Blueberry Thyme Soap Projecthttps://www.brambleberry.com/in-the-studio/projects/cold-process/blueberry-thyme-soap-project/PS000033.html
In this recipe, a combination of red sandalwood powder and Caribbean Blue Mica create light and dark navy shades. The sandalwood powder adds speckles for a natural look. Between each layer there’s a titanium dioxide pencil line to add interest. Finally, a fork is used to create texture on top and it’s finished with cranberry seeds.
Blueberry Thyme Fragrance Oil discolors to a light ivory. You’ll notice the in-process photos look slightly green, while the final bars look more blue. This could be due to the fragrance oil or the sandalwood powder – we aren’t quite sure. This recipe uses a low fragrance oil usage rate to keep any discoloration to a minimum.
- Skill Level: Intermediate
- Time to Complete: 2 hours
- Kit Yields: 3 pounds of soap
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Blueberry Thyme Soap Project
Blueberry Thyme Fragrance Oil is a complex blend of lemon, Spanish rosemary, and vanilla. It inspired this layered design.
10″ Silicone Loaf Mold
1 oz. Castor Oil (2.9%)
8.7 oz. Coconut Oil (25%)
9.4 oz. Olive Oil (27%)
8.7 oz. Palm Oil (25%)
3.5 oz. Raspberry Seed Oil (10.1%)
3.5 oz. Sunflower Oil (10.1%)
4.9 oz. Sodium Hydroxide Lye
10.4 oz. Distilled Water (10% water discount)
1.5 oz. Blueberry Thyme Fragrance Oil
Red Sandalwood Powder
Caribbean Blue Mica
Note: This project was originally made with Blackberry Seeds, which were discontinued. Cranberry Seeds creates a similar product but it will be different from the photos below.
FRAGRANCE PREP: Measure 1.5 ounces of Blueberry Thyme Fragrance Oil into a small glass container and set aside.
COLORANT PREP: Disperse 1 teaspoon of the titanium dioxide into 1 tablespoon of sunflower or sweet almond oil (or any other liquid oil). Use a mini mixer to get rid of any clumps. In a separate container, mix 1 teaspoon of Caribbean Blue Mica into 1 tablespoon of lightweight liquid oil. Use a mini mixer to get rid of any clumps. Finally, mix 1/2 teaspoon of black oxide with 1/2 tablespoon lightweight liquid oil. Have 2 teaspoons of red sandalwood powder nearby. Optional: To ensure the titanium dioxide blends smoothly into the soap, we recommend micronizing it before dispersing it in oil. Use a coffee grinder to break up any clumps of color and prevent streaks of white from showing in the final soap. We like to use a coffee grinder that has a removable stainless steel mixing area for easy cleaning.
SAFETY FIRST: Suit up for safe handling practices. That means goggles, gloves, and long sleeves. Make sure kids, pets, other distractions, and tripping hazards are out of the house or don’t have access to your space. Always make soap in a well-ventilated area.
Slowly and carefully add 4.9 ounces of lye to 10.4 ounces of distilled water and gently stir until the lye has fully dissolved and the liquid is clear. Set aside to cool. Optional: Add 2 teaspoons of sodium lactate to help the bars harden more quickly.
Melt and combine 1 ounce of castor oil, 8.7 ounces of coconut oil, 9.4 ounces of olive oil, 8.7 ounces of palm oil, 3.5 ounces of sunflower oil, and 3.5 ounces of raspberry seed oil (remember to fully melt then mix your entire container of palm oil before portioning). Add 2 teaspoons of red sandalwood powder directly into the oils. Use the stick blender to mix and get rid of clumps.
Once the lye water and the oils have cooled to 130° F or below (and are ideally within 10 degrees of each other), add the lye water to the oils and stick blend the mixture to a thin trace.
Add the 1.5 ounces of Blueberry Thyme Fragrance Oil and all of the dispersed Caribbean Blue Mica into the soap. Use a stick blender to mix.
Split the batch in half equally – each container will be about 750 mL. Add 1/2 teaspoon of dispersed black oxide to one container and 1 tablespoon of dispersed titanium dioxide to the other.
The soap needs to be a medium trace. If it’s still thin, pulse each container with the stick blender to thicken. It should be the texture of thick pudding.
Pour half of the light blue soap into the mold and tap on the counter to level it. Use a spoon to create divots down the length of the mold. That gives the layers an interesting and rustic shape.
Add a few teaspoons of titanium dioxide to a powder duster or mesh strainer and sprinkle a fine layer across the soap. Don't use too much, or the layers may separate when cut.
Use a spoon to plop half of the dark blue soap on top of the light blue soap. Firmly tap the mold on the counter to help it settle and get rid of bubbles. Use a spoon to create divots..
Dust another thin layer of titanium dioxide on top of the dark soap. Be careful to not make the layer too thick.
Dollop the rest of the light blue soap into the mold, tap on the counter, use a spoon to create divots, and dust with a layer titanium dioxide.
Use a spoon to gently dollop the remaining dark blue soap into the mold. Tap firmly on the counter to get rid of bubbles. Use a fork to create texture down the entire length of the mold.
Sprinkle cranberry seeds in the center down the length of the mold. Spritz 99% isopropyl alcohol on the top of the soap to prevent soda ash.
This soap benefits from being lightly insulated. You can place it in a drawer or other small space to stay warm. Allow the soap to stay in the mold for 2-3 days. Unmold and cut into bars.
We recommend cutting the soap on its side to prevent the seeds from creating drag marks and to prevent the titanium dioxide from smearing. If this happens (it happened to ours!), gently wiping the bars with 99% isopropyl alcohol and a tissue can help clean them up. Once cut, allow them to cure for 4-6 weeks. Enjoy.
Photographer: Amanda Kerzman
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