Humidity Problem

by Whitney
(Brazil)

I am desperate for an idea to beat the humidity.


So I live in Brazil and I really want to start a natural soap store here. I have made many batches in the last couple of months, its been about 3 months since the first ones.. they should be dry right?.. But they aren't, they aren't very hard and they are a little sticky to touch.

I used cocoa butter 5%, shea 5%, coconut oil 76 deg 30%, palm 20%, olive 20%, castor 15%, soy 5%. So i guess these should be pretty hard bars.. its been 12 weeks and they just aren't ready, i have used some in the shower and they just disappear so quickly like within a week.

This climate is ridiculously humid. Its not too hot but like 90% humidity. We don't have central heating and air in brazil, you just open the windows. The houses are all made of cement. I keep the area ventilated but a dehumidifier or ac unit is impossible as the machines are super expensive to buy and would rack up the electricity bill because of the price of power here. So using electricity isn't really an option here since the price of making the soap would totally outway the selling price.

So to get to the point of the question, do you have any possible idea for me, what I can do, and like secret trick solution.

I use the Cold Process Method, would using the hot process help? Someone mentioned on a site to put the soap in air tight bins... i couldn't really see what that would do other than the opposite by holding in moisture and having no ventilation. So.. any ideas, advice??? Anything would be helpful. Thanks alot for your time!

Answer:

My first and most important suggestion would be to reduce the amount of castor oil in your recipe perhaps down to about 5% (or even eliminate). The reason for this is that castor oil acts as a humectant and draws moisture from the air. This is probably why the bars are sticky. Castor oil also makes a very soft soap.

Secondly, try reducing the amount of water you use in your recipe. Many soap making calculators, like SoapCalc use around 35% - 40% water but you can try reducing that amount down to around 30%.

Other than that, it sounds like you are doing what you can.

Good luck,
Cathy

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