French Green Clay Soap Protocol
protocol by Kerry Gorelick (5/1/2020)
Makes 16 1-inch bars
525 g (35%*) Olive oil
375 g (25%) Coconut oil
450 g (30%) Beef tallow
75 g (5%) Castor oil
75 g (5%) Avocado oil
* olive oil is 35% of the total oils
2 Tablespoons French green clay (roughly 2 teaspoons per 1 lb of oils)
Essential Oil Blend
9.3 g (20%*) Rosemary
18.6 g (40%) Lavender
9.3 g (20%) Patchouli
4.7 g (10%) Litsea cubeba
* rosemary is 20% of the total essential oils
431.2 g distilled water
212.4 g NaOH
If you’ve never made cold process soap before, please watch beginner videos on YouTube before proceeding (there is no JoVE protocol available)
Mix lye water. Always add NaOH to distilled water in a well ventilated area using proper protective equipment (but I don’t have to tell scientists that right?). Set aside to cool.
Measure all oils (melting the solid ones) and mix together. Add clay to oil mixture and whisk or stick blend briefly. Add essential oil blend to oils and mix gently.
Heat oils and lye water to within 10 degrees of each other (I like to soap around 110°F), gently pour the lye water into the oil mixture. The easiest way is to put your stick blender into the oils and pour the lye water onto the shaft. Stick blend to thin to medium trace. Pour into your mold and decorate as you wish. Topping with coarse pink Himalayan sea salt looks nice with the soft green color of this soap. Once the soap is no longer shiny, spray with 91% (or higher) isopropanol to prevent soda ash. I also like to put this soap into the refrigerator for several hours so it doesn’t gel. Wait 2 days, unmold and cut. Cure for at least 4 weeks at room temperature.
To scale this recipe to any size mold, use SoapCalc with the above ratios.
Oils: Costco & Amazon
NaOH: Amazon (do not bring home from your lab)
91% isopropanol (rubbing alcohol): CVS, Target or similar drugstore (we do not sanction using 70% EtOH from your lab)