Thursday, September 19, 2013

English Breakfast Soap

I made soap today using English Breakfast tea and a little bit of heavy cream.  I love the distinct and wonderful smells of different teas.  English breakfast is a warm, sweet & welcoming scent.  I did not use any other scent besides the tea in this soap.

Loaf split in half
I miss measured the water in this recipe.  I started by brewing the tea in about 10 ounces of water for 2 minutes in the microwave.  This ensures that the tea is nice and strong.  While the tea steeped and cooled, I measured out half of the total water for the recipe in ice and added the lye to the ice.  This melted the ice and kept the lye mixture from getting as hot.  In turn this helps to keep me from getting too impatient and soaping too hot.  After measuring out all of my oils, I re-weighted the now steeped tea and added an ounce of water, before adding the tea to the lye mixture.

Log being cut
I  decided not to premelt my oils this time.  I added the lye mixture and started mixing with my trusty stick blender.  I got the soap to a medium trace and started separating it into separate containers for color additions.  As I got the soap portioned out I could tell that the soap was getting really thick.  After I started adding the titanium dioxide mixed with water I realized that I had mismeasured the water.  The tea part was thick enough that I could spoon it into half of the mold ( separated by a piece of cardboard) that I could literally push it into place with the cardboard.  Then I added the portion that I had tinted with the titanium dioxide.  After the lighter portion was in the mold I added the small amount of soap colored with activated charcoal down the middle of the mold.  After getting all of the soap into the mold, I used a heavy skewer to do a mantra swirl design.

Love the lather
After I got the soap in the mold finished, I filled my sample molds.  I ended up with 21 sample blocks.  These will be sliced and dried for samples both for sale and for people to try my soap.

 I ended up putting the soap out of the mold in the freezer on a cutting board to firm up the soap.  When I pulled the soap out of the mold, the bottom of the soap was extremely soft.  Putting the soap in the freezer seemed to do the trick. I started by cutting the log in half and let it sit and dry for a while.   After letting it sit for about 8 hours I started cutting bars.  I am not using my wooden soap cutter because I need a harder wood for the cutting frame.  Unfortunately I had left the logs sitting on the garbage linier that I had used to line the mold.  This resulted in condensation forming on the bottom of the logs making it extremely difficult to cut bars because my log kept slipping.  This is the reason that this blog post didn't go up on Monday.  I had to give the logs some time to dry so that I could finish cutting the bars.  Life in the fast lane, you sometimes get pushed into the slow lane.  ;)

I am linking with the following blogs:


  1. That sounds amazing! I love pretty sweet smelling soaps!

  2. I'm sure I would LOVE this smell of soap! You do such a great job!


  3. This one is so pretty too! Really, you don't melt the solid oils? The lye heats them up sufficiently, I assume? But it would be hard to mix some of the hard ones (I use tallow, for instance), wouldn't it? Hm, I'll have to experiment!


Thank you so much for stopping by.