How to Customize a Conditioner Base (Video Tutorial)

Customizing your own conditioner only takes a few minutes! In this DIY video, I show the basic steps of customizing a conditioner base and using it. I also include a before and after, to give you a feeling of how well it works!

Use the code CORNER25 for 25% discount on the ingredients linked under the video, as well as all other products from Moksha Lifestyle Products.

If you want to pair your conditioner with your own customized shampoo base, you can find the instructions here: How to customize a Shampoo Base (Video Tutorial).

Instructions:

  • Measure the desired amount of Conditioner Base (measured in ml.)
  • Mix in up to 2% of Essential Oils of choice (measured in ml.)
  • Stir the mixture until the ingredients are completely dispersed
  • Keep in a bottle or glass jar, like you would any conditioner

Note: ensure that your conditioner base contains a preservative. Otherwise, you will need to add that additionally. Stephenson Shampoo Base already contains a preservative, hence I don’t need to add one.

Shop the Ingredients:

Conditioner Base:

  • Stephenson Conditioner Base (Buy here)

Essential Oil:

  • Grapefruit Essential Oil (Buy it here)

Feel free to leave a comment if you have a question, or just want to give your input to this post!

//Louise

How to customize a Shampoo Base (Video Tutorial)

Customizing a Shampoo Base is just about the easiest DIY projects you’ll ever try! What I really love about it, is that you get to play around with different varieties, until you find your absolute favorite mix of Essential Oils. In this video tutorial, I go through the basics of mixing a Shampoo Cosmetic Base with Essential Oils for three different varieties – Detoxing Peppermint & Tea Tree Shampoo, Relaxing Rosemary & Ylang Ylang Shampoo and Luxurious Rose Shampoo.

Use the code CORNER25 for 25% discount on the ingredients linked under the video, as well as all other products from Moksha Lifestyle Products.

Instructions:

  • Measure the desired amount of Shampoo Base (measured in ml.)
  • Mix in up to 1-2% of Essential Oils of choice (measured in ml.)
  • Stir the mixture until the ingredients are completely dispersed
  • Keep in a bottle or glass jar, like you would any shampoo

Note: ensure that your shampoo base contains a preservative. Otherwise, you will need to add that additionally. Stephenson Shampoo Base already contains a preservative, hence I don’t need to add one.

Shop the Ingredients:

Shampoo Base

  • Stephenson Shampoo Base (Buy here) – made primarily from natural ingredients, certified organic, made using mild surfactants and is pre-thickened.

Detoxing Peppermint & Tea Tree Shampoo

Good for: Treating Dandruff, Fungus, and other Scalp Ailments as well as Preventing and Repelling Lice.

  • Peppermint Essential Oil (Buy here)
  • Tea Tree Essential Oil (Buy here)

Relaxing Rosemary & Ylang Ylang Shampoo

Good for: Conditioning, Promoting Hair Growth and Inducing a Relaxing Feeling because of the Aroma Therapeutic Properties of Rose Mary and Ylang Ylang.

  • Rosemary Essential Oil (Buy here)
  • Ylang Ylang Essential Oil (Buy here)

Luxurious Rose Shampoo

  • Rose Essential Oil (Buy here)

Good for: Shine and Hair Loss Prevention by Strengthening the Hair Follicles. Rose also has a Luxurious and Relaxing scent, that lingers in the hair after a wash.

Feel free to leave a comment below. Would love to hear from you if you try this out, or have a question. Until then, happy DIY!

//Louise

3 easy DIY projects for fewer toxins in 2019!

Making your own natural beauty products is a lot easier than one might think! I have gathered a small video with the basic instructions for 3 easy DIY projects, that take less than 30 min to make. Here’s to fewer toxins in 2019!

Use the code CORNER25 for 25% discount on the ingredients linked under the video.

Disclaimer: use Brambleberry’s fragrance calculator to determine the dosage of your chosen Essential Oil in each product. Follow the link: https://goo.gl/jqHdVS.

Products used in the video:

Lip Balm: 

  • Beeswax (Available online)
  • Mango Butter (Buy it here)
  • Ylang Ylang Essential Oil (Buy it here)

Get the full instructions on how to make it in the post 3 easy DIY projects (for natural beauty products).

Note: not all essential oils are suitable for products used on the face since they can be photo-toxic.

Clay Face Mask:

  • French Pink Clay (Buy it here)
  • Lavender Essential Oil (Buy it here)

Handmade Soap:

  • Stephenson Crystal WST Opaque White Soap Base (buy it here – Available in India only – this can be substituted for any other Melt & Pour Soap Base)
  • Grapefruit Essential Oil (Buy it here)

Watch the video Melt & Pour – The Basics for the full instructions.

Feel free to leave a comment. I’d be happy to hear if you try this out, or what other DIY projects you have planned. Until then, happy New Year!

//Louise

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New DIY video series on handmade products! (with discount code)

I am happy to announce my new project with Moksha Lifestyle Products, showcasing in a video series, how to make your own personal care products with bases from Stephenson Personal Care. We are shooting this project off with three videos, that will be followed by one new per week. 
Melt and Pour soap is a great way to get started making your own personal care products. Stephenson Personal Care provides high-quality bases, made from almost entirely natural products. Combined with Moksha’s variety of natural and organic ingredients, you are all set to make your own safe and luxurious products!
 
Use the code CORNER25 to get 25% discount at Moksha, to get started making your own beauty products.

To shop visit:

Video 1: Melt and Pour Soaps – The Basics

Watch how to make it here!

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This video runs through the basics of making Melt and Pour Soap, through the making these lovely French Lavender Soaps.

The recipe used in the video: 

  • 1 kg Stephenson ‘Crystal WST Opaque White Soap Base’
  • 20 ml. French Lavender Essential Oil from Moksha
  • (Optional) Lavender flowers

Video 2 – Melt and Pour Soap – The Microwave Method

Watch how to make it here!

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The video takes you through using the Microwave Method in Melt and Pour Soaps, through the making of these beautiful Peppermint Soaps.

The recipe used in the video: 

  • 300 g. Stephenson ‘Crystal ST Transparent Soap Base’
  • 7,5 ml. Peppermint Essential Oil from Moksha

Video 3: Melt and Pour Soap – Acne Soap with Green Clay

Watch how to make it here!

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The video shows the making of these easy soaps, that helps prevent and fight acne and troubled skin.

The recipe used in the video: 

  • 100 grams ‘Crystal WST Opaque White Soap Base’
  • 10-20 drops of Tea Tree Essential Oil from Moksha
  • 1 teaspoon of French Green Clay

If you love it, share it!

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Disclaimer: whenever you use the discount, I will get a piece of the pie.

The Ayurvedic Collection (Alternative Soap Ingredients)

The Ayurvedic soap collection is a beautiful creation by my friend and founder of Bare Elements Skincare, Anuradha Pant. I wanted to share this collection and it’s ingredients, for some soap inspiration, that celebrates important ingredients in the ancient Indian system of Ayurveda.

Use the code CORNER25 and get 25% discount at Moksha Lifestyle Products, to shop the ingredients. Moksha is a leading wholesale supplier of 100% Pure, Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils and other materials around the world.

MRIDUL – meaning gentle

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Key ingredient: Basil and Bael

Ingredients: lye, water, goat milk, basil, bael, charcoal powder, coconut oil, palm (RSPO), rice bran, olive oil pomace, shea butter, kokum butter, chlorophyll oleoresin, silk fibers tussah, kaolin clay, Himalayan rock salt, brown unrefined sugar, cedarwood, lime essential oil

SHANTI – meaning peace

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Key ingredient: 100 x washed cow ghee and Wild Turmeric

Ingredients: lye, water, goat milk, 100 x washed cow ghee ( clarified butter), coconut oil, palm (RSPO), rice bran, safflower, olive oil pomace, kokum butter, castor oil, silk fibres tussah, kaolin clay, Himalayan rock salt, brown unrefined sugar, annatto infusion, wild turmeric ( Kasturi Manjal ), cedarwood, ashwagandha, ylang-ylang, pine

CHANDAN – meaning sandalwood

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Key ingredient: Red Sandalwood

Ingredients: lye, water, goat milk, 100 x washed cow ghee (clarified butter), coconut oil, palm (RSPO), rice bran, olive oil pomace, cocoa butter, castor oil, kaolin clay, red sandalwood powder, Himalayan rock salt, brown unrefined sugar, tussah silk fibres, french lavender, peppermint essential oil

KESH – meaning hair

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The key ingredient(s): Brahmi, Amla, Arapu, and Curry leaves

Ingredients: lye, water, coconut oil, safflower, olive oil pomace, shea butter, castor oil, silk fibres tussah, kaolin clay, Himalayan rock salt, brown unrefined sugar, Brahmi powder, amla powder, arupu ( cake oil tree), curry leaves powder, basil, lime, lemon, cedarwood, rosemary essential oils

Hope this will give you some inspiration to explore Indian ingredients for your next soap making session. Feel free to leave a comment below with any thoughts or questions!

//Louise

How to Make Liquid Soap, the Easy Way!

If you have never made liquid soap from scratch, and are looking for a natural alternative for commercial options – this might be helpful! To making liquid Soap the easy way you just need a piece of natural soap, water and a pot to boil it in. If you would like to try your hand at making liquid soap from scratch you can start by reading  How to make natural liquid soap. Otherwise, keep reading!

The Method, Issues and Solutions

This method is very simple, and I didn’t invent it. Though there are two differences between how I use this method and the way I’ve mostly found other people do it. Here are the two main issues and the solutions I’ve found to solve them.

Issue 1: some soap turns out sticky, lumpy or uneven when its melted into water.

This can partially be avoided by adding more water, but that takes away from the lather (and obviously makes it very thin)

Solution: I use pure Coconut Soap. 

Every soap, according to its formulation, has a different diluting point (how much water is needed to dilute it). Coconut Soap has one of the lowest diluting points, as well as an abundant lather, meaning that even when it’s diluted with water it still stays relatively thick and with a great lather.

Issue 2: most recipes call for grating the soap.

Have you every grated soap? It takes forever!

Solution: the same solution – I use coconut soap.

Coconut Soap dissolves fast and evenly, without needing any grating. I simply leave the full pieces of soap in the water and let the heat do its job.

What you need

  1. A pot – it doesn’t have to be a double boiler, just any regular cooking pot
  2. A spatula or big spoon 
  3. Pure Coconut Soap – I make it by the cold process method and store it for when I need more liquid soap. You can find a guide here: Two Coconut Soaps – for Beauty and Cleaning. Alternatively, you can buy it!
  4. Water – plain old normal tap water
  5. (Optional) Essential oils – any of your own choice

How to go about it

  1. Measure and weigh your soap and water – approximately 1 CUP of water per 100 grams of soap
  2. Simmer it on low heat – don’t boil it, since it might burn (and burned soap smells horrible!)
  3. Stir occasionally – until the pieces of soap have dissolved completely
  4. Put aside – until it has cooled down
  5. Add Essential Oils – until it has the scent you want

How to store it

Keep in an airtight bottle. I don’t make more than I need for a month, so I don’t need to add any preservatives. In case you keep it for more than a month, I would recommend that you only use it for dish wash, laundry and cleaning around the house.

Note: I use this method for personal use only. If you intend to sell or in any other way distribute, I would recommend you use appropriate preservatives.

What to use it for

Coconut soap is very cleansing and is, therefore, makes great for washing dishes, clothes and cleaning the house. As for beauty, make sure the Coconut Soap is properly superfatted (read the article given above) since it will otherwise be too drying on the skin. I’ve heard very mixed reviews on coconut soap as a face and body bar, but I personally love it!

This was all for now. Let me know if you try it out, or have any other tips to making liquid soap the easy way!

//Louise

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Making soap the easy way, is as easy as vooking a meal. All you need is a solid bar of coconut soap and water!.png

Homemade all-natural hand sanitizer (Dettol alternative)

Antibacterial soaps and hand sanitizers have boomed over the last decade, and ironically enough this has introduced a number of new health concerns.  That being said, keeping good hand hygiene (washing your hands with good old soap and water) is essential to stay healthy. Because I don’t always have access to soap and water when I travel here in India, I have learned to make my own hand sanitizer from all-natural ingredients, that I would like to share with you. But first a little background.

The antibacterial scam

While we are being bombarded with commercials, stating that antibacterial products are more effective than regular soap and water, the reality is more complex. Many antibacterial agents added in commercial products are strong chemicals that do more damage to our health than it prevents. Additionally, tests have shown no evidence they do a better job at cleaning your hands. If you want to read more on this topic, you can start by reading The dangers of antibacterial soap (Dettol).

It’s also important to understand that not all bacteria is bad – actually, we need them to stay healthy! We even need to be exposed to ‘bad’ bacteria to help build up our immune system, which usually happens as we grow up. Though the same process continues every time we get exposed to a new environment. My point is this: don’t take commercial companies on their word. Understand the science, and make an informed decision. I’ve concluded that the best option is natural soap, water, and homemade hand sanitizer.

The Ingredients

Rubbing alcohol – a strong antibacterial agent, often used for disinfecting and sterilizing. It can be left out of the recipe, for a milder hand sanitizer.

Aloe Vera gel – a nourishing gel, that is mild on the skin. It can help treat small rashes and skin irritations.

Essential oil – a selection of EO’s with antibacterial properties – choose between tea tree, cinnamon, Oregano, Thyme, Eucalyptus, Lavender, Lemongrass and Bergamot, Clove.

(Optional) Glycerin – a moisturizing liquid, known for its ability to ‘attract’ moisture from the air. Rubbing alcohol can be drying, and this is to counter that.

The Recipe

Note: the recipe is not adjusted to children. Do research child safe essential oils, to adjust accordingly.

  • 1 tbs Rubbing Alcohol
  • 5 tbsp Aloe Vera Gel
  • 20 drops Essential Oils of choice
  • 1/2 tsp Glycerin

Simply mix the ingredients in a bowl and stir for a few minutes. Keep it in an airtight container. I have re-used an old squeeze bottle, which fits conveniently in my hand bag.

This was all for now. Let me know if you have any questions or comments below. I’d be happy to hear your favorite recipe for homemade hand sanitizer if you have any!

//Louise

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Making your own natural hand sanitizer out of just 3 ingredients, and avoid buying toxic commercial options..png

 

 

The ‘no 2nd hand shop’ guide to sustainable clothing

I am originally from Denmark, but have been living in New Delhi for the past 4 years. Ironically enough I work with development work, and in that connection with one of the biggest clothes recycling areas in Delhi, but can’t for the life of me find a second hand shop (at least not one that isn’t super pricy)! Now, it’s not that there isn’t markets that sell second hand clothing – but it’s usually one of those ‘messy’ markets, where you cant try out the clothes before buying it. There’s also a few websites that sell second hand clothes, but again, there’s no option of trying it before buying it. So, in my attempt to try to be as sustainable as possible when it comes to my clothing, I’ve learned a few ways to go about how to keep my wardrobe sustainable that I would like to share with you.

The Tradesman (Or Women)

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I got tired of my old dress, so traded it for this one.

This trick is my absolute favourite! Since I couldn’t find any second hand shops here in India, I started letting my friends know that if they had any clothes they could no longer fit – or just wanted to clean out their closet (like many girls like to do, so they can fill it up again), I’d love to take a look at it. At first I sometimes paid them for the clothes I took, but with time I simply showed my appreciation by contributing to their life in any way I could – I gave away homemade soaps as gifts, helped out with hair loss remedies and other things I do well. With friends that are interested I exchange clothes – which is pretty useful when I sometimes gain or loose weight. Actually me and my best friend, continuously exchange clothes, and often regain a piece of clothes we couldn’t fit some years back.

I must admit that in the pursuit of getting as much as possible of my clothes second hand, I’m not picky about what I wear – at least style wise. Which is always kind of funny, when people give me compliments on what I wear, because I get to say: “You’re really complimenting my friends taste, not mine”!

Buy Me Once

My father has taught me many things, and one of them is this: buy things of quality, and only buy it once in your life. There are some things I haven’t been able to wait around for one of my friends to have a spare of, in my size and of the quality level I needed. Such as for example hiking boots and a travelling purse. So whenever I have to buy anything new, that I know I will need for many years to come, I try to find high quality brands. A few brands even have life time warranty. It does take some research to find it, and at times a little manoeuvring to get my hands on it. But on the other hand, I only buy it once! The last three things I bought were:

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  • A handbag and shoes from Hide design. The bags are made completely from natural materials, and also run a range with lifetime guarantee. Though, even the ones that don’t will last a long time, if taken proper care of.

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  • Dr Martens for hiking. A bit on the expensive side, but even they are super solid and robust, and again have a range with life time guarantee.

For inspiration on quality purchases you can visit the website: Buy Me Once. If they don’t ship to your country, you can search the same items on amazon or other. Thats what I do!

The Ethical Brand

There are some items, that no matter what I do, wont ever last a lifetime. Items such as underwear, socks, jeans (at least mine) and t-shirts have to be exchanged from time to time. So if I can’t get it second hand, and I know I will have to buy it more than once – I try to buy from Organic and Ethical brands. The biggest downside to this is that the brands I trust are legitimately ethical, are also quite highly priced – but since it only happens rarely, it can also be a welcome treat. In India some examples are No NastiesPeople TreeSoma shop and Anokhi. The online shop Organic Shop (India only) has the biggest collection of different organic/natural brands and items I’ve found.

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A collection from the Indian based No Nasties – organic and ethical clothing

Know Your Fabrics

This is my third go to method of buying more sustainable clothes, if the two first aren’t an option. The trick is simple – go for natural fabrics such as cotton, hemp, silk, wool and bamboo, because they are biodegradable. Even if I buy something second hand, I will still try to go for natural fabrics. Examples of synthetic fabrics are polyester, nylon, acrylic and spandex. There’s a lot of information online, so in doubt I just google it.

Think Global, Act Local

Transport of goods has a very high co2 footprint, because of the use of fuel and energy – as well as possibly use of extensive packaging and other protection needed. So I try as much as I can to buy things produced here in India or neighbouring countries. If possible I try to buy directly from the producer, or NGO’s and other organisations linking villages to markets here in Delhi.

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Keep It Simple

This last trick, has in time become my first – I think many knows the feeling of having a closet full of clothes, and nothing to wear. So I try to keep my closet simply, with clothes that fit (get rid of those jeans you haven’t been able to fit for years) and that I love to wear. Whenever I get tired of wearing the same, I trade it for something new. That was it for now. Feel free to leave a comment with your own experiences, questions or anything really…

//Louise.

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The 'no 2nd hand shop' guide to sustainable clothing

 

The comeback of the indigenous cow (A2 vs. A1 milk)

Disclaimer: this post is not sponsored, but has been written in collaboration between the co-founder of “Meri Gaiya” Rajesh Madan and myself. It is entirely our own personal perception of the matter at hand.

When I came to India, I discovered something about milk that I had never thought about – namely that there’s a big difference between pasteurised, homogenised and raw milk! Furthermore, organic and non-organic milk are two very different things too. Recently my understanding of milk deepened even more, when I found out milk from different breeds, contains different proteins, making them very different as well. So why does it matter if all these are different? From my own personal conclusion, I believe the kind of milk we drink has enormous implications for our health (as well as a number of other aspects – but that discussion is for another time). In this article I will focus on my new discovery, leading me to conclude – that we should all be drinking A2 milk over A1 milk. From here I will let Rajesh Madan explain:

A1 vs. A2

When Keith Woodford published the Groundbreaking Work “Devil in the Milk” in 2007, it put a stirrer in the world’s glass of milk, so to speak.

A professor of Farm Management and Agri Business at Lincoln University in in New Zealand, Woodford presents irrefutable evidence in his book that linked cow’s milk to numerous medical mysteries including diabetes and autism.

In “Devil in the Milk”, Keith Woodford brings together the evidence published in over 100 scientific papers. He examines the population studies that look at the link between consumption of A1 milk and the incidence of heart disease and Type 1 diabetes; he explains the science that underpins the A1/A2 hypothesis; and he examines the research undertaken with animals and humans. The evidence is compelling: WE SHOULD BE SWITCHING TO A2 MILK.

The book in itself is an amazing story of not just about the health issues surrounding A1 milk, but also about how scientific evidence can be molded and withheld by vested interests, and how consumer choices are influenced by the interests of corporate business.

So what exactly is A1 and A2 milk?

Originally, all animal milk was A2, including of course the cow milk. But then, a mutation occurs in the Bovine Population of Northern Europe and Voila! Cows started producing A1 milk.

India’s National Bureau of Animal Genetic Resources (NABGR) had done a study in 2012 where they specified that the A1 and A2 variants differ at amino acid position 67 with Histidine in A1 and Proline in A2 variant. This polymorphism leads to a key change in the secondary structure of expressed β-casein protein. The variant A1 of β-casein has been suggested to be associated as a risk factor for the following diseases: Type 1 diabetes mellitus, coronary heart disease, arteriosclerosis, sudden infant death syndrome and neurological impairment including autistic and schizophrenic changes.

The Indian Village and the Cow

Needless to say, all indigenous breeds of cows in India produce only A2 milk.

The cow in fact had, and perhaps still has a central place in the Indian Rural Economy. The milk was treasured, the dung used as fertiliser to rejuvenate the soil, the dried dung cakes used as a cheap substitute for firewood, the male bullocks put to work in the fields, and then of course it fed the leather industry too. This bond of the farmer with the cow is so strong that the cow has came to be held as sacred in the Hindu way of living.

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This sacredness turned beef consumption into a contentious issue in India. The ancient ayurvedic texts supported eating of beef: “The flesh of the cow is beneficial for those suffering from the loss of flesh due to disorders caused by an excess of vayu, rhinitis, irregular fever, dry cough, fatigue, and also in cases of excessive appetite resulting from hard manual labor.” But over time, beef became a strict no-no in the diet of an Indian, except the lowest of the low classes of Hindus and those from other religions.

The invasion of the Western Cows

To increase the availability of milk for every Indian and also to increase the income of farmers, the Indian Government launched Operation Flood in 1970. The import of alien cow breeds like Jersey or Holstein Friesian was encouraged as they produce more milk.

That started the slow but steady downward slide for India’s 37 indigenous cow breeds. There was a relentless and reckless drive to cross-breed the alien varieties with the indigenous ones.

In 2013, Jay Mazoomdar wrote in Tehelka, an Indian News Publication: India is the world’s largest producer of milk. But in 10 years, we will be forced to start importing it. And the Indian cow will no longer exist.

Today, according to one estimate, only 5% of the total cow population is of pure indigenous breeds. But the good news is that over the last few years, awareness has grown on the harmful effects of A1 milk and efforts have gathered steam to promote and increase the indigenous cow population.

The A2 Ambassadors

Unknown to most, Desi Ghee made from A2 milk is lighter than the ghee from other sources. It can prevent heart blockages, help cure gastric problems and headaches. It also combats Asthma and Insomnia, besides lowering blood cholesterol and recovery of wounds.

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Many ventures like ‘Meri Gaiya’ and ‘The Way We Were’ have come up in India which have taken it upon themselves to increase awareness about all the health benefits of cow ghee made from A2 milk and at the same time promote ethical dairy practices and conservation of indigenous breeds.

We felt passionately about our cause for the consumer’s health, farmers as well as cows. We put together a small capital to start our dairy last year with just 4 Desi A2 Cows. We made sure to feed them only with Organic feed and took care of them like part of our extended family. We now have 28 cows – Rajesh Madan

The fight to reclaim the health, community and environmental benefits of indigenous cow breeds and their milk products has begun in earnest. And in the years to come, it promises to gain momentum and turn things around.

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A big thank you to Rajesh for this inspiring information, and for inspiring others to get back to basics! Your ghee will from now on be a stabile on my kitchen counter. 

//Louise.

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The comeback of the indigenous cow (A2 vs. A1 milk)

How to make two types of soap in one batch

The only downside of making soap at home, is that sometimes there’s just too many new (and expensive) things I want to try out – which is actually why I developed the trick I’m about to explain. In this post I will explain how you can make two or more types of soap in one go, in a way that’s simple enough for anyone with basic soap making skills to do so. If you want to see it live, you can check out my last post: Video tutorial: cold process soap making, where I make two types of soaps in one go. I will use the same soap as an example in this post.

Creating your base recipe – but mixing up the rest

I’m sure a lot of soapers can relate to having a ‘go to’ soap recipe, when it comes to the base oils (carrier oils). There might be smaller variations, but all of us have our favorites. I think this is for good reason, because when something works – why change it? But we still need the excitement of changing it up whenever we make soap, which is where the esthetic and experience of the soap comes into the picture – the shape, smell, look and feel can make two soaps seems completely different even if the base is the same. So to make two types of soap, you simply create a base recipe – but plan out different scents, additives and shapes for the two (or more soaps) you want to make. Here is an example of a two soaps in one:

Base recipe – 1000 grams:
  • 250 grams coconut oil
  • 200 grams olive oil
  • 150 grams mango butter
  • 200 grams canola oil
  • 100 grams castor oil
  • 100 grams sesame oil
  • Lye – 141.77 grams
  • Coconut milk – 425.30 grams
The two batches (separated after trace):

Batch 1 – around 800 grams:

This batch will be poured in a loaf mold in a simple swirl with the following ingredients:

  • 50 ml cedar wood oil
  • 25 ml lemon grass oil
  • Aronia berry powder

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Batch 2 – around 200 grams:

This batch will be poured in small muffin molds, unscented with the following one ingredient for color:

  • Paprika powder

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How to go about it

I’ve divided this part in three steps: Planning, Preparation & Timing. Here we go.

Planning

Once you’ve chosen your base recipe, plan out how the two soaps will be different, in a way you are sure you’ll be able to manage. For example if it’s the first time you try this out, start by only changing one element – such as shape or scent. If you’re more experienced you can plan out changing more elements, and even plan to make two different swirls in your two batches. Though whatever you plan, it’s important that it is completely clear before you make your soap. I usually spend some time visualizing my soap, and then write it down on a piece of paper with all the different components and details of each of the batches.

Preparation

Since you will be working with more components than normal, it’s important to prepare as much as you can before you start. Examples of ways to prepare are:

  • Set out as many bowls as you will be dividing the batter into (for two simple batches, prepare two bowls, for two batches with swirls prepare four bowls etc.)
  • Add the additives in the bowls at the preparation stage. If it’s powders, you can mix a little oil in it to make sure they don’t clump when the batter is added. You can either add the essential oil directly in the bowl at preparation, or put it next to to the bowl in a smaller container, so its ready to be added.
  • If you want to pour the soup in different molds, place them so you’ve got plenty of space to work. The batter might be hardening fast, and you wont have time to move things around when you are in the middle of the process.

Timing:

Anyone that has made soap before, knows it’s all about timing, and even more so when you are trying to make two different soaps in one go. The only thing I really do, is to separate the soap batter into the different bowls, a little before it really thickens (trace) and then use a hand whisk for the last thickening. In this way you gain some time to mix in the different additives before they become too thick. A useful pointer is the following: if one mold is a cavity mold, pour that one first. It’s really hard to scoop into a cavity mold (without spending too much time smoothing it out). On the other hand, if you plan a swirl in one of the soaps, pour that first – once it’s too solid, you wont be able to make certain swirls.

Now, that was all for now. Remember, practice makes perfect. I’ve only done this a few times, but I get better every time. And it really keep things interesting when you got the regular process down.

//Louise

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