This cold process soap was created as a colorant experiment with mica. I wanted to create a gradient from pink to white using only 1 pink mica and this is how my experiment turned out!
Gather Your Materials
First, you’ll need to gather all the necessary items for your soap-making project.
You will need a digital scale, a soap mold, a stick blender, a thermometer, and lye safe mixing bowls and utensils. You will also need to gather your ingredients, including lye, distilled water, oils and butters (sunflower oil, castor oil, olive oil, coconut oil, and mango butter), pink mica, and fragrance oil. Make sure to use proper protective gear like goggles and gloves when handling lye. Please check out our article on lye safety or watch this video before making your first batch of soap.
Mix Your Lye Solution
The next step is mixing your lye solution. Using a lye safe container, measure out your lye using a digital scale. Next, measure out the distilled water in a separate lye safe container. Once both are measured out, carefully pour lye crystals into the distilled water—never add water to lye! Add the lye crystals slowly while stirring continuously until all the lye has dissolved into the water. Once again, be sure to wear safety goggles, gloves and clothing that covers your arms and legs, as lye is caustic and can cause serious burns when handled improperly. Additionally, always mix your lye solution in a well ventilated area free of pets, children, or those that need supervision.
Measure Out Your Oils & Butters
While the lye solution cools, in a separate heat-safe container, measure out your solid oils and butters, in this case, the coconut oil and mango butter. Heat this mixture until the solid ingredients are fully melted. After they are fully melted, measure your remaining oils into the same container. In a separate small container, measure out your fragrance oil and set it aside.
Set out 4 containers for your layers. In one container add 1/2 tsp of mica. In the second container add 1/4 tsp of mica. In the third container, add 1/8 tsp of mica. To the fourth container mix 1/8 tsp of titanium dioxide and a small amount of water, this will be your white layer. In order to disperse the mica easier, you can mix a small amount of lightweight oil in each container with mica.
Create Your Soap Mixture
Once your oil mixture and your lye solution are both in the 80-85 degrees Fahrenheit range, it’s time to make soap! Start by slowly pouring your cooled off lye solution into your oils and mix with a stick blender/immersion blender, making sure to avoid introducing air bubbles. Blend for about 20 seconds or until the oil and lye solution are mixed together then add fragrance oil. Begin mixing again and keep blending until the mixture reaches a thin trace. After soap mixture is blended, split batter between 4 containers evenly then stick blend from the lightest color to the darkest until each color is fully mixed.
Pour the Mixture into the Mold
Pour the darkest soap mixture into the mold evenly and add texture by massaging with a spoon. Repeat this with each layer going from darkest to lightest. Be sure to remove any air pockets by tapping the mold gently on a hard surface.
Add texture to the top of the soap by gently scraping small spoon about 3/4 of the way width wise repeatedly down the soap. Add pink cornflower to the side of the soap that has not be texturized. Cover the mold with the lid or cardboard to insulate the soap, allowing it to set for 24-48 hours.
Cut and Cure the Soap
Once the soap has set, remove the soap from the mold and cut it into bars with a knife or a soap cutter. Then, place the bars onto a drying rack and let them cure for 4-6 weeks. During the curing process, the soap will harden, and the chemical reactions will complete, making it safe to use.
6.5 oz - Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
13.21 oz - Distilled Water
20.7 oz - Olive Oil
13.34 oz - Coconut Oil
4.6 oz - Mango Butter
4.14 oz - Sunflower Oil
3.22 oz Castor Oil
2.01 oz - Fragrance Oil
Pink Cornflower Petals (for decoration)
Gather your supplies. Put on your gloves, safety glasses, and long sleeves. Be sure to be in a well-ventilated area free of pets, children, or those that need supervision.
Measure out the required amount of lye into a lye safe container. Measure out the required amount of water into a separate lye safe container. Slowly pour the lye into the water and stir. Set aside to cool.
In a heat-resistant bowl, measure and melt mango butter and coconut oil. After your mango butter and coconut oil are liquified, measure olive oil, sunflower oil and castor oil into same heat-resistant bowl. Also, measure out your fragrance oil in a separate container and set aside.
Set out 4 containers for your layers. In one container add 1/2 tsp of mica. In the second container add 1/4 tsp of mica. In the third container, add 1/8 tsp of mica. To the fourth container mix 1/8 tsp of titanium dioxide and a small amount of water. In order to disperse the mica easier, you can mix a small amount of lightweight oil in each container with the pink mica.
Once your oil mixture and your lye solution are both in the 80 - 85 degrees Fahrenheit range, slowly pour the lye solution into the oils and mix with a stick blender until it has formed an emulsion (can no longer be separated). This typically takes just a few seconds.
Add fragrance oil and mix with a stick blender until you get to a thin trace.
Separate batter into each of the 4 containers evenly. Stick blend from the lightest color to the darkest until you reach medium trace. Hand mixing each with a spatula for a few seconds first will help the colorant get more dispersed without speeding up trace.
Pour the darkest soap mixture into the mold evenly and add texture by massaging soap with a spoon creating peaks and divots. Repeat this with each layer. Be sure to remove any air pockets by tapping the mold gently on a hard surface.
Add texture to the top of the soap by gently scraping small spoon about 3/4 of the way width wise repeatedly down the soap. Add pink cornflower to the side of the soap that has not be texturized.
Spray 99% isopropyl alcohol on top of the soap in order to help prevent soda ash. This step is optional.
Let your soap sit in the mold for 24 to 48 hours then unmold and cut into 1 inch bars. Allow your soap to cure for 4-6 weeks on a drying rack or wax paper in a cool, well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight.