Monday, December 31, 2012

Free Beginner’s Guide To Soapmaking: Cold Process

If you are just getting into making your own soap, the Soap Queen's has gone back to basics and created this article on cold process soap making for beginners. And she has graciously created a free download for anyone who wants one.  This is very informative and easy to understand, so  I would highly recommend it.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Running a Retail Business

Are you running a retail business?  It is difficult to run one even if times are good.  So, if you are feeling that you need some inspiration then read this blog article from Wholesale Supplies Plus on Running a Retail Business.  This article is not about starting a business.  The information in the article assumes your business is already up and running and your are looking for tips on how to keep your business running smoothly.  This article is oriented towards a small business, the same principles apply to most businesses regardless of size.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

How To Photograph Products

Anne-Marie (aka The Soap Queen) has reposted an article about photographing products.  The article on How to Photography Products shares a few tips on how you should approach this subject.  She mentions that she is not a photographer by any means but she wants you take this information with a grain a salt.  I would read the article anyway and take any information you can. You might be able to improve the pictures on your website or etsy site.  Good Luck!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Calculating your water amount for soapmaking

Whether you are a beginning or advanced cold process soap maker you may have a difficult time calculating your water.  If you are having trouble with this particular issue, you may want to read the article from Lovin' Soap called Calculating Your Water Amount For Soapmaking.  This is an informative article that help you along if you are having trouble calculating your water if you are making your own  recipe or if you are changing a particular oil in a recipe.  If you have any other suggestions on this subject, please share them.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Licorice Candy Soap (Melt and Pour)

When I saw the picture of this soap it reminded me of the Brach candy. I believe it was a Neopolitan. I tried it but  I did not like it because it had coconut.  But since this soap was called Licorice Candy Soap, the pink version reminded me of a boxed candy called Good and Plenty.  Now I was not a big licorice lover, but every once in awhile, I would get a box.  IF you love licorice, then I would recommend you try making this soap.  It is a very easy soap to make  because it only takes under two hours to make 9 soaps.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Peppermint Ice Melt and Pour Soap

Here is a wintery wake up for your shower that's cool to look at and cool to wash with, this melt and pour soap making project from About Candle and Soap called Peppermint Ice Melt and Pour Soap  that uses clear soap base with blue and pearlescent colorants to make a nifty icy bar of soap.

For this project you'll need:

(1) Clear melt and pour soap base - For this project I used 48 oz. of soap base total

(2) A blue soap colorant, preferably clear, ideally with a mica undertone - I used Sapphire Gel Tone Colorant from SunFeather Soap Company

(3) A white pearlescent mica colorant - I used "Polar Ice" mica from Keller Naturals

(4) Peppermint essential oil or another "cool" or "icy" fragrance oil

(5) A basic soap mold - my mold here makes 12 4 oz. bars

(6)  Basic melt and pour soap making equipment (measuring cup, scale, knives, whisk)

To get started making the Peppermint Ice Soap follow the instructions for each of these link:

Make the Blue Ice
Make the White Ice
Make the Ice Slivers
Arrange the Slivers in the Mold
Melt and Pour the Rest of the Soap Base
Unmold Your Icy Soap Creations

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Very Merry Cranberry Tree Melt and Pour Soap Loaf

Want to make your Christmas special? Why not create this Very Merry Cranberry Tree Melt and Pour Soap Loaf  from Wholesale Supplies Plus.  It is an advanced level soap project that should take an hour to make.  And the results are (8) 1" slices of soap.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Rose and Oat Facial Scrub

I have always used an almond scrub from the drugstore on my face.  I have never made one from scratch even though I took a facial products class from Lori Nova may years ago.  In a recent newsletters from Mountain Rose Herb they included a rceipe for a Rose and Oat Facial Scrub.  Their recipe looks simple enough to make but I will have to be on the look out for organic rose petals.  So give it a try and see what you think. Now I am on the look out for a mud mask since Walmart and CVS no longer carry my favorite mud mask.

For this recipe, you will need:

1 TBSP organic old-fashioned rolled Oats
1 TBSP organic raw Almonds
2 tsp dried organic Rose petals
1 tsp Rhassoul clay

Grind oats, almonds, and Rose petals in a clean coffee grinder until finely powdered. Sift through a mesh screen to remove larger pieces; larger pieces may be too abrasive for the delicate facial skin. Add Rhassoul clay, mix thoroughly, and store in a glass jar. To use, mix 2-3 tsp with water, milk, cream, flower water, or tea until a smooth paste forms. Massage the scrub onto your face with fingertips, then rinse with cool water.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Back to basics: Solid scrub bars

Have you ever made a lotion bar or a bath melt before?  How would you like to try and make a solid scrub bar?  Point of Interest has this very easy recipe for Solid Scrub Bars which would be great to make if you need an exfoliateror to use in the shower.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Clove and Orange Lip Balm Recipe

I would have to admit that I love the Orange/Clove or Orange/Cinnamon in cold process soap.  But in a recent Mountain Rose Herb Newsletter they had a recipe for Clove and Orange Lip Balm recipe. It is sweet, citrusy, and warming lip balm has just a hint of spice and a delightful scent reminiscent of Orange and Clove studded Pomander Balls. For those who do not know that citrus essential oils such as Sweet Orange are photosensitive which means that it can cause a rash or sunburn when worn when it is daylight.  So use it with caution

1 Tablespoon organic Shea Butter
3 Tablespoons organic Sunflower Oil
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Beeswax
15 drops organic Sweet Orange essential oil
5 drops organic Clove essential oil

Lip balm preparation: Coarsely chop the beeswax or use beeswax pastilles. Place beeswax, butter, and oils in a small pot or glass Pyrex measuring cup and gently heat in the top of a double boiler until the beeswax and butters have melted. Once melted, remove from the stovetop and add essential oils and Vitamin E Oil. Immediately pour the mixture into lip balm containers. You can purchase lip balm tubes and jars, or you can reuse glass or plastic containers. Allow to cool completely before placing caps onto the lip balm containers. Your lip balm is finished! You can now add labels, ribbons, twine, or any other decorative elements. Makes approximately 1.5 oz of lip balm, enough to fill 10 lip balm tubes, 6 of our 1/4 oz plastic jars, or 3 1/2 oz tins or plastic jars.

Friday, December 21, 2012


Here is a clever and unique gifft to make for someone on your list that loves to take baths.  This easy Ginger Orange Bath Cookies recipe from Wholesale Supplies Plus that should take you one hour to make 20-24 bath cookies. If you are giving these as a gift make sure to attach a note saying these are not edible. As easy as these are to make, they are very easy to use.  All you need to do is crumble a few bath cookies under running water to experience the soothing affects of the oatmeal, mango butter and grapeseed oil.  .

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Body Scrubs Class in Sunnyvale, CA

Body scrubs are a great way to exfoliate the skin while you shower. They are also a simple & easy gift to make for any occasion. In this hands on demonstration class, students will learn how to make 3 different body scrubs (salt, whipped sugar & sugar cube), plus an added bonus of a lip scrub. At the end of the class, students will take home an 8 oz. jar of salt scrub, a 10 oz. jar of single use sugar cube scrub, 8 oz. jar of whipped sugar scrub, .25 oz. lip scrub. In addition students will receive an extensive handout with recipes, resources of suppliers, packaging and more. Important: Students must bring to class: a 2 cup measuring cup, mixing bowl (metal), mixing spoon, and a large bowl for measuring. A materials fee of $20 (cash) will be collected on the day of class.

Saturday, February 16, 2013
10 am to 1 pm

Cost: $35 plus $20 materials fee

Sunnyvale Cupertino Adult Education
591 W. Fremont Avenue
Room: Cafeteria
Sunnyvale, CA 94087

(408) 522-2700

Class could be cancelled due to low enrollment. Sign up early and tell your friends!

Fuzzy Felted Soap Balls

Have you ever heard of felted soap?  I have heard of it and saw demonstrated on a craft show awhile back but I have never tried it before.   If you are interested in trying making this type of soap, you should check out Amanda's  (of Lovin' Soap) Fuzzy Felted Soap Balls tutorial on The Soap Queen's site.  After seeing this tutorial I would definately would like to give it a try.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Customer Question: How Do I Prevent Product Tampering?

Are you currently in business that creates soaps or other cosmetic products? So you are wondering how to protect your product against tampering.  According to Alison Kontur of Bath Body Supply Company, it is a common problem  in the cosmetic industry that occurs when you stock your products at a boutique or have them displayed at a craft show and a customer removs the lid to smell or sample the product.  In her blog article Customer Question: How Do I Prevent Product Tampering?, Alison gives you 5 different solutions to this problem.  But I am wondering if putting out one jar or bottle of a product as a sample would work.  Or would this create a problem of contamination, what are your thoughts?


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Wildcraft Face Cream Recipe

This luxuriously rich and silky face cream recipe is a favorite of the Mountain Rose staff. It is an adaptation of Rosemary Gladstar’s much beloved Perfect Cream recipe absorbs quickly without leaving a filmy or greasy residue. The best part is that it has an unbelievably velvet texture and a smooth consistency which leaves your skin feeling fresh and supple. Totally customizable, you can experiment freely with your favorite essential oils, infused oils, and hydrosols using this recipe as a base for your own face cream creations. A wonderful gift idea for friends and family – or for yourself!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Hot Process Series: CPOP Swirls

Ever wondered what the difference is between CPOP, HPOP, and CPHP? Anne-Marie (aka Soap Queen)  hopes to set the record straight when it comes to various methods of using heat to aid in the soapmaking process in an blog entry called Hot Process Series: CPOP Swirls . She will selt out to tell you of my own accounts of what happens when I attempt these different methods. She also provides a recipe for you to try.  It is an advanced project that should take you 1.5 hours to make 8 bars of soap. Give it a try!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Peppermint Salt Scrub Cubes Recipes

If you have ever made sugar scrub cubes before, here is a recipe from Wholesale Supplies Plus on how to make Peppermint Salt Scrub Cubes.  It is very similiar to making sugar scrub cubes but you are using a medium grain salt instead of granulated sugar.  Even though the author says this would be great for summer, I thought the peppermint scent reminded me more of Christmas. Wow! What a great gift to give to your friends during the holiday season.  If you change the fragrance, you can give it out anytime of the year!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Tree with Falling Snow M&P Soap

Winter is just around the corner. If winter is your favorite time of the year, then you may want to create this adorable melt and pour bar of soap called Tree with Falling Snow . This free recipe appears on the Wholesale Supplies Plus website and they conveniently added a print recipe button to store easily in your files. This advanced melt and pour soap project should take you about 2 hours to complete and when the soap is completely cured you should get (8) 1" bars of soap to enjoy.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Fresh Snow Gradient Layer Soap

I really like the layered look in cold process soap.  If you like the look as much as I do, then check out this tutorial Fresh Snow Gradient Layer Soap  from I'd Lathering Be Soaping.  Somehow, purple does not seem like a color that I would associate with fresh snow.  I may use blue instead.  What do you think?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Making an eye cream (part 3)

Did you love the recipes from part one and two from Point of Interenets?  IF you have not and want to try to make your own eye cream. here is part three of the series Making an eye cream (part 3)  where Point of Interest discusses what a comeceutical and gives and other great recipe.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Peppermint Cocoa Lip balm Recipe

Do you love using lip balm?  Here is a Peppermint Cocoa Lip Balm recipe from Mountain Rose Herb that is refreshing, cooling, and nourishing lip balm with Cocoa Butter and Peppermint for that quintessential fusion of chocolate and mint. It is perfect some someone who loves that combination.

1 Tablespoon Cocoa Butter
2 Tablespoons Sweet Almond Oil
1 Tablespoon Avocado Oil
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Beeswax
12-15 drops Peppermint Essential Oil
A few drops of Vitamin E Oil (optional, but recommended)

Lip balm preparation: Coarsely chop the beeswax or use beeswax pastilles. Place beeswax, butter, and oils in a small pot or glass Pyrex measuring cup and gently heat in the top of a double boiler until the beeswax and butters have melted. Once melted, remove from the stovetop and add essential oils and Vitamin E Oil. Immediately pour the mixture into lip balm containers. You can purchase lip balm tubes and jars, or you can reuse glass or plastic containers. Allow to cool completely before placing caps onto the lip balm containers. Your lip balm is finished! You can now add labels, ribbons, twine, or any other decorative elements. Makes approximately 1.5 oz of lip balm, enough to fill 10 lip balm tubes, 6 of our 1/4 oz plastic jars, or 3 1/2 oz tins or plastic jars.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Gnome Soaps

When I see Gnomes I think of the commercial for that online travel site. Was it Expedia?  Anyway, I saw this project by Amanda of Lovin' Soap who did a guest melt and pour tutorial on how to make Gnome Soaps for The Soap Queen last year that you might have missed.  If you want to create this as a Santa Gnome and give them as gifts then check out the tutorial.  But make sure to download the free gnome embed from Amanda's site.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Snow Globes Melt and Pour Soaps

As an adult, I still love snow globes.  I have seen simple projects to make your own which I have not tried yet, but I recently found this Gingerbread Man Snow Globe (Melt and Pour) project from Wholesale Supplies Plus which is too cute not to share.  I really want to try making this project sometime.  They would be cute to give as gives but they may be too cute to use.  This is an intermediate project which should take two hours to make 10 soaps.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Mr. Grinch Sleigh Soap

Did you watch The Grinch Stole Christmas as a child?  I watched every year when it came on.  I do remember that Boris Karloff having a voice over reading the store.  If you are a big fan of this classic, you  may want to create this melt and pour Mr. Grinch Sleigh Soap from Denise of Go Planet Earth.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Faux Fir Refresher Room Spray

For Christmas do you put a fauz tree up every year?  Do you miss the aroma of a fresh tree?  Then you should consider making this Faux Fir Refresher Spray from DIY Skincare.  It is very simple to make since it only takes two ingredients plus a spray bottle to make it. So bring back abit of the holidays to your home.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Super Bouncy Ball Soaps

As a child were you always begging your mom/dad for change to put into the gumball machine to get a bouncy ball?  Here is a soap project from The Soap Queen called the Super Bouncy Ball Soaps that look the like the balls you would get from the gumball machine. It is an advanced project that should take you two hours to make eight spheres.  What a great party favor to make for your child's next birthday party.

Thursday, December 6, 2012


Are you a fan of body butters and use them on a regular basis?  What about pumpkin?  Why not combine the two and create this Whipped Pumpkin Butter from Wholesale Supplies Plus?  This is an easy level project that you can do in a half hour.  Once you complete the recipe you will have made (12) three ounce jars which means you can have enough to give out as holiday gifts. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Pumpkin Spice Aroma

Even though Thanksgiving has passed, it does not mean that you cannot celebrate all year with the aroma of  baking goodies, enjoying beloved company, and filling the air with warm spicy aromas! Diffusing essential oils is a simple and effective way to fill a room with your favorite seasonal scent, especially if you don’t have time to bake a pie. A classic blend for this time of year is pumpkin spice, which brings back warm feelings and memories of fresh baked pumpkin pie and family gatherings. This blend will not only fill your room with spicy goodness, it will also help disinfect the air while bringing a smile to your face. So, skip those expensive synthetically perfumed candles and make this delicious smelling treat! This recipe from a newsletter I receive from The Mountain Rose blog is one way to  bring in those fabulous baking aromas anytime you want.

Pumpkin Spice Essential Oil Blend

Blending Directions: Add all essential oils to a glass bottle. One 1/4oz bottle will hold this blend perfectly. Screw cap on tightly and invert the bottle to blend the oils. Do not shake!

Diffusing Directions: Fill your essential oil diffuser reservoir with water. Add 5-6 drops of the Pumpkin Spice Essential Oil Blend. Light a tea candle in base of your diffuser and enjoy as your space fills with this spicy aroma! (The diffuser pictured is our new Ceramic Diffuser, which is made in the USA).

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Making an eye cream: Tweaking the oils

If you loved the articles posted on Point of Interest's site about making your own eye cream, but know you want to tweak the oils in the recipes.  Now you do not have to worry because Point of Interest has recently posted an article on Making an eye cream: Tweaking the oils which should answer all of your questions.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Orange Spice Colongne

If you are looking for something for the man in your life, you might want to consider making this Orange Spice Cologne recipe that I recently saw in a newsletter from Mountain Rose. This  warming, spicy, and exotic blend that will lift spirits, invigorate senses, alleviate stress, mental fatigue, and tension. The aroma is delightfully reminiscent of Chai tea.

You will need the following ingredients:

1 organic Cinnamon Stick
25 organic whole Cardamom Pods
15 organic Cloves
1 organic Vanilla Bean – cut into small pieces
1 fresh organic Orange peel – zest only
8 oz Vodka


Crush spices in a mortar and pestle. Combine with Vanilla Bean pieces, Orange peel zest, and vodka in a glass mason jar. Cap tightly and shake once or more per day. After 2-6 weeks, strain the spices and pour the infused liquid into a glass bottle with a mister top. Simply add more spices if you desire a stronger cologne.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Learn how to make bath and body treats

How would you like to learn how to make some of your favorite products in a solid form? In this demonstration class you will learn how to make a solid version of a lotion stick/massage bar, body scrub and bath oil.The class will cover packaging and other topics. Students will take home an extensive handout with recipes, resources and more, a lotion stick, massage bar, body scrub and bath melts. Lab Fee: $20 (cash) payable to the instructor. NO REFUNDS 7 DAYS PRIOR TO CLASS START DATE.

Saturday, March 9, 2013
11 am to 2 pm
Cost: $33 for Residents/$39 Non Resident plus $20 materials fee

Redwood City Parks and Recreation
Red Morton Community Center
1120 Roosevelt Ave
Room 4
Redwood City, CA 94061
(650) 780-7311

To register online: This class could be cancelled due to low enrollment. Sign up early and tell your friends!

This class is sponsored by Redwood City Parks and Rec.

Ombre Rebatch Layers Tutorial

In the past, I have found and posted tutorials on how to make ombre layered candles. To my surprise, I found this Ombre Rebatch Layered Soap tutorial from The Soap Queen that really takes rebatching and layering soap to a whole new level.  In this receipe you can simply purchase the cold process soap noodles from Brambleberry which is really conveinent if you do not have the space or time to do so. This is an intermediate level project that should take 30-45 mins to get about 6 bars of soap.  Have fun!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Star Loaf with Curls M&P

Want to make soaps for the holidays but you do not know where to start?  Well, here is an advanced level project from Wholesale Supplies Plus called Star Loaf with Curls.  From the picture it does not look particularly geared towards anyone religion, but you can incorporate holiday colors if you wish.  This project takes a 1/2 hour to make and yields eight bars of soap.