Soap Making Tips
- Never use lye on aluminum utensils (lye acts upon them). For small batches of soap, enameled or granite ware is suitable and for larger batches, an iron kettle may be used.
- All grease should be pure and clean to obtain soap with a clean, wholesome odor.
- Measure accurately. Be careful about temperatures.
- Ammonia, kerosene, carbolic acid, etc., when added to soap help it little, if any, as the lye usually neutralizes them. They increase cost and may make soap harsh on skin.
- Coldness makes a hard, brittle soap.
- Excess lye makes a coarse, flinty soap that will crumble when shaved. Soap should have a smooth, velvety texture that curls when shaved. It should not bite the tongue when aged.
- Use the all-purpose soap for toilet soap, a shampoo, for washing prints, lingerie, hose and other delicate fabrics.
- The following fats (for soap making) are listed in the order of their desirability: Tallow, lard and their combinations, olive oil, other vegetable oils. Mineral oils will not make soap.
- Poultry fat should be combined with other fats, as soap made from it alone is soft and spongy.
- Aging always improves soap. Soap made from lard or soap that has been boiled requires longer aging before it becomes hard and ready for use.
- Instead of storing rinds and meats scraps, extract the fat; store in a tightly covered container in a cool, dry place.
- Make the fat into soap as it accumulates and let the soap age rather than allow the fat to get too old and rancid.
- There need never be a failure in soap making. If separation occurs, it can be reclaimed.
- Where you find your grease has become rancid or contains materials other than fats, boil in large quantity of water, allow to cool, skim off grease, and then follow the directions in the recipe for soap making.
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