Thursday, December 31, 2009

Margarita Salt Scrub

In a small bowl, combine the Fractionated Coconut Oil and Shea Butter Shower Gel Base. Mix these well, until thoroughly combined. Next, stir in the Dead Sea Salt. Add the colorant and essential oil and mix once more. Spoon into a sterile jar.
Packaging and Storage
The best storage container for this recipe would be a jar made from high density plastic. A PET or HDPE container should do well. Due to the essential oil content in this recipe, the plastic may erode over a long period of time. Since this recipe contains natural ingredients, it should be used long before this becomes an issue. However, I thought it would be worth mentioning just in case. For safety's sake, don't leave this jar of scrub on top of any expensive linens. You never know.
There are many scrubbing techniques out there, but this is one I am particularly find of. Step into the shower and before turning the water on, scrub your body all over! (Of course, avoiding very sensitive areas or broken skin.) When you are thoroughly scrubbed, turn the shower on and rinse. When the shower is over, make sure to moisturize your skin with a body oil, cream, or lotion.
I will leave the preservation of this recipe up to you. The scrub can be made without any preservative, but this will be prone to contamination. If it is left unpreserved, I would suggest handling it with extreme care. Do not take the jar into the shower. Instead, use a clean spoon to scoop one serving at a time into a paper or plastic cup.
If you are using the Shea Butter Shower Gel, please be aware that is does contain parabens. However, this recipe has not been challenge tested, and the preservative content in the shower gel base may not be enough to thoroughly preserve the entire scrub. You can add further preservative to the remaining ingredients, if you choose to. Liquapar Oil would be a good choice if you are going with a chemical preservative. It can be added to 0.3 - 0.6% of the fractionated coconut oil, which is 1 oz. This would be a very minuscule amount.
If you are creating a natural scrub, using Castille soap, you may also want to consider adding some Grapefruit Seed Extract. This will act as an antibacterial agent, but it will not "preserve" the ingredients. It can be added to the formula at 0.5 to 1%. In this recipe that would be 1 drop. While this will help to fend off bacteria, it may be wise to still handle the product with extra care. Exposure to water may still compromise the formula's stability.
*To achieve a green hue with natural ingredients, steep 1 teaspoon of Parsley Powder in 4 ounces of warm Fractionated Coconut Oil for 30 - 60 minutes. Strain the herb from the oil using a cheese cloth. Use this colored Fractionated Coconut Oil in place of the oil in this recipe. No additional colorant should be needed. The excess oil can be stored in a clean bottle for later use.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

FDA (U.S. Food & Drug Administration) Guidelines and Regulations for Soap

Soap is in a different category than cosmetics (body care products). The FDA says soap is exempt from the provisions for cosmetics must but you must go by the FDA's definition of soap. To be classified as soap, you can not make any cosmetic claims about your soap on the soap label. If you say the soap is moisturizing, that is a claim for cosmetics and your soap is now a cosmetic. You now must follow the guidelines and regulations for cosmetics. Basically what soap does is clean and that is the only claim you can make about your soap. See below highligted words for the FDA's defintion of a cosmetic.

Statements below are directly quoted from the FDA website:

And what if it's "soap"?
Soap is a category that needs special explanation. That's because the regulatory definition of "soap" is different from the way in which people commonly use the word. Products that meet the definition of "soap" are exempt from the provisions of the FD&C Act because -- even though Section 201(i)(1) of the act includes "articles...for cleansing" in the definition of a cosmetic -- Section 201(i)(2) excludes soap from the definition of a cosmetic.”

How FDA defines "soap"

Not every product marketed as soap meets FDA's definition of the term. FDA interprets the term "soap" to apply only when --

• The bulk of the nonvolatile matter in the product consists of an alkali salt of fatty acids and the product's detergent properties are due to the alkali-fatty acid compounds, and

• The product is labeled, sold, and represented solely as soap [21 CFR 701.20].

If a cleanser does not meet all of these criteria...

If a product intended to cleanse the human body does not meet all the criteria for soap, as listed above, it is either a cosmetic or a drug. For example:

If a product --

• consists of detergents or

• primarily of alkali salts of fatty acids and

• is intended not only for cleansing but also for other cosmetic uses, such as beautifying or moisturizing,

it is regulated as a cosmetic.

If a product --

• consists of detergents or

• primarily of alkali salts of fatty acids and

• is intended not only for cleansing but also to cure, treat, or prevent disease or to affect the structure or any function of the human body,

it is regulated as a drug.
If a product --

• is intended solely for cleansing the human body and

• has the characteristics consumers generally associate with soap,

• does not consist primarily of alkali salts of fatty acids,

it may be identified in labeling as soap, but it is regulated as a cosmetic.

How does the law define a cosmetic?

The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) defines cosmetics by their intended use, as "articles intended to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled, or sprayed on, introduced into, or otherwise applied to the human body...for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance" [FD&C Act, sec. 201(i)]. Among the products included in this definition are skin moisturizers, perfumes, lipsticks, fingernail polishes, eye and facial makeup preparations, shampoos, permanent waves, hair colors, toothpastes, and deodorants, as well as any material intended for use as a component of a cosmetic product.


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Snowglobe Soap From HGTV

Here is another soapglobe soap project for the holidays from HGTV!

Project by Heather McConeghy.

Materials and Tools:
fragrance oil
color solutions
snowglobe-shaped soap molds
stir sticks
microwave-safe container
melt and pour clear glycerin soap
round globe insert toys


1. For the first pour (the clear soap): Melt the soap in the microwave.

2. Add fragrance and mix well. Add colorants and mix well.

3. Pour approximately 40 grams (about 1.5 ounces) of the colored and fragranced soap into each of the snowglobe molds and quickly insert the snow globe ball into the soap mold. Allow the first pour to harden thoroughly.

4. While waiting for the first pour to harden, prepare the second pour (the opaque soap): Melt the soap in the microwave.

5. Add fragrance and mix well.

6. Add the white colorant to make the soap opaque (or not transparent) and mix well.

7. Add additional colorants to color the opaque soap (if desired) and mix well.

8. After ensuring the first pour is hard, pour the opaque soap on top of the clear soap. Allow the second pour to harden completely.

9. After the soap has thoroughly hardened, it can either be removed from the mold, wrapped in plastic wrap and sealed it with a sticker, or it can be left in the mold until ready for use.


The soap melts begins to melt at 135 F degrees. Always melt the soap in a microwave-safe container, never in the soap molds.

Always add the fragrance first because the fragrance may affect the overall color of the soap.Don't pour the soap when it is steaming. Continuing to stir it will reduce the temperature; putting the soap into the refrigerator or blowing a fan on it will speed up the cooling process.A small amount of color and fragrance will go a long way.

Child supervision is encouraged and recommended.

To more easily remove the soap from the mold, put the finished soap (still in the mold) into the freezer for 15 to 30 minutes, remove from freezer and pop the soap out of the mold. This will enable the soap to shrink slightly, making it easier to remove from the mold.


Monday, December 28, 2009

Cuticle Cream Recipe

From: Allison B. Kontur

You will need:

Oil Phase:

0.50 oz Shea Butter, Unrefined (Ivory)
0.75 oz Olive Butter
0.25 oz Emulsifying Wax NF
0.25 oz Polysorbate 20

Water Phase:

2.25 oz Distilled Water
1.25 ml (1/4 tsp) Allantoin USP

Cooldown Phase:

1.25ml (1/4 tsp) Phenonip (Preservative)
5 drops Tea Tree Essential Oil
5 drops Lavender, Bulgarian Essential Oil
3 drops Sandalwoods Essential Oil Blend

Phase 1: In a double boiler over low heat, combine all ingredients in oil phase until melted & clear. Remove from heat.

Phase 2: In a separate, heat-proof container, heat the water until it reaches approximately the same temperature as the liquified oils/wax. Use a thermometer to accurately determine the temperature. Remove from heat and add Allantoin, stirring thoroughly until dissolved.

Phase 3: Slowly combine water mixture with oil mixture using a stick blender or mixer to fully incorporate. Allow to cool to room temperature.Phase 4: When lotion has cooled to the touch (as close to room temp as possible), add preservative and optional fragrance. Blend well to incorporate before packaging in airtight containers.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

How to Make Homemade Tarts & Candles

Some of the best ways to spruce up your decor is with candles and tarts  And you probably know candles come in all shapes, sizes, colors and fragrances. Tarts are wickless candles that are melted in special containers. have you seen the prices of candles these days? Beth VanHoose, a contributing writer for ehow, tells you how to make your own candles and tarts in your very own home.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Hydrosols: Petal Power Skin Care

posted by Melissa Breyer May 29, 2008 8:00 am

Adapted from Anti-Wrinkle Treatments for Perfect Skin by Pierre Jean Cousin (Storey Books)

Also known as floral waters (but not flower waters), hydrosols are a byproduct of steam distillation, created while extracting essential oil. Hydrosols have properties similar to those of their related essential oils, although inevitably in a less concentrated form, but they are enriched with various water-soluble active ingredients.

Their gentleness makes them an excellent way to tone, hydrate, and rebalance the pH of the skin, so they are frequently recommended as final cleansers/toners after cleansing or nourishing masks. Most also have antibacterial and antiviral action and can disinfect sensitive or damaged skin without the harshness of detergents or alcohol-based lotions. All are available from specialty shops or by mail order.

Hydrosols can be applied to the face twice daily. Use cotton pads or a mister, but be careful to avoid the eyes. Allow to dry naturally. Hydrosols can also be added to a bath as a general skin tonic (use three tablespoons) and are sometimes substituted for water in preparing clay masks.

Chamomile. Suitable for all skin types, chamomile is a very gentle antiinflammatory, good for over-exposure to sun and wind.

Clary sage. Suitable for dry and aging skin, clary sage relieves skin problems associated with fluctuating hormone levels and menopause.

Cornflower. See chamomile. Cornflower is often used around the eyes because, unlike most hydrosols, it does not burn in contact with them.

Lavender. Though slightly drying, lavender is suitable for all skin types. It has cooling, anti-inflammatory properties that can ease sun- or wind-burn.

Orange blossom (neroli). Inflammation-reducing, this hydrosol is particularly good at soothing dry or sensitive skin and for treating rosacea.

Rose. Appropriate for all skin types, especially aging, rose is recognized for its balancing, tonic, and astringent properties.

Rosemary. Excellent for balancing and toning all skin types, rosemary stimulates circulation and is a superb hydrosol for hair.

Witch hazel. Suitable for all types of skin, witch hazel is mildly astringent.


Friday, December 25, 2009

Embedments in Cold Process Soap Projects

Here are some ideas from Snowdrift Farm on how to create cold process soap with embedded items. Snowdrift Farm includes a generic cold process recipe plus ideas for a fruit salad soap and another for sugar cube soap.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Last Minute Gift Wrapping Idea

Do you have a Christmas gift that needs wrapping that needs alittle bling?  Then how about about checking out this tutorial from All Things Hold Together. It is really festive and rather easy.

Recipe: Creamy Body Mousse

This has got to be my favorite bath and body moisturising product. Smooth, silky and ooohhh, so creamy. So far it is the least greasy feeling handmade lotion/cream I have ever used.

Since this is a water based cream, you must use a preservative. I recommend using Optiphen Plus because it is paraben and urea free and has been approved world wide.


34 grams Shea Butter
20 grams Camellia Tea Seed Oil (other alternatives would be apricot kernel, hempseed or more grapeseed oil)
20 grams Herb infused Grapeseed Oil (the infusion is optional..I use calendula petals)
12 grams Vegetable Glycerin
24 grams Conditioning Emulsifier (Incroquat Behenyl TMS-50 - it's derived from rapeseed oil)
18 grams Stearic Acid
350 grams Distilled Water (I replace 35 grams of water with pure aloe gel)
2 grams Vitamin E
5 grams Optiphen Plus
Essential or Fragrance Oil

Measure out water, shea butter, camellia and grapeseed oils, stearic, glycerin, aloe (if using) and the emulsifier.

Place in 4 cup plastic measuring cup and microwave in 20 second bursts until the emulsifier pellets have melted.

Using your stick blender, carefully pulse blend mixture until it is thick and creamy....this may take awhile. As the cream cools, it will thicken.

Once the cream is below 140 degrees F / 60 degrees C, you can add the Vitamin E, Optiphen Plus and the essential/fragrance oils. It is important to wait for the cream to cool before adding these ingredients...the scent will evaporate and the preservatives won't work if you ignore this rule.

Spoon into jars and seal when cool.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Scented Soy Votive Candles by Martha Stewart

Tools and Materials

Soy wax (#112138), Yaley Candle,
Votive glasses, from Ikea
Wax color chips
Essential oils (for 3 cups of wax, you'll need 40 drops), 1 oz. each, Majestic   Mountain Sage,
Small pipettes, (#108-2401), Majestic Mountain Sage,
Small braided wick, (12R, #120473), Yaley Candle,
Metal wick clips, (#110517), 15 mm, Yaley Candle,
Small wooden skewers
Clip-art labels and partition templates
Optional: Crystal Clear Pop & Lock boxes, (PLB138), from

Step 1

To determine the quantity of soy wax you will need, fill votive glass with water and measure that volume. Melt wax in a microwave, following package instructions. Add wax color chips, stirring to melt and blend, until desired color is achieved. For scent, add essential oils to wax (for 3 cups of wax, you'll need about 40 drops); stir to blend.

Step 2

Set the wick in place: Thread a length of braided wick through a metal wick tab, then "glue" it to the bottom of the glass with a dab of melted wax. Tie wick to a skewer resting atop the glass, so it stays taut and centered. Using a funnel, pour wax into each glass, running the wax over the wick to coat it. Let wax dry and harden thoroughly. If surface dips, fill in with extra wax. Trim the wick to 1/4 inch.

Step 3

Package a trio of candles in a clear plastic box, using our template to create a partition. Then, print our colorful clip-art labels and write down the names of each scent.


Making Your Own Winter Lip Balm

This winter, thou shalt not chap.

If you hate chapped winter, dry lips then instead of piling on the store bought brand, make your own and make several to pass out to others that have chapped lips. You can add as many ingredients and take as many ingredients away as you want. It’s your recipe. Improvise this recipe and make it your own.

Peppermint Eucalyptus

Thou-Shalt not chap soothing lip balm®™BeeSpa Naturals


6 drops peppermint essential oil
4 drops eucalyptus essential oil
4 drops rosemary essential oil
1 tablespoon soy wax1 tablespoon beeswax pearls
1 tablespoon pure shea butter
2 tablespoons sweet almond oil


Mix essential oils and almond oil together in a small glass bowl. Heat in microwave for about 30 seconds. Remove from the microwave and add soy wax. Heat for another 30 seconds. Mix in beeswax pearls with a whisk. Heat for another 30 seconds. Whisk in shea butter. Mixture will become very hot, as well as the bowl. Use care when handling. Heat for 1 minute or until shea butter is melted. whisk ingredients together till mixture begins to cool. You have to continue to mix so the oils can become incorporated into the mixture completely. If you have to stick the bowl in the refrigerator till the bowl becomes cooled down enough to handles without a pot-holder or tea towel. After the mixture is whisked enough to be incorporated, but not fully set, pour into a very shallow container with a lid. Make sure the container is shallow enough to put your finger in or a lip brush. Use whenever your lips feel dry and chapped.

This recipe is great for skiiers or snowboarders. Because of the products in this lip balm, be sure and not use this chap-stick before tanning in a tanning bed or staying in the sun for too long.

Always label your products made. You don’t want to spend the time making something and throw it in your purse or bag and forget what it is later on.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Making Essential Oils - Steam Distillation, Absolutes, And CO2's

Aromatherapy Goes 'High Tech'

New methods of essential oil extraction are entering the mainstream of aromatherapy, offering new choices in oils never before available. With the new labels of 'CO2' and 'SCO2', along with the traditional 'steam' and 'hydro' distillations, 'absolutes', and 'cold pressing', a little education for the aromatherapy enthusiast can go a long way in essential oil selection. Is one process better than another? Does one produce a nicer smelling oil, or one with greater aromatherapeutic value? It turns out that essential oil production, like winemaking, is an art form as well as a science. The value of the newer processing methods depends greatly on the experience of the distiller, as well as the intended application of the final product. Each method is important, and has it's place in the making of aromatherapy-grade essential oils.

Steam and Hydro Distillation

Steam distillation, the most common method of essential oil production, involves the flow of steam into a chamber holding the raw plant material. The steam causes small sacs containing essential oil to burst. The oil is then carried by the steam out of the chamber and into a chilled condenser, where the steam once again becomes water. (Hydro-distillation is a similar process where the plant material is boiled, with the resultant steam being captured and condensed). The oil and water are then separated; the water, referred to as a 'hydrosol', can be retained as it will have some of the plant essence. Rose hydrosol, for example, is commonly used for it's mild antiseptic and soothing properties, as well as it's pleasing floral aroma.

A number of factors determine the final quality of a steam distilled essential oil. Aside from the plant material itself, most important are time, temperature and pressure, and the quality of the distillation equipment. Essential oils are very complex products; each is made up of many, sometimes hundreds, of distinct molecules which come together to form the oil's aroma and therapeutic properties. Some of these molecules are fairly delicate structures which can be altered or destroyed by adverse environmental conditions. So, much like a fine meal is more flavorful when made with patience, most oils benefit from a long, slow 'cooking' process.

The temperature of the extraction chamber cannot be too high, lest some components of the oil be altered or destroyed. The same is true of the chamber's pressure. Lavender essential oil, for example, should not be processed at over 245 degrees F and three pounds per square inch of pressure (3 psi). Higher temperatures and/or pressures result in a 'harsh' aroma – more chemical than floral – and lessen the oil's therapeutic effects. Also, the extraction period must be allowed to continue for a certain period of time in order to flush ALL the oil's components from the plant, as some are released more quickly than others.

Despite the drawbacks of aggressive processing, high temperatures and pressures are often used to produces large quantities of oil in a short period of time. These oils are usually destined for use in cosmetic and processed food manufacturing, but are sometimes sold to final consumers as essential oils for use in aromatherapy. These oils will be less expensive, but are of limited therapeutic value, and the difference is apparent when the aromas are compared side-by-side.


Some plants, and particularly flowers, do not lend themselves to steam distilling. They are too delicate, or their fragrance and therapeutic essences cannot be completely released by water alone. These oils will be produced as 'absolutes' – and while not technically considered essential oils they can still be of therapeutic value. Jasmine oil and Rose oil in particular are delicate flowers who's oils are often found in 'absolute' form.

The processing of an absolute first involves the hydrocarbon solvent extraction of a 'concrete' from the plant material, a semi-solid mixture of typically 50% wax and 50% volatile oil. The concrete is again processed using ethyl alcohol (the same alcohol found in beer, wine, etc.) in which the wax is only slightly soluble. The volatile plant oil separates into the alcohol and this mixture is removed. The alcohol is then evaporated and the result is an almost pure plant extract – depending on the care taken in the evaporation process, sometimes 2% or less of the ethyl alcohol may remain. The use of solvents in the extraction process notwithstanding, absolutes can have incredibly deep and complex aromas.

CO2's and SCO2's

And now for the most modern technologies, Carbon Dioxide and Supercritical Carbon Dioxide extraction. Both methods involve the use of carbon dioxide as the 'solvent' which carries the essential oil away from the raw plant material. The lower pressure CO2 extraction involves chilling carbon dioxide to between 35 and 55 degrees F, and pumping it through the plant material at about 1000 psi. The carbon dioxide in this condition is condensed to a liquid. Supercritical CO2 extraction (SCO2) involves carbon dioxide heated to 87 degrees F and pumped through the plant material at around 8,000 psi – under these conditions, the carbon dioxide is likened to a 'dense fog' or vapor. With release of the pressure in either process, the carbon dioxide escapes in its gaseous form, leaving the essential oil behind.

These carbon dioxide methods have a couple of advantages: Like steam distillation, there are no solvent residues left behind, and the resultant product is quite pure. Like solvent extraction, there is no heat applied to the plant material or essential oil to alter it in any way. The oil produced is very accurate with respect to the original state of the plant. The CO2 methods also are the most efficient, producing the most oil per amount of plant (one of the reasons for the high cost of essential oils is the low yield of oil from most plants – one ton of Rose petals produces less than 1 pound of oil, for example). The efficiency of CO2 extraction is particularly important when rare or endangered plant species are involved, such as Indian Sandalwood oil – less of the precious plant is needed to produce an equivalent amount of oil.

Cold Pressing

Finally, there is the 'cold pressing' of citrus oils from the peels of fruit, as is done with Bergamot oil, Orange oil , Lemon oil , and the like. This method involves the simple pressing of the rind at about 120 degrees F to extract the oil. Little, if any, alteration from the oil's original state occurs – these citrus oils retain their bright, fresh, uplifting aromas like that of smelling a wonderfully ripe fruit.

Which Method is Best?

CO2's, with some obvious advantages, are not always the best choice for a particular need. They still are the most expensive, despite their higher yields. The resultant product differs slightly compared to one produced another way – the oils produced by steam distillation of some plants may sometimes be found to have a more agreeable aroma. Patchouli oil, for example, seems to benefit from the steam distillation process by becoming a little warmer and richer. Many other essential oils are quite effectively produced via steam distillation, with little alteration from the original plant state. Oils from other plant species do seem more 'complete' with CO2 processing, with Frankincense oil and most of the 'spice' oils being good examples where a little something special is present in the aroma. This likely translates to greater therapeautic properties.

Producing essential oils of aromatherapeutic grade is skill requiring years of experience. It takes the work of a dedicated artesian at every step, from growing and harvesting to fine-tuning the distillation process, to produce a truly fine oil. The making of a fine essential oil relies far more on knowledge and experience than it does on the particular extraction method. There are, however, legitimate reasons to select one distillation method over another – some plants simply require a particular process to produce a fine oil, and the oil needed for a particular application may only be made by one process. In the end, as is often the case in aromatherapy, your own sense of smell can tell you which oil will work best for you.

About the Author

Misty Rae Cech, ND, is a naturopath and yoga teacher practicing in Boulder, Colorado. She enjoys pure essential oils, using aromatherapy in conjunction with other natural therapies. More can be found at the Ananda Apothecary,


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Frosty Salted Pillar Candles

Would you believe that basic Epsom Salt would give this ordinary blue candle an icy blue effect? 

If you are interested in creating this candle for the holidays or keep out during the Winter season, here are the step by step instructions from Martha's website:

Saturday, December 19, 2009

What is Stevia?

Recently on the television, I saw a commercial for a new sweetner called Stevia.  And while I was at my local Whole Foods Market, I found a variety of different flavors of it on the shelf.  I heard that I could use it as a flavoring for my lip balms, but I was wondering what else I could use it for since it was $16 per ounce. Ouch! While looking online, I found this description from And according to,

"Stevia is a word both for a plant and for a sweetener extracted from the leaves of that plant. Stevia has been grown and used in South America for centuries, and it spread to the rest of the world during the 18th century, when people first began taking the product with them to Europe in large volumes.

In the early 1900s, stevia exploded into popularity in several markets, but the rest of the 20th century was accompanied by vicious battles over it around the world. Some people hail the extract as a healthy all natural alternative to sugar, while others have health concerns about it, on the basis of laboratory research which suggests the need for further study.

The stevia plant is a perennial shrub native to Paraguay and Brazil. Native Americans in these regions realized that the leaves were sweet, and used them to season teas and other foods. The plant is also sometimes called sweetleaf or sugarleaf, in a reference to the natural sweetness held in the leaves. As Europeans began to explore the foods consumed by Native Americans, they were introduced to stevia.

In the 1930s, chemists in France isolated stevioside, the compound in the leaves which is responsible for their sweetness. This compound is sometimes sold isolated from the leaves in a highly refined form. In other cases, stevia is made by crushing or distilling the leaves of the plant to form a powder or a syrup with an intensely sweet flavor.

It has been shown that stevia is much sweeter than other sugars, meaning that only a small amount needs to be used. The body also processes stevia very slowly, which greatly reduces the risk of a sugar high. In addition, stevia is essentially calorie free, which is why it is popular with dieters. Research also suggests that stevia may be safe for diabetics, although diabetics should always consult their doctors about additions to their diet which may alter their blood sugar.

Although stevia sounds like a miracle herb, scientific research may suggest otherwise. Some scientists are concerned that stevia may be a mutagen, meaning that it could cause cancer. Stevia has also been linked to reproductive malfunction. Some of these studies have been imperfectly performed, but the need for more thorough analysis of the compound has certainly been demonstrated. Proponents of stevia suggest that these studies may be part of a larger effort on the part of sugar companies to keep alternatives to sugar off the market, pointing out that stevia is widely used in South America and Asia with no noticeable ill effects. Given the argument over stevia, it would appear that more controlled studies are needed.:

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Bath Salts Packaging Idea from Soap Queen

Are you tired of the same old packaging for your bath salts?  Then here is a great idea from the Soap Queen herself, Anne-Marie.

Even though this might be for the Christmas holiday, you could find other paper for the appropiate occassion. 

For more information on how to create this packaging, visit the link on the Soap Queen's Blog-

Rose & Frankinsence Aromatherapy Perfume Recipe

A Perfume Blend with Rose, Frankincense, and Black Pepper Notes
By Risha, via Wavelengths Natural Health

There are several excellent essays already out there on the top-heart-base note system of perfumery, so I refer you to your favorite search engine to find information on the theory of perfumery.

Basic recipe

10 drops Frankincense essential oil (EO)
5 drops Black Pepper EO
4 drops Rose (damascena) absolute or Rose Otto – see discussion below
1 drop Jasmine (grandiflorum) absolute – optional, quite expensive, see discussion
5 drops Myrrh EO
10 drops Cedar (atlantica) EO a.k.a. Atlas Cedarwood
3 drops Rosewood EO – or use Rosalina (Melaluca ericifolia), supposedly a more ecologically sustainable substitute

First, the base: I like to use Everclear beverage instead of vodka as an alcohol base. Everclear has a higher percentage of ethanol to water versus vodka, and therefore the essential oils will go into solution faster and the final blend will not tend to be cloudy, depending on concentration. Alternatively, shelf-stable oil such as jojoba will work just fine as a base, although you cannot add fixatives in the same way (see Advanced recipes section).

The highest concentration of essential and absolute oils in your blends should be no more than 20% in proportion to base alcohol or oil, the classic French parfum concentration. This is approximately 20 drops total (adding up all drops of various essential oils) for every 4 mL base. However, this is too high a concentration for sensitive skin, and somewhat wasteful for this particular blend. I recommend a final solution of 20-30 mL base for the recipe – you may want to start with 10 mL of base in a 30 mL glass container, add the perfume components, and then fill to the top with base.

Like all perfume recipes, this one should be adjusted to suit your tastes. For instance, I like it heavy on the Frankincense, but if you do not tend towards “incensey” perfumes, you may want to start out with only half the amount of Frankincense (see the second version under Advanced recipes). It is always easier to add more at a later time than try to re-balance a blend!

The components of will marry over time and thus I urge you to wait at least a few weeks before making adjustments to the recipe. For more advanced perfume making, you want to let your blend rest for a month, mixing once a day (if you can remember), and then finalizing the components. In this case, only fill your container 2/3 of the way, so you have room to change the composition later. You can also split the blend into two containers, change one version, and dilute to the top of each container once it has been perfected.

The Rose component is the heart of this blend, appropriately enough. The advanced recipes have the option to use two (or more!) Roses – Rose damascena absolute and otto – but just one will suit you fine. I understand that you may hesitate to buy even one of these, especially as a beginning perfumer. If money is tight, there are rose fragrance oils that contain chemical constituents of Rose, and will suffice, though lack the depth and beauty of the real thing. Unfortunately, I do not know right now of a good source for this type of rose fragrance oil, and I warn you against just picking up any rose oil, as it could easily make your blend smell soapy (yuk!). It is well worth the investment to go ahead and purchase a Rose absolute or otto. As a bonus, the true Rose has aromatherapy applications. You may purchase Rose and Jasmine pre-diluted in jojoba, however alcohol-based perfumes will be slightly cloudy if you use jojoba-diluted absolutes.

To stretch out your Rose or Jasmine absolute, purchase a small amount and dilute it to 10% (0.5 mL in a 5 mL container; 1 mL in 10 mL, diluting with the base you will be using in your blends). The dilutions in jojoba work well for an oil-based perfume. When you make the Blend, have all the other essential oils blended together and diluted to 10% in your base. In a separate, smaller (2-5 mL) container, add 30 drops almost-ready Blend with 4 drops of the Rose 10% dilution and 1 drop Jasmine 10% dilution (if you choose to use it). If you like the results, add ~36 drops Rose (10%) and 9 drops Jasmine (10%) to your larger container of the Blend, finishing your perfume. This may sound complicated – and it’s not strictly traditional perfumery – but it will keep you from wasting too much of an expensive absolute on a blend that doesn’t thrill you.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Free Soap Labels and Soap Cigarbands

If you are looking for some more labels and cigarbands for your soaps, here are some from Perfume Kits that you may want to check out.

These are free labels that will fit a standard bar of soap. A cigar band is a strip of paper usually about 3x8.5 inches that wraps around the body of the soap, leaving the ends exposed. One can use a cigarband to wrap the soap and use another piece of paper as the underwrap. Also, we have a few full wraps that you print out, customize and wrap the whole bar of soap in. These wraps are the traditional type wraps that we associate with soaps from large manufacturers.

As we add products we will have tutorials on wrapping goods especially soaps in this section.

(1) Japanese Soap Cigarband

(2)  Rocklove Tattoo Soap Cigarband

(3) Hoshi Japanese Soap Cigar Band

(4) Darkwings Soap Cigar Band

(5) Cherubim Cigar Band Template

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Decorative Decal Pillar Candles

Would you like to add pazz to your pillar candles?  Then why not try this project from Martha Stewart!

It looks really easy.  First you print the candle decals on your color inkjet printer.  Martha offers of 10 different styles:

Blue and White Star Snowflake Pattern

Green Leaf Pattern

Pink Leaf Pattern

Orange and White Snowflake Pattern

Green and White Snowflake Pattern

Green and White Winter Village

Blue and White Star Pattern

Blue Star Pattern

Alternate Blue Star Pattern

Alternate Blue and White Star

The next step is to apply the decal to the candle and here is how:
Spray it with 2 coats of clear varnish, letting varnish dry between coats. When decal is dry, cut to desired size and soak in a bowl of water for about 1 minute to loosen the paper backing. Carefully remove decal from water, and apply it to candle, peeling off backing as you go. Smooth decal with a paper towel, eliminating air bubbles and excess water. Let dry for approximately 3 hours.

If you would like to create corresponding matchbox wrappers, print one of our 12 clip-art designs onto paper. Cut to size, and wrap around a matchbox, securing with double-sided tape.  Here is the link to the corresponding papers -

Snowball Bath Bombs Recipe

Here is a fun bath bomb recipe for the holidays and winter season that I found on Pure and Natural Soaps ( website.  Although, I must admit that I was surprised to see water as the binder of the ingredients.  I have always spritzed witch hazel, so I honest do not know the how water will work.  But if you are used to spritzing witch hazel then stay with that method.

Dry ingredients:

2 cups baking soda
1 cup citric acid
1 cup cornstarch

Wet ingredients:

1/3 cup Safflower oil
1-1/4 T. Peppermint E/O
2 T. water


Combine dry phase in mixing bowl. Combine wet phase in small jar and shake well. Slowly add wet phase to dry phase, whipping with a whisk as you go. If the mixture starts to fizz you are adding the liquid too fast and or not stirring fast enough. Once all incorporated, use bath bomb press to scoop mixture up and pack it in tight through the two holes. Gently tap on hard surface and release top half slowly by pushing your finger through the top hole, turn upside down and repeat. If mixture gets dry at the end of batch, add a little more oil and mix well this will stop fizzing or cracking! Lay bath bombs on paper bag over night and package! These bombs are packaged in 3" x 8" poly bags fits 2 bombs perfectly! Each bomb weighs approx. 2.2 oz.


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Hanukkah Clip-Art Favor Boxes

Here is a craft from Martha Stewart for those who celebrate Hanukkah.

Silver gelt, chocolate coins wrapped in foil, make charming favors when presented in clip-art card-stock boxes tied with ribbon and a Star of David.

Tools and Materials

Clip art from Martha Stewart (link below)
Matte heavyweight paper
Bone folder
Star of David craft punch
Silver paper
Narrow satin ribbon
Double-sided tape

Hanukkah Clip-Art How-To

1. Download clip art (, and print onto matte heavyweight paper; cut out.

2. Score along dotted lines with a bone folder. For straight lines, use a ruler for guidance.

3. Fold box, first along straight lines, then on one end to close. Fill box with gelt. Close open end.

4. Using craft punch, punch out a star from silver paper.

5. Wrap ribbon around box, and secure with a star using double-sided tape.

6. Trim ends of ribbon on the diagonal.


Coffee Cinnamon Bath Salts Tutorial

For all of those coffee lovers, here is a great bath salt recipe for you to soak in during these upcoming winter days. 

Infused Bath Salts or Salt Scrub

Original how-to: I’ve made bath salts and used essential oils to scent them before, but I thought I’d try using kitchen stuff instead! It works really well, and it’s easy and pretty cheap to make a big batch. You can adjust the oil-salts ratio to your liking — use more oil to make an exfoliating salt scrub, less to make more traditional bath salts.

You’ll need:

1/2 – 1 cup extra-light olive oil
1/3 cup ground coffee
6 Tbsp cinnamon (or more if you really like cinnamon, mmm)
reusable coffee filter, or several paper filters, in a coffeemaker basket
3 lb. container of Epsom salts1 cup baking soda (optional)
2 – 4 cup Pyrex measuring cup
large flat saucepan
mixing bowl


1. Warm the olive oil in the Pyrex container in a saucepan of boiling water. Mix in the coffee first, then the cinnamon, stirring to blend as the mixture heats. Continue to infuse for 20 minutes on the stove, stirring from time to time.

2. Pour the coffee-cinnamon-oil mixture through the coffee filter into the large mixing bowl, one-third at a time. Careful not to burn yourself here! Discard the grounds and keep the oil. Let it cool to room temperature.

3. Mix the infused oil with the salts (and baking soda if you’re using it). You’re done!

Update: Stacy mentioned that she infused her olive oil in her crockpot for two hours on high instead of on the stove, and it turned out really well — so you might want to try that. Great idea.

Variation: green tea-ginger. Substitute 1/3 cup green tea and 1/4 cup powdered ginger (cheaper if you buy it in bulk) for the coffee and cinnamon.

Packaging Ideas

I like to use recycled jars or flat plastic bags (very cheap at craft/scrapbooking stores) to package them for gifts.

Just fill a Mason jar with your salt scrub and paint the lid a cool color (I used hot-pink enamel paint, but acrylic is fine too). When the paint is dry, hot-glue assorted buttons over it and on the sides of the jar. Add a piece of rick-rack around the side of the lid if you like, too. (I used my current favorites, glitter hot-glue for the buttons and Aleene’s Tacky Glue for the rick-rack.)

Of course, you could glue on rhinestones, game pieces, or any flat-backed bits and pieces, too. Or make a personalized label: draw or print out something you like on colored paper, and then apply it to the jar with a glue stick. You can seal it with Delta Ceramcoat Gloss.

If you want to ornament a plain plastic bag, just cut a simple flower shape out in two colors of felt — one 1.5 inches across with pinking shears, one 1 inch across with scissors. Glue them down as shown (Aleene’s again) and let them dry completely. Tie it with a ribbon (I wish I could reach into that picture and re-tie that one… it looks awful, sorry about that) and voila!

I’ll be publishing my December getcrafty column on Monday with tons more how-to projects, so stay tuned if you’re looking for ideas on gifts to make this year…

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Candy Cane Soaps From Soap Queen

Here is a great holiday guest soap tutorial from Anne-Marie, the Soap Queen.  Make sure to check out her blog entry ( full color photo of the steps.


Clear Melt and Pour Soap
White Melt and Pour Soap
Peppermint Essential Oil
Brownie Pan Soap Mold
Liquid Glycerin
Non-bleeding Red Colorant
Jelly Red Colorant
Microwave Safe Container


ONE: Melt 4 ounces of white melt and pour soap base in the microwave (in 30 second bursts). Add 1 ml of Peppermint Essential Oil and .5 ounces of liquid glycerin. Mix well. Pour the soap into the brownie pan and spritz with rubbing alcohol to eliminate bubbles. Let cool for about 10 minutes.

TWO: Melt 4 ounces of clear melt and pour base in the microwave (in 30 second bursts). Add 1 ml of Peppermint Essential Oil and .5 ounces of liquid glycerin. Mix well.

To get our Santa Clause red color, add equal parts non-bleeding red and jelly red colorants. Once the red soap has cooled to 125 degrees, spritz the white layer of soap with rubbing alcohol (to make sure our layers stick together) and pour your second layer of soap. Let the layered soap cool for about 10 minutes.

THREE: Once the soap has cooled, remove it from the mold and place it on a cutting board. With a craft knife and ruler, cut the soap into thin strips (about ¼ inches or smaller).

FOUR: Place two of your freshly cut soap strands on top of each other (so they look like a checkered board) and squish them together with your fingers.

FIVE: Then gently twist the soap and curl the top so it looks like a candy cane.

SIX: Are you ready for the dazzling finish? Melt 4 ounces of clear soap base and mix in some iridescent glitter. Then dip your candy canes in the sparkly soap and hang then on the “candy cane drying contraption”.

Candy Cane Drying Contraption: We came up with a silly contraption to dry our candy canes and you will probably have the supplies in your home to make one too. We used 2 medium sized jars (or mugs), a ruler, a chopstick (or skewer) and salt to weight the jars so they don't tip over.


Making Your Own Snowman Candle

If candles are your hobby, then why not create this cute snowman candle for the holidays from Wicks Wax Scents (  These candles are so cute that they can stay out all winter long. That makes them so great - they are not holiday specific. Why not give something new a try!

Supplies tools you will need for this project are a bread knife, a clean paint brush, a uncoated metal pizza pan, paint scraper, drill and bit, and a hand held mixer. You can find most of these items around your home.

First melt your wax and add the scent as discussed in the basic candle making instructions.

Next, pour mixture into pizza pan, letting it cool till it is feels firm, but still warm enough to be pliable.

Now, cut wax away from edges with bread knife and down the center.

Put your gloves on and lift one half of the wax away from the pan. Place on your work table. Roll it up.

Time to make the wax snowman! Take the wax and start to shape the snowman's base. Don't need to worry about looks like at this point, the wax snowman will be covered with whipped wax at a later point. You just want the general shape of a snowman. Just make the wax candle shape. It won't look like a snowman till you cake the outside and add the finishing touches.

Tall primitive snowmen or short round snowmen. Your imagination is at work here. Consider your choice of color too. White or off white looks best.

Short fat snowmen will burn, where the thiner primitive snowmen will not. If making fat snowmen, make them round and large enough to burn. Use a smaller diameter of wick so the wax will burn the snowman's center, not the outer edges. This is a cake candle with a shape! Mine are about 5" wide at the indentations of the snowman, wider for his body and head.

Primitive snowman can be decorated with anything you like, even spray with glitter, find country primitive decorations. I have seen the primitive snowmen over 2 feet tall. Be creative.The bases will look similar to these. Not to pretty to look at yet? Be patient.

When cooled, drill a hole down the snowman's center . Use longer wick from a role, making sure the wick is long enough for caking on top. Thread your wick from the bottom of the candle. Make sure you have a tab on the wick's end.

This project didn't use the whole pan of wax, we had plenty left over for caking. Make lots of snowmen and you need more wax/scent mixture. Only 5 lbs. wax used here, with plenty left.Let mixture cool till it forms a skim on top. Mix with a hand mixture till fluffy.

With your paint brush (make sure any previously used wax is melted and brush is pliable) gather up some whipped wax and apply it to the snowman. Work from the bottom up. Sit snowman on a metal tray to finish his head area.

Decorate your snowman before whipped wax is hard. Decorations will stick in warm wax. These snowmen are not made for burning, just smelly decorations. If I had made them larger and wider they would burn fine. Never use decorations that can catch fire when making snowmen to burn. Always include burning instructions on finished candle making products. Just have your decoration supplies on hand and an idea in mind for what you want to do with candle making material. Easy enough for beginner candle making.

I left decorating up to the gals, but the rest of the candle making was so easy, even I was did this the first time around.

Happy candle making from the staff of Blue Moon Supplies! Candle making instructions are free! When you are finished here, check out our Candle Trivia and Fun Facts.

For those of you who want to know, I built my site with Yahoo Small Business.

Never have the wax in direct contact with the heat source. Wax is like grease, as it has a flash point. In general, wax has a flash point of 300 degrees. A flash point is the point where the wax is so hot that it burst into flames all by itself. So I say "IN GENERAL" the flash point of wax is 300 degrees. I tell everyone - if wax is smoking, it is too hot. The vapors produced are extremely flammable for any heat source like a stove. Use the double boiler. Don't melt it in a microwave. Our wax isn't made for this. I like my wax at 150 degrees for a variety of reasons.

Most paraffin waxes have a flash point around 300° F. When it reaches its flash point it may not smoke or bubble, it will usually just explode, splattering flaming wax in all directions. To avoid this catastrophe, always use the double boiling method to melt your wax. Water boils at 212° F, which is well below the flash point of any paraffin wax.

Yes, I said this twice in different ways, I want you to get the message. USE A DOUBLE BOILER!

For full color pictures of this project, go to


Friday, December 11, 2009

Tutorial: A Simple Recycled Paper Greeting Card

If you would like to learn how to make a simple recycled paper creating card, then check out this tutorial by Julie Finn.

Packaging of Swirl Soap

Lori Nova's swirl soap was reviewed by Saponifer Magazine back in 2008.  Here is a picture of her award winning soap. In addition to liking her soap, I really like her packaging because of the way it shows off the beauty of each bar of soap.  This packaging can be used for any method of soap making from melt and pour to cold process.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Container Candles by Martha

These wonderful candles are a fun project that will leave your home beautifully lit and wonderful smelling.

Tools and Materials

2/3 cup Hydrogenated soybean wax or food shortening
2 2/3 bars Paraffin wax
Double boiler
Dye pellets or food coloring
5 teaspoons essential oils (such as vanilla, cinnamon stick, or apple)
Stirring spoons
Container for candle (able to withstand extremely hot water; has a thick base)
Cotton, medium-gauge wick
Popsicle stick
Metal wick holder
Hot-glue gun and glue sticks

Candle How-To

1. Begin by melting your paraffin wax in a double boiler; then add the hydrogenated soybean wax. Add dye -- or food coloring -- to create your desired color; add essential oils to the wax to create fragrance. Stir together and allow mixture to melt. Once the mixture reaches 165 degrees, you are ready to pour.

2. Attach bottom of wick to metal wick holder. Attach wick, now attached to wick holder, to bottom of candle container with hot glue; press into place and let cool.

3. Rest Popsicle stick across the top of candle container; wrap wick around Popsicle stick to prevent it from falling into the candle container.

4. Fill your candle container 3/4 full with wax. A skin will form within 30 minutes; wax will appear solid in about one hour, but it will take 6 hours to set. Be sure not to move the candle while it is still liquefied.

Tip: After burning a fragrant candle, you often wind up with a big, black bulb at the end of the wick that can later wind up in your candle. Remove it first by turning the candle upside down and pulling the black bulb off with a tissue. To make candles last longer and drip less, place them in the freezer two hours before a party.


Hydrogenated soybean wax, paraffin wax, dye pellets, cotton, medium-gauge wicks, and metal wick holders can be found at most craft stores. Essential oils can be found at most health food stores. Special thanks to Harry Slatkin of Slatkin & Co. for giving a beautiful assortment of candles and Zippo lighters to our studio audience. Harry Slatkin & Co. uses their own tree fragrance mix, but to create something similar, you can use 3 teaspoons of fir needle siberian, 1 teaspoon of galbanum oil, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla fragrance oil from International Aromatics, Inc. by contacting

Ideas for Wrapping Soap

How you wrap the soap you have made with your own hands will depend on whether you will: sell the soap, give them out as presents, or keep them for family or personal use. Your packaging may have to be more professional-looking if your home production is a growing business. Whatever the case, wrapping soap can be a test of your resourcefulness but also a source of enjoyment. It’s a craft in itself with plenty of room for creativity.

When it comes to handmade bars of soap, you can afford to be homey and less commercial-grade with your wrapping. After all, there’s an unrefined naturalness associated with this kind of stuff.

Wrapping Soap Ideas: Carton Boxes

Making uniformly sized carton boxes in which to package your soap will require cardboard cutting and folding apparatus, unless you decide instead to buy your boards pre-folded. There’s no way you can make boxes in large numbers manually. If you don’t have the resources for obtaining machinery or feel that you should invest your money elsewhere, then you might as well wrap your soap in packaging paper. If you are giving them away as personal gifts, then gift wrapping paper is, naturally, what you’ll need.

Wrapping Soap Ideas: Plain Wrapping

If you are out simply to package your soap without any intention of making them look like gift items, your ideas for wrapping soap might include the following:

For fold-and-paste paper wrapping:
Packaging paper – food paper will do as well
Brown paper bags – choose a size that fits your soap snugly, or make your soap in sizes that fit available paper bags
Ziplock plastic sachets
For hard packaging:
Carton boxes
Brown Craft boxes
Acetate tubes or boxes, which may be clear, or tinted blue or red, etc.
Recycled, lidded tin containers

Making Your Soap Gift-able

However you can easily modify any of these plain ideas for wrapping soap or packaging them to come up with gift-able items. You can, for example, do some tying up with an ornamental string, add a ribbon, attach a colorfully designed sticker paper, or wrap up the package in cellophane paper. Placing a couple of your wrapped soap inside a gift paper bag will also do the trick.

You won’t easily run out of ideas for wrapping soap or packaging them as gift items. They are as many as your resources and imaginativeness will allow. We have just mentioned a few of them. Here are some more:

Handy crate packs. Pine wood would make good material for these small crates. Make soap bars of sizes that stack snugly inside.

Fabric gift bags. Mesh, organza, muslin, and calico are some of the textiles used in making these cloth packs.

Cellophane paper bundle-ups. Tie up the bundle with a yarn, slender hemp rope, or raffia ribbon. During the Christmas season, you can use shiny green, red or gold Twistee wires.

Recycled, lidded tin containers. Reusing old items should be part of your ideas for wrapping soap. Make sure the mouth of your tin can is wide enough to take out soap without the hand getting jammed.

Glass jars. Place bars of various colors or designs inside the jar or other glass bottles. Add a ribbon or colorful sticker.

Cardboard boxes with cellophane window. The viewing hole can be round, square, or the shape of a star, Christmas tree or angel.

Gift baskets. Bundle up several soap bars, a loofah and colored face towel with cellophane paper or see-through fabric. You can use a tray or plastic bowl in place of woven basket.

Gift paper bags. You can buy these bags or make your own. If you don’t know how to fold your paper or card board into a bag, unravel one you’ve bought and imitate the folding pattern.

Corrugated cardboard wraps. You can also simply roll your soap inside corrugated cardboard, leaving the sides of the bar exposed. Tie up with an ornamental string or ribbon.

A Few More Ideas for Wrapping Soap

Soap that is viewable through wrapping makes your handiwork more interesting. You may want to allow a peek to some feature of the soap, such as a cool color or an embossed name, logo or emblem. For added attraction, stick printed descriptions of your soap somewhere in your packaging. The following are examples of fancy soap names others have given their own soaps.

Sweet almond baja; Mediterranean chamomile; English white lavender; Mint swirl avocado oil soap; Tea tree wake-up bar; Patchouli blend soap; Kitchen citrus scrub.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Christmas Tree Room Spray Recipe

If you have a fake Christams tree and miss the aroma of a fresh tree, here is a holiday room spray from Allison B. Kontur (

4 oz Liquid Perfume Base
5 ml (1 tsp) Fir Needle (White/Silver) Essential Oil
4 oz PET Boston Round
20/410 Fine Mist Sprayer-Black

Combine ingredients in bottle. Cap and shake well to blend.

To use: Spray liberally into air.


Countdown to the Holidays – Packaging

MarrWilliams from Smelly Chicks ( posted this article on her site regarding holiday packaging:

Many soap/candle/handmade crafters do not use special packaging for the holidays. It could be the time and effort involved to design and implement seasonal packaging or it could be the expense. I believe that swapping out simple elements in your current packaging is probably the safest and less time consuming way to go. Here’s a few examples:

Yummy Suds Soap Company has simply wrapped a holiday themed paper around simple soap boxes to give it holiday flair. These soap boxes happen to be made from seeded paper that will grow when planted. you can find and purchase at Of the Earth if your interested. You can find holiday themed paper to use for the cigar band at almost anywhere these days and the cost is minimal.

Here’s another example from Humble Beads:

This technique can be used on anything really. Lotion bars, tins etc. You can tie a ribbon or wrap a cigar band around just about anything.

The following following examples of Kate Spade, Mandel Bros., Marshall Field & Co., and Carson Pirie Scott boxes are pre-printed but you could easily achieve the same effect with stamps.

Monday, December 7, 2009

How to Stamp Soap for the Holidays

Project designed by Cheryl Ball

Learn how to make holiday soap creations for your bath.

Materials and Tools:

Delta Soap Creations

- Melt & Pour soap - clear and white
- No-Tip Molds - rectangle and square
- Sparkling Accents - iridescent glitter

Rubber Stampede

- holiday-themed decorative stamps
- frame kit - 78001
Delta Ceramcoat acrylic paint - Christmas green, opaque red, blue jay
Delta stencil sponges
glass measuring cup
craft stick
cotton swabs
spray bottle filled with rubbing alcohol
paper plate


For best results, please take a moment to review all instructions on product packaging before beginning this project.

1. Cut clear soap in half, cut one half into 1/2-inch cubes and put into glass cup. Microwave on high for 20 seconds then five seconds until melted. Do not boil the soap.

2. Pour a thin layer of the soap into the rectangle mold. Spritz with alcohol to remove any bubbles. Let cool. Wipe soap layer with paper towel to rough up.

3. Pour green and red paints onto paper plate. Cut out the tree stamp. Using the flat end of the sponge, tap green paint onto the stamp and press into the center of the soap. Lightly press all areas of stamp for an even image. Add a dot to the top of the tree using a cotton swab covered with red paint. Let paint dry.
4. Melt more clear soap. Spritz molded soap from step 3 with alcohol and pour on a 1/4-inch layer of melted soap. Let cool.

5. Stamp a tree on either side of first tree design, and add red dots. Dab random dots of blue on the remainder of soap. Let dry.

6. Melt more clear soap. Add iridescent glitter to melted soap and stir to mix. Spritz bar of soap from step 5 with alcohol, and pour melted glitter soap to within 1/4 inch of the top of the mold. Let cool.
7. Melt white soap. Spritz the cooled bar of soap from step 6 and top off the mold with melted white soap. Let cool and remove from mold.

8. Wrap cooled soap with plastic wrap for gift giving.
  • Cutting the soap in 1/2-inch cubes lets the soap melt quicker and more evenly.
  • Any unused soap can be re-melted.
  • Don't boil the soap. If it occurs, let soap cool slightly before pouring into mold. Boiling adds more bubbles to the soap that may be difficult to remove.
  • Stamping between several layers will add more depth to the design.
  • Spraying alcohol between layers helps the layers adhere together.
  • Spritzing the just-poured soap with alcohol removes any surface bubbles for a clearer surface.