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Takes the Problem Out of Problem Soaps!

Cool Soapmaking

The Smart and Simple Guide to Low‑Temp Tricks for Making Soap with Milk, Citrus, Cucumber, Pine Tar, Beer, Wine, and Other Special Ingredients

Book cover graphic

By Anne L. Watson

Soapmakers may love to add a variety of materials to soap, but they find that some cause more trouble than others. In the heat of the chemical reaction, an ingredient might discolor, or lose its scent, or develop a bad smell. Or it might cause problems during soapmaking, giving off noxious fumes, or making the soap harden so fast that there’s no time to pour it in the mold.

Help has arrived.

Anne L. Watson extends the low‑temp techniques from her book Milk Soapmaking to making soap from a variety of special ingredients, including cucumber, citrus, pine tar, beer, and wine. Soaps that have long challenged home soapmakers will now pose no problem at all.


Anne L. Watson is the first author to have introduced modern techniques of home soapmaking and lotionmaking to book readers. She has made soap under the company name Soap Tree, and before her retirement from professional life, she was a historic preservation architecture consultant. Anne and her husband, Aaron Shepard, live in Bellingham, Washington.


Shepard Publications

Paperback ~ 2016

Ebook ~ 2016

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Book cover: Cool Soapmaking


Contents

GETTING STARTED
(From High-Temp Soapmaking to Low)

WHAT DO I PUT INTO IT?
(The Ingredients of Cool Soapmaking)

WHAT DO I USE TO MAKE IT?
(Gathering the Equipment You Need)

PROJECT #1: MILK SOAPS

Recipe: Anne’s Cool Milk Soap

COOL SOAPMAKING STEP‑BY‑STEP
(From Prep to Cleanup and Beyond)

PROJECT #2: CUCUMBER SOAPS

Recipe: Basic Cucumber Soap

Recipe: Cucumber Yogurt Soap

Recipe: Cucumber Green Clay Soap

Recipe: Cucumber Apricot Soap

Recipe: Cucumber Avocado Soap

Sidebar: Designing Cucumber Soaps

PROJECT #3: CITRUS SOAPS

Recipe: Basic Citrus Soap

Recipe: Orange Yogurt Soap

Recipe: Citrus Honey Soap

Recipe: Ruby Red Grapefruit Soap

Sidebar: Designing Citrus Soaps

PROJECT #4: SOAPS WITH ACCELERANTS

Recipe: Sweet Bay Soap

Recipe: Pine Tar Soap

Sidebar: Designing Soaps with Accelerants

PROJECT #5: BEER AND WINE SOAPS

Recipe: Basic Beer Soap

Recipe: Chocolate Ale Soap

Recipe: Red Wine Soap

Recipe: White Wine Soap

Recipe: Anne’s Coconut Beer Soap

Sidebar: Designing Beer and Wine Soaps

WHY? WHY? WHY?
(Frequently Asked Questions)

WHERE TO FIND MORE


Sample Text

From the beginning of soapmaking, people have made it “hot.” In fact, professional soapmakers used to be called soap boilers and shared a patron saint with firefighters.

As far as I can tell, the kind of soapmaking now called hot process was the rule for both family and commercial soapmaking all the way up to around 1940. At that time, companies that manufactured lye began to market it for home soapmaking, which was falling out of fashion. The new method came to be known as cold process—a term I’ve found from as early as that same period, in a lye company pamphlet.

Though in cold process the soap mixture isn’t “cooked,” it isn’t really cold either, as its temperature usually falls somewhere between room temperature and 110°F (43°C). Still, cold process seemed simpler, possibly safer, and was less intimidating to beginners. So, as craft soapmaking became popular, cold process was the technique favored in many books.

More recently, soapmakers adding milk to their soaps have come up with a version of cold process that truly does involve lower temperatures. In my book Milk Soapmaking, I called it Cool Technique. It uses frozen liquid to counteract the heat generated by the dissolving lye. This aims to keep the milk as cold as possible, to avoid browning the milk sugars and darkening the soap.

After writing that book, I continued to refine Cool Technique. But more important, I discovered that its usefulness goes far beyond milk soap. In fact, it can help wherever high temperatures cause problems of scorching, fumes, acceleration, or other unwanted reactions.

Anne’s Soap and Lotion Books

Book cover: Smart Soapmaking Book cover: Milk Soapmaking Book cover: Smart Lotionmaking Book cover: Castile Soapmaking Book cover: Cool Soapmaking


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