and consisting essentially of sodium or potassium salts of such acids" according to the Webster dictionary.

“To be regulated as “soap,” the product must be composed mainly of the “alkali salts of fatty acids,” that is, the material you get when you combine fats or oils with an alkali, such as lye.” from the FDA guidelines.

This is why you can not create true soap without fats, water, and lye. It is a beautiful process of chemical reactions. Saponification is the process where the ingredients combine to create the magical product we all know is called soap. Many of the products on the market say soap but also claim to be lye-free, or made without lye. This makes it a detergent or cleaning agent, and not technically a soap at all. This is why when you hear people talking about cold process soap, they often will say TRUE SOAP. As a soap crafter myself this is important information to know and to be able to share with my customers.

Ingredients are added together when they are all at the correct weight and temperature. They are mixed together. This causes the batter to start to thicken as they start the process of becoming one. Once the batter reaches the desired thickness and trace, typically I then mix in one other ingredient. This can be anything for sap from pine trees, indigo powder, sand from my favorite beaches, and flowers or honey we have here locally. Mixed to perfection, then poured into my molds before creating the textured tops. This is another time I think less is more when I design my bars.

I take them out of the molds one by one and then cut them into bars. They are stamped with my logo and then have the edges and sides shaved down for a smoother bar. I take them to the curing rack to then sit for at least 30 days. This allows for the bars to harden, cure and become a mature bar of cold process soap.

(Custom Christal Clear Soaps)

The process of creating soap is all about chemistry. You need the correct amounts of each ingredient, or your soap is bound to have problems. The amazing thing about soap is it can be rebatched or added back into another batch, so you can use all of your bits and pieces. I love the way soap bits and shavings can add texture and color to my bars. Mistakes are a part of life and soap crafting is no different. If you are afraid of making mistakes, then being an artisan soap crafter is not for you. Being able to create new recipes is a powerful tool to have, and mistakes are a part of the journey. Don't forget to save your ugly soaps and you can slice, dice, and blend them to create different textures to add back to brand new batches. This can create amazing and eye-catching designs. When I make soaps, I shave the sides and edges of all the bars by hand, which creates thin long strips of soap. I collect these to add back to the soaps and have even used a melon baller to create the moons in my magic moon water soap.

Soap is a self-care tool everyone uses. It means a lot to me that people are able to trust me and my products with their skin, and the skin of their families. This is a beautiful honor, and I am proud to make bar soap that even the most sensitive of skin can use. As someone who has done caregiving professionally for years, and has had the honor of personally caring for some of my own family members when they were unable to do so for themselves, I know the importance of good bar soap. Soap is more than just fats, water, and lye. Every bar of soap I make is a part of my heart and soul. I create soaps that are not just beautiful to look at, all-natural, they are created to be used. Nothing hurts the feelings of an artisan soap maker more than just seeing a bar of soap just become a part of a bathroom's decor covered in dust, our soap is formulated with ingredients that are intended to be used.

If you are interested in creating soaps, you can probably find a soap crafter near you who is willing to teach soap classes. This is how I learned how to make soap. If you are unable to find a soap artisan near you, there is always the internet. I have learned so much just by watching soap videos from soap makers from all over the world. Whether you are serious about wanting to learn as much as you can for your own soap shop, or just want to make a few gifts for a special holiday, I hope to encourage you to join the amazing crafters of soap makers. If you love to bake then, soap creating may be your next passion. Soap has become something I love to learn about, create, formulate, use, and share with others. It is something that brings us all closer together. And in a pandemic-filled world, what could be any better than that?

(Indigo Christal Clear Soaps)

Christal Clear Soaps Ingredients: Coconut oil, Olive oil, Palm oil, Water, Lye

All Natural * Fragrance-Free, Custom orders available

*Check out my soaps on social media and read my weekly blog for self-care tips and tricks.

*Help our small business grow organically by:

Leaving reviews and liking my posts, gives more people the ability to see my products. Each like, share, and review is greatly appreciated!

Posting photos of your soaps and tagging them with my hashtags below is a great way to help any and all small businesses grow naturally.

*Thank you to every one of you for supporting me and my dreams of being an artisan soap crafter. Every order is important to me! I appreciate each and everyone who has bought my soaps along the way, either from my website, local art shows, local vendor malls, flower shops, and from me.

* All soaps are made by my own two hands, cut, stamped, cured, and packaged with hand-stamped logos myself.

* Each and every bar is a unique piece of functional art and may look just a bit different than the pictured photos. My soaps are all formulated to be used and are not just for display. Colors are all-natural and some get darker or lighter over time. Stamp imprints may be deeper or shallower due to the hardness of each individual bar.

Here is a list of my completed blogs! Learn a bit about Cold Process Soap and Christal Clear Soaps, and how I got started making all-natural fragrance-free soap.

5) Sand

6) Indigo

7 Rose & wildflower

8) holiday gifts

9) In the garden

10) What’s in my bag

11) Fall is here

12) Essential oils

13) Clays

14) Favorite self-care tips

15) Spices are not just for cooking

16) What I am thankful for

17) New in the shop/stocking up with Christal Clear Soaps

18 An accomplishment I am proud of

19 Houseguests


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