I love this part of my simpler life. It is fun, great to use and the possibilities are endless.
I got interested when an online friend (I think it was Ruth) attempted to make soap sometime last year. I was intrigued but nothing came of it. It took two more friends to attempt and succeed before I figured I would bite the bullet.
The first attempt cooled down too fast and although it was useable (and I still have a couple of bars) the second attempt was so much better. The recipe is this one for Cold Pressed Soap from Rhonda from Down to Earth. I had to half the batch as I don’t have a big enough bowl for that much liquid and ran it through the Soap Calc to ensure the ratio of lye was correct before I started. All the ingredients I found in the supermarket or the health food shop and for my everyday soap I do not use essential oils. This is because both all of us use the same soap and I don’t think R would appreciate the scent I like and I know I don’t want to smell like the ones he likes.
I have used this recipe and have made a lavender soap using lavender essential oil and dried flowers. It smells divine and is much creamier that the everyday soap (therefore it is used up faster).
I wanted more options from my soap making so I started looking for books. None of my local libraries had anything good for cold pressed soaps so I went online and discovered a series of books on self sufficiency including this one on soap making by Sarah Ade. The series also covers household cleaning, preserving and hen keeping among others.
This book has a number of recipes I am planning to try. I have already made the shampoo bar (my hair is undecided at the moment although it smells divine) and the shaving soap (which is still curing and not yet ready to use).
Is it worth it? Yes I think it is, financially each bar costs about $1 to make (the basic recipe is less and the shaving soap is more), it feels nicer on the skin and is nice to know that I am not introducing anything harmful to Jots skin.
I have also made deodorant from Jessica at How About Orange. A very simple and quick product which I love to use. I made up the amount specified in April and still have some left 6 months later. The only gripe I have is that in winter it is completely solid and an absolute nightmare to get out of the tub I put it in. It is starting to warm up now so hoping it will be a little easier to use over the next few months. I am looking for a deodorant recipe for a spray deodorant but so far I haven’t got very far, might have to try devising my own.
There are a couple of other recipes I have noted that I would like to try but I need to find some time away from Jot where I can concentrate on something new:
Calendula Salve from Passionate Homemaker
Lavender Water from Fiolinn and the Handy Gnomes
Lip Balm and Toner from Beautiful with Brains