My Three Doozies at Making Homemade Goat Milk Soap
by Sydne Spencer
I originally learned to make soap in college chemistry class! That means, I started out way ahead of most soap makers as far as knowing what is happening during the saponification process.
My first doozie occurred when after making many, many batches of soap, that worked perfectly, I poured about two dozen bars that never hardened up. Days later I still had soup! I wracked my brain until I, finally, realized I forgot to put in the LYE! No wonder all I had was a big, oily mess! This was just a silly mistake. The next two doozies could have been really dangerous and I am lucky nobody received terrible burns from raw soap.
My second doozie occurred when I was making soap one day and poured 3 pounds of lavender soap into one of my tall round molds. I forgot that I had filled this mold and picked it up. The plug in the bottom of the mold popped out and SPLAT! Out came all of that raw soap all over my counters, cabinets, and floors. Oh, it was such fun to clean up---not!
My third doozie was the most embarrassing incident and the most dangerous! It happened during one of my soap making demonstrations. I was teaching other people how to make soap and wasn't watching the temperature of my oils. I mixed my lye and milk and started pouring it into the oils, that were WAAAAYYYYY too hot. The lye reacted like an explosion and the crock pot erupted violently all over the place. Needless to say, the demonstration became a hazardous waste clean up. Geez, I can't think of anything much worse to happen during a live demonstration! I always check my oil temperatures and remind my students that they always need to watch their temperatures, too! The strangest thing about that incident is that one of the students, who helped me clean up, actually went on to become a successful soap maker. I wouldn't blame anyone there for having a permanent fear of soap!
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