Soap Making is one of those skills that I had been wanting to learn for a VERY long time but I was always so intimidated by the process. This was the year of learning new things, thanks to my friend over at MyshireFarm. I am such a hands on learner that I needed some encouragement.
I have made a few batches of soap now and I honestly feel a lot more confident in the process (it wasn't nearly as scary and difficult as I had thought). So, here is a roundup of some great tutorials and recipes out there, I know what I will be busy doing all winter!
Let's talk vocabulary first, there are two MAIN types of soap making:
COLD PROCESS: Cold Process soapmaking is the act of mixing fixed oils (common oils include Olive, Coconut and Palm) with an alkali (Sodium Hydroxide or Lye). The result is a chemical process called saponification, where the composition of the oils change with the help of the lye to create a bar of soap
HOT PROCESS: Hot Process soapmaking is very similar, however, it is called hot because during the saponification process heat is added, usually in the form of a crockpot or double broiler. There really is no one way that is better, it is simply a matter of preference and also based on the type of recipe you use.
If you feel still a little lost when looking at soap recipes, this Glossary of terms may prove helpful to you. (though it is admittedly pretty technical).
What do you even need to begin? Here is a great tutorial post from Oak Hill Homestead on just that.
Starting here with a FREE BEGINNERS GUIDE TO SOAP MAKING
Oh, and just in case you need some supplies before you get started, here are a few to consider. (yes there are affiliate links in here)
The Science of Soap
How to prevent the scent from fading in your soaps