Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil in Soap Making

In the process of soap making, the use of coconut oil is very common as the base oil. There is actually a reason why it is popular. Coconut oil in soap making is good to help produce a bar of soap with excellent cleaning properties. Afterall, coconut oil derivatives are widely used in personal care industry.

Besides being a great cleanser, coconut oil is also a great alternative to palm oil, if you or your company wants to avoid using it. Here are common questions asked about using coconut oil in soap.

Can soap be made from coconut oil?

Yes, soap can be made from coconut oil. Soap can also be made using other vegetable oils. Soap makers can also mix multiple types of oil together in a soap.

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There are three main ingredients in soap: oil or fat, lye, and water. Inherently, oil for soap can be animal based or plant based, as long as it is a saponifiable oil. Now, what is saponifiable oil?

Saponifiable oil is simply oils that can be saponified or made into soap. Saponification is a chemical reaction of fat or oil with caustic catalyst (e.g. lye) which produces soap.

Coconut oil is a popular soap ingredient. It can produce hard bars easily with favorable cleansing properties.

coconut oil in soap making

However, it is important to note that most soap makers use a maximum of 20-30% in a coconut oil soap recipe. Too much coconut oil in soap can be drying, because coconut oil in soap has dominant cleansing properties. By keeping the ingredient of coconut oil at that rate, we will have the best qualities and avoid drying out our skin. However, according to natural soap making enthusiast Tanya Anderson, it is possible to add more than 20 – 30% coconut oil in soap without causing dry skin. Check out the next section to understand how this is possible.

Is 100% coconut oil a good soap?

Yes, it can be a good soap. Basically, this question arises because soap makers usually mix several types of oil together in soap making. Moreover, the general rule of coconut oil is not more than 20 – 30% in a soap mix because it could be drying to the skin.

coconut oil in soap making

However, you can actually use more than 20 – 30% coconut oil in a soap, according to lovelygreens.com. The trick to making 100% coconut oil soap or pure coconut oil soap is by giving the recipe a 20% superfat. And then, let the finished bars have an extra-long cure time. The recipe will give you hard white bars that lather well and are gentle on our skin.

great lathering is coconut oil soap characteristic. Check out FAQs of coconut oil in soap making here

Usually, superfat is used not more that 8-10% in soap making because it risks rancidity. Superfat is usually a byproduct when multiple oil types are mixed together in a soap. So, why does the 100% coconut oil and 20% superfat trick work? For some reason, it works. Unlike almond, sunflower, canola, and many other oils that can’t handle high superfat content. Superfat will also not make 100% coconut oil soap soft because coconut oil soap bar are hard enough.

Moreover, coconut oil will make a super lather. A properly made 100 percent coconut oil bar of soap will not have the lathering and spoilage issues that are commonly associated with soaps with high superfat percentage.

A pure coconut oil soap bar with high superfat is good for people with allergy to other common oils in soap making, such as olive, sunflower, or palm oil.

Benefits and disadvantages of coconut oil soap?

Coconut oil soap benefits is that it’s natural and pure which is perfect for everyday use, especially to avoid an allergic reaction to essential oils and other fragrances. Besides, it can be an inexpensive soap to make, depending on where you live.

Other pure or 100 coconut oil soap benefits are anti-inflammatory, which is great quality for red inflamed skin, coconut oil also is an antioxidant that is good for the skin to slow down the aging process, and moisturizing if we use natural soap with coconut oil in that will make some of it will remain as oil and give the moisturizing benefits to our skin.

While there are some benefits, there are some disadvantages of coconut oil soap as well. First, if someone is allergic to coconut oil, then coconut oil soap must be avoided.

Another disadvantage is the length of process in the making of coconut oil soap. Coconut oil soap needs to be cured for a full ten weeks before the coconut oil soap is gentle enough for our skin. Curing is the process of the soap crystals inside the bars. Using soap too early can be over-cleansing, hence drying our skin.

How do you make natural coconut oil soap?

To make a homemade coconut oil soap, try a simple coconut oil soap recipe. Some materials you will need to make a coconut oil soap are: lye, water, and essential. To be more specific, here is the coconut oil soap recipe in grams that we can use: 500 grams of coconut oil, 190 grams of distilled water, 73.3 grams of lye.

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We can also replace up to half of the distilled water with coconut milk. It is recommended that if we do so, add the coconut milk right after putting the soap to trace. Therefore, we can avoid turning our soap brown, although adding coconut milk can change the color of bars from white to cream.

Generally, we can make coconut oil soap by following the coconut oil soap recipe hot process or cold process. The difference between both processes is how we do soap-making with the temperature. In the cold process, it is done at room temperature, while the hot one uses heat to speed up the process.

In the soap making process, we can start by following the directions of making a basic soap batch to make our lye solution. And then, weigh and melt the oils on the stovetop or microwave. When we finish, mix oils and lye solution at about 100 degrees.

Ensure all of your tools and supplies for additives, such as color and/or fragrance are ready to go. And you can add lye solution to oils as well as fragrance afterward. When the mixed soap is ready, put it into molds and let it harden overnight. Once the solution has been in the molds for 12-18 hours, we can unmold and cut it into bars.

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Can you make soap without lye?

The function of lye in soap making is to convert oils into soap. Without using it, what we will have is just oil and water. However, we can make soap with no need to handle lye ourselves using the melt and pour method.

So, how does it work? You need to buy a premade soap base first, then cut it into chunks, and melt it down on the stove top until it becomes liquid. After that, we can stir in whatever we want and the melted base, then pour it into a soap mold. Let it cool and harden back up, and once it is done, pop the soap out of the mold.

What can replace lye in soap?

Using lye in soap making is inevitable, but there is an alternative way in order to not try coconut oil soap recipe without lye. We can use plants that have a rich compound in saponins. The process of making soap replacing lye with plants is by warming the roots, leaves, and fruit of the plants in water.

Saponins can dissolve in a water and then latch itself to oils. Along with the oil, water will wash away the saponin. We can also use saponins to cleanse our skin, hair, and even our home. The good news is, no matter where we live in the world, we will have saponin-rich plants available.

coconut oil in soap making

Some examples of saponin-rich plants are soapwort, english ivy, horse chestnuts, clematis, and soapbush tree. To extract the saponins from plants, all we need to do is boil or soak the plant material, whether it’s a fresh or dried plant, in water. There is no exact amount of plant material, but you can base it on how much saponin is in the plant.

Is pure coconut oil soap good for skin?

Coconut oil in soap can give many benefits for our skin. It can moisturize our skin since coconut oil creates a protective moisturizing shield on our skin. Coconut oil composes healthy saturated fats, and antioxidants, as well as many vitamins like vitamin E, lauric acid, and others.

In addition, coconut oil is good for fighting acne and eczema because it is rich in antioxidants. Coconut oil also can reduce inflammation due to its high levels of polyphenols and fatty acid components. It helps skin heal too because natural fats can create healthier and softer skin which will repair the skin better.

coconut oil in soap making

However, the effect of coconut oil soap for skin can also depend on how much coconut oil is used in the soap. A lot of coconut oil will be super cleansing but can potentially dry our skin. Meanwhile, too little coconut oil won’t clean the skin and leave bacteria, dead skin cells on our skin which can cause acne.

So, coconut oil in soap is good for our skin when we use it in the right proportions. There should be no other cleansing oils in it too. Make sure to always follow the direction of the best coconut oil soap recipe when trying to do soap making.

Is coconut oil too heavy for skin?

From the explanations above, we can see that coconut oil can give us many benefits in protecting and repairing the barrier of our skin. While it works to moisturize, some people might find it too oily or clogging to apply coconut oil to their face.

We should be using coconut oil in areas with not too much hair and applying just enough. Too much coconut oil on our face or legs can cause breakouts.

What type of coconut oil is best for soap making?

Coconut oil 76 degree, 92 degree, virgin coconut oil and fractionated coconut oil can all be made into soap. However, RBD coconut oil or coconut oil 76 degree is the most popular choice. It is less expensive than other coconut oil types and has a neutral aroma (no coconut fragrance). RBD coconut oil is purified enough to be used as cooking oil, so definitely safe enough for soap.

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With coconut oil for soap making, the soap will produce great lather and cleansing prowess. The oil is also great for bar soap because it hardens the soap, while still providing some skin conditioning.

When choosing coconut oil, just make sure you check on the certificate of analysis or lab test result to confirm whether the chemical properties suit your product demand. If you want to buy coconut oil in large amount, consider importing directly from Indonesia.

What does 76 degrees mean in coconut oil?

The variety of coconut oil called 76 degrees refers to the melting point of the oil, which is at 76 degrees Fahrenheit. It is the most widely available type of coconut oil. It is common for soap to be made from scratch by cold or hot process.

Read More: Coconut Oil 76 Degree vs 92 Degree: What is the Difference?

What does coconut oil 92 degrees mean?

Coconut oil 92 degree is also known as hydrogenated coconut oil. The number 92 degree means this type of oil has a melting point of 92 degree Fahrenheit. It has higher melting point than RBD coconut oil because it has been hydrogenated. You can use this type to make hydrogenated coconut oil soap, but many soap makers argue that this type makes a harder bar of soap with less lather.

To sum up, all we need to know about coconut oil in soap making from the explanation above, it can be said that coconut oil-based soaps have some benefits and disadvantages. However, coconut oil provides the most essential part of the soap. It is the cleansing ability to wash away bacteria and dirt from the skin.

Coconut oil is a great substitute for palm oil which is very common in soap making. Moreover, using coconut oil in soap making offers many benefits for our skin, including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and moisturizing. If you want to import coconut oil 76 for you soap making business, do not hesitate to contact us for some details. Have a wonderful day!

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