Sunday, October 31, 2010

Stenciled Glitter Soap

Here is a melt and pour  soap project that you may want to add to your collection. This stenciled glitter soap project from Anne-Marie (aka The Soap Queen) was posted on her blog Soap and the Finer Things in 2009 and I thought it was really unique. I have never seen a soap that had a stenciled shaped on top of the soap before.  The soap shape reminds me of a fancy cookie.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

"Swirling with the Best" Supplemental Tutorial from Saponifier Magazine

At the 7th Anniversary (September 11, 2010) at The Nova Studio, I was lucky enough to win the raffle and had the opportunity to select the "Swirling with the Best" Supplemental Tutorial from Saponifier Magazine ) "Swirling with the Best" is a supplemental tutorial that was inspired by the "Best Swirl" contest held in January 2009 by the leading soap making industry magazine. The contest had 49 entries from all over the world and received over 1,000 votes.

The contributors to this tutorial were Nicole Benitex, Joan Broughton, Debbie Chialtas, Lovena Harwood, Jinaaiaka Jakuszeilt, Lori Nova, Christy Rose, Misty Sprouce, and Ana Bryna Tracy. These contributors wrote and submitted articles on their way they create their own special swirl bars of the soaps. Included in this supplemental are the following articles:

Swirls in the Pot Section: 1-6 Color Swirl in the Pot Method with Log Mold (Cold Process), 6 Color In the Pot Swirl with in the Mold Top Swirls (Cold Process) and 1 Color Oven Hot Process Swirl (Hot Process)

Swirls Done in the Mold Section: 4 Layer Strawberry Fields Forever (Cold Process), Mantra Swirl (Cold Process), Controlled Swirling: Two Easy Techniques (Cold Process), Two Color Contrast Swirl (Cold Process), Coloring Swirled Cold Process Soap, and Marbling Melt and Pour Soap Sugar Plum Hanging Ornament Soap.

Each article is written and layout like very simple step by step recipe card which makes each process of making each recipe to be made with ease. In addition each article is supplemented with colorful photographs which corresponds with each step.

If you would like to order your own copy, to the "Swirling with the Best" Supplemental Tutorial Link for more information on how to order. The supplement come in a different variety of formats: PDF File Download, CD Mailed, and a printed booklet. Each is priced differently. PDF File is $17.95, CD Mailed is $19.95 and a printed booklet is $24.95. Orders for any of the options can be placed via our secure order form at:

Friday, October 29, 2010

How to Make Cinnamon Buns Candles

I love the smell of cinnamon buns.  When I am at the mall and I smell the delicious aroma of them baking in the oven I cannot leave with out purchasing one.  How about bring that fantastic aroma to the home?  Then learn how to make cinnamon buns candles.  This delicious smelling candle by ehow member, Andrea Berrios shows you how to make these really cute candles that actually look like the real thing.  And she makes these step by step instructions look so waty.  These candles make great gifts, housewarming favors or to decorate your own home.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Spooooooooky Eyes Soaps

I got this feeling that somebody's watching me. I guess it these Spooky Eye Soaps. Would you like to create these spooky soaps for Halloween? Then check out the instructions for the Spooky Eye Soaps which appear on The Soap Queen's blog - Soap and the Finer Things in Life.

Why not create some spooky fun with the kids for the upcoming Halloween festivities and create these soaps? The instructions for these are pretty simple that all ages would have fun making these.

Recipes from the 2010-2011 Glory Bee Catalog

I recently received my 2010-2011 catalog from Glory Bee Foods.  Now I do not order much from Glory Bee but when I do I ordered supplies for crafting purposes.  What is really cool about Glory Bee catalog is often times they will insert a variety of recipes.  In this issue they have a variety of edible and body product recipes.  Some of the body recipes included in this issue are Soap on a Rope, Cocoa Butter Moisturizer for Dry Skin, Lipstick, Whipped Body Butter and Lotion Sticks. 

Soap on a Rope (pg 56)

Translucent (Melt and Pour) Soap Base
Soap Mold of your choice
Assorted gel tone colorants
Rope (nylon cord works well)
Fragrance or Essential Oil  (Choose type and amount you want)

Bring end of cord together and tie an overhand knot.  Cut ends off close to the knot.  If  the mold  you are using is too shallow to tie the knot, tape cord end together.  Pour the mold half full of melted soap base and let it cool slightly.  Place the cord in the mold.  Hold or tape the cords in place.  Fill the mold with the remainder of soap.  Do not move the cords until the soap is completely cool.  Remove the soap from the mold when it is completely cool and hard.

Cocoa Butter Moisturizer for Dry Skin (pg 57)
(Makes 3/4 cup)

2 tablespoons beeswax
4 tablespoons cocoa butter
1/4 cup sweet almond oil
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1/4 aloe vera concentrate
1 tablespoon honey

Add the wax, cocoa butter and oils to the top of a double boiler and heat until the wax and cocoa butter have melted.  Remove the pan from the heat.  Make sure to wipe down the bottom of the pan of any water.  In a separate container, combine the aloe vera concentrate and honey.  Stir the aloe mixture into the hot wax.  Stir continuously until the mixture thickens.  Pour into a container and allow to cool. When completely cooled place lid on container.

Lipstick (pg 62)
(Makes about 24 tubes)

1 ounce beeswax
2 ounces sweet almond oil
2.5 ounces jojoba oil
4 teaspoons lip safe mica

Melt the beeswax in a double boiler. Once fully melted add all of the oils. Pour your colorant into the double boiler and stir well.  Let the mixture sit until the mixture begins to thicken slightly (thus suspending the colorant better) and pour into hars or tubes.  Let cool completely.

Whipped Body Butter (pg 70)
(Makes about 24 ounces)

Blogger note:  This is not a true body butter because it contains water which means you need a preservative.  In actuality this recipe is for a cream.

260 grams water (use distilled water)
44 grams coconut oil
64 grams rice bran (or other carrier oil)
34 grams emulisfying wax
8 grams stearic acid
14 grams cocoa butter (you can use either refined or unrefined.  If you want the chocolate scent to your product then select unrefined otherwise chose refined)
6 grams lf Germaben II (preservative)
Fragrance or Essential Oil
Colorant, if desired

Melt everything expect the Germaben, fragrance/essential oils and colorant in a double boiler until fully melted and blended together.  Remove from heat and let cool, mixing occassionally, until it is just a little armer than body temperature.  Add Germaben II, fragrance oil (amount will depend on strength), and colorant, if you wish.  Mix throughly with an electric hand mixer ( I use an immersion blender).  Start with a medium speed and then increase the speed as it starts to gain volume.  It should be whipped until it is light and fluffy, like meringue.  Once the desired consistency has been reached, pour into containdersand refridgerate over until to set.

Lotion Sticks (pg 90)

1 ounce Sweet Almond Oil
2 ounces Shea Butter
1 ounce Cocoa Butter
1 ounce Beeswax
1 teaspoon honey
Essential or Fragrance Oil

Melt beeswax, honey, alomd oil and butters in a double boiler over medium heat.  If you do not have a double boiler then you can use a glass pyrex measuring cup on a canning jar rin in a pan of water.  When all ingredients are melted to liquid, remove from heat, add fragrance and mix throughly.  Pour into large round roll up containers or for a larger stick then use the stick deordorant containers.

If you want to make these products and enjoy these products, you can purchase all of the ingredients (or at least most of them ) through Glory Bee Foods.  All of these products would be great gifts for the holidays so get started making your gifts today.  Another idea would be making these product during a baby or bridal shower.  The ideas are endless.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Chamomile & Orange Body Cream

Here is an interesting body cream recipe you just might to try.  If you love chamomile and oranges than this is the recipe for you. Chamomile & Orange Body Cream by Gill Smith which originially appeared in the Fall 2009 issue of UK Homemade. It so happens that I found this recipe on a site Craft which especializes finding great bath and body recipes.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Glitter Cut Out Soaps

Here is another fantastic fall soap from project from Anna-Marie (aka The Soap Queen) which she kindly shares on her blog Soap and the Finer Things in Life.  This Fall Glitter Cut Out Soap is a project for all of you melt and pour soap makers that would be a great addition to make for this time of year.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Glitzy Halloween Candles

Here are some really glitzy halloween candles that you may want to consider making for the upcoming halloween. The instructions for these glitzy halloween candles appears on Cathie Filian's blog Domestic in the City.
Get started today to make your halloween more glitzy.

"Swirling with the Best" Supplemental Tutorial from Saponifier Magazine

At the 7th Anniversary of The Nova Studio on September 11th 2010, I was lucky enough to win the raffle and had the opportunity to select the "Swirling with the Best" Supplemental Tutorial from Saponifier Magazine . "Swirling with the Best" is a supplemental tutorial that was inspired by the "Best Swirl" contest held in January 2009 by the leading soap making industry magazine. The contest had 49 entries from all over the world and received over 1,000 votes.

The contributors to this tutorial were Nicole Benitex, Joan Broughton, Debbie Chialtas, Lovena Harwood, Jinaaiaka Jakuszeilt, Lori Nova, Christy Rose, Misty Sprouce, and Ana Bryna Tracy. These contributors wrote and submitted articles on their way they create their own special swirl bars of the soaps. Included in this supplemental are the following articles:

Swirls in the Pot Section: 1-6 Color Swirl in the Pot Method with Log Mold (Cold Process), 6 Color In the Pot Swirl with in the Mold Top Swirls (Cold Process) and 1 Color Oven Hot Process Swirl (Hot Process)

Swirls Done in the Mold Section: 4 Layer Strawberry Fields Forever (Cold Process), Mantra Swirl (Cold Process), Controlled Swirling: Two Easy Techniques (Cold Process), Two Color Contrast Swirl (Cold Process), Coloring Swirled Cold Process Soap, and Marbling Melt and Pour Soap Sugar Plum Hanging Ornament Soap.

Each article is written and layout like very simple step by step recipe card which makes each process of making each recipe to be made with ease. In addition each article is supplemented with colorful photographs which corresponds with each step.

If you would like to order your own copy, to the "Swirling with the Best" Supplemental Tutorial Link for more information on how to order. The supplement come in a different variety of formats: PDF File Download, CD Mailed, and a printed booklet. Each is priced differently. PDF File is $17.95, CD Mailed is $19.95 and a printed booklet is $24.95. To order any of these options can be placed through Saponifier Magazine's secure order form.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Floating Leaves Bar Soaps

Do you want to take embedding in your melt and pour soaps to a new and different level.Then check out this Floating Leaves Bar Soap Project from The Soap King.

According to The Soap King you would normally use a clear soap base and place the embed inside. But in this project you are using an opaque base and using the bottom of the bar as the top, allowing our leaf to pop out!

Some of the supplies you will need for this project are Guest Leaves Mold, Basic Shapes Mold, Opaque Melt and Pour, Merlot Mica, Yellow Mica, Brilliant Blue Labcolor, Sensuous Sandalwood Fragrance Oil and Rubbing alcohol in spray bottle.  All of these supplies can be purchased through Brambleberry.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Travel Soap & Matching Lotion Bar

A while back when I was attending an arts and wine festival, I saw a soap booth.  One of the items that the vendor was selling was a travel version of a glycerin bar of soap.  Basically the packaging was very simple, the vendor used a melt and pour soap base and poured it into a deodorant tube container. I thought it was a great idea because I do not know about you, but I hate slimly soap. 

I know that this would be a no brainer to recreate, I thought I would browse the internet to see if anyone has tried to create something similiar.  Low and behold I found these instructions on Wholesale Supplies Plus's blog on how to do a similiar project but in a lotion stick container.Kathy from the Customer Service Department created this tutorial on how to make your own Travel Soap & Matching Lotion Bars

If you are going to do any traveling in the near future and want to take your own soap with you, then you should make make some for yourself.  Or if you know of anyone whose job is to travel (ie salespersons, flight attendants, etc) then you may want to create some and give them as gifts. It would be great to throw into your gym bag and use it the shower after your work out at the gym.  There are probably other ideas where you can take and use this particular item.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

What is Natural? Is the word misused?

In this day and age everyone is concerned about what ingredients are in their foods and body products.  But really consitutes a natural product?  According to Star Khechara, author of The Holistic Beauty Book, says that it is difficult to quantify plus everyone has their own idea of what constitutes a natural ingredient or product.  Plus natural is often a misused word.

But according to the dictionary, natural means existing or produced in nature.  At this time, there is no legal defintion of the word "natural" as it pertains to cosmetics.  This means that the most heinously chemically fileed cosemetics can use the term on their labelling.  Even the most wholesome seeming product can also contain a whole host of unnatural irritants.The other issue to consider is the so called naturalness of an ingredient or products such as organically grown or substanably harvested and other environmental considerations.

So what are organic materials?  There is some confusion between organic and natural.  For an ingredient to be labelled "organic" it has to be grown to organic standards established by a proper agriculture organization and cannot be a carbon base company.  So simply for something to be organic, it is the way of growing an item that avoids using chemicals, pesticides and artificial fertilizers in the soil or on the plant. Also, the organic item must be certified by a proper organization.

Some of the other misused words or phrases are pure, aromatherapy, extracts of...., devired from...., extracts of.  Lets examine some of these other words and phrases.

Pure is a term that can be completely unproven, unique and meaningless term.  What is the actual term used for?  Could it be a marketing ploy?  Most likely.  What do you think? 

Aromatherapy is another words that appears on labels.  When the word appears on the label that the products really do not contain any aromatics plant extracts, botanicals or essential oils.  Alot of companies jumped on the aromatherapy bandwagon and started to make aromatherapy claims about their products.

"Extracts of..." is a term that manufacturers love to add a small atom of a plant extract to hide an otherwise hideous synthetic cocoction so that can just state it on their label as a selling point.

One of the worst offenders of the terms is "Devired from...".  This term is used widely from the makers of commerically natural products which you would find in your local health food store. So watch this term because the actual ingredient may be processed and somehow become something less natural.

There are plenty of other words or terms that appear on labels or in advertising to sell cosmetics.  They are hypo-allergenic, anti-aging,  and dermologically tested. So be very wary when you see these words or terms used randomly or hap-hazardly.

So truly natural ingredients can be separated into three categories:  Vegetable, Animal and Mineral.  The vegetable category contains plant based materials such as cocoa butter, almond oil, herbs, flowers, essential oils, nuts and seeds.  Animal category would include laolin, beeswax, milk, honey and animal fats.  And final the mineral category includes various clays, muds and certain pigments.

After all this is there such a thing as a natural product? Well the best way I can answer that is probably on the product.  Lets take soap.  There is a difference between commerically manufactured perfumed soap and soap that is handcrafted  using natural facts and essential oils.  When a soapmaker makes a batch of cold process or hot process soap, it is not correct for them to label their soap as "Natural" because soap does not actually occur in nature itself.  It is actually a chemical compound resulting between fatty acids and a powerful akali - Sodium Hydroxide aka Lye.  This chemical reaction is called saponification.  What I found really interesting and did not realize is that soap is really a sythethic man-made chemical of salt. Nowhere in nature does sodium hydroxide suddenly comes into contact with some fat and turns into soap.  So crafters who make their own soap should label their soap as being manufactured from only natural ingredients as opposed to the soap itself being a natural product.

So it come down to this - consumers be careful to examine on what is actually labelled on beauty products because you maybe paying for the hype.  And if you make your own bath and body products for sale, make sure to label your products accurately.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Bath & Body Works (type) Sugar Scrub Recipe

Have you created your body scrub with salt and want to try using sugar instread? Then why not try this Bath and Body Works type of sugar scrub recipe that appears on The author of this recipe is unknown.

What you need for this recipe is 10 Tablespoons white sugar, 5 Tablespoons brown sugar, 8 Tablespoons sunflower oil, 2 Tablespoons golden jojoba oil, 1 Tablespoon liquid glycerine, 1 Tablespoon favourite fragrance oil or essential oil.

To assemble these ingredients to make your scrub:

Add all of your dry ingredients and blend them well making sure you remove any clumps. Next add your sunflower oil, golden jojoba oil and liquid glycerine. Stir until you have a consistent blend of oil to sugar.

Last add in your favourite fragrance oil or essential oil (keep in mind that some are stronger than others so you may need to increase or decrease this amount accordingly, in any case start w/ less and add to the blend).

When your sugar scrub is all blended transfer to your air tight containers until you are ready to use. ** the oil will settle at the top of your scrub so just shake it or stir it prior to each use.

To use, scoop out a tablespoon or two and start to exfoliate hands, feet,elbows and rough spots, massaging into skin with gentle circular motions. Rinse with warm water.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Marbled Pillar Candles

Are you looking for a different look to add to your candles?  If you would like to give your candles the marbled look,but you do not know how?   Then you should check out this Marbled Pillar tutorial,which appears on, to help you out. These step by step instructions were a contribution of EB Candles and are very simple to create these unique looking candles which could enhance any decor. What a great way to bring ambiance to any room in your home.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Luscious Lip Balms, Gloss and Exfoliator Class @ CSM Community Education

On Saturday, October 16th (2010), I took a class through Community Education on how to make lip balms, gloss and exfoliators with Melanie Wessner. Some of you maybe wondering why I took this class since I recently took a class on sugar scrubs last month which included how to make a lip scrub. And I already knew how to make a lip balm. So it would seem to be a waste of time. Well, most importantly I wanted to learn how to make a lip gloss but I find that taking a class on a subject that I may have some experience in also has some benefits. For example, I learned tips how to create my own recipes. Melanie provide me the information on the correct percentages of ingredients that I needed to know to make a lip balm recipe from scratch rather than following some one else's recipe. In addition, I gained alot of tips and tricks to making other products. For example, if I wanted to make a lip balm and wanted to put the mixture into a pot instead of a tube. I would have to make the recipe abit softer which means adjusting the wax.

The first produce we learned how to make was a lip balm. Melanie demonstrated on how to make a simple recipe. Then a second lip balm recipe was made with the assistance of the class. Each student got to participate learning how to measure the ingredients and if a simple mistake was made in measuring, Melanie instructed the class on how to adjust the other ingredients in the class. Since I had previously made a lip balm before I graciously gave up my chance to try. I really wanted the students who did not prior experience to give it a try.

The second product we made was a sugar lip exfoliator. It is similar to making a lip balm but with the added ingredient of sugar to scrub off any dead skin off of our lips. Melanie was also kind enough to demonstrate how to use the product.

The last product we made was a lip gloss. In Melanie's handout she provided several recipes we could choose from. The class unanimously chose to learn how to make a lava lamp lip gloss. This is a very unique product that none of us has ever heard of before and were all excited to learn to make. If you grew up in the 60's you would really like this product and I believe this would be a hit with the teens and tweens.

Overall, I enjoyed this premiere class. All though there were eight students in the class, I felt that Melanie was able to provide ample to attention to everyone and accomodated the different skill level. I am glad that I had the opportunity to take this class and did not miss it.

I would highly recommend this class who would be interested in learning how to make your own lip products. Hopefully, Melanie would offer this class again in the future. If you missed this class, you may want to check out her Natural Scented Festive Candles Class offerred on November 20 from 10 am to 1:30 pm. The candles you learn how to make in this class would make great gifts for any holiday.

Cinnamon Soap Cakes

Do you have leftover soap that you do not know that to do with?  Then you may want to try this Cinnamon Soap Cakes recipe from Possumsal Homestead. The author for this recipe is unknown.

Easy to make soap cakes are an ideal way to turn leftover soap scraps, too small to use but too good to throw away, into luxurious, spicy, scented treats. This recipe is similiar making soap by the handmilled process but looking at the directions there is no heating involved to melt the soap.  I do not know whether or not heating the grated soap in a double boiler will help or hinder this recipe or not. But if you follow the directions and it does not work, then you may want to try to heat the soap in a double boiler like you would in the traditional handmilled soapmaking process.

Here is a list of what supplies you will need to make these wonderful soaps:

2 Lb. 2oz./1 kg. leftover soap
1 Tbsp./15 ml spring water
1 tsp./5 ml glycerine
1/2 tsp/2.5 ml cinnamon essential oil
1 Tbsp./15 ml sweet orange essential oil
10 drops clove bud essential oil

The directions are pretty simple to follow:

1. Coarsely grate the leftover scraps of soap into a large mixing bowl. Add the spring water, glycerine, and essential oils and mix well.

2. Cover the bowl with a clean cloth and leave to stand for about 15 minutes, until soap is slightly soft and pliable. If the soap you use for grating is fairly new, you may find that you do not need to leave it to soften.

3. Scoop up a handful of the mixture and press it firmly together. Push it firmly into your mold. If you do not have a suitable soap mold, you could simply roll your soap into a ball. The more you compress the mixture into the molds, the better your soap cakes will be.

4. Push out of the mold and stand your soap cakes somewhere to dry and harden. They should be ready to use in a day or two.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

What are Epsom Salts?

Have you seen recipes for bath sals calling for Epsom Salts? Or have you seen them at the drug store and are wondering what it is? Well, according to

"Epsom salts are made up of a naturally occurring mineral that is found in water. More properly known as magnesium sulfate, Epsom salts derives its popular name from the town of Epsom, England, where the compound was first distilled from water. The chemical formula for Epsom salts is a rather simplistic one: MgS04-7H2O.

Epsom salts are easily obtained at any drug store or supermarket. Inexpensive and versatile, the salts can be used for a number of different applications around the home. Many of the applications have to do with expediting healing, as well as improving the quality of the skin and helping with basic grooming.

Perhaps the most popular application is the Epsom salts bath. As an ideal means of relieving stress at the end of a hard day, two cups of Epsom salts in a tub of hot water can help to soothe jangled nerves and restore a sense of well being. This one application makes Epsom salts a staple in many bathrooms around the world.

Cleansing is also a common use for Epsom salts. Many people make use of Epsom salt compounds to exfoliate skin, applying a paste of Epsom salts with a little water to the skin, then rinsing with clean warm water. Homemade skin masks that help with oily skin can be created, using the salts as the base ingredient. Along with the Epsom salts, the mask requires a small amount of lemon juice, an egg, and a small amount of nonfat dry milk. In situations where there is not time to wash hair, Epsom salts can be used to partially clean the follicles, making it easier to comb and set the hairdo.

Treating minor sprains and bruises with Epsom salts is also thought to be very effective. A simple Epsom salt bath applied to the area of the sprain or the bruise will provide relief to the impacted area, helping to reduce swelling and minimize the soreness. Immersing the area in warm water and Epsom salts for twenty to thirty minutes not only provides physical relief from the ailment, but also can be refreshing for the mind as well. "

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Cold Process Soap Recipe

Autumn is here. Why not celebrate the season with this festive pumpkin pie cold process soap recipe by David Fisher from Guide. This famous recipe that David has kindly shared with his readers would be perfect to set out during the autumn season but would also be great to give out during the Thanksgiving holiday. It would be great to give a bar of this soap to someone whose favorite soap is pumpkin pie.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Scrubby Sugar Cubes - MP Type

Have you ever heard of body sugar cubes?  Well this is a different take on it. They are like the normal sugar scrub used to exfoliate, or slough off dry, old skin cells. But these include a clear glycerin melt and pour soap base.  To be honest, I have not tried this recipe before so I do not know if this particulr scrubby sugar scrubs will later.  But I have a suspcicion that just might because of the soap base.

Learn how to make these Scrubby Sugar Cubes (MP Type) from Aussie Soap Supplies. They would be an unique gift to give out on any specialy ocassion.  How about making a batch and giving them out as favors at your next bridal or baby shower?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

What is Ylang Ylang?

Ylang ylang (pronounced EE-lang EE-lang) is a tropical tree native to Asia, or the flower of the tree and the essential oil produced from the flowers. The tree is the Cananga odorata, and the oil is extensively used in making perfumes and in aromatherapy.

In parts of the Pacific Rim, ylang ylang, with its heavy and sweet scent similar to jasmine, is associated with weddings and honeymoons. Ylang ylang essential oil comes in four grades: ylang extra, ylang I, ylang II, and ylang III. The grades vary based on when the oil is removed in the steam distillation process. The lengthier the distillation, which generally can take up to 24 hours, the lighter the scent of the oil — ylang extra has the strongest scent and ylang III has the weakest. All grades of ylang ylang essential oil have a fairly heavy scent compared to lighter scented oils, so they should be added carefully to a blend. Ylang ylang can easily overpower less exuberant scents.

The scent of ylang ylang, like jasmine and rose, has long been considered an aphrodisiac. This may account for its popularity in perfume blends. Of course, the so-called aphrodisiac scents also simply smell wonderful, which may be why they are attractive to the opposite sex. In aromatherapy, ylang ylang is used for its stress-relieving properties -- a few drops of ylang ylang oil in a hot bath can melt the day's cares quickly away. Some people find the scent overpowering, however, and it may cause headaches in people sensitive to heavy floral scents.

Ylang ylang is also thought to reduce anxiety and perhaps even relieve depression. Sexual dysfunction or simple lack of interest might be addressed with a judicious use of ylang ylang oil in an aromalamp or blended in a massage oil. Use in perfume recipes that call for jasmine, if your budget cannot support the purchase of the much more costly jasmine essential oil.


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

How Lip Exfoliators Work...

Have you ever hear of lip exfoliators?  This product is something  new to me since I rarely have problems with my lips.  And if I do, I normally use a lip balm. So, I intrigued with this product I never heard of and began looking into what a lip exfoliator was.

Lip exfoliators products are like a product such as a body scrub that exffoliates the skin from other portions of the body.  The process will remove the top layer of dead skin cells, allowing new cells to rise to the surface and give your lips a fresh glow.

The benefits of a lip exfoliator is that it will remove the top layer of dead skin cells, allowing new cells to rise to the surface and give your lips a fresh glow. If you exfoliate your lips before you apply your favorite lip product, then your product will adhere alot better. I know I am always attempted to always reapply my favorite lip balm when need but according to Rebecca Regan who wrote the article, How Lip Exfoliators Work  says that if you exfoliate your lips first then your lip products will adhere better to your lips.  She also says that matte lipsticks can accentuate your dry lips which make your lips even look worse.  So she recommends to rub off the dry skin gently off your lips with a moist washcloths once every day. Then apply a moisterizing product, such as a lip balm, to prevent your lips from drying out even more. If you do this, Rebecca says that your lipstick will look more natural and stay on longer.  There are supposed to be lip exfoliators that are formulated to protect against signs of aging. These products include specific ingredients could help to reduce the appearance of any wrinkles in your lips while they exfoliate,but you will have to shell out alot more cash for these products.  Now only do lip exfoliators help improve the appearance and texture, but some of them can taste really good that can make them edible.  But the problem is that if you repeat licking your lips, the salva in your mouth will cause your lips to dry out. It would be better to apply a lip balm instead.

If you want to use a lip exfoliator use caution.  For example, do not overuse it. If you use lip scrubs too often can exacerbate the problem and result in painful, cracked lips. Apply the exfoliator once a week, and use lip moisturize, i.e. lip balm, the rest of the time. Use a cotton swab to apply the lip scrub to avoid transferring bacteria from your fingers into the jar. If you make your own homemade beauty products that do not contain preservatives, they have a shorter shelf life. It is recommended  by others to store any extra lip scrub in your refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Crockpot Shampoo Bar Recipe

I bet you have heard of making soap by the hot process method in a slow cooker (not going to use the other term since it is trademark by the Rival Company). Did you know that you can create a special bar of soap especially made to wash your hair?  If you do not like all the chemicals in the commercial shampoos then why not learn to make your own shampoo bar?   Then you should check out this recipe for Crockpot Shampoo Bar from Skin Care Naturals.

What is really great about making your own shampoo bar by the slower cooker method is that you do not have to wait as long for the bar to cure as you would in the traditional cold process method.  If you have dry or oily hair, the author has kindly put tips on how to deal with those problems.  And if you have grey hair, you may want to pay special attention to the special ingredient that will help cover that grey.

Monday, October 11, 2010

How to Develop Cold Process Soap Recipes

Are you a cold process soap maker who is getting bored with sticking to same old recipes and want to venture out on your own?  Are you timidated with the thought of creating your own cold process soap recipes?  Then you may want to read this article by Ehow contributor Heidi A. Reeves on How to Develop Cold Process Soap Recipes.  I believe if you read her article and follow her tips to the tea, then you will concoquer your fears and will be creating your own recipes immediately.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

What is lip balm?

Are you wondering what is truly considered a lip balm? Well, I found this description from

"Lip balm is an ointment used on the lips to help keep them moist and to aid in the healing of sores and cracks. Different types of lip balm use different ingredients, ranging from petroleum jelly based balm to those relying on 'natural' ingredients such as beeswax. Lip balm is different from lip gloss and lipstick, both of which serve only a cosmetic purpose. Lip balm, in addition to adding a sheen to the lips, also aims to fight chapping and to protect the sensitive skin of the lips from sunburn.

The most famous brand of lip balm in the United States is ChapStick, which manufactures hundreds of specific types of lip balm. The brand has become so popular that its trade name has become generic, such that any lip balm, no matter the manufacturer, may be referred to as chapstick. ChapStick lip balm comes in different product lines, each of which offers different varieties for consumers. The All-Natural line, for example, has additives such as mango butter, jojoba and vitamin E.

Flavored lip balms are also very popular, particularly among younger users. Major manufacturers of flavored lip balm include Lip Smackers and ChapStick's Flava-Craze line, though most major lip balm manufacturers have at least one flavored product available. Popular flavors include strawberry, cherry and mint, with odd-ball flavors such as coffee offered by some companies.

Though most lip balm products have some level of sun protection in them, usually around SPF 4, many manufacturers offer special lines of sun-care lip balm which contain especially potent sun-block. These lip balms are ideal for those spending extended periods of time in the sun. Most protecting lip balms have an SPF of at least 25, and often contain ingredients such as aloe and vitamin E as well.

Medicated lip balm is also available from a number of companies. These products contain a number of ingredients meant to sooth pain in the lips and help repair intense damage. Ingredients such as menthol, camphor and phenol act as analgesics to dull the pain, while petrolatum helps to repair damage to lips.

There are a number of rumors that lip balm is 'addictive', requiring users to continue using it or face damage to their lips and experience physical withdrawal symptoms. Most independent investigations suggest that there is no physical addiction occurring with the use of lip balm, but that users become accustomed to a high level of softness and moisture for their lips, and experience psychological withdrawal when their lips return to a natural state. This may provoke users to lick their lips in a misguided attempt to remoisturize them, which ultimately serves to dry them out more and cause cracking, which may then be attributed to a physical addiction to lip balm."


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Rubber Band Shaped Soaps

Here is a really cool idea that is supposed to be the hottest trend in school today - Shaped Rubber Bands.  Why not take this new fangle item and put them in a bar of soap?  If you are interested in learning how to make this very simple melt and pour project check out the Rubber Band Soap instructions from the blog Soap and the Finer Things in Life.

You can purchase these shaped rubber bands from  Branbleberry carries  Cat and Dogs, Princess or Sea Creatures.  Maybe in the future they will offer more shapes.  Do you anywhere else someone can find other shapes?  Let us know. In addition you would have to purchase the following soapmaking supplies 24 ounces of Clear Melt and Pour Soap base, Fragrance Oil (of your choice), 6 Lidded Molds and Colorants (of your choice).

Friday, October 8, 2010

Simply Sweet Sugar Scrubs Class @ The Nova Studio

Recently, I have heard the buzz regarding sugar scrubs and was really interested in finding more about them. Well, I had found a tutorial for a solid sugar cube recipe by Erin Pikor that appeared on a blog titled Soap and the Finer Things in Life . I was really intrigued and wanted to know more. Interesting enough I saw that Erin would be teaching a class at The Nova Studio in Point Richmond, CA. I thought hurrah! And I immediately signed up and anxiously waited for the faithful day in September 2010 for the class to happen.

What I was really look for was learning how to make a scrub that does not feel greasy to the skin or leave the tub slippery where I could potentially slip and fall. In this new and innovative full-day class at The Nova Studio we learned how to make 4 different types of creative & skin-loving sugar scrubs including a sugar whipped soap, a lip exfoliator, a foot scrub and sugar cube scrubs. I have to tell you that I found all of the products made in the class intriguing. First of all, I never heard of a sugar whipped soap. The feeling is very silky and smooth so it will be very interesting to try it for the first time. I never heard of a lip exfoliator before or never needed the use for one but I could use this product during the cold winter months. And it is something that I am looking forward to using soon. And finally the sugar cube scrubs. What can I say? That the product is simply irrestible! I like it so much better than dipping my fingers in a jar of an oily substance.

What was so amazing in this class is what you left with. Each student left with two 10.5 oz jars of body sugar cubes, one 10 oz jar of sugar whipped soap, one 6 oz jar of Green Tea Foot scrub and at least two adorable pots of mango lip scrub. And with the added BONUS from Erin that each student got a kit with ingredients to make six more lip scrubs at home! I wound up getting a pineapple flavor which I have not made yet since I have not finish the apple flavor exfoliator in class. At the table I was sitting at we decided to our scented our sugar cube scrubs with a kumquat fragrance oil. Too me it smelled like a fresh grapefruit, but when I let someone else take a whiff they thought it was tangerine. Go figure. But what really exordinary was Erin's handout. It contained beautiful color photographs corresponding to each step plus the recipes for each product had ingredient amounts to make small and large batches. I could not ask for anything more.

Another great testament to the class was that there were 18 people taking this first time class. And the participants most came from all over the bay area except for one couple who came all the way from Mexico. Alot them were crafters, some had their own businesses and some were teachers who actually taught other classes at the studio. With such a diverse group how could one had a great learning experience in the class.

Erin was a fantastic instructor. Erin is the owner of Naiad Soap Arts and a proud member of the handcrafted Soap Makers Guild. With a background in fine art and photography, she began making soap in 2006 with an attention to formulating soaps and bath products that suited her problematic and sensitive skin but also appealed to her sense of composition and color. She is best known for her award winning soap design, her dessert line of soaps including the French Macaroon soap and her body sugar cubes, a no mess single use, cube shaped sugar scrub. Her soaps can be found online and in boutiques around the country.

So if you are really interested in learning more about making sugar scrubs, I highly recommend taking Erin's class at The Nova Studio. Make sure to check The Nova Studio's website to see when the next time this class is offered. Make sure to sign up for the class because it is well worth the $125 class fee plus the $35 materials fee. I really cannot say enough or more about this class. You just need to be there and experience the joy of making all of these products. I am so looking forward to using the products made in this class and of course making these products as gifts. All of the recipes are very simple to make. But I would say that the sugar cube scrubs would be the most challenging because you have to make sure to pour it into the mold before it cools down and solidifies. But with practice that challenge could be conquered.

If whatever reason you are unable to take the class, The Nova Studio offers an eclass handout for a great price of $39.00. You are wondering what an eclass is? Well, basically you are purchasing the handout that is given in the class in a downloadable form that you can save right on your computer. Are you interested in purchasing an E-Class Handout? Then visit the E-Class Handout Link to The Nova Studio to find out more info.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Bee Balm Lip Salve Recipe

Brenda Brock from Farm Aesthetics from Rhode Island appeared on Cultivating Life to demonstrate this simple recipe from Bee Balm Lip Salve which combines local beeswax and herbs from the garden.  If you did not know, beeswax is primarily used in skin care products for its emollient, softening and antibacterial properties.

The tools need to make this lip balm salve are a hot plate, double boiler, ice cube tray and a strainer.  As for the supplies, you will need lemon balm; grape seed, almond or soy oil; vitamin E; beeswax, pink grapefruit essential oil; cheesecloth; containers for the salve and a quart size storage jar with a cover.

Since the recipe calls for grapefruit essential to flavor your lip balm/salve, I want to let you know that all citrus essential oils are photosensitive.  Which means that if you wear this product on your lips when you go outside it can cause sunburn or a rash on your lips.  So you may want to apply this product to your lips and wait before going out or apply in the evening.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Antique Embossed Tins

My favorite decorating style is the Shabby Chic look.  I found this Antique Embossed Tin project was designed by Fran Seiford. Fran demonstrated this project awhile back on HGTV's Carol Duvall Show. What really attracted me to this project was its shabby chic look but I thought it would be a great container holding dusting powder to keep in the bathroom. Or it could be a really creative way to wrap a gift.  The creativity is really up to you.  In this project, there are seven simple steps and several good tips to embellish this project. So get out your supplies and get started today!

Some of the tools and materials you would need for this project are Stampendous rose scrollwork stamp P103;  tin; black, pink Jo Sonya acrylic paint; Clearsnap Top Boss clear embossing ink pad; Stampendous Deep Impression Clear embossing powder; embossing heat tool; 1" paintbrushes; large tray; terry cloth rag and rub-on metallic paste (optional).

There are many different types of embossing powders on the market.  In this project, it calls for a clear embosing powder.  But you are at your local craft store and you cannot different which is which. Well, here is a table from The Stampin' Place that simplifies each category.


Color Powders:

A variety of rich colors which will completely cover the ink on which they are applied, showing only the color of the embossing powder.


Metallic Powders: A variety of opaque colors with a metallic shine. These colors will completely cover the ink on which they are applied, showing only the color of the embossing powder.


Detail Powders: A variety of opaque colors which are a finer grind of powder, allowing these powders to be a better choice for stamped images which have greater detail. These colors will completely cover the ink on which they are applied, showing only the color of the embossing powder.


Glitter Powders: A variety of clear powders with glitter added. They will show the color of ink beneath, adding a glittered look to the effects of clear powder.


Glitter Powders: A variety of opaque powders containing glitter. These powders will completely cover the ink on which they are applied, showing only the color of the embossing powder. The "tinsel" powders contain a greater amount of glitter.


Glow in the Dark: A translucent powder which is applied over light colored ink. The color of ink will show through, and the treated area will glow in the dark.


Pearls Powders: A variety of delicate color powders which can be applied over any ink color and will show the color of the ink beneath while adding a pearlized highlight in the color indicated.


Clear Powders: A variety of clear powders, which will show the color of the ink beneath while adding a raised shine. Clear and Clear Detail are finer ground powders, while Clear Enamel (Super Gloss) and Enamelware are a coarser grind which allows the powder to build up quicker for a heavy, thick application.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

How to make old fashioned soap balls

I remember as a child that my mother had a soap dish in the bathroom with a couple of soap balls.  Soap balls are those rustic looking balls of soap that were big in the late 60's and early 70's. And I was looking for a site that had information on how to make them. Well, I found this article by Danelle Karth on How to make old fashioned soap balls.

In Danelle's article, she gives you a basic Oatmeal Soap Ball recipe and adapts it to the Melt and Pour and Hot Process methods.  I have not found any other recipes to share, but I am on the hunt for more. But I am sure that any rebatched or handmilled recipe would work just as well in this situation.

Monday, October 4, 2010

How to Make A Smelly Jelly

Several years ago, I was at Joann Fabric and Craft store and I had purchased a container that had some gel content. This gel when melted down you could add scent and liquid coloring to create your smelly jelly.  This was a really great project that my niece and I did together. 

Now I want to recreate that memory.  But now Joann does sell that particular product anymore. So I searched the internet, I found this recipe for Homemade Smelly Jelly from Tip Nut

The tip I really like and never thought of was too add embedded items similar to the gel candles embedded items to give your smelly jelly more pzazz.

As for jars to contain your smelly jelly are the jars that has the daisy perforated lids.  If you cannot find those or in a bind, you could  use any heat proof glass (mason jars, baby jars) and cover the top with lace or netting instead of jar lids.

So why not try this activity with your kids.  They will have a load of fun.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Spooky Cut Out Soaps

The season has definately changed. And there is something in the air, which means Halloween is just around the corner.  While browsing some of the blogs I follow posted this really cute Halloween Soap Idea from Soap Place. These Spooky Cut Out Soaps are a really clever idea to give out at a Halloween party or even to trick or treaters on Halloween.  Even though the title of this project is Spooky Cut Out Soaps, these are more cute than scary.  So the really young trick or treaters would really want to wash their hands with these soaps.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Funnel Swirl Soap Tutorial By Lomond Soap

What is really cool about the look of theFunnel Swirl Soap is that each soap from the loaf is completely unique. I was lucky to have the opportunity to take the Advanced Cold Process Soap Class at The Nova Studio back in 2009.  But if you are not fortunate enough to take the class, then check out this Funnel Swirl Soap tutorial by Lomond Soap which so happens to appear on Fresholi Bites.

Make funnel swirl soaps is pretty easy for one person to do. But if you are unsure of yourself pouring two different colors of soap for the first time, you can always ask a friend to help you out.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Bath Confetti

Love to take baths instead of showers?  Why not make your bathing experience more festive by making Bath Confetti from  The Soap Barn.
I think it is really cute idea to make for someone who enjoys take a soak. Or it would be the perfect party favor for a bridal shower, baby shower or whatever. The packaging idea presented in this recipe uses a soap box with an oval window is ideal to give the confetti out as gifts.  I think that is a great idea because it really show cases the confetti.