So what is Cold Process Soap, anyway?
Cold process soap is made the old fashioned way with oils, water, and lye. It is a very exact science. Too much lye, and your soap is dangerous, too little, and you’ve got an ooey gooey mess.
All the heat of this reaction is intrinsic, meaning it comes from the reaction itself. Because no heat is added, it’s relatively slow, as in it takes at least 4 weeks for a batch of natural soap to cure! During the curing process, all of the lye is used up breaking down oils, and water is slowly evaporated, leaving a gentle, hard bar of soap. It takes patience to do cold process soap right!!
Hydrolysis is oils being broken down by lye.
Fatty acids, such as coconut oil, palm oil, rice bran oil, and shea butter are being hydrolyzed, or broken down by the lye water. We always leave a little bit of the oils intact to help moisturize skin. It’s cool to be super fat when you’re a bar of soap! Glycerin is a natural byproduct of the saponification (soap making) reaction, and boosts lather and moisturizes skin.
These broken fatty acids end up with a water loving end (hydrophilic) and an oil loving end (hydrophobic). The way true soap works is the oil loving end grabs onto dirt and germs. The water loving end grabs a hold of the water as the soap is rinsed off, taking those bad boys for a wild ride down the drain.
Cold Process Soap is Natural Soap.
Cold process soap differs from synthetic detergents in its ability to grab a hold of oils. Synthetic detergents, such as dish soap, and some liquid hand soaps and shampoos are very good at removing oils. A little too good, as they tend to strip skin of its natural oils and could leave your skin dry and itchy.
Cold Process Soap is nothing like Melt and Pour Soap.
Just a little pet peeve here: glycerin melt and pour soap is not cold process soap! It is the left over glycerin from commercial soap manufacturing. To make it you just buy it, melt it (even zap it in the microwave), and pour it into whatever fancy little shape you want. After a few minutes it will harden up and your done. Even organic brands of melt and pour contain ingredients such as propylene glycol, sorbitan, and sorbitan oleate as well as undisclosed processing aids. It would be the same as comparing ice cream from the store that was scooped into a bowl to ice cream that was made from scratch, with tempered eggs, and slowly churned as it was freezing. Okay, I’ll get off my soap box, now!
Cold process soap is formulated with such a strong base, and it often has a high pH. Our soap is formulated to be very close to a neutral pH of 7. They clock in at around 7.5 to 8, which is great news for your skin!!
We add tussah silk fibers and honey to each batch, and some even contain pollen, and propolis! We also use many different natural actives, such as clay, activated charcoal, slippery elm bark, and oatmeal to name a just a few!
Check out all of our natural honey soap right here, and see which bar is right for you!