White crustiness appearing on Castile bar soaps

by Rebecca
(Boston, ma)

This is only my second batch of soap and after the third day I notice a thin "white" crust appearing on some of the the otherwise great-looking (all olive oil) soap.

What is the solution for this?


Without a picture of the white crust, I can only guess as to what it is but my first thoughts are soda ash.

As moisture evaporates from handmade soap, it can sometimes settle on the outside of the bars. Once this moisture dries, it can have a crusty, crystally look to it. To help prevent this, you can try placing a fan directed at the soap for a couple of days to stop the moisture from settling back on the soap.

I don't usually find soda ash a problem after the soap has cooled down but I don't often make castile soap either. Castile soap takes longer to go through the saponification process so this may account for the late arrival of the ash.

If you didn't gel the soap, that too could account for the ash taking so long. The moisture is evaporating over a much longer time frame and the soap is taking longer to complete the saponification process.

A lot of moisture tends to evaporate from the soap during the gel phase. When my soap has reached the full gel phase, I open up the blankets and the lid of the soap mold and place a fan on it to cool it down and to blow away that nasty moisture. For the most part this seems to prevent the arrival of soda ash on my bars.

Hope this provides some answers for you,

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