What I enjoy most about making soap, apart from the cheating element (using a soap base), and the great gift factor, is the aromas that filter through the kitchen and the house!
I decided that my life isn’t hectic enough recently and that making soap was something that I absolutely needed to do, forgetting that I still haven’t gifted/given away all the soaps I made in the run up to Christmas.
Ive been harvesting lavender for ages, if I see a bush I give it a good whack and then dry it out for a few days and then its ready for crafting. Lavender is also getting very trendy at the moment and can be used in various things, even baking, thinking lavender shortbread cookies!
I took inspiration from Sisoo HOW TO: MAKE LAVENDER HONEY LEMON SOAP in making this soap.
Soap making requirements:
- 1/2 Kilo of Stephenson’s Soap Melt and Pour Soap Base Shea Butter 1kg (you can use any soap base for this but a white base gives the best aesthetic)
- 2-3 tablespoons dried rosemary
- 2-3 tablespoons dried lavender
- coffee grinder (optional but gives a finer texture)
- Lavender essential oil
- Lemon essential oil
- 2 tablespoons Filippo Berio Extra Virgin Olive Oil or any fine oil will work (optional)
- Plastic jug (to melt your soap in)
- Wood spoon (to mix your soap)
- Moulds (any shape will work)
Instructions for making awesome soap:
I decided I wanted delicate yet chunky soap, it seemed like a clever idea at the time! So I got my coffee grinder out and managed to successfully melt/destroy it on the first grind. 18 hours later and a new coffee grinder was delivered thanks to Prime! (Oh Prime, how I am going to miss you!) I ground up most of the rosemary, some bits refused to grind (top bag you see). I decided I wanted the color and the aroma of the rosemary, so I ground half of the lavender (the bottom bag).
Now to melt the soap, chop it up soap into smallish bits, the small the better, as it melts quicker. Put it a microwaveable safe bowl and cover with clingfilm (this is VERY important). Officially you are meant to melt it in 30 second intervals or you can be lazy like me and whack it in for 1-2 mins at a time depending on how much soap you are melting at time (I tend to make large amounts of soap).
Now to bring your soap together, once the base has completed melted, chuck in the lavender and rosemary, olive oil, and essential oils. Mixed until just combined, trying not to over mix, as this adds in air bubbles.
Pour the soap into your moulds. I use two different types of moulds. I prefer the clear plastic one, as it actually gives a better and more shiny appearance to the finished soaps. Now for the most difficult part, waiting 24 hours for your soap to set. It is a minimum suggestion of 24 hours for your soap to set before you use it.
The finished product, wrapped in cellophane. I also made coffee sugar scrub soaps at the same time, hence the dark soaps. The lavender and rosemary initially looked very light/white in color but they longer they set for, the darker they became. Think of it as maturing if you will. Please note that most of the lavender and rosemary does settle on the bottom of the soap or top where you are pouring.
I then made small labels to go on each soap! This small detail makes a large amount of difference.
Remember to share with friends and enjoy!