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Discussion Starter #1
Hello! I'm new to soaping and had a question about the smell of fresh soap. I've added essential oils (orange and ginger) and the scent is there, along with another unpleasant scent. I think it's the lye that I still smell?

I've made 5 batches so far: 2 with water/lye and 3 with goat milk/lye. They all traced nicely and came out of the mold nicely. It's just the smell, it doesn't stink but it doesn't smell like the scents I added.

I used these oils:eek:live, coconut, grapeseed & castor in the first three batches.
The last two I used crisco(the only thing close to palm oil I could find), Louanna brand coconut oil, olive and castor.

Is there something specific I should be adding to lock in the scents?
Thanks so much and I have enjoyed reading this forum!:)
 

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When I first started making milk soap, I got an off smell too...I let it cure for about 5 months or more and it was gone. I have no idea what caused it...but I know use half milk and half water for the liquid measurement and don't get that anymore.
 

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Thank you! These are very new, made my first just this past Friday. I did use half milk, half water in the lye solution. Canned goats milk when you freeze it ends up being a beige color before adding the lye, at least mine did. I wish I could find some that's fresh.

Do you all use the refined coconut oil like Louanna? The organic oil smells wonderful but it isn't cheap.
 

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Yes I did. The last batch I made I added some mint oil to the oils before I added the lye solution. I got a bit adventurous with that one, I added 2 ounces of fresh lime juice to the milk/water/lye and put the zest of three limes in the soap after trace. That was Monday evening. I unmolded that one this morning and cut it. The lime scent is coming through well. I've found that it's very much a trial & error process! It's exciting to see the results :)


I also put the milk mixture in an ice bath and added the lye very slowly-just a small amount at the time, keeping the temperature to 80 degrees and below. I add that mixture to the oil when they are within 10 degrees of each other. Using the stick blender they trace very quickly. I watched many youTube videos and read many blogs before I dove in.
 

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soaps made with milk will always have an initial ammonia smell.

Since you're using canned GM, mixing 50:50 with water reconstitutes it just fine.

You can also freeze the canned GM and add this to your water.

The way I've been making soap using raw milk (15 years) is to freeze it flat in ziplock bags (easy to store that way). When soaping, I'll have all my oils weighed & melted ready to go.

Weigh out your frozen milk (chunked up into 1"-2" pieces) and lye. I add about 1/3 of the lye to the frozen milk, stir to get the milk just melting. Add half the remaining lye, stir some more, then add the remainder of the lye and use a stick blender to break up the remaining chunks of frozen milk (keep the SB immersed in the lye solution). Pour immediately into the waiting oils. It takes less than a couple of minutes to make the lye solution.

Your oils/lye solution do not have to be about the same temperature. My lye solution is usually about 70*F where the oils are closer to 100*F
 

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Citrus scents usually need something to anchor them or they will fade. I use kaolin clay. When I measure out my ingredients I add my citrus scents to that and mix well before adding to the batter.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks everyone! This site is extremely helpful. I have purchased some scents from Brambleberry since I posted this. I'm going to try some out tonight with a coconut milk soap.
 
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