Speed Up Cold Process Cure Time

by Paul Poole
(Hayden, Idaho)

I've heard of a way to speed up the curing time of cold process soap making using the oven.

Do you know of this method? If so will it work on your Cold Process recipe's?

I love the way you do your recipe's and want to make use of them.

I am very new to this and I'll be using one of your recipes for my first batch. I've got to raise some cash this summer and hope to attend numerous craft fairs to sell my soap.

Thanks for your time......Paul


The method you are referring to is called the Cold Process Oven Process soap method. It involves placing the molded soap into the oven at about 150-170 degrees until the soap fully gels. All cold process soap recipes can be oven processed.

This method will speed up the time the soap gels at but I'm not so sure if it actually speeds up the cure time. It will likely make the soap harder faster but does it make the soap ready to use? I do not really know for sure.

Many people talk about how hot process and oven process soaps, when tested for pH after they are cooled show the soap as being at an acceptable pH level ( 7 - 10 ). I do not dispute this at all but I often wonder if this matters since my cold process soap consistently has measured at 8 the day after making it.

I have used my cold process soap the day after making it (can't help getting covered in soap when cutting the bars) and do find the soap a bit drying at that time.

I personally believe that soap takes at least 4 weeks to properly cure.

Sorry, probably not the answer you were looking for.


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Hot Process
by: Terri

In addition to yogurt and sodium lactate. Maple syrup is excellent and provide loads of bubbles. My preferred method is CPOP.

HP Soaping
by: Cathy

I've been rediscovering hot process myself and really enjoying it.

Playing around with sodium lactate and yoghurt. Having some fun with attempting to swirl. I have a ways to go yet!

I'm amazed at how fluid the addition of these two ingredients make the hot process batch.

Hot Process Soaping
by: Anonymous

I started with MP but after about a year learned hot process - I don't have a lot of storage for CP but I do like it. I just read another post about texture and swirling. Using techniques read online I have swirled some awesome HP many people think its CP. I also add Tussah Silk to my lye water which makes it more smooth in appearance - I thought at first it looked to rough - also come down in calc to 35% or 38% rather than going up for fluidity great impacts texture. You can add sodium lactate for fluidness, yogurt (but not ice cold)

~~~ Happy Soaping

cp modified
by: Soapista

WendiLu, do you take temp readings on the liquid and lye before combining? Awesome info, could be exactly what i have been searching for!

Yes you can.
by: wendilu

I have been using a modified HP method. I make my soap according to my recipe.

When it reaches a light to medium trace where it is still pourable I pour it into silicone molds and bake it at 170 for 2 hours. I let it cool then unmold it.

It is ready to use immediately but it can be somewhat soft depending on your recipe. I cure mine for a week and it is usually hard enough by then.

Of course the longer you cure it the harder it will be but it will be safe to use if you need a quicker time.

Be sure to test the ph before you sell it but every batch I have ever made like this has been safe as soon as it is out of the oven. You get the smoother consistency of CP without the waiting!

Hot processing
by: Colleen of Native Sister Soap

Further thoughts on soap making, hot processing to be exact.

About 10 years ago, I did a lot of hot processing. I feel the soap does completely saponify after being heated in an oven (not messy)or double boiler (a bit messy).

The thing I didn't like about hot processed soap are the voids caused by the gel (yep that's when you pour it...when it's reached the gel stage...looks translucent) and the soap not settling completely in the mold because of it's consistency.

Creating swirls is out; blobs of color are more like it. Also the texture isn't the nicest, being somewhat oily in nature...but it sure is mild.

You CAN speed up the cold process cure time!
by: Colleen of Native Sister Soap

I've been making soap for 25+ years and I use what I call a modified water process which only means that I add less water to dissolve the lye in; typically 20% water based on the amount of base oils used.

It's critical to be right on with weight of oils, lye and water and combining temperature is critical as the soap tends to seize if the combine temp is too hot, especially with some essential oils like clove, cassia, bay and soaps with a high percentage of honey.

Within 24 hours, these soaps are neutral to the tongue test. Please note that soaps made with only olive oil take 3 to 4 days before they are firm enough to be taken out of the mold.

I use a wooden box lined with freezer paper that makes 60 bars a batch. I also take a 6% to 8% lye discount. Hope this helps!

Speeding Up The Cold Process
by: Rose

The method you are referring to is the CPOP method.

From what I understand this process only eliminates the gel phase. All cold process soaps should cure for 4 to 6 weeks.

If you process batches with the hot process method it is said that the soaps can be used within 24 hours after cutting.

Although, a 4 to 6 week cure time is still best.


not all CP soaps can be OP
by: Gio

yes almost all recipe you can OP but not with recipes with extra sugar contents like buttermilk, honey, etc... it will ruin your day..

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