I had today off from work due to the teacher's convention, which I was only required to attend one of the two days, since I am half time. Tomorrow is rounding up the sheep and treating them for keds, plus a bit of hoof trimming, plus regular chores. Two young fellow are coming to help me in the afternoon, paid help. I hope they are good. But today after chores, I did the laundry and the dishes and had some time in the evening to make soap.
I made a unique soap, with Brazilian green clay and activated charcoal, plus birch tar, camphor, black pepper, sweet birch and wintergreen essential oils in small quantities. The thing is I did it cold pressed, which means you mix the oils and lye water together and then when it is thick, called trace, it is poured into a mold. My mold is just a cardboard box with a placemat for texture, and lined with a cotton cloth. The soap did trace and I poured it then swirled it with the same batter with activated charcoal, but then it lost some oil to the cloth and the box it is molded in. I am wondering if tomorrow I might have to cook it. I would lose my pretty design and get grey soap, but the Brazilian green clay is quite grey anyhow. I will see how it is tomorrow.
I also made hemp and olive oil soap. It is a cooked soap, called hot process, but it still takes some time to cure. It was not fully saponified when I put it in its mold, which is another cardboard box, because when I washed the pot, the soap bit my hands. That is weird.Usually a cooked soap that has gone through all the stages is already finished saponification and does not bite back. This soap will still have to take time to cure in the mold to fully saponify the oils with the lye. It is 50/50 hemp oil and lye. Hemp oil has a very green scent already so this is left au natural, no essential oils added. I plan to do a hemp aleppo, that is instead of using olive oil, using hemp oil and the fantastic laurel berry oil.
I love hemp oil. It is the perfect food. Mixed with my greens and berry powder I hardly notice it, but it provides omega 6 nutirents that are hard to get in a diet. It is extremely conditioning for the skin and hair too. The hemp plant supplies fibre for fabric, ropes, and hempcrete, a type of concrete that has hemp fibres for strength and stability and lightness. It is one of the most useful and underused plants in the world. It was a great day for soaping. Would you like to try some of these soaps?