Hello everyone! A here!
It’s been a hard journey to this recipe, as I do not possess straight hair, but after rounds of testing (both blog-documented and blog-undocumented) and days of planning and rationing ingredients, after inordinate amounts of research and tears of joy and horror, I think I’ve finally come across the perfect shampoo bar for straight hair. And while I won’t disclose recipes, I will explain my creation process.
There were a few things I wished to accomplish with my shampoo bar. I wanted it chock-full of ingredients known for their low pHs, and I wanted several things nourished the scalp and helped regulate sebum production without imparting too much color. I’d already decided on the ingredients for low pH: lemon, apple cider vinegar, and aloe vera juice. After playing around with infusing herbs into apple cider vinegar specifically intended for shampoo bars, I found that I didn’t care for using infused apple cider vinegar in soap. I resolved to use a small amount of lemon juice mixed in with the apple cider vinegar I would add after cook. The aloe vera juice would be used to dissolve the lye.
These ingredients are also great hits for hair on their own, so I didn’t feel the need to add anything extra. However, a bit of colloidal oatmeal never hurt anyone, right? Right.
It’s a pretty simple HP recipe, but all that means is I just had to trust the ingredients and nail the soaping process 🙂
Next I mixed aloe vera and lye, stickblending it into my warmed oils until it reached a solid medium trace. The recipes with castor and cocoa tend to trace fast when added with heat. After this I just put on the top and left it alone.
Is it me or does cook seem to come quicker than I expected? It’s like I turn around and my soap is all gelified and such! The soap here is on the harder side of things, but fully cooked. This is before adding the superfat and scent. While I do like the consistency of this soap, it’s not the best for molding. This is the reason why I like to add superfats and the like separately instead of using an automatic one.
Then comes the fun part! Superfatting and adding extra liquid. Here’s where I added the ACV and lemon juice. I think of ACV as my “base color” and lemon juice as my “accent.” Add the liquid and whisk it in. It becomes so smooth! But I don’t mold it yet. I let the soap cook a bit more to condense before I cut off the heat and let it cool down to under 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Then I add my superfat and my scent. I love adding a fragrance to soap. It just blooms in it! Litsea in particular is especially nice.
I pour (read: spoon) into a mold and let it set for a couple hours before cutting. Peep the new mold! I have a post scheduled talking about the change very soon! Just to get you all excited about it, it’s custom-made, made of sturdy cedar, and cost me under $7.00. Whoo hoo!
Unmold and cut. The bars are pretty large with the rough top characteristic of hot process soap. The surfaces are smooth and free of air bubbles.
So happy with the way this soap came out. It smells wonderful, and it feels great. It’s only improved over time. You can buy a bar here.