Choose which color/colors you want to use and premix. Set aside.
Water soluble colors -- To premix water soluble colors add one teaspoon of powdered oxide color with one tablespoon of hot water. Depending on which color and how strong, these measurements will vary. Start with 1 teaspoon and 1 tablespoon.
Oil soluble colors -- To premix oil soluble colors add one teaspoon of powdered mica color with one tablespoon of almond oil. Depending on which color and how strong, these measurements will vary. Start with 1 teaspoon and 1 tablespoon.
You are going to start with two separate processes, and combine them when they reach the right temperature. One is the oil phase and one is the water phase.
First, prepare the water phase. Make sure you’re wearing Nitrile gloves for this part. In a stainless steel bowl (or plastic or glass, but NOT ALUMINUM), combine the ingredients below:
WATER PHASE – MEASUREMENTS IN WEIGHT NOT VOLUME
18.1 oz of water
6.7 oz of lye (includes a 7% Lye Discount)
Measure the water, and add roughly ¼ of the lye to the water and a cotton ball size piece of raw silk (silk optional). Stir with a plastic or stainless steel spoon until lye is dissolved. Slowly add the rest of the lye. *You can also add all of the lye and stir briefly and leave the lye water mixture outside or in another room with an open window. If you choose this process, prepare lye the day before and heat the lye to the right temperature (between 90 and 110 degrees F).
Leave the lye/water mixture sitting/cooling while you prepare the oil phase:
OIL PHASE– MEASUREMENTS IN WEIGHT NOT VOLUME
13.5 oz of Palm Oil
13.5 oz of Coconut Oil (76 degree)
4.8 oz of Shea Butter (unrefined)
6.7 oz of Olive Oil (Grade A)
9.6 oz of Sunflower Oil
Heat/melt the palm oil, coconut oil, and the shea butter over low heat. Once completely melted, remove from heat and add the olive oil and sunflower oil. Adding the olive oil and sunflower oil after oil mixture is removed from heat should cool your oil mixture close to the necessary temperature of between 90-110 degrees F. If you add the olive oil and sunflower oil while oils are still heating, it will take longer to cool down to the proper temperature.
When both mixtures (lye/water mixture and oils mixture) are between 90-110 degrees F, combine in a large stainless steel bowl (or glass or plastic), and mix with a stick blender.
Mix for 5 minutes or less until the soap mixture reaches trace. Trace is the point where the mixture noticeably thickens (you can see traces of the soap drops in the mixture when you hold the stick blender above the mixture and let the soap drip in). If the drops completely disappear back into the soap and leave no trace or trail, you are not yet at trace. A very light trace is best for swirling and other coloring techniques.
When the soap mixture reaches trace:
--add 3 teaspoons of melted shea butter. This is called superfatting. The reason for this is to leave some oil floating/suspended in the soap (as opposed to having it all reacted with the lye in the saponification process).
--add 3 ounces of scent – My general rule is one ounce of scent to one pound of soap. Many people use less (even half).
--add color – this is where you use the color you premixed in the first step. Add a little at a time until the desire color is reached.
Pour into desired mold and let sit for 24 hours.