Wednesday, June 19, 2013


This week has seen an almost doubling of the readers, which has me really confused as there isn't one obvious referring source. I haven't seen an increase in email or comments, so these stats were a little surprising, but the last three days have been really busy. So if you have a moment, could you let me know where you heard about the blog, with a link, if possible, so I can pay the site a visit?

To increase your interest, I'll give away the e-book of your choice to a random commenter. As usual, please sign off with at least your first name! Otherwise, how will I know you're the person who won? I'll draw for the name on June 28th! 

I'm on holiday time as of Sunday for more than a week, so I'm eagerly awaiting my workshop time! And I'll have some time to look at all those emails piling up! Your somewhat random picture of the day are these colourful test tubes from chemistry lab today. I really do love that pink! 


Anna Rose said...

I found out because I read and you you are on her blog role
- Anna Rose I.

Katie Z said...

I've been coming to your blog for the last couple of weeks because I'm just getting into making my own skincare products. I used to work in a lab growing tissue culture, so I needed to find a source of information that was more scientific and reliable than most of the scary and dangerous instructions I'd found. I believe I was doing Google searches when I stumbled across this site and immediately bookmarked it on my laptop, phone, and tablet! Your information has been invaluable in helping me to begin crafting safe, high quality products at home.

My aim is to be able to control the substances that I'm putting on my body. I'm currently suffering from too many medical issues, so anything that I can do to help myself makes me feel like I'm not entirely helpless. So far I've made several successful whipped body butters, a lip balm, and a batch of cold process soap (that info came from several books and a class I took locally).

Thank you for all of the time and effort you've put into helping us newbies! This is my first time commenting, but I'm quite sure it won't be the last. Sorry I've written you a novel!

Happy creating!
Katie Z
(a.k.a. Uncommon Magpie)

Roberta said...

Hello Susan,
I am a recent convert to the soap and cream making world. I think I came across your blog through Goggling 'recipe for face cream'. Nothing obscure. Love your site, by the way. You are providing a wonderful service to all of us who skipped our Chem 101 classes. Roberta Rich

Roberta said...

Hello Susan,
I should add that I became fascinated by soap making when I was writing a scene in my novel set in 16th century Constantinople. I had my heroine adding lye water to beef tallow and stirring it over an open fire. And I thought, 'wait a sec, I better check to see how you really do make soap'.I watched a few YouTube clips and was hooked. Roberta Rich

Moj sapun... said...

Hello Susan, I found your blog via I started making soap two years ago and soapmaking is till my big passion. After discovering your blog and reading detailed instructions about ingredients and emulsification process I was really impressed and inspired to try making my first lotion. I am still new to lotion making but find your blog as the most relevant source of information . Thank you very much for all your effort and passion you are sharing with us. Best regards, Gordana

Sally said...

Hi Susan,
Love your site! Think it's the only place that gives all the technical, back end info (science) in an easy to understand format.
Ya know, I'm not sure how I found your site. But in the past few months it has been my go to resource and visit it quite often to answer questions and get your perspective. Thank you so much for the information you share with us.

Johanna Roth said...

I am a new reader and have learned a lot about lotionmaking on your website. I like your writing style and I haven't found better lotion making instructions anywhere else on the internet. Thank you!!
/Johanna from Sweden

Johanna Roth said...

Forgot to say that I found your site when I googled recipies for lotions/creams.

Finola Prescott said...

I found your site looking for info on preservatives - that was a few months ago.
I find it very informative and appreciate the science so I subscribed
thanks for keeping up informing - I have to say, I am a 'natural' products person, but I am very, very concerned about safety and do believe that there must be appropriate preservation and caution applied, otherwise you just head to a 'natural disaster'
cheers from Saint Lucia!

Anonymous said...

Hi Susan,
I found your site while researching oil properties to make my own cuticle oil with jojoba. I think it was the carrier oil profiles was what google thought would be helpful. Following the blog ever since, thank you, Veronica

TC said...

Hi Susan,
I came across your blog while googling lotion recipes for beeswax and was sold so I subscribed. I just got my ingredients and hoping to cook something this weekend. Yaye! Thanks for being so generous with your knowledge and time. I love learning new things :)

Singing Waters said...

Like most everyone else posting a comment, I found your blog while randomly searching for lotion crafting recipes. I liked the science! Thank you! Judy A.

Anonymous said...

Dear Susan,
I believe I found your blog trough Making Scentz (aka Homemade Bath Products). I can´t tell you in this brief comment how grateful I am that you take the time and effort to educate all of us crafters that want to take their craft very seriously and do things right. Not just follow a recipe, but knowing the science behind the craft. Greetings from Venezuela! Patricia Diaz

Diva Soap said...

Hi Susan,
I'm a soapmaker (all the way) from Macedonia. I had stumbled upon your site via Google search and bookmarked it,as I thought it was the best place on the internet for studying cosmetics! Then,I need to be honest,I put it aside,because had to do many other researches on soaps etc. Later, my good friend Goca, (from 'Moj Sapun'- the link is above) told me she had been learnih a lot from you and suddenly, I remembered I actually should activate my bookmarked read. I still haven't made my first face cream (that's how I found your site),because now I realize I don't wanna waste my ingredients without having a proper preservative. Thanks to you and Goca,actually.
I still don't think I have enough knowledge to successfully make my b&b products, but as I get emulsifiers and preservatives, I will certainly dive into this world,even if I know it will be hit or miss!
I haven't commented yet on your posts, for a simple fact I haven't tried making any of the stuff,so I don't wanna ask something I need to learn first!
Thanks for reading this long one,though (when I write,I really write,lol)

Melissa from Naturally Good Soaps said...

I get direct emails from you. I first had you on my google reader but with that closing down, I converted to the RSS fee so I get a direct email in my gmail account.

IrishMolly said...

I message people your blog all the time about conditioners and lotions lol. I stumbled upon your blog searching bubble bars and SLSa :) I try to send people your way because I had been researching lotions and bubble bars for at least a month before I found your blog and I never saw "swifts awesome information source" come up before that :( I wish more people mentioned and linked you

Carrie S. said...

I found you searching Google for how to make shampoo without Castile Soap and I am soooooo very grateful I found this amazing site! Your information is the best I have found online.

Becky said...

I come and visit every now and again because I love your blog and all the knowledge it contains! I know about you through The Dish!

Becky V

(Spettatore Luna)

tq said...

I found your blog on The Dish and tough the oil and butter blog. I absolutely LOVE the info and the way you present it. Now I'm going to have to dig out my old chem books and play :)


johnny somethingerman said...

When I was searching for how to make my anhydrous topical recipe in its early stage feel less greasy I googled a bunch of terms and your blog came up, and it was the only one that made me say "ah ha! someone who knows what they are talking about and wants to share it with the world!"

kerzuke said...


I read about your blog from this forum: Someone suggested it and now i read it almost every day. I started by making massage cabdles and then i thought why not try to make creams and palms and so on. Your blog has been so helpful, thank you so much for that information! Now i can formulate my own recipes and i really like my products :)

Marcia said...

I found you by reading about the classes you hold locally, then googling you. Love your site, you give sound advice .
Marcia M.

Andrea said...

I found you while looking for information about solid conditioner bars. I love your site and try to get on everyday to read your posts. So informative and helpful. Thank you!


Yvonne said...

Hi Susan,

I found your site when I was googling for lotion recipes and am so glad I did. I have learned so much from you. You really know your stuff and have the best information out there. Keep up the excellent work!
Thank you so much for sharing!!!


Rocio said...

I'm not sure how i found your site,since is been a while since i get caught by it, maybe it was searching in google... Totally love it, thanks for share all this amazing information :)

Mary Peterson said...

Hello Susan --

Wow! What a great site. I'm a soap and lotion maker (for just my family and friends). I had been to your site a couple of years ago, but much of it is over my head, so I concentrated on soaping and learning about making skin, hair and cleaning products as naturally as possible. The link I used was on the Yahoo group for liquid soapers. Someone said your blog is so comprehensive that we should bring a cuppa and prepare to spend many hours here! I see why.

Thanks for all the information. I'm learning so much.

Mary Peterson

Anonymous said...

Hello Susan
I am on the southern most tip of Africa. I so appreciate your extreme generosity in sharing your skills and knowledge. I am writing a soap making book ( which I would love to bless you with as you start making soaps ) , and while googling for technical info and verification of facts, I came across your site, I am so inspired to start making my own cosmetics now. I am a bit of an all natural Freek though, so the synthetics do discourage me somewhat.
My name is Bev. I know you hate anonymous posts , but when posting to your site, it seems the easiest option as the other options have to sign in on google accounts and you have to have passwords to hand. Which is a pain. Just so you know.

Mesha Tucker said...

I have learned so much about making lotions from reading your blog. You have made something that seemed really difficult to achieve become a possibility. Thank you!

LizR66 said...

I found your blog through google looking for information on skin care ingrediants. I love the fact that your posts have a scientific basis from which to draw my own conclusions. Thank you. PS as one who participates in a lot of meetings, I hate "learnings" as well.


Heather said...

I found this on the blog list at I have been lurking on the site for quite a while and now it has been added to my list of must-check blogs. I really should comment more.

I love the in-depth information that I can get here. I also really like the links that let me go look things up for myself. I am one of those poeple who likes to learn just for the sake of learning.

I started with CP soap, but have branched out into making homemade bath and body products with the oils and butters that I had collected for my soapmaking experiments. Soon I will need to get some of the other things I have seen used on here. Then I will be able to try some of the other recipes.

Although I use a lot of natural ingredients, my focus is less about being "all natural" and more about having control of what I use. I have sensitive, very dry skin and most of the products I find on the market are okay, but not great. I like to play around with ingredients until I find that combination that does everyhting I want it to.

Thank you for all of the time and effort you putinto making a quality blog.


Simone said...

Hi Susan,
I found you when I was researching ingredients for body and face creams in a Google search, and I thank my lucky stars weekly that I found your blog. If it weren't for you I would probably still be thinking about doing something rather than having achieved to produce quite a variety of products, often without failure using your recipes.
Thanks again for sharing your time and knowledge.

sueold55 said...

Hi Susan. I just found your blog this morning, following a link from another site. You were named at (more than once) as a good resource. Now I see why!! My head is kind of swimming right now, in a good way--I am a total newbie! Thank you for the time you obviously pour into this; your knowledge is priceless. God bless! Sue

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Thanks for your input, everyone! I really appreciate knowing where you came from and what interests you!

As a note, when I say anonymous, I mean something without a name at all. That's why I say signing off with "Bye, name" is great. Since I've instituted this policy, the only posts that could be considered mean or bullying have been those that don't include a name, which is why I ask you to do it in the first place!

Npj said...

Hi Susan! I'm npj from the dish. I just started reading your blog finally after 3 years of being a big fat scaredy cat to move beyond soap. I suffer from analysis paralysis and read the dish for a year before I made my first bar of soap.

I'm ready for an new challenge. Conditioner. Not going near lotion yet. I'll get there though! Still reading. Haven't ordered anything yet.

Never thought at the ripe age of 45 that I'd want to go near chemistry again in life but you make it fun and I'm starting to feel confident. Thanks for a great and knowledge share!


Anonymous said...

I found your blog awhile back while reading some comments on a Facebook group that I belong to. Someone posted the link to your blog to help them with a question they had. I cannot even recall what it was but since I started strictly with soap making, I didn't pay much attentions but kept it bookmarked. I recently began experimenting with lotions and scrubs and that drew me back to you. I only do my research here because I trust your extensive knowledge to guide me in the right direction. I don't always comment but I do read every post when they come through the email notifications. Thank you for sharing all of your knowledge with us. I am one who truly appreciates you taking the time to teach others. I also tell others about your blog every chance I get.


Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Marcia! You're the winner! Write to me at and tell me which e-book you want!