Making soap is a fun, relaxing, creative process. And the best thing about this is that it can be profitable as well. Of course, learning to make soap takes a little bit of time and patience, but once you've mastered the technique, a world of creative possibilities opens to you.
For the uninitiated, soap making can be divided into two processes:
(i) Cold and hot process
(ii) Melt and Pour Process
Cold and hot process refer to the manufacture of soap from scratch, using raw oil, lye, or sodium hydroxide and other ingredients. This can be a laborious process and takes years to perfect. But if you've mastered it, soap making is indeed fun and profitable!
The melt and pour process returns to the use of a base (the raw materials are already mixed). It's your job to melt these and mix your own ingredients: scents, essential herbs, natural colors, etc., and then pour them into molds to make soaps. This procedure is very popular among those looking to avoid chemical fumes because of children or pets. Natural, customized soaps are great gifts, and many people will pay top dollar for them ..
Before you prepare to make soap, make sure you are aware of the ingredients that go into the process. For instance, the fat used in making the soap base can be made from animal fat or vegetable fat. In the days of yore, animal fat, or lard from pigs and cattle, were used. Since this was the only available fat, no one asked the benefits of these. But today, with increased awareness and the ready availability of vegetable oil, animal fat is no longer a preferred option. In fact, many people prefer to create vegan soaps, using no animal products at all.
Before you can get into the real soap making fun, it's important to follow instructions carefully as you learn the process by heart. Handling chemicals like sodium hydroxide can be potentially dangerous. Make sure you wear protective gear from head to toe, and also wear goggles to cover your eyes. Metal molds and containers made from tin, zinc, and aluminum are also best avoided.
It's better for beginners to learn soap making basics by using the melt and pour process. There are plenty of websites that teach this. Soap making is made simple and uncomplicated, thanks to these valuable information resources. You can also purchase your raw materials and other products from these sites.
Once the basic process is mastered, you can proceed to the hot process or the cold process where you can learn to make the base. The price of making these would depend on the raw material used. For example, using essential oils and other essence can be expensive. Beside if you're beginning, a large portion of the cost would be spent on the trial and error methods.