Craft: Making Soap in Less Than 1 Hour
How would you like to make your own soap that is easier on the skin and tailor made to suit your tastes? Think it’s too difficult, time consuming or risky? Then think again. You can make your own soap in your kitchen in a matter of just one hour. And if you’re worried whether you’ll be able to handle this job, stop worrying, because any ten year old could do it with a set of simple instructions.
What do you need to make your own soap in one hour? There are two approaches to making soaps. Of these the cold process uses lye and requires careful handling and you’d need to use protective gear like gloves and goggles. The other approach is the Melt and Pour soap, which requires no such precautions and is ready within an hour using widely available kitchen implements. That’s the process that we’re concerned with here.
The first step in making Melt and Pour soap is to find the supplies – the base for your soap. You can easily source that through the Internet. You can also get it from supermarkets and many Wal-Mart stores.
Cut the Melt and Pour soap that you procure from the store into small cubes of one to two inches on the edge. You can melt these using either a double boiler or a microwave oven. First put the cut pieces in a plastic container and place them in the boiler or the microwave. If you are using a boiler, add a few inches of water and allow the water to boil and then add the Melt and Pour base that you have prepared. Keep the heat low and allow the base to melt. You don’t have to do much while the base is melting, but do check from time to time and stir occasionally if required. If you’re using the microwave, apply a low heat and make sure that the whole of the base doesn’t melt.
While the base is melting you can add color. For this you can use color nuggets or liquid color. Add small quantities at a time and avoid using too much color as some of the colors may cause stains. After the base is fully melted you can add fragrance.
Once you have melted the base and added color and fragrance, you are ready to cast them into the molds. You can get either ready to use molds or improvise them from suitable plastic containers. Just make sure that the mold is of plastic and not of aluminum or other metals. When you pour the soap into the mold, make sure that bubbles that form are popped out, and that the soap does not contain any foreign matter including insects.
After pouring into the mold you can allow the soap to cool at room temperature or put it in the freezer. Either way, after cooling, the soap will pop out of the mold easily. Allow it to remain at room temperature for a day before using it.
That’s it. You’ve made your first soap. Don’t worry if it hasn’t turned out as well as you wanted it – you’ll learn by experience. Cover your handmade soap in wax paper and paper towel, and don’t forget to wrap it up in a fancy wrapper if you want greater admiration for your work!
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