Solving Common Appearance Problems when Making Soap

Part of the Making Candles & Soaps For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Sometimes, your finished homemade soaps just don't look right. Disappointment is natural, but chances are you can still use and enjoy soaps you've made. You'll want to make your soaps to look their best, though, for gift-giving and for selling. Check out this list of common appearance problems and how to solve them.

  • Bubbles mar the appearance of your soap: Those bubbles are the result of trapped air. To prevent air bubbles, make sure you lightly spray the top of your soap with rubbing alcohol after you pour it into its mold. The bubbles should disappear instantly.

  • Your soap looks cloudy: You may have used too much of an additive, or you put your soap in the freezer to hasten hardening. Try using less of an additive next time, and despite your enthusiasm, let the soap harden at room temperature!

  • Your soap is cracked and brittle: You most likely overheated your base or “overcooled” your soap. You can still use the soap, although it doesn’t look very pretty!

  • Your soap looks crumbly: You probably put your soap in the freezer. Remember to let the soap harden at room temperature.

  • Fuzz covers your soap: Your soap may be sweating because it’s attracting moisture in the air, and lint may be attracted to the sweat. Simply wipe off the fuzz, rub the soap with alcohol, and wrap it in plastic if you’re not going to use it for a while.

  • Your soap is streaked: The temperatures during mixing and melting were too cold. Synthetic fragrances can also cause streaking in soap. You can still use the soap, but it just doesn’t look very attractive.

  • Your soap looks scummy: Unwanted gook somehow contaminated your soap, but you can still safely use it. Simply scrape off the scum if it bothers you, or rinse the soap until the scum disappears.

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Making Candles & Soaps For Dummies Cheat Sheet

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