Monday, March 14, 2011

Making Goat's Milk Soap

My goats give a lot of milk, so I am always looking for new ways to make good use of all their hard work. I recently found out how to make goat milk soap. It was fun and came out really nice

The only ingredients I used were my goat's milk, olive oil, and lye. I had to start with the goat milk frozen, so it wouldn't be damaged by the heat the lye produces. I had to buy the lye online. There are lots of different oils to use, but many make my skin itch, so I stayed with olive oil.
I started by putting the frozen goat milk into a large bowl and added the lye crystals. I stirred very carefully so it wouldn't splash. Once the lye had dissolved, I added the olive oil and started mixing with an immersion blender. After about five minutes the oil and lye saponify, which means it chemically changes into soap, and thickens into what looks like thin pudding. This is called a medium trace. It was then I could add fun ingredients. In the picture, I'm stirring in coffee grinds for a scrubby soap.

I carefully poured the soap into a mold. I use a PVC pipe lined with freezer paper. It will set up overnight, and I can slice it into fun round shapes. Since this is called the cold process method, the soap will need to cure for at least four weeks or more. It becomes more gentle the longer it ages. I'm excited to be selling my soap now in these cute little bags at a local farmer's market.