40 grams white sugar
30 grams baking soda
10 grams mango butter - I thought the shea was too soft
10 grams cream of tartar
10 grams melt & pour soap (white)
2 grams fragrance oil (Cream Cheese Frosting! Yum!)
What was I thinking?
- I've decreased the sugar and replaced the plantation sugar for white sugar.
- I've upped the baking soda as I thought it would add some hardness to it.
- I need to reduce the squishiness, so I've reduced the butter from 20% to 10% and reduced the melt & pour soap from 20% to 10%.
- I've kept the cream of tartar the same as I thought it would offer some hardness.
It looks nice (remembering that I've never seen the actual product before, just pictures) but is a little soft. I can press on it and it will cause a small dent. It is a little damper than I would like - perhaps the melt & pour soap is sweating in it? - and I'm thinking I need a harder butter, like cocoa butter in there. I realize the original recipe has virgin coconut oil in it, which is quite soft, but I don't have any of that. Perhaps I'll pick some up when I next stock up on MMU ingredients?
In the shower: It held up well. I didn't cut it into a sugar cube simply because I forgot to do it, so I used it as a 3.5 oz (100 gram) bar. It was way too scrubby, but my skin does feel moisturized.
Half an hour post-shower: My skin feels slightly moisturized, but is starting to get a bit dry and tight in some places. I need some kind of humectant in there and some more oils (olive oil would work - or olive butter!) or perhaps a conditioning agent?
An hour post-shower: My elbows feel really dry, as if I'd used a dollar store body wash or a hand sanitizer in the shower! If I used it regularly, I would have to use an after bath oil or moisturizer when I left the tub, which kinda defeats the purpose!
Final assessment: Too scrubby, not moisturizing enough.
As an interesting aside, I have noticed a real difference between generic baking soda and Arm & Hammer baking soda. The no name is far more coarse and feels rougher when I use it in scrub bars!
I think I have an inherent problem with this product - it seems like a bath bomb with a bit of moisturizer in it, using sugar instead of citric acid. It needs to be hard before using, but melt away when you're using it in the shower. I think the surfactants are a real key to this product - it keeps the product solid when dry, but melts away when wet. Although I'm still leaning towards the surfactants being melt & pour, I think I'll try SCI in the next batch. It has a nice creamy after feel to it, and will give the bar some hardness. (Petra tried SLSa in hers. Good idea!)
Although I really think this product needs more humectants and conditioning ingredients, I'm going to give it one more shot staying close to the original product's ingredient list. I'm going with berry sugar at 40% to reduce the extreme scrubbiness (finer grained sugar), and I'll keep the baking soda the same at 30% but substitute it for Arm & Hammer baking soda or sodium bicarbonate from Voyageur with a finer grain. I'm going to use cocoa butter at 10% because I think it will make for a harder bar with some moisturizing and I'll try 8% SCI instead of melt & pour soap. I'm keeping the cream of tartar at 10% because I still think this is essential to the hardness of the bar on the shelf and the softness in the shower. I think the 2% fragrance oil is still a good idea for this product - I can still get the odd whiff of Cream Cheese Frosting but it's not too strong.
If attempt #3 doesn't work, then I'm pulling out the BTMS or honeyquat or something to make my skin feel happier post-shower!