This Instructable will show you how to make soap at home (the ancient, chemical way!) and how to transform it into a wonderful Christmas gift, or for decorate your home. It's very cheap but extremely customable!
Step 1: Instruments and Ingredients
Olive Oil, virgin or extra-virgin: 35,27 ounces (1000 grams)
Distilled water: 13.23 ounces (375 grams)
Sodium Hidroxide: 4.41 ounces (125 grams)
Paprika powder: 1 or 2 tbs
Cinnamon powder: 1 or 2 tbs
Lavender, essential oil: 0.25 grams - 10 drops, according to the European Pharmacopoeia ;-)
Kitchen aid immersion blender
2 high sides stainless steel pots
A pyrex jar (important, this must be made of pyrex!)
Some large aluminium foil containers
pH test strips or pHmeter
Colored strings, paper, pencils and so more for make your christmas card!
Step 2: Prepare the Alkaline Solution
Warning! Sodium hydroxide is extremely dangerous because it's caustic. First, read this: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sodium_hydroxide
Use protective goggles and gloves, wear old dresses. Take a bottle of winegear to neutralize sodium hydroxide in case of accidents.
All the distilled water is put into the pyrex jar. Sodium Hydroxide is slowly added. pH is 14, the solution is extremely alkaline!
Warning: in this step temperature will increase (over 80°C), extremely hot.
Important: add sodium hydroxide to the water, in this order!
Step 3: Prepare Oil and Water
Oil is heated at 40°C into the pot.
Into another pot water (even not distilled) is heated at (about) 85°C
Step 4: Add the Alkali Solution to the Oil and Make the Gel
When the alkali solution is at about 40°C, slowly add it to the oil into the pot, which is at 40°C.
Then mix the solution using the blender.
Continue mixing untill the solution becomes like a gel. This gel is still caustic, warning. This gel is called "trace".
Step 5: Heat the Gel
Take the pot containing gel, and put it into the other pot, containing water at 85°C.
Continue heating for other 2 hours: temperature of water should be 90-95°C.
Sometimes mix using the blender. In this step pH will decrease from 14 to 7-8.
Step 6: Stop Heating
After two hours color, smell and consistence will change: after this time soap is ready and less caustic. pH is 7-8.
Take a little piece of soap (using gloves) and let it cool. When cool, it must be semisolid, and not "like glue". If it's not still semisolid, continue heating.
Step 7: Prepare Four Type of Soap
Divide soap into four parts: into the first part add lavender essential oil and dry lavender, into the second add cinnamon powder, into the third, paprika powder. The fourth will be "natural soap".
Put the first part into an aluminium foil.
Put the second part into another aluminium foil. Add natural soap and mix. It must not be completely mix for a best visual effect.
Put the third part into another aluminium foil. Add natural soap and mix as you do for the second part.
Step 8: Cut Soap
Using the cookies cutter, cut the soap when it becomes more solid, but not completely solid!
Drill a hole in the top of the soap. Then cut the aluminium foil and you will get the soap!
Step 9: Test the PH and Use the Scraps
Take a scrap of soap, and dissolve it into water. Use the pH test strips and analize pH. Homemade soap has pH from 7-8 to 10. This recipy uses less sodium hydroxide (about 7%) then required for the complete reaction, so pH isn't too much high and it can be used even for sensible skins.
Scraps can be used as normal soap, or can be remelted. I will write a new Istrucatble soon, but it's not diffucult. Just take scraps, blend them, and heat this little pieces of soap into the apparatus described in step 5, adding 1 or 2 tbs of distilled water every 3.53 ounces (100 grams) of soap.
After some time, soap will have a cream consistence: it's ready!
Step 10: Prepare Your Gift!
You can use soap to decorate your home, your christmas tree or as a gift.
Cut a circle of paper and write on it your Xmas card, then, with the string, tie all togheter! Don't forget, make the string ring enought big to use it to suspend the gift on the Christmas tree!
Finalist in the
Homemade Holidays Contest