In this month’s Great Cakes Soap Challenge, we had to create a batch of cold process soap using a method called the dirty fluid pour. The dirty fluid pour technique is actually a really cool method of pouring acrylic paint. Our guest teacher was Joanne Watkins of Nature’s Potions Handmade Soaps. Joanne came up with a way we could implement the dirty fluid pour with soap by using pipe connectors in a slab mold. I was determined to participate in these last two soap challenges, and I’m so glad I did. Joanne is an excellent teacher and this technique was a lot of fun. :)
First, I just have to say thanks to my husband, Steve, for cutting some pipe for me. I failed to actually tell him that I only needed a few. When I got home, I found all of these in my soap shop – perfectly cut to the correct height and sanded so they would sit flat against the bottom of the mold. I still haven’t told him I only used 8 of them. He cut 22 pieces for me. ;)
I used a 13″x13″ slab mold and 8pieces of pipe, varying in size from 4″ down to 2″ in diameter. I spread a little coconut oil on the bottom of each pipe to keep the fluid soap from leaking. That actually worked really well.
Black – activated charcoal in sunflower oil
Dark Blue – Indigo Root Powder dissolved in sunflower oil
Light Blue – Indigo Root Powder dissolved in sunflower oil (just a bit for a lighter shade of blue)
Orange – Paprika Powder in sunflower oil (let it sit overnight until the oil was a nice shade of orange)
Purple – Alkanet Root infused olive oil
Pale Yellow – Safflower Oil infused olive oil with a bit of paprika
I used squeeze bottles and varied the colors in each pipe: dark blue – light blue, orange – black, purple – yellow, purple – yellow – black, etc. As both Joanne and Amy showed us in their instructional videos, I poured the soap against the side of the pipe and allowed it to run into the bottom (like a wall pour) so that it layered as you see in the photos. The soap remained fluid for the entire pour.
Olive Oil – 42%
Coconut Oil – 25%
Sunflower Oil – 10%
Sustainable Palm Oil – 15%
Avocado Oil – 8%
Superfat – 5%
Rosemary Essential Oil – 4 parts
Peppermint Essential Oil – 1 part
Water = 2.2 x lye (31% lye solution)
Oils and lye where about 80º F
This recipe always works so well for me when I need the soap to remain fluid. Well, it works well provided I don’t blend too long. ;) For a palm free version, I use shea butter (10%) and cocoa butter (5%) in place of the palm oil.
Pouring the white base soap into the mold about 3/4″ thick. This will give the colored soap something to float in when tilting the mold.
After removing the pipe, I tilted the mold – left to right and front to back. I gently turned the mold 90 degrees and repeated the tilting until I was reasonably happy with the design.
I covered the soap and insulated it with blankets. It did go through gel, thankfully, which made the colors look a lot better. I was able to unmold and cut it after 24 hours. After 48 hours, I planed the tops and trimmed the edges with a vegetable peeler then took these photos.
Thank you for reading my post! I videoed the whole process and will hopefully have it edited and posted next week.