When Fragrance Oils Go Rogue

My hands-down-most-popular summer special last year was my Lemon Verbena Confetti, so obviously I had to make it again this year.  It has a white base colour, is crammed with multi-coloured soap shavings and is fragranced with an amazing smelling Lemon Verbena fragrance oil.  I LOVE lemon verbena – it’s fresh, crisp and citrussy with herbaceous notes, but sadly, this particular lemon verbena fragrance does NOT behave itself in cold process soap.

I knew from my experience using last year that it was a fast mover, so I thought I was well prepared this time. The soap shavings were ready to go, the oils and lye were at room temperature, I didn’t discount the water, and was prepared to work quickly. It wasn’t enough…

Soap shaving ready to be added...

Soap shaving ready to be added…

I added my titanium dioxide AND the Lemon Verbena FO to to my oils, added the lye water and KAPOW!  it solidified immediately. I refused to be beaten.  I splodged the stick blender in and loosened it up a bit before adding all the soap shavings. How much soap shavings you use is entirely up to you – I don’t measure it out, I just mix in more and more until it looks like enough <not helpful sorry>:

Soap shavings added

Soap shavings added

I mixed as far as I could with a spoon but in the end I had to plunge in my (gloved!!) hands to give it a thorough mix. It was the only way to get everything properly combined without breaking up all the soap shreds with the blender.  I also used my hands to get the whole lot into the the moulds (one benefit of making confetti soap – two batches with added confetti makes enough soap to fill three moulds – yey!)

Moulds filled with confetti soap

Moulds filled with confetti soap

It was only then that I realised that one of my gloves had split and I had the beginnings of a lye burn on the end of one of my fingers – ouch 😦

Two days later I unmoulded and cut, and the result wasn’t too shabby:

Confetti soap, the cut

Confetti soap, the cut

It has a few small air holes here and there, trapped during the mould filling, but it’s pretty good, considering!

Incidentally, the company from whom I bought this FO claim on their website that it causes no acceleration in CP soap, but when I asked in a FB group whether anyone else had had an issue with this particular FO, it seems to be fairly common. Ah well, forewarned is forearmed eh?!

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11 thoughts on “When Fragrance Oils Go Rogue

  1. Great idea – mixing the shavings in! Looks so appealing. I have lemon verbena in the garden – thinking I might try an infised oil with it…
    Sarah 😊

  2. Nice job! I guess that is something that I love about soaping, it is always a surprise 🙂 Starting from making it until cutting it! Everything is well planned in our mind and under control and then we start soaping and get a surprise! 🙂

  3. Pingback: Bathbombs and Specials – The Week in Soap: 11th June ’17 | The Soap Mine

  4. I recently discovered your Blog (from the interview with soap witch) and have really enjoyed reading the last several months. Thank You! You make really beautiful soaps.

    That FO sound like a real trouble maker. I always mix my colors in after reaching emulsification and separating out the batter – I Never add my FO to the oils – who knows what can happen!
    If I used this FO and was making 3 batches, after mixing the lye & oils, I would divide it into three, and do a third at a time with the FO & Confetti.

    I hope the burn wasn’t too sever…I have gotten a couple on my face (between the goggles & mask) and was so focused on my soaping I didn’t notice it for 45 minutes – that was a horrible burn that I hope I never repeat! It’s a miracle I don’t have a huge scar on my face!
    I look forward to your next blog.
    Happy Soaping!

    Sly

    • Hey Sly! Adding the fo to the oils works well for me (usually!) – I’d used this one before successfully – I can only think that the formulation changed. Anyway, I knew what to do to control the next batch and it worked a treat – I’ll must remember to share pics soon. Thanks for reading!

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