Brush: Certifyd Badger/Boar Mix (restored by @reyes_restores)
Soap: Thirsty Badger Alpha
Today I figured was a good day to revisit my soap making experience. Quite some time ago, I decided I wanted to try making a shaving soap. I thought about putting some up for sale at some point, having my own soap line, etc, but my main driver for learning is that I wanted a better understanding of shave soap. How much effort does it take artisans to soap? What makes a good shave soap? What should I look out for when buying a shave soap to ensure I don’t pick up a soap that is just a bath soap with the word ‘shaving’ added. After some research and a bit of trial and error, I was able to make my own shave soap. I’m revisiting it today.
The Alpha (ie, my first try) shave soap is a vegan base with stearic acid, coconut oil and shea butter. For scent, I grabbed a vanilla oak fragrance oil from the soap making supply source and used that to scent. As far as shave soaps go…. this is one of them. lol. I achieved what I was looking for. The soap lathers quite easily into a very voluminous and stable lather. Slickness wise, its average, I can get a decent enough shave (it even worked with the straight) but residual is lacking, I wouldn’t do any buffing. Post shave, it is a bit drying for sure. If I was to soap again, I know some things I would change up to get better slickness and post shave. I can say I was super happy with how it turned out and I learned a few things about soap making that helps me better purchase and talk about shave soaps. For example, I won’t buy a shave soap without stearic acid or soy wax in the ingredient list.
Most of my work was from research, taking a traditional soap making class, watching some youtube videos and doing some ingredient list reading. I have since found a better resource to start with. If you want to try out soap making (I recommend giving it a go, even if just to better understand what our soap makers go through) then I would point you to this book, How to Make Shave Soap by Soap Commander. There are several recipes and tips/tricks to get you started. I wish I had seen this when I got started.