I keep a soap-making journal, exactly as a chemist or other scientist would keep a lab notebook. In this, I not only record what has been done -- processes, notes, outcomes, evaluations, etc. -- but also what I plan to do. So I have notes on formulations that I would like to try as I go forward.
|The small test puck of SS#4 shave soap along with left-over lather from this mornings initial test in a re-purposed yogurt container. This morning's razor, the Merkur 37C slant with a new Personna Blue blade, is shown as well.|
I have basic formulations, designated by number, and then variations on those basics using post-cook additives, designated by capital letters. I had been most pleased with my SS#1E, which I recently wrote about. I did not like SS#2 or its variation as much, so I had SS#3 and SS#4 recipes waiting in my soap journal to be cooked into reality for testing.
On a hunch, I skipped SS#3 and made up SS#4 -- the basic formula, with no additives -- for preliminary testing.
My goal with all of this chemistry and related planning and work is to make a shave soap that has no harsh additives, that is, all natural like you might get in a soap of c.1900, with the following characteristics:
- Slick and lubricating
- Creamy smooth
- No scent to irritate the skin, offend the olfactory, or compete with the scent of other pre- or post-shave products
- A tight, dense lather that is substantial, durable, and lathers on the face just thick enough to give a great shave but not be excessively foamy
- Not drying on the skin