Since I want to start selling soaps by next January, I need ALL the practice I can get. Sundays are my official soaping day.
Today I used my usual Martha Stewart Goat Milk Soap recipe, substituted double-strength coffee for half of the liquid (GM is the other half), and added 1 Tbl of used, Fog Lifter coffee grounds. I read somewhere that freshly ground coffee beans were way too scratchy. Plus I made sure to add the coffee AFTER the initial lye reaction . . . hopefully that will preserve some of the smell.
What I'm hoping for: Chocolately color. Slight Coffee scent. Exfoliation, without sacrificing the moisturizing benefits of the recipe.
I stuck the Pringles can/mold in the freezer for two hours, then transferred to the fridge where it will stay for the rest of its 48 hour 'insulation' period. Hopefully this will prevent the soap from gelling-- giving it a lighter color. It should also prevent the soap from volcano-ing into an odd shaped log.
Trace was so much smoother, slower, and harder to see. I liked it! My previous two batches traced instantly and were difficult to mold (think trying to fit mashed potatoes into a container versus pudding). My hand coordination is also getting better ;) It's difficult trying to pour oils and stir a dangerously caustic solution at the same time, without passing out from ammonia fumes . . .
Oh yeah, another thing that helped-- making sure each bit of hard oils was melted, then refrigerating until the temp lowered to 95 F. Then adding to the cooled lye solution.