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Soap Making Blog

  • How to start a soap business and other adventures in goating

    I am not a delicate little flower by any stretch of the imagination, just ask any of my friends, but the thought of burning myself so that I am no longer recognizable scared me to death! I have raised goats since 1997, have driven an 18 wheel truck cross country by myself, and have even […]

  • Hoegger’s Christmas 2014 Goat Gift Guide

    For those who love ‘us goat people’, gift giving can be a challenge. So, for Christmas 2014, we thought we would put together an ‘Ultimate Gift Guide’ to help you out. There’s something here for all kinds of goat keepers and milk aficionados, and we’ve tried to cover all budgets. So from stocking fillers to […]

  • Dirty Jobs and Pretty Faces – an adventure in soap making

    Well, it’s that time of year when a lot of us are getting dirty. We are planting flowers, weeding gardens, hiking, fishing, and generally making a mess of ourselves. We are also sweating and clogging up those pesky facial pores. So what are dirty guys and gals to do? The answer is Cup ‘O Joe […]

  • The mystical art of soap making

    “Stir your soap in a clockwise direction with a sassafras stick under a waning moon”….   I started soap making about a year ago. I give all my success to an awesome book called Smart Soap making by Anne Watson. When I tell people I make soap – mostly they crinkle their nose and say […]

  • Formulating goat milk soaps and using additives

    Our last soap blog showed a step-by-step tutorial on how to make goat milk castile bar soap.  Castile soap – 100% olive oil soap – is mild but not very bubbly or cleansing.  What do we consider when formulation goat milk soap with multiple triglycerides? And what about adding scents and colors to goat milk […]

  • How to make a goat milk Castile bar soap

    Castile soap is 100% olive oil soap, and it is mild enough to use on babies (6 months or older).  In this variant, goat milk replaces the water used to dissolve the lye crystals (NaOH).   This has several advantages:  the goat milk reduces curing time from six months to three months; the resulting soap is […]

  • Using infused calendula in home made goat milk soap

    Calendula is renowned for its skin healing and soothing qualities, and has been used in skin care for centuries. The sunny bright yellow-orange flowers are the parts of the plant used.  We are lucky to have calendula flowers growing in the garden as a friendly ‘volunteer’ companion crop.   We have so many, that Pine St […]

  • Nuts about Shea Nut Butter

    Making your own natural soaps is not only fun and economical, but, it gives you the option of creating soaps that meet your specific skin needs.   Once saponified, different fats contribute unique properties to your soap. Hardness, lather consistency, trace time, moisturizing and conditioning properties, are all determined by the fats you choose.   […]

  • Adding color to your soap

    Soap color was one of the hardest things for me to master. Mainly because I was using synthetic colors.   When working with color you have to know how they will react in a high PH environment. Many synthetics just will not hold up in cold process soap. I have had blues turn burgundy, purples […]

  • Is your Christmas soap as ‘all natural’ as it seems?

    If you are planning to buy your loved ones hand made soaps as gifts this year, be sure you know what you’re buying and that they are just what they say on the label! Take advice from our guru, Debbie Shivvers.   I see more and more soap makers claiming they make ‘all natural’ or organic […]

  • Soap making 101: How to cure and store your home made soaps

    After all the fun of soap making is over, it’s time to cure and store those carefully hand crafted soaps, and complete the final step in preparing them for use. When I formulate a soap recipe I usually discount the water a bit. Typically I use 33% of my oil weight in water.  For a […]

  • Soap making 101: Troubleshooting soap making

    So your soap didn’t turn out quite how you had hoped? Never fear, all may not be lost. Read through the common problems below to find the solution to your soap saga.   I am fortunate to have a huge base of soap making friends with tons of experience. One thing that I have learned […]

  • Simple Goat Milk Soap Recipe

    Ready to make goat milk soap? Here is a great, simple goat milk soap recipe from Debbie Shivvers.  This goat milk soap recipe should produce two pounds of nice creamy goat milk soap.   Equipment: Pan of Ice Water Accurate Scale Quart Size Measuring Cup for Lye(Glass, Quality plastic or Stainless Steel) 2 Quart Container […]

  • Safely Handling Lye

    Many people would like to make their own natural soaps but are afraid of working with lye.  Lye is a caustic chemical that can cause significant burns and injury when handled incorrectly. Proper safety procedures when handling lye will protect you and ensure that soap making is safe and fun.   The first article I […]

  • Start Making Soap with this Simple Milk Soap Recipe

    Simple Milk Soap Recipe provided by Mary Jane Toth Author: Goats Produce Too and The Cheese Maker’s Journey (available Jan 2012) 4 Choosing the right milk soap recipe for your first soap making attempt is crucial to your success.  I’ve been making soap for over 30 years and wanted to provide the simplest, easiest milk soap recipe […]