I’ve been thinking about making a shaving soap for some time, and quite often use my Gurts Milk Surp to lather up. That works pretty well but I had a feeling I could improve and get a richer, creamier lather with a lot more bubbles. I had a spare hour before the lady of the house returned home and a cupboard full of oils and butters, so I figured I could get a small batch made and clean up before becoming unpopular for messing up the kitchen. Again. 🙂
I took a starting point a basic blend of 2 parts coconut oil, 1 part castor oil and 1 part olive oil that I had read about somewhere as making a good shaving soap. I then ‘supercharged’ it with some argan oil and some of my home rendered grass-fed beef tallow and adjusted the balance of oils.
Tallow – has traditionally been and is often still used in a lot of shaving soaps, including the ‘high end’ products. It is regarded by many to yield the best lather possible, in terms of cream, slick, and protection to the skin.
Argan Oil – is high in vitamin E and fatty acid content and is ideal to give skin a natural boost. It absorbs easily and is non-greasy and non-irritating, which makes it a great natural moisturiser.
Coconut Oil – appears to be the ‘wonder oil’ of the decade and is a great gentle cleansing and conditioning oil – some people swear by it for hair, skin and food use.
In addition, this soap is rich in natural glycerin. It also contains French green (illite) clay to create a slick buffer between your skin and the blade. For fragrance I went light, just adding a few drops of essential oils, but would happily use this unscented.
Since I made a very small quantity here – expecting to yield 2 ‘pucks’ just over 100g each once cured, I poured directly into 2 IKEA Stainless Steel Bowls which means they can be used just as they are. In anticipation I also ordered a new badger hair shaving brush off of Amazon 🙂
Oh .. and I made it and I got the kitchen tidied in time – benches were spotless. Once I’d got the soap into the bowls I wrapped them in a towel overnight then put them away to cure.
This blend was 5% superfatted with water as 36% of oils.
This makes a small batch – just enough to pour into 2 or 3 individual bowls or moulds.
Liquid & Lye Portion:
• 29.4 grams lye (5% superfat)
• 72 grams water (I used a cooled tea made with dried Calendula petals)
Oil Portion (200 grams total):
• 80 grams coconut oil (40%)
• 40 grams home rendered grass-fed beef tallow (20%)
• 40 grams castor oil (20%)
• 30 grams extra virgin olive oil (15%)
• 10 grams argan oil (5%)
At light trace, add:
• A few drops of essential oil (I added 6x Lime, 4x White Thyme, 3x Bergamot)
• French Green Clay (illite) (1g)