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OK, SO I saw these soaps when I was at downtown Disney and fell in love with them! I, however, did NOT want to speand $5 on a bar of soap I knew cost pennies to make and that I could do at home. Here's a tutorial I found online and I am going to use an citrus colors of translucent soap and some citrus scents to make them look like slices of___well, citrus:
The main thing for making round soaps is having the right molds, namely a setup that won’t leave you with a hernia from trying to extract your soap. (*Ahem. I may have tried some setups that left me with bruises, cuts, and other various injuries.*)
From everything I’ve tried, this is by far the best. What I use are pieces of a PVC pipe I picked up at the hardware store, in the plumbing section. It was approximately $9 for a pipe which I could cut into three manageable lengths (approximately one foot each), and the diameter is three inches or so.
For loofah soaps, you’ll need at least that diameter; for regular soaps, it’s doesn’t matter which diameter you choose. I used a hacksaw to cut it into sections; it wasn’t too difficult. Just make sure that your lines are straight, or you might have a pipe that won’t sit flat when you’re trying to pour soap into it.
While you’re at the hardware store, pick up the end caps that
fit over the pipes, one for the bottom of each mold (I think they were
around $1 each.) They’re very important; I’ve tried wrapping other
things over the end, but it has always made a big mess.
The other thing you need is a silicone baking sheet. They’re available at some dollar stores, but you need one that is quite thick and stiff. If it’s too floppy, you’ll end up with a mess, since they tend to collapse in on themselves when you pour the soap in. Incidentally, the thin ones work very well for lining loaf molds, since you can get square-er corners on the bottom of your bars.
need to trim the silicone sheet a bit, but you want it to roll
up and stick up out of the top of the mold, at least three or
four inches, as seen in the first picture. This is very important later
on, when you’re trying to get your soap out. So, roll up your silicone
sheet, pop it in, and make sure that it’s even from top to bottom. Also,
if there’s a pattern on one side of the sheet, make sure that you
notice which side. If you like the pattern and want it on the sides of
your bars, that’s peachy, but not if you wanted plain sides.
details: If you’re making a loofah soap, you’ll need 12 inch
loofahs, which are available from some craft and soap supply places. You also need to make sure that your loofah will fit inside
your lined mold. Many of the loofahs I have seem to be a bit wider at
one end; you can trim them with a serrated knife if you need to. Pop in
your loofah, and make your soap. You don’t want to put in any herbs,
petals, or other things, as they will get gummed up in the loofah, and you
only want your soap brought to a very thin trace. Take this
into account when you’re adding in your fragrance or essential oils,
especially if they accelerate trace.One thing I would advise is to make
it in a bowl or container with a pour spout, whether you’re using a
loofah or not. The opening is small enough in the top of the
mold to make it tricky without the spout. (*Ahem. I may have
made many, many messes and poured lots of soap on the floor before
thinking of this.*)
I was trying to take pictures at the same time
as I poured the soap, which didn’t really work out, except to show you
that this is too thick for loofah soap. I let it stand for a minute
while I changed some camera settings, and it thickened enough to make it
a bit tricky for pouring into my loofah.
The next part is the other key for
loofah soaps: as you’re pouring your soap in, you need to pour it in
stages. I do about three pours for each 12 inch mold. Also
for the loofah bars, give it a serious jiggle between each
pour, so that the soap permeates the loofah and you eliminate any air
bubbles or pockets. Serious, quick, small jiggles back and forth,
without sloshing your soap up and out of the mold and all over your
hands and face. (*Ahem.*) Once it’s full, keep jiggling, until no more
air bubbles break the surface. Wrap them with a towel or two for a day or two,
and covering the top with part of the towel helps, too.
unmold, just hold on tight to the pipe and pull on the cookie
sheet part that’s sticking up out of the mold. There will be a bit of
suction as the bottom releases, and you’ve got to give it a good tug,
but it should slide right out. Unwrap it from the baking sheet and let
it rest for a few hours before cutting. For loofah soap, let it
sit in the mold for at least three or four days. The soap will
have time to soften the loofah enough to make it easy to cut. If you try
too soon (*ahem*) you will get blisters trying to cut it into pretty,
even slices. Edited to add: You won’t be able to cut it
with a counter scraper, you will need a knife. One that’s serrated will
leave marks, so keep that in mind when choosing your knife.
Your loofah soap should look something like