Soda ash on my CP soaps

Yesterday I did my 3rd batch of cold process soap.

I wanted to make a taiwan swirl soap and I have been watching and studying for quite a while (started researching in December and made my first batch of cold process soap this Februray) and I felt that I was ready to try a taiwan swirl. It seems pretty easy, all you need is different colours mixed in your batch and when you draw with your chopstick (that’s what I use) the colours will follow your deign with the chopstick (example here ande here).

So, last weekend when I made my 2nd batch of soap, I was going to try to make drawings on my soap (flowers). I made a thick trace so that I could make drawings on the top of my soaps that would stay fixed on top of the soaps. After I cut my soaps in 4 (I had a square mould).

Here is a picture of the soaps I made:


Today I noticed on top of my soaps what I think must be soap ash. I washed the soap with a spounge on the spots that have soda ash and let them drying. Let’s see tomorrow if the spots don’t come back…

Now getting back to my 3rd batch of soap… Yesterday I was decided to make the taiwan swirl soap, and from what I have read to make designs (swirls) it is best to have a light trace. So I made my trace very light. I wanted to make a soap using the colours black, pink and orange.

When I got my really light trace, I poured them in my mould and I thought this will be much different than my other mould last week, where my trace was pretty thick. As I poured my different colours in the mould, I was thinking I am not sure if this trace actually is trace and I don’t know if this will work but kept thinking positive. It will look better when I draw the swirls I kept thinking to myself. At this pont my husband appeared curious of what I was doing. As I started to make the taiwan swirls, I noticed that my batch was so thin that the colours were mixing together as if it were a soup, there was no distinction between the 3 colours…!! Oh boy, I started to think I’ll have to see how this batch can be saved!! By the time I poured the last of pink and orange it was a bit thicker and ended up not mixing with the poured batch. I put a lid on my mould and wrapped a towel and prayed that it would solidfy!

So the next day, yeah!, my soaps solidified! But what is this? Did the colours fade? No, I think it is soda ash…

Soda ash on my cold process soap?


I tried to unmould my soaps (12 hours later) but it was like soft butter so I will let it be for at least 12 more hours.

I will let it cure for about a week or two and then try to wash off the soda ash.

I will post pictures after I wash the soda ash off (at least I think it is soda ash).


2 thoughts on “Soda ash on my CP soaps

  1. Welcome to the world of cold process soap! How brave of you to start swirling right away. 🙂 They look great!
    And yes, that is ash on your soap. It may wash off, or not. You’re right that it is more common in soap that was poured at a thin trace. And also if the soap never goes through a gel phase. So, if you can, try to get the soap a bit warm after pouring. Maybe wrap it up and place it in a sunny window, or wrap it up with warm towels. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Ruth! Thank you for your comment. I am beginning to realize how much I have to learn! I am really enjoying making soaps (3 small batches so far) and I love all of the beautiful soaps and ideas I have seen! I am hoping that my handmade soaps will help our eczema go away 🙂 I am enjoying my new hobby 🙂 Thanks for your tip 🙂


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