There are many benefits to preparing a homemade soap, for me the first of all is the possibility of flavoring it from time to time according to my tastes. There are other aspects that should not be underestimated which may also concern aspects such as the economic and environmental ones.
Making a homemade organic soap one hundred percent natural is possible and not only super experts and practical in the field, many learn to do it for example by taking olive oil as the main ingredient, just as happens when you want to obtain Aleppo soap. Let's see together how to operate and why.
Homemade soap: ingredients
Very often to prepare a homemade soap it is necessary to use caustic soda, also called sodium hydroxide. It is the fundamental ingredient of soap, without it it is really difficult to obtain it even if in fact during the saponification process, reacting with fats, the sodium hydroxide it neutralizes and disappears.
As many know, we are talking about a dangerous material that must be handled with extreme care. This means that when we prepare the homemade soap with this ingredient, we must always wear rubber gloves and goggles without forgetting even a mask that protects the nose and mouth from the steam that soda produces when it is diluted. In order not to risk it altogether, I recommend moving to prepare our soap in an airy place, making sure that we are outdoors or near a previously open window. And if we happen to inhale the sodium hydroxide or to touch it? Better to contact a doctor immediately or go to the emergency room.
In addition to caustic soda we need other elements and this time these do not "vanish" during preparation. For example, we need fatty acids and we can choose for example whether to use the shea butter, coconut oil, sunflower oil or the already mentioned olive oil which is highly regarded for its emollient properties. You also need a liquid and usually distilled water is used, although there are also those who prefer a variant that focuses on milk. It is to be discounted that this liquid requires a longer procedure, but the soap could be better, "softer" and creamy.
Cold homemade soap
You will hear about homemade cold and hot soap, in fact, both methods exist and both give good results, they are not so dissimilar but there is a small difference starting from the ingredients to be prepared. For homemade soap, for example, we can get one kg of extra-virgin olive oil and 134 grams of caustic soda, if we want to proceed with cold method we need 280 grams of preferably distilled water, if instead we opt for the hot process, which we will see shortly, we must get 350 grams of water, always better if distilled.
Homemade soap with olive oil
Let's try to follow the preparation of a step by step homemade soap with olive oil and with the hot method. With the ingredients that we announced in the previous paragraph it goes without saying that it is necessary to protect ourselves in order to risk getting hurt with the caustic soda that we will put in a pyrex container and then add it to the water after we have placed it in a container of stainless steel. Once the two fluids are united, the temperature of the mixture will rise to 80 ° while we continue to mix with the wooden spoon.
The next step is that of cooling down: leave the container in a ventilated place, preferably outdoors, in the garden or on the balcony, until the temperature drops to 45 °, measure it with a thermometer taking into account that it may take about 15 - 20 minutes.
We have also prepared oil as an ingredient, in fact it is needed and must be heated to 45 ° in a large stainless steel pot twice its volume. A delicate operation follows which is to remove the oil from the heat and pour over the mixture of water and soda by now cooled and then at 45 ° like the fat itself. To get rid of lumps and to make everything more homogeneous, we can always resume mixing with the spoon for about ten minutes or use the immersion mixer in more sends just to prevent everything from heating up again.
Continuing with constancy and attention we will reach a phase in which we will see the drops of the mixture able to slip from the spoon to rest on a creamy compound tracing like lines. For those who are familiar with homemade soaps, we can speak of the "ribbon phase", a phase that marks the starting point of the real hot soaping in which the caustic soda still present in our compound is finally neutralized thanks to the slow action of heat .
Put the pan with the cream of oil, soda and water heating over low heat with a lid that covers the emulsion, we wait patiently without distracting ourselves because every half hour we have to mix what is becoming our soap with a wooden spoon, making sure that the water does not come to boil.
Home made scented soap
We don't have ours yet homemade soap and ready to use but right now that the mixture is taking on a sticky consistency, it is the right time to perfume it. In fact, after about two hours of cooking, we will see the mixture become semi-transparent, it's time to remove the pot from the heat and let it cool, adding ingredients to taste. There are those who choose essential oils and micro-granules, small pieces of lavender, orange peel, cinnamon chips or even rice. Take advantage of the moment when the texture is still soft.
Homemade soap with ash
Those who do not want to proceed with caustic soda can make a soap with ash lye and a few other ingredients: 200 ml of oil and aromas of your choice. 100 ml of ash lye are needed.
We combine the first two ingredients in a saucepan, stirring until boiling, waiting for the mixture to become thick and rubbery. Just check the moment when the ladle leaves no trail, the right time to remove the pot from the heat and let our mixture cool which is then blended with an immersion blender. All that remains is to pour the soap into the molds by adding a essential oil in drops and let it settle for at least 3 days before removing it from the molds. Before using it you need to wait another 2-3 months in which to store it in a cool and dry place.
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