Add a Bit of Sugar for Super Bubbles
By David Fisher, About.com
The amount of lather your soap produces is directly related to the types and balance of oils you’re using. Different oils give different amounts and different types of lathers. Many soap makers add a bit of sugar to their soap to help increase the lather even more. Adding sugar helps make a light, bubbly lather with large bubbles.
There are two ways to add the sugar:
Take a bit (just a few ounces) of the water you’ve weighed to make your lye solution. Add ½ - 1 tsp. of sugar per pound of oils you are using* to the water, and stir until it’s completely dissolved. Sometimes it helps to warm the water first. Add this sugar-water solution in at trace with your other additives, but before your fragrance oil.
Make a “simple syrup” ahead of time by taking two cups of sugar and one cup of water and slowly heating them on the stove. Stir gently until all of the sugar has dissolved. Let it cool and pour it into a bottle to use when you’re making soap. Add ½ to 1 tsp. of the syrup per pound of oils you are using* to your soap, at trace, with your other additives, but before your fragrance oil.
* "Sugar Measurement"1/2 to 1 tsp. of sugar per pound of oils you are using" means that for each 16 oz. of oils (just the oils) you add that much sugar. If there is 32 oz. of oils, add 1 to 2 tsp of sugar. If there is 48 oz. of oils, add 1 1/2 to 3 tsp. sugar.
Note: Some people have noticed that adding sugar to their soap makes it heat up more in the gel stage. The same thing happens when milk is added - it's the sugars in the milk that is jump starting the gel process. Be careful if you are adding sugar and adding milk. Your soap can get quite hot!