Chelsea’s Melt & Pour Soap Making Instructions
Soap Base 91% Rubbing Alcohol
Suspension Soap (Optional) Colorants
Fragrance/Essential Oils (Optional) Botanicals-Herbs (Optional)
Pipette(s) Soap Mold(s)
Double Boiler or Microwave | Large Measuring Cup | Spoon (Preferably Wooden) | Candy Thermometer (Optional)
Get all of your supplies together and then cut 1 lb. of soap base into cubes. If your kit includes suspension soap, please add it at this time. The suspension soap helps evenly distribute additives such as dried herbs and oils for soap bases that are very thin. Only some of our kits require suspension soap. Now that you have all of your soap base cut into cubes you have one of two options:
- Double Boiler - Place cubes into the double boiler and heat slowly until just melted. We recommend this method as it’s easier to control the temperature of the soap base.
- Microwave - Place the cubes into a bowl and microwave for 15 – 20 seconds at a time. Microwave until just melted. This is the easiest method, but if you’re going for special designs in your bars of soap, it will be difficult to do so with this method as you’ll have to repeatedly microwave your soap bases.
Stir gently during the melting process and try to avoid creating bubbles. Soap will melt at 140 degrees and should not go over 160. It’s important to NOT LET THE SOAP BOIL OR IT WILL RUIN THE BATCH.
Adding Color – Once the mixture is melted, slowly add your colorant to the mix. You may want to transfer a small portion of your soap base to another container, so that you can add different colors to your soap. The colorant in your kit is concentrated so add it slowly until you get the desired result. Stir the soap base gently so that the colorant is evenly distributed – be careful not to stir too fast, as we don’t want to create any air bubbles. If at any time the mix becomes too difficult to stir, just throw it back into the boiler/microwave.
Adding Scent and Essential Oils - Remove mixture from heat. Remember a little goes a long way! For 8 oz. of soap base, ¼ - 1/3 of an ounce will be plenty for most fragrance oils. However, this is a personal decision so add a little at a time until you reach what you like. If your kit contains an essential oil, we suggest using the pipette that is included in your kit to carefully add the essential oil. Essential oils vary in smell, so apply what smells best to you. Each pipette holds 1/4oz. You may add the vitamin E oil capsules provided in your kit. Simply puncture them and squeeze the vitamin E oil in the soap base and stir gently.
Adding Dry Botanical and Herbs – Each botanical will react differently in different soap bases. Depending on the herb your using, there’s different methods you can use to get your desired effect. Before pouring your soap base into the molds, read Steps 4 and 5 first, as you’ll have different approaches depending on how you want your soap bar to look. Here we’ll provide the three most common herbs used Chelsea’s Soap Kits and how to work with them:
- Hibiscus – This is a great exfoliant that many soapers like to add to the top/bottom of their soap bars. Hibiscus can change the color of the soap so it’s important to not put it in while the soap base is too hot. We suggest sprinkling it over the top while there is still a thin film over the top of your soap.
- Oatmeal – This heavy botanical will sink to the bottom of your soap base if you add it while it’s too hot, which is fine if you want it to be at the bottom/top of your bar. If you’re going for a dispersed look, then you’ll either want to add the oatmeal while the soap base has cooled (100-110 degrees Fahrenheit) or layer it (we’ll discuss below). Another way to do this is to add the botanical to the soap base and keep stirring until you notice that it starts to get thick and then put it in your mold immediately. If you stir too long it will get VERY sticky and will be difficult to mold. If this happens just throw it back in the microwave.
- Lavender Buds – Are very buoyant, so much like Oatmeal, you throw them in the soap base and keep mixing OR you can create small layers. To do this, pour a thin layer in your mold and then add the lavender buds. Spray the alcohol over the top and repeat for as many layers as you’d like with lavender buds.
Wrapping up – You may want to spray a non-stick spray on your mold before pouring the soap into your mold. Pour the melted soap into the mold of your choice. Any air bubble will rise to the top, to remove air bubbles, lightly spray with rubbing alcohol right after pouring or smooth them off with the back of spoon once you’re finished pouring. Let the soap completely harden before trying to remove from the mold. Once the mold has cooled and hardened (2-3 hours), you can gently take the soap out of the molds. These molds really can last forever if taken care of. You shouldn’t have to exert much force at all to get them out. If a mold is being stubborn, try putting it in the freezer for no longer than 10 minutes, and then come back to it. If it’s still being stubborn, all it needs is time to dry.
We hope you enjoyed the experience!!
For more tips, tricks and tutorials
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