Soap will not harden

by Belita
(Mauritius)

I live in Mauritius an island in the Indian Ocean. I am very keen to learn soap making though it's quite difficult too get raw material. I will have to order some ingredients.


Last time I tried twice to start making soap at home and would like to start a small small business.

Could you please check my recipe if its okay?

100 g olive oil
300 g coconut oil
250 g palm
95g lye
244 g water
2 g fragance

My soap remains oily and moist. I waited 3 months and it is still soft.

Thank you for your help

Regards
Belita

Answer:

I ran your recipe through SoapCalc and the amounts of lye and water listed are fine.

Since the soap is still soft after 3 months, it makes me wonder if the lye you are using is Potassium Hydroxide rather than Sodium Hydroxide?

Potassium Hydroxide is a lye as well but it is used for making liquid soaps. In order to make bar soap, you need to use Sodium Hydroxide.

If the lye is Sodium Hydroxide, it could be that the lye has absorbed too much moisture which will throw off the lye weight when weighing it.

Be sure to store your lye in tightly sealed containers that do not absorb moisture. This is especially important for you as you live in a humid climate.

Be sure to use distilled water as well. Minerals in water can cause problems with the saponification process.

Lastly, it could be you accidentally measured the amount of water or lye incorrectly...it happens sadly. Pretty much every soap maker has done this, myself included.

Good luck,
Cathy

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Helping Hand
by: Virginia

I have had the same problem. What I have done was put it back in the crock pot and let it melt down and cook a little bit longer stir frequently. It's going to be a little bit of a hassle but keep mashing and stirring for about 30 minutes and then pour into your molds and it should be fine.

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