Sunday, October 14, 2012

Saponification Sunday...To infuse or not to infuse.

Some of my regulars might recall that I recently received a gift box from Bramble Berry. But if you're over a certain age you might remember Bramble Berry but are thinking it's a new type of bush fruit. If this is so refresh your memory with last weeks blog HERE

So  lets get to this week shall we?

I thought at first I would use ALL the gifts in one grand soaping adventure. This plan lasted all of 30 seconds when I realized it was 9pm and I had less than 3 hours for saponifying. So, I decided to focus, yes focus, on one aspect...infusions.

I'm not new to infusions, I have stuck thousands of needles into thousands of arms ( several feet and sadly  a few infants heads) in order to infuse fluids into bodies in need. Soap infusions however are still newish to me. Usually I just throw the colorants , clay, plant materials etc, right into the soap mixture in their chopped up form, thus getting color and exfoliation benefits.

But tonight I risked all and ...followed directions. Specifically the ones given to me by Bramble Berry in their infusion book I was gifted. I chose Alkanet as my material of choice and elected to compare two types. The one gifted to me from Bramble Berry and one from Organic Creations.

I was so surprised to see how well ground the Alkanet was from Bramble Berry!  (On the right in the pic above) Like talcum powder. Whereas the Alkanet from OC was very course. Using a 1/2 tablespoon of the Alkanet from each company and mixing it into 2.5 oz of Rice Bran Oil, I heated each for a minute in the microwave,

The resulting color from both was a rich purple-grey.

I then divided my soap into three parts, the two largest parts I colored with the alkanet powders. The bottom layer with the Bramble Berry concoction, the top layer was the Organic Creations Alkanet and Rice Bran mixture. The middle layer was a small amount of white soap just so I could see the difference between the two after it was unmolded.

Both soap mixtures were a beautiful deep purple with the Bramble Berry layer looking slightly . darker. I did not wrap my mold, afraid that between the plant additives, the warm weather (it's 60 and humid) and the EO's I used to scent, that it might gel and crack. So left it out in the open where the smell was easily enjoyed, a combination of Lavender, Amyris and Bergamot.

An hour after pouring in the mold the top soap layer morphed into a gorgeous blue. Couldn't see the other layers of course, not in my high tech diaper wipe mold I couldn't. 

But I certainly could feel some strong heat in the bottom of the mold...a good thing. Cannot wait to see the results tomorrow, if I make it that long. I have found that 0400 can be an excellent time for unmolding soap.

Post note: 12 hours later and the soap was hard enough to cut. This first pic was taken in the kitchen, with filtered light and a black card board background. The darker area in the middle is where the soap got the hottest or gelled the best.

The next photo was taken in the dining room in early afternoon sunlight. It has become obvious that the top Alkanet layer (from Organic creations) is slightly lighter in color than the bottom purple layer from Bramble Berry's Alkanet infusion.

My favorite? Must say...I like them both very much but my daughter-in-law Tab is the real purple freak in our family. The final decision will be hers. Tab??? Are you there?


  1. Go to bed you night owl you!! Did you forget you don't work nights any more?

  2. I never realized making soap could be such a steep task!

  3. Beautiful colours and, naturally!