Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Fabulously Frustrating Blue...

What an awesome blue!!! Right? It is a fabulous blue, even though I wasn’t looking for blue. It’s like a Robin’s Egg!! I got it from Ratanjot!

The thing is – it is the same recipe as my fabulous purple a few weeks ago... !!??(!/¿&/%**!???????

October 31 Wild Lavender, Ratanjot (Ylang Ylang, Geranium & Clove EO)

This perfect purple was achieved with a touch of Ratanjot in this wonderful recipe full of shea and avocado butter - soothing... moisturizing... luxuriously lovely lavender!!! Except it had been achieved without Lavender Essential Oil since I ran out. The Essential Oil blend in this soap was Ylang Ylang, Geranium & Clove. Not a fabulous scent, but a fabulous colour.

So, when more Lavender Essential Oil arrived, I tried again! The EXACT same recipe EXCEPT with Alkanet instead of Ratanjot and Lavender, Patchouli and Spearmint Essential Oils. Here it is:

November 4 Wild Lavender, Alkanet (Lavender, Patchouli, Spearmint)

What the ??!!?? Completely different. Not very purple. We are back to blue gray. The Patchouli I have is pretty dark so I think it really affected the colour. Also, the Alkanet?

So I tried AGAIN. The EXACT same recipe EXCEPT I went back to Ratanjot and did half water half goat milk for the liquid. I wanted to see how Ratanjot reacted to goat milk. Achieved gray-blue.

November 7 Wild Lavender, Ratanjot & goat milk (Lavender, Ylang Ylang, Spearmint)

So I tried AGAIN. The EXACT same recipe as the beautiful purple from 31st October EXCEPT I only used Lavender and Patchouli Essential Oils. What a difference! Could it really be just the Essential Oils that are affecting this colour?

November 14 Wild Lavender, Ratanjot (Lavender & Patchouli)

So I tried AGAIN. (Some say I am not a quitter...) The EXACT same recipe as the beautiful purple from 31st October EXCEPT for 3 things:

1) I accidentally went overboard by 3 grams of Castor Oil
2) The Essential Oil blend is Lavender, Ho Wood and Ylang Ylang (all clears)
3) I finally used Orris Root powder for the first time, as a scent fixative, added at trace. You can see the specs in the photo

Here is the gorgeous blue! (Same soap as the very first photo in this post)

November 15 Wild Lavender (Lavender, Ho Wood and Ylang Ylang)

Note Orris Root speckles

Oct 31 Purple & Nov 4 Wild Lavender - Colour Comparison

But what good is achieving the perfect lavender purple if I can’t seem to replicate it with Lavender Essential Oil?

As I am nearing the date of opening my on-line shop I want to have some recipes set. I think I am feeling pressure to get my lavender recipe set and it is teasing me...

So, I think for the moment I will offer a nice cream coloured Goat-Milk Lavender soap until I finally get the colour I want with the scent I want!!! AAARRRRRGGG!

Questions and opinions:

1) What Essential Oil scent/ blend would you put with the awesome robin’s egg blue soap?
2) Have you worked with Orris Root powder? How do you get it not to speckle?
3) While I am asking questions – what sort of scales do you work with? Mine is only accurate within 2 grams. Please recommend good scale(s) - brand name and model if possible.

Thanks all!

Happy soaping!



Ambra said...

Jen, you do not give up, do you?! That blue is going to turn some sort of purple/lavender. I made some alkanet soap (with lavender EO) on Saturday and what a fabulous blue I got! And it is starting to turn from blue right now. So it is a question of the PH and it is so fascinating to watch. And this is what you have to love about the natural colours. You can't really replicate. Makes it easier to understand why manufacturers turn to man made=predictable results.
I saw Orris root in a specialty shop and forgot to buy it. So I haven't tried it, but I'm going to. Keep us posted on your results. And my scale just went kaput. It's a cheap thing that, like yours, measures in 2g increments. Pure hell and I'm glad to see it go. So I' also interested in the answers :)

Splurge Sisters said...

I'm crazy about that Robin Egg's Blue, it is absolutely gorgeous. I love my scale and once I get home I'll let you know the brand. How frustrating to not be able to get the same purple again. I admire your efforts though.

AromaBeauty Natural Soaps said...

Boy oh boy! You’ve been a busy little beaver:) Love the blue, it's so pretty Jen, haven't any suggestions about a blend to use with it at present, but I'll put my thinking cap on.
Talk about frustrating, why can't using natural colours be easier?? I haven't tried Orris root powder in soap, did try it once in a natural deodorant but was allergic to it:( so that sort of put me off using it again.
I use Homemaker scales from Kmart; don’t know if you have that store over there? They weren’t very expensive and were bought in an emergency, they weigh in 1g increments and they’ve worked really well for me, since my old ones decided to up and die on me, half way though making soap one day.
I had my lye all ready and was half way though weighing the oils and then had to tear into town and madly run around, like a chook with its head cut off, trying to buy another.

lola said...

Hola Jen , como obtienes el color purpura?
Me interesa para darle un poco de color a mis jabones, pero con colorantes naturales.

Jennifer Young said...

Lola, Estoy experimentando con raiz de Alkanet y tambien de Ratanjot. Nunca sale igual! Depende de que aceites usas, el colour de ellas y otros factores pero aconsejo que empiezas por alli. Y cuentame sobre tus experimentos por favor!!!! Suerte! xo Jen

Michelle said...

I like how persistent you are with these natural colorants. A natural blue is so hard to get and maintain. That blue in the first pic is soooooo perrrrrfect!

I've only used orris root powder in homemade body powder not in anything else.

Your blue soap would be great with blue chamomile... I have blue chamomile on the brain this week.

Michael R. Hughes said...

Hi Jennifer,

The Wild Lavender, Ratanjot (Lavender & Patchouli)looks awesome. I like the sheen on thees soaps! How often have you found essential oils to change the colour of your soaps unexpectedly?

Thank you!


Jennifer Young said...

Michael, Yes... lately I have found with the trickier natural colourants every little colour change, including colour of ois and essential oils affects the end colour result. I continue to experiment! xo Jen

Amy W said...

They're all lovely colors, but I understand consistency would be nice. :) For blue, I think of blue chamomile as a nice natural scent.

Anonymous said...

I am full of admiration for your patience Jen! And what a gorgeous colour you've achieved, just beautiful.

Celine Blacow said...

Wow, what are you going to do with all that soap?! The thing about handmade producs is that one is never the same as the next so, if these are planned for sale, just sell them as changing colours due to the natural colorants used! Personally I think people mostly buy based on fragrance description and if you highlight the handmade-ness of the product by pointing out that they're not all the same, straight off the factory floor, one the same as the next, type soaps.. well then I think you'll be on to a winner. Can't wait to see your online store!!!

And thanks for all the comments on my blog, we're muddling through all this together aren't we?!