Friday, January 8, 2010

Does bar soap or liquid hand soap go bad? Why? Thanks?

Why? Did it taste different the last time you ate some?

How long will the soap last?

I was wondering how long my home made soap will last? I make soaps with milk and oats, and sometimes fruit and veggie juice. I was reading some soap pages on the net and it said that a lot of veggie made soaps (olive oil, coconut oil, palm oil, etc) don't last as long (a few weeks or so). I wanted to make some soaps as gifts for the family and I want them to be able to last at least a year or more, how would I accomplish this???

You're talking about how long they will stay good in storage? At first I thought you meant in use... but I think you mean how long before they might go bad when stored. If you are making gifts, I would not make them way in advance because the fragrances will fade over time. It's better to time your soapmaking so that the soap is well cured but not old when you give it if possible... maybe make it two months in advance of giving it (you could do six weeks, I'm just tossing out a number there). If you want soap that will keep longer in storage, the following will help that to happen:

Don't go overboard with lye discounting/superfatting... Personally, I would not go higher than 5% lye discount. Accurate measuring is important here.

Don't fill your soap with too many unsaponifiable ingredients... like plant or vegetable fiber, fruits, etc. Those can go bad in storage and sometimes even mold if the chunks are very large. Small bits of dried herb should be okay if you don't overload the soap with it.

It would appear that you should avoid superfatting at trace. If fats added then don't get well blended before the soap is poured, they may be more inclined to go bad during storage. I prefer to put all my oils in at the beginning and only add fragrances and additives (like color, herbs) if needed at the end.

Don't store your soaps in airtight conditions. A semi-closed environment that gets a bit of air is good. That way they will be less inclined to sweat in storage but won't lose so much fragrance as they can if given total open air. I would not wrap them until it is close to the time you are going to give them as gifts. They continue to lose moisture for a long time and will keep shrinking (less and less but enough for labels to loosen, for example).

Soap that was made with no lye discount (and we are assuming is still balanced and not lye heavy) will keep for a LONG time without any rancidity. It might lose its smell over time and get hard as a rock, but will still be good soap. Whenever you add extra fat for mildness, you are lessening the longevity of your bars. If you plan to use them in short order, this is not a problem and most people use their soap within a year or two. I've heard of boxed up soap being found in old houses and still being good after who knows how long! Amazing.

Good luck! I hope this helps!

...It's possible that thing you read was in reference to how long the soap lasts when being used. Some all vegetable soaps will soften and melt down quicker in the dish than soaps made with beef tallow, for instance. Palm oil helps all-vegetable soaps to be hard and longer lasting. That in addition to coconut are good to blend with a conditioning oil such as olive.Does bar soap or liquid hand soap go bad? Why? Thanks?
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Does bar soap or liquid hand soap go bad? Why? Thanks?
i don't think that it does
if u dont put a cover on it or change it every now and than it will collect bacteria that is very bad for ur skin and others
Only after a few millenia. The glycerine and fats in modern soaps does not go rancid because of the manufacturing process involving chemical stabilizers. The polymer chains are mostly carbon based, so its halflife would be a VERY, VERY long time.

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