I have been using herbal infusions for soaps since I began making soap. Using herbs as natural colorants is challenging as depending on the type of infusion you choose the finished soap can go from a great success to a downright disaster. I cannot forget how the color of the hibiscus infusion went from magnificent ruby to scary blue in the lye solution and to a nice but not so interesting beige in the finished soap.
Another “accident” was using green tea powder. Adding it to the raw soap caused the batter to turn muddy (dirty may provide a better description though) brown and the finished soap was a dreadfully oily thing which I only kept to cure because of my husband’s advice to never give up on a batch of soap. Grateful I listened to him because, three months later, that dreadful log of oily something became one of the best soaps I have ever used.
Since those (and a few other) disastrous trials with herbs I have done a lot of research and have come to the point of feeling confident about what I can achieve with certain herbs depending on the way of infusing them and using them in soap.
Yet, with the great variety of botanicals out there, there is always a new herb to try and this time I am using moringa. I received a package of moringa powder from Silvia at SoapJam a couple of months ago and almost immediately decided that I would try infusing some oil with part of the powder.
I chose sunflower oil because it does not discolor in soap, it is light and as it is almost colorless it is easy to check the color of the infusion.
After infusing it for two weeks at room temperature, I got a beautiful yellow-green color.
Since thiswas just a trial, I made a 200 g batch soap. The infused sunflower oil was 45% of the total amount of oils and I used 10 g moringa powder for 110 g of oil.
The color did not change significantly after adding the lye solution and 3 weeks later it still holds well. It was a long wait until I could cut the soap though — I used less than usual hard oil and the sunflower oil did not help either 🙂
I guess I should have kept the soap simple but I had some embeds left over from the February’s Soap Challenge so I had to use them (not using them would have been a waste, no?)
Thank you very much, Silvia, for the wonderful opportunity to discover and get to know yet another natural colorant which holds well in CP soap! I still have to try adding the powder directly to the raw soap and see what happens then though 🙂 Guess I have to have one more post about moringa and its use in soap.
I hope you all have a successful week!