Master-batching Soap Oils

If you aren’t a soapmaker, please feel free to scroll to the bottom of the post to see the pretty soaps I made this week!

For those who care, I finally got my act together and master-batched some oils! I had been slowly gathering information and equipment for several weeks. Long Leaf Soaps was a true inspiration as she shared about her set-up on Facebook. I was able to use my big bucket that my coconut oil came in from Soaper’s Choice, and bought an industrial bucket warmer, as well as a bulkhead tank fitting and spigot online. I told Hubby all we needed were some pipe fittings and some silicone, but he was adamant about not using silicone, so he found the fittings he wanted to use and put together that part for me.

masterbatch bucket2 Master batching Soap Oils

Master-batch bucket for soap oils

I set it up on top of an empty 5-gallon bucket right next to my rack full of supplies. There’s an electrical outlet directly behind it so I can easily plug in the warmer, and it’s high enough I can put my scale and soap pot on the floor under the spigot to get the oils I need.

To start out, I just melted the solid oils in two large pots on my stove, then dumped them in the bucket along with the liquid oils and stirred it up – enough to make 3.5 gallons total. I figure I could have made at least another 2 gallons if I wanted to fill the bucket, but that was a good starting point. Long Leaf Soaps also recommended plugging in the warmer the night before you want to make soap. It heats up to 140 degrees, so you have to be careful not to touch it when it’s hot!

I made three batches of soap in one afternoon – it worked pretty great! I didn’t get it plugged in overnight, but it was probably 5-6 hours. The oils were between 90-95 degrees, which is my perfect soaping temp! I did not master-batch the lye solution, and probably never will. It just seems too dangerous to me to have that sitting around, since I do all my soapmaking in my kitchen.

Here are the final soaps, all cut and ready to cure:

BRCb Master batching Soap Oils

Black Raspberry Creme Soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

Always a favorite, I figured I would bring it back in time for the holidays!

mor spice coffee Master batching Soap Oils

Moroccan Spice Coffee Soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

This is also a re-make, and the first time I will be offering it this year. Perfect for fall with its top notes of orange combined with every spicy note you can think of!

River Dance Master batching Soap Oils

River Dance Soap by Great Cakes Soapworks

It’s been several years since I have made a soap with this fragrance. It’s a dupe of the popular men’s cologne Green Irish Tweed – smells absolutely wonderful! Love the way the faux funnel pour came out with the three shades of green.

All three of these soaps will be available at Greatcakessoapworks.com on October 23rd.

27 thoughts on “Master-batching Soap Oils

  1. Hmmm, so glad you posted this. I will have to get the husband on something like this-it would make live soooo much easier. Great idea!

    And as always lovely soap there my friend. Loving the green one.

  2. Wow, what a time saver! Thanks for sharing all about your set up. I would love to do this someday when I have a bigger soap making space. Your three soaps look wonderful as always!

  3. So Amy, I’m having a bit of trouble wrapping my head around masterbatching-do all your oil ratios work out when you do this? I just can’t seem to get past the idea that something might be off with this method. Just curious.

  4. I think this is a wonderful idea and have thought about doing it myself as well. Thanks for your inspiration!

  5. @Michele – Yes, it all works out…it’s just a gigantic batch of oils using the same ratios, so as long as you keep it stirred up, it should come out just the same. :)

  6. First of all, those soaps are amazing! You are awesome at those faux funnel swirls and your black raspberry cream is soooo pretty. I hope master-batching leads to many more beautiful soaps!
    Patti´s last blog post ..type II fun

  7. Awesome Amy! Your soaps are beautiful! I know what I am going to have my husband doing now. What size was the coconut oil container?

  8. A bucket warmer! Now I get it! Thank you. I was wondering how to do this when some of the oils are hard oils. I totally am going to do this. And Amy, your soaps are just beautiful.
    -Katrina

  9. WOOT! Good for you Amy! Glad to have been any help getting anyone interested in master batching their soaping oils…it is truly a time saver :oD So Amy, did you love it? Looks like your hubby did a nice job with your set-up. We will build a stand of some sort to hold our bucket with a ledge to hold the scale & soaping bucket so we don’t have to stoop over so much (saves the back). We found that the warming wrap has an automatic shut off if left on for a few days..all you need to do is unplug it to reset it! Happy “speedy” soaping!

  10. @LongLeafSoaps – Yes, of course I loved it!! Looking forward to some speedy soaping this week again. :) (Good to know about the automatic shut-off!)

  11. Totally need to do this. It should help cut down on soaping time and clean up time. Thanks so much for posting this!!

    Gorgeous soaps, as usual.

  12. I’m finally ready to try to set one of these Master Batching stations up. I noticed that Soaper’s Choice has a ‘Pail Pump, Plastic – 6.5 Gallon’. Would that work instead of the spigot? Or do you think it would be too easy to get that clogged?
    Do you buy the 7 Pound Coconut oil at Soaper’s Choice?
    Linda´s last blog post ..How Soapmaking Turned Me Into an Addict

  13. @Linda – Not sure how the pump would work…sounds more difficult to pump all that oil out rather than letting gravity do its thing. I get the 50 pound pail of coconut oil – that’s the 6.5 gallon bucket.

  14. How do you like the warmer you got? I’ve been looking into a bunch and there’s quite a range in price on some and I’m trying to figure out what to go with. Jennifer

  15. @Jennifer – It worked great the first time I plugged it in…in the wintertime, not so much. I’m a little frustrated with it right now, to be honest! I am stirring and dipping the oils out of the top of the bucket with a ladle because it won’t even heat it up enough to get it through the spigot! So then I have to re-heat everything on the stove again. :(

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