Handmade Soap Shop

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Alkanet info

Good morning everyone.  I was just reading about Alkanet Rooot in my Soapmakers Companion by Susan Miller Cavitch (my all-time favorite soap book) and in it Susan says that Alkanet root is like "an herbal version of a pH test, somewhat like the litmus plant.  It colors an acid vegetable oil with a pH of 6 red, a somewhat alkaline soap mixture with a pH of 8 shades of lavender, and a more alkaline soap mixture with a pH of 10 shades of blue."

 I think Susan has just shed some light on Alkanet's color changing mystery!  Apparantly it coincides with the changing pH levels that occur during saponification.  I'm guessing that's why the goat's milk soaps won't keep the desired colors for you, Jen.  If we could figure out a way to alter the pH, then maybe we would also alter the color!  Eureka!  But how?  Anyone have any ideas out there? Without compromising the end product, of course.   Perhaps what makes the goats milk soap so wonderful on the skin (including it's pH) is the same thing than prevents the purple color?  Hmmm.  Something to ponder when I'm lining moulds....

Happy Skin!

1 comment:

Jennifer Young said...

Thank you for this! I had read something about this... but what I need to know is how! I understand that the more alkaline, the more purple and the more acit the more blue (I think) but how? Are there more alkaline oils? Heat? Hope other people comment with tips!! xo Jen PS. In my search for a purple - I got a nice teal blue last night....