Multi-Colored Gradient Soap Challenge

After taking my baby time-out, I’ve finally rejoined the Soap Challenge (now a Club!) put on by Amy Warden of Great Cakes Soapworks. This month’s challenge was to create a seven-layer multi-colored gradient soap. Last year, I created Sage & Citrus gradient soap using only one color. It was fun, and I’ve used the technique again, but I’ve never tried it with multiple colors! Challenge on!

I searched through my growing supply of fragrances to find one that had multiple facets to inspire several color choices. The winner was Satsuma, a very bright citrus scent with a mix of juicy ruby red grapefruit, sweet orange, and tangerine. What better colors to use than those new neon samples I’ve been waiting to try?! I chose Neon Laser Lemon for the bottom layer, Neon Citrus Blast for the middle (an awesome bright orange color), and Neon Tutti Frutti (HOT pink) for the top. Even the names of the colors are perfect! They’re also side-by-side on the color wheel, making them beautifully blendable.

Thanks to Amy’s step-by-step tutorial, I was very comfortable creating the right amounts of soap needed for each layer. I began by making the lye solution and letting it cool to about 100 degrees. The oils with fragrance added were at about 110 degrees when I added the lye and blended to emulsification. This fragrance worked wonderfully, allowing me plenty of time to play with colors. In fact, I almost wished things would move a little faster! Almost

Here are the three main colors getting ready to be poured.

Here are the three main colors getting ready to be poured.

Here’s a look at the layering process.

Layers 1 & 2 of Gradient Soap

First and second layers

Layers 3 & 4 of Gradient Soap

Third and fourth layers

Layers 5 & 6 of Gradient Soap

Fifth and sixth layers

Final layer of Gradient Soap

Final layer!

The raw soap colors were very pretty but weren’t very extreme, so I put it in the oven to force full gel, hoping to bring out those neons. 

Satsuma Gradient Soap

Wow, do they pop!?! The colors are absolutely neon now, and they blended together so well. My girls love the bright pink tops, too. When Annabelle (one of the triplets) saw it, she squealed, “Mommy, you made me a rainbow soap!” She went to tell her sisters, then they all ran in together oo-ing and ah-ing over the “pwitty wainbow” soap. Too cute! They obviously approve of my color choices, and I’m pretty darn pleased as well!

Satsuma Gradient Soap

You can see that some of the layers aren’t completely flat. I have a few waves from where the layer beneath was still rather soft when I spooned on the next. I really love the effect that it made!

Satsuma Gradient Soap

Satsuma Gradient Soap

As always, I had a great time taking part in this challenge. I’m looking forward to seeing what everyone else created!

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Gradient Soap

Another new technique! For me at least! This week’s Great Cakes Soapworks challenge was to create a gradient colored soap, displaying several layers of colors.  I chose to go from a deep sage green color on bottom, working my way to a soft green on top, showing a total of 5 layers.  I used Sage & Citrus fragrance, and I really do love the final product!  The scent is slightly masculine, but I’m very tempted to use it myself!  Though the top few layers don’t show much differentiation, the bottom color is particularly pretty.

Sage & Citrus Gradient Soap

When making this soap, I used another new recipe with several different oils.  I wasn’t sure how quickly everything would move, so I let the oils and lye solution cool almost to room temperature before I mixed them.  As usual, it was also my first time using this fragrance, so I had to be ready to work quickly just in case!  Why do I keep doing this to myself, all these firsts at once?!?!  I guess since I’m so new to this, I can only learn by trying, right?  I keep looking for that perfect recipe with just the right lather, hardness and conditioning.  Don’t we all?  And I can’t keep making soap with the same scents over and over simply because they behave!

Notice it’s a bit grainy in texture? Hmmm… This soap is also super hard! I had a rough time cutting it by hand only 12 hours after making it.

This new recipe worked well, but the fragrance did speed things up just a bit.  I was surprised to be able to add each layer after only a few minutes of waiting, working faster and faster with each new color.  By the final layer, the soap was getting very thick, so I had to carefully plop the soap in and spread it around.  In my mind, I planned to start with green on bottom and work my way up into a few yellow layers on top to represent the citrus notes, but things moved too fast for that!  All in all, I’ll definitely try this technique again.  It was fun and not too difficult, but certainly not too easy either!  I played it safe for this first one, but I would like to try a few different colors in my next attempts.

Check out the other beautiful gradient soaps here.