If you are new to handcrafted soap you may not be aware there are three processes in which a person can handcraft soap; yet there are only two ways to really make soap.
The oldest recorded process of soap making is the Hot Process Method. This process has been dated as far back as 2800 B.C. Not much has changed in this process in over 5000 years. In its simplest form, Hot Process is still heating fats and adding an alkaline to induce saponification. Fats usually plant or animal base and alkaline was in the form of ash or salts. Today the Hot Process is still used by many soap makers. It is primary process for making African Black Soap where the ash of Shea bark and Cocoa pods and Palm Tree leaves give it a dark rich color. The Hot Process is our favorite and most used process at 153 Boutique.
The Cold Process method is newer and one of the most popular soap making methods. Similar to Hot Process, Cold Process uses the same ingredients however the alkaline is not heated with the fats. The soap from this process is generally smoother and requires a longer curing time. Generally Cold Process soap-makers are more creative with their design and creative visual flare. Many times, we at 153 Boutique use this process in soap making with our more delicate recipes.
The Melt and Pour Process is the newest method of soap making. The process is usually used by those who are concerned with using alkaline or lye. In this method a batch of soap is usually purchased from a soap maker or company. To make the soap it is melted down and additives are added to it such as essential oils, fragrance, color, or other agents. In some instances, this process is also used to create soap with a visual flare. WE NEVER USE THIS METHOD FOR OUR SOAPS. We are a bit of control freaks with our soaps and like to know what is going into them. This is how we protect the integrity and quality of our soaps. With the Melt and Pour Process there is no guarantee on the ingredients or the quality of those ingredients.