Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Dragon's Blood Drop Swirl Soap


Did I scare you?

It's almost Halloween, and so a Halloween soap is in order. I got some of my mojo back and actually felt like soaping, so I hurried to my fragrance cabinet and perused my stash. You may recall that when we moved only a few of my fragrance oils made the trip and I am trying to use them up before buying more. I know, HAHAHA!, right? So far, though, I haven't bought any more scents, but the next time I go shopping for supplies ... well, you know how you start clicking on things and then those things have a way of sneaking into your cart and then later, after you emerge from a hazy fragrance fog, you're like, "Where did all of my monies go?"

Anyway, I had some Dragon's Blood fragrance oil from Elements Bath and Body. I immediately thought of a black and red soap. And the drop swirl technique would be perfect for making gruesome bloody droplets of bloody blood.

To make the soap, I brought the batch to a very light trace. I successfully resisted the urge to stickblend ONE MORE TIME, so the batch stayed fairly loose. I think that I could have stopped stickblending even sooner, though. I'll work on that. I'm almost there.

For the recipe itself, I used 50% olive oil, 30% coconut oil, 15% shea butter, and 5% castor oil. I'm still trying to come up with a palm-free recipe that I like. So far, this one seems promising.
 Here is a video showing how I made this soap:

Because the fragrance oil discolors brown, I didn't scent the entire batch. After bringing the soap to a light trace, I portioned off one cup in a measuring cup and left it unscented. Then I colored the rest of the soap black with activated charcoal and added all of the fragrance oil to the black soap. (I used one teaspoon of activated charcoal per pound of oils, so two teaspoons total for this batch. I also mixed the charcoal with some oil pulled from the total to work out any clumps.) Then I colored the unscented cup of soap with one teaspoon of Merlot Sparkle Mica. This way, the red soap will stay red and the black soap will hide any discoloration from the fragrance oil.

Next I poured the black soap into my mold. To make the drop swirls, I poured the red soap from up high in a random pattern. Pouring from higher up allows the drop swirls to sink deeper into the soap.

Once I was done pouring the red soap, I swirled and texturized the top of the loaf, being careful not to disturb the drop swirls beneath the surface.

To do drop swirls, it's important to keep the soap loose and to maintain a light trace. As I said, I resisted the urge to overmix. And I also soaped a little bit cooler - around 93 degrees F.

These bars turned out boo-tifully! And I tested an end piece and it lathers white, so I don't think I overdid it with the charcoal.

I've got a couple more soap ideas rattling around in my head. Next up will be an autumn-themed soap, and then a holiday soap.

In the meantime, have a safe and fun Halloween! I think this year we might actually have trick-or-treaters in the neighborhood. Instead of candy maybe I should hand out slivers of soap, eh?

Nah. Candy. Definitely candy.


  1. Love those colours! Good for you for not overmixing, I know that has been your nemesis the last few times you soaped.

    I personally love the idea of giving out soap instead of candy for Hallowe'en, although it'd probably be a horrible shock for kids who don't pay attention and take a bite out of it. :)

    Have a great Hallowe'en!

    1. Thanks, Monica! I don't know what it is with me and overmixing lately. I hope I'm on my way to overcoming that problem.

      I would worry about the kids eating the soap, too. Or toilet-papering my house. :D You have a great Halloween, too!

  2. These are so cool looking! Nice work on resisting that last stickblend. Haha =)

    1. Thanks, Anne-Marie! It was hard to resist the urge! :D

  3. Jenny I love your articles!!!

    I know this isn't the right section, but could you add to your soapy links. It's a new forum some people are putting together from a few soap making forums. It's a lot smoother for older computers and a little easier to navigate.

    Our goal is to help small soapers sell their product and make a living!!

  4. Love the soap Jenny! When i use Activated Charcoal (which i love for it s beautiful deep black) it is soooo scratchy on the skin. Is it always like that or is there product that is of a finer powder?


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