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Cold Process Soap Making 101

~with Jen Grimes OR Ruth Esteves~

“Jen is very clear and precise. She is very knowledgeable, clear, and easy to comprehend. She's a patient, warm, & friendly instructor, very accessible.” - Brenda Holzke (click for more comments on Jen's classes)

Lemon Poppy CP SoapCold Process Soap by Ruth EstevesCold Process Soap by Ruth

Upcoming Classes
Registration Options

November 1, 2014

~ with Jen Grimes ~

10 am - 1 pm (3 hours)
$65 (plus $10 materials fee)
Credit Card

December 7, 2014

~ with Ruth Esteves ~

10 am - 1 pm (3 hours)
$65 (plus $10 materials fee)
Credit Card
before signing up, please visit the Policies & Info Page
Can't make it to an "in-person" Class?

Purchase the eClass download instead!
Use the "Buy Now" button to immediately download the instructions, recipes & more (eClass handout).

eClass Price: only $39
(click here for more information on this specific eClass)

The cold process method of soapmaking relies almost exclusively on the heat generated by saponification (the chemical reaction of fatty acids and alkali to produce soap). No external heat is applied once the ingredients have been mixed. Although it may seem complicated when you are first starting out, making your own soap from scratch (the way some of our grandparents did) using all-natural ingredients can be both fun and rewarding ~ not to mention extremely addicting!

Why are people drawn to making their own soap from scratch?

Many of us start making soap to have inexpensive, homemade, natural gifts for all the holidays and birthdays throughout the year. Also, more and more people today are looking for a second source of income that involves doing something creative that they love (isn't that the true key to success?). Or, some of us begin soaping because we have friends or family with problematic or sensitive skin that is easily irritated.

Many commercial soap companies use cheap petroleum-based ingredients (like mineral oil), animal fats (like sodium tallowate, lard, or lanolin) and synthetic detergents (like sodium laureth sulfate) that can be harsh on delicate skin. By making soap in your own kitchen, you can tailor it to suit any skin type as well as insure that only the most beneficial ingredients go into your finished soap.

The class will cover the following as we demonstrate how to make a 4-pound
batch of soap (about 18-20 bars) using the cold process method:

• Brief history and basic chemistry of soap making
• Necessary materials, supplies and equipment
• Safety considerations when working with sodium hydroxide
• Taking accurate measurements & proper mixing temperatures
• Coloring soap naturally with herbs, spices & clays
• Using pure essential oils to scent your soap naturally
• Preparing your molds and molding options
• Insulating, cutting, curing and storing your finished soap
• Decorating and packaging to impress

[NOTE: This CP 101 class does not cover advanced techniques like swirling or
layering, but our 2-Day Soap Making Boot Camp does.]

Due to the nature of making soap from scratch, this class is mainly demonstration style (not hands-on). You'll leave with very thorough handouts and enough information to make awesome vegetable-based natural herbal soap from scratch on your own (at home) as well as 2 full-sized bars of soap to enjoy. This class uses only vegan / vegetarian ingredients.

NOTE: This is an age 18+ class since making soap from scratch involves working with lye (aka sodium hydroxide). Also, cold process soap needs about a month to cure before using (hot process can be used within a few days and melt & pour soap can be used within a few hours). To take part in stirring the soap, please wear or bring a long-sleeved shirt. You'll also need rubber gloves and safety goggles. There will be several pairs of goggles and gloves to share, but if you prefer your own please bring them to class.


Soap Equipment Loft Soap Bramble Berry


Jen Grimes started her descent down the make-your-own cosmetic rabbit hole after stumbling over books with vintage cosmetic recipes in her local library. After picking up and putting down books on how to make soap (all those bizarre ingredients and safety measures!), she took the plunge, promptly became addicted, and was certified as a soapmaker through the Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild (HSMG). Today, Jen is a proud member of and volunteer for HSMG & owns and operates Loft Soap. She has a passion for hot-processed soap, loves funny-looking soap and can often be found communing with other soapmakers at The Nova Studio.

Refer to the table above for price, date, time and registration options. Contact us at 510-234-5700 with any questions. Please read the Class Policies & Info Page before signing up.

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