Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Person of Interest

The Cleanest Blog You'll Ever Read
My friend, Judi, does a lot of things that keep her and her husband healthier. She's been an inspiration to me, in that she makes many food items that most people buy pre-made.
(If you've read my first book, 'Lost and Found', you might recognize similarities between Judi and Jules). 
Judi doesn't stop with the art of homemade food, however. She also makes her own soap, just for her personal use. I asked her if she would share the process here, and she was glad to do so.
Hi everyone. I'll walk you through the steps it takes to make a homemade batch of soap.
First, I start with my safety equipment. Heavy gloves, safety glasses, a mask.
I weigh out the sodium hydroxide(aka lye) and mix it with water. I do this outside. The reaction heats the lye to over 200 degrees, and produces strong fumes. Now you know why I need the safety equipment.

Then I have to cover my work area with plastic and measure the oils that I will need.
I combine my ingredients and heat all in a stainless steel pot.

Next I measure out my essential oils for scent, natural preservatives, extra nutrients and superfatting oils.
I use a stick blender and mix it all together.
Then I pour it into the molds that are lined with waxed paper.

I cover it with insulating foam, and tuck it in under a towel for 18-24 hours. It's important to leave it undisturbed. The insulation allows the soap to heat up and complete the soap making process.
After curing time is up, I unmold it and cut it into pieces. Then I lay them on plain cardboard and let them cure for an additional 4-6 weeks in a cool, dry place.
And then I have soap. We use this all the time, rather than buying the highly perfumed kind that lines the store shelves.
Thank's Judi, for sharing this process. I know that we all take soap for granted. The next time I see homemade soap in a store or at a craft sale, I will truly appreciate the time and effort that goes into making it.

Have a squeaky, clean week.


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