DIFFERENCE: This recipe has 5% less Shea Butter and Castor 5% more Castor oil than Alkanet Experiment 9. Alkanet Experiments 1 – 8 had 15% shea. This one has 5% Shea.
PROCESS: I decreased the Shea Butter by 5% and added Castor Oil not only at trace but also in the main liquid oils.
RESULTS: I am sooooo disappointed and actually fed up. Once again, I got that ugly soupy grey. But the reason I am so fed up this time is because I decided to use the EXACT recipe that I used last time I got a nice purple from Alkanet (made in early March). I felt confident that I would get a nice purple this time.
If I am using the EXACT same recipe, why shouldn’t it turn a beautiful purple???? The answer is I don’t know. The only changes in the recipe between this ugly soupy grey soap and this lovely demonstration of a Alkanet purple... is that 1) I lowered the quantities very slightly to fit the experimental mould... but all proportionally and correctly, 2) in the March recipe, used Alkanet coloured oil in half the mixture, then I used the funnel technique 3) The Essential Oil blend was slightly different but not much and 4) The atmosphere, temperatures I am working in now in mid-summer southern Spain - HOT and humid and February was cold and not-so-humid. I used the same oils. I mixed the lye and oils at the same temperature (37º). I am absolutely baffled and discouraged. Could the atmosphere and weather conditions be affecting Alkanet? Could the amount of time it takes me to pour (as with the funnel technique it all takes a while) affect the Alkanet? I cannot think of any other reasons why these two soaps are so different except that maybe I forgot to write something down in my notes on the funnel purple soap...? I DON'T KNOW! I do have enough Lavender oil for 1 more experiment. But, then I will wait until the colder weather is back and MAYBE try again.
CONCLUSION – Increasing castor oil and lowering shea butter quantities affects Alkanet colour in soaps but possibly not in a good way. Also, it is possible that atmosphere and weather conditions affect Alkanet colour in soaps.
CONFESSION: My patience is almost up... I would LOOOOVE someone else to continue where I have left off. Anyone interested?
TEASER... Next experiment will be adding baking soda and maybe in the pot swirling...