Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Gardener's Hand Soap

Time to bring back my Gardener's Hand Soap! Actually, I'm a bit late this year, what with all the website and label "tweaking". Go figure.

This year I've given it a new essential oil combo: Orange-Bay-Lemongrass, that I'm hoping will have appeal for both sexes. It's great as a "shop soap" too, for mechanics and anyone who's hands get really dirty in the course of a hard-working day.

Happily, I made some more soap yesterday as well. Lavender-Oatmeal and Orange-Mint are insulated and "resting", I can't wait to un-mold them.

I made a batch of bath salts yesterday, as "teacher gifts" for the end of school.
I have to tell you that I love a combination that I used: Ylang Ylang & Sweet Orange ...yummy! It so inspired me that I'm going to do a soap to match today! I'm sure someone somewhere has done it before, but it's new to me and feels very fresh and fun.

One of the things that I love most about soap making is the creativity. New combinations of essential oils and other ingredients really keep the process exciting. The possibilities are endless! I'm anxiously awaiting my Madder Root and Alkanet! Jen from Jenora Soaps has been an inspiration to try natural colorants, as well as the lovely soaps on NaKIN . I just love what these ladies have done with color, while keeping things natural! If you haven't seen their work, you simply must take a peek!

Happy Day!


Jennifer Young said...

Hello Becky and thanks for the plug! Wow! You will have to let me know how you get on with Madder Root which I have never tried. I really love what you are doing, experimenting with ALL essential oils. I am doing the same. Some are great. Other combinations don't come out as nice... but it is like magic... I love the hit & miss. As for Alkanet root, when you get it, my best method yet was 50gr Alkanet root powder steeped in 230gr Castor oil for 4 days. Then I strain out the Alkanet root powder and use the oil left. It looks deep blood red. You need very little to colour a soap (even as little as a few grams)... and as for colouring I am still not sure why purple, why grey and why blue! I THINK that the more castor oil you use, the purpler it turns out but this doesn't always work! It seems like when you want blue, purple comes out and vice versa! I also think that as milk turns the lye solution yellowy... the yellow affects the alkanet and you end up with greeny grey... but you will have to tell me about your experiments and how it goes! I have also tried steeping olive oil instead of castor oil. Anyway let us know about the madder root as well. Good luck!! (I recently ordered some charcoal powder,spirulina powder & Rhassoul clay!!! will let you know how it goes!) xo Jen

Ambra said...

Thank you for the compliment :) I also love to follow your experiments. I did actually use ylang ylang and orange together in a soap, I just didn't use enough of it. It faded too quickly for me, but while it lasted it smelled really, really nice. I'm going to continue with the experiments and I'll keep posting and sharing and following others to learn more. This soaping business is just so much fun. Always something new to try.

Amy Warden said...

Never would have thought to mix orange with ylang ylang. Might have to try it out on a paper towel & see how I like it! BTW, your link to Jenora Soaps blog is missing an "a". I recently heard that parsley powder makes a nice natural green colorant that doesn't fade (or stink like spirulina). I haven't tried it myself yet.

Jennifer Young said...

This is the second time someone has suggested parsley for green to me! I think I just may have to try it!!! Thanks xo Jen

TheSoapSister said...

Hi Jen! Thanks so much for the info on colorants. Since this is all new to me I really appreciate the guidance! (I'm interested to see if the honey in my lavender recipe is going to affect the results.)You're right about the EO combining...sometimes it turns out lovely, and sometimes not so much! But really, it's all fun and it's all good. I hope you post your charcoal, spirulina and clay results on your blog, I'm anxious to see your new creations!Happy Day!

TheSoapSister said...

Hi Ambra,Wow! Should we just hope that "great minds think alike" with regard to the Ylang Ylang-Orange combo? ;) I hope the fragrance holds, but you know how those citrus oils tend to be. I love the Ylang Ylang-Orange in bath salts...nothing innovative, just a really nice smell! I sure do enjoy your blog and all the great photos. I'm trying to get better at my photography. So much to do and so little time, right? Happy Day to you!Becky

TheSoapSister said...

Hi Amy,Thanks for the heads-up on my typo. I love that I can go back and correct those! The teacher that I gave the bath salts and soap to was thrilled, and liked the orange-ylang ylang combination. I think I need to make some for me now. :) With regard to the parsley, do you know if one can make their own powder by grinding up food-grade dried parsley? I guess it would work. Does anyone have any experience with using parsley to color soap?Thanks for the tip...I think I may have to experiment with the parsley while I'm waiting for my other colorants. :)Have a great evening!