All About Soap and the Soap Biz

These articles provide a wealth of information from soap making methods, the history of fragrance oils, how to make a soap cutter, to finding good craft shows, and all about business insurance and keeping organized. There’s some valuable reading here, and we hope you’ll find it both fun and informative. Articles listed from newest (top) to oldest.

Why is My Cold Process Soap Soft?

March 8, 2017

Cold process soap requires patience. It needs several days to harden in the mold. Then, it needs to cure for 4-6 weeks to allow excess water to evaporate. Curing creates a firmer bar that lasts longer in the shower. All this waiting can be the hardest part of cold process soapmaking! But, what if your […]

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How to Make Soap Last Longer in the Shower

January 25, 2017

Cold process soap is very different compared to soap made from surfactants. Cold process soap is made with natural oils and produces lather naturally. Lather from most store bought soaps come from surfactants or detergents. Synthetic surfactants are harsher on the skin, and can strip the skin of moisture. That’s why cold process soap is […]

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How to Use Tea and Coffee in Soap

December 14, 2016

Here in the Pacific Northwest, it’s starting to feel like fall. The leaves are changing, the temperatures are dropping and it’s getting dark earlier. If that wasn’t enough, Starbucks has started serving the ever-popular Pumpkin Spice Latte. There’s something so comforting about hot coffee and a warm blanket this time of year. If you’d like to translate that feeling […]

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Why Did My Soap Crack?

November 2, 2016

You poured your soap into the mold and everything looks wonderful. But, when you look at the soap the next day…ack! There’s a huge crack down the center. What happened? There are several reasons why your batch may have cracked. Below are some of the most common cracking culprits, and how to avoid them. Too Much […]

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Common Soapmaking Mistakes & How to Avoid Them

September 21, 2016

Photo by Lara Ferroni. If you’re new to soaping, the process can seem a bit overwhelming. You can learn how to make soap and, with all the resources out there for free, never leave the comfort of your own home to do so =) There are multiple factors to take into account like temperature, equipment, […]

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How to Save on Soapmaking: Tips for creating soap on a budget!

August 10, 2016

Photo by Lara Ferroni. We all have a budget. Sometimes it’s difficult to fit hobbies into that budget. Soaping is no exception; with so many fun ingredients and projects, wishlists can add up quickly. If you’re looking for ways to save on your soaping addiction, check out my tips below! Use a recycled mold Silicone and wood […]

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Troubleshooting Lye Heavy Soap

June 29, 2016

Preparing your work space before making cold process soap is essential. It helps the process run smoothly, as seen in this post. However, as any soaper can attest, even with the best planning you can forget something. Maybe it’s a colorant, a fragrance, or an oil. Trust me, it happens! Not that I’m speaking from experience or anything. […]

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5 Tips for Swirling Cold Process Soap

May 18, 2016

The ability to manipulate the texture of cold process soap allows for a wide variety of techniques. For example, thick textured soap mimics the look of cupcake frosting in the Sparkling Champagne Soap Cupcakes. On the flip side, fluid soap batter is used to create complex swirls in the Clover & Aloe Spin Swirl Soap. Swirling […]

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Shelf Life of Bath Products & Ingredients: Rancidity vs. Mold

April 20, 2016

Just like food, bath and beauty ingredients have a recommended shelf life. Shelf life refers to the length of time that a product can be stored without it becoming unfit for use. If you make your own bath products, it’s important to have an understanding of shelf life to ensure your products are safe for […]

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All About Butters in Bath & Beauty Products

March 9, 2016

Rich, creamy and decadent, butters are a great addition to a wide variety of projects. They can be used in cold process soap, lip balms, body butters and more. They are solid at room temperature, and have varying textures. If you’re wondering what butter is right for your project, read more about mango, cocoa, coffee, shea […]

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All About the Trace

January 27, 2016

There are a lot of terms thrown around when you’re learning how to make soap. The most tricky of them for a newbie to learn and recognize is ‘trace.’ All the books, blogs and videos say to stop stick blending when you’ve hit ‘trace’ and then, more confusingly, it may have been referred to as […]

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Adding Honey to Cold Process Soap: Tips, Tricks & Recipe

December 16, 2015

There are a wide variety of ingredients to customize handmade soap. Oils, colorants, additives and fragrances create a perfectly customized bar. Honey is a popular additive for cold process soap. It has various properties that make it appealing for skincare. In particular, honey is a natural humectant, which means it absorbs moisture from the air. […]

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How to Substitute Oil in Cold Process Recipes

November 4, 2015

Selecting soap making oils and butters is a fun and personal process. Each oil and butter contributes various properties to the finished bar. For example, some oils may give a silky lather, while others may contribute extra moisturizing properties. Many soapers spend years perfecting their cold process recipes to create what they consider to be […]

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Business Insurance

April 19, 2012

As a small-scale soap maker, you have probably educated yourself about soap making, and the business side of things before you went into business. Often, however, one thing gets left out: insurance. If you assume your homeowners insurance will cover you, you are probably wrong… What about my homeowner’s policy? Homeowners policies don’t (in general) […]

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Build Your Own Soap Cutter

March 29, 2012

by Catherine Failor of Milky Way Molds When it comes to cutting soap into bars, most small-scale soapmakers are faced with 2 options: laborious hand-carving or the purchase of expensive pre-fabbed cutters. But in very little time, you can create your own customized soap cutter for $50 or less. This simple but effective cutter can […]

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Pricing Your Cold Process Soaps

March 27, 2012

Please note that this analysis is intended for informational purposes only. Your actual cost of goods may vary depending on shipping charges, ingredients used, and time spent on each batch of soap. First, let’s discuss some basic overhead costs incurred by any small business (be it soaping or clothing design) like heat, electricity, phone bills […]

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