Thursday, February 19, 2015

It's all in the Genes

Black Cherry Bomb

This month's soap challenge is the DNA/helix swirl, which is very similar to an earlier comb challenge  -- my worst to date. Unfortunately, this one didn't start very well, either.

I chose to make Black Cherry Bomb, based on my son's favorite fragrance and the color palette (link) it inspired. Using my standard non-vegan DIY pre-mixed oils:
  • 32% Coconut Oil - $20/gallon from Amazon (link)
  • 32% Lard - Walmart or Smart & Final (in store)
  • 32% Costco Kirkland Mediterranean Blend Oil (link)
  • 4% Castor Oil - Wholesale Supplies (link)
  • 1.5:1 water:lye - discounted to minimize rivers (link) - DIY pre-mixed
  • 1 oz/ppo fragrance oil - Black Cherry Bomb - Nature Garden (link)
  • 0.5 oz/ppo 60% Sodium Lactate to harden bars - Wholesale Supplies (link)
  • 0.5 oz/ppo 1:1 Simple Syrup to increase bubbles - DIY (link)
Here are some close-ups of the finished batch; I'll spare you the rest.

These only look halfway decent because I added glitter to the tops and took the pictures with a macro lens. :) Otherwise, the colors don't really work and the stripes were too wide.

BTW, as I realized too late, I'd already tried this ill-fated color combination (in the comb challenge!), where I'd discovered (and subsequently forgotten) that opaque gold looks just like peanut butter, and is rather unappealing in soap!

Berry Creamsickle

Luckily, there's another dessert I've been wanting to do ever since I saw this light-hearted color palette (link). This time, I only used three of the colors, plus the lightened base (all colors from TKB Trading):

  •       Cosmic Caroline (link) +
          Red #27 (link)
  •       Soapberry Purple (link)  +
          Red #27 - TKB Trading (link)
  •       Soapberry Orange (link) +
          True Yellow (link)
  •       Titanium Dioxide - pre-mixed
           in oil to reduce speckles
Exact same recipe, additives, etc., but back to Nature's Garden Strawberry Rhubarb Pie (link) (which decelerates trace but discolors to tan without the TD).



Blackberry Creamsickle

Although I like how those came out, I did make just one more version, to see if I could get the colors pop a bit more. For this, I mixed some white into the hot pink and the plum, and added in some black in place of the base color. The orange doesn't show very much against them, though:

And now for some arty close ups... :)



BTW, I did make a few other batches, and I really like how this one looks, but it doesn't work for this challenge:

It was an experiment using mica oil for the tops instead of batter, which just don't hold their shape well enough for such a structured design. But it's still cool! :)


  1. I love the colours you have used, the contrast between the stripes shows up beautifully.

  2. Beautiful colors ! I like the light hearted colors more :)

  3. Oh, Claudia! The color combo is stunning. The contrast of the colors is great and the swirl turned out great. The soap with the mica oil, it is so beautiful, too!

  4. Just goes to show with a professional camera and some artsy angles, you can make a not-so-pretty soap look pretty amazing!! LOL! The Blackberry Creamsickle really looks fantastic! I'm a huge fan of the purple, and the helix design looks like you crossed over the swirls like the log mold design, but in a slab mold. Gives it that added interest and unique creative touch. :)

  5. I like both of your creamsickle swirls! and that bottom soap is very cool too.

  6. Wow! and WOW! These are all stunning. Love your color choices.