There are a couple ways to get purple in soap using natural colorants. My favorite herb to use is alkanet infused in olive oil. But I wanted to try something different. For this soap I used indigo and madder added to the lye water. Here’s what I did…
The recipe – 2 oz castor, 8 oz coconut, 8 oz lard, 10 oz olive oil, 3.9 oz lye & 8 oz water.
Add 1/4 teaspoon of madder root powder and 1/4 teaspoon of indigo powder to your water before you add the lye.
Add the lye slowely while stirring.
Melt the solid oils, add the liquid oils and add your fragrance. I used lavender essential oil.
Once your oils and lye solution are ready…pour the lye solution into the oils. I poured my lye solution through a stainless steel strainer to strain out some of the herb powder.
Stickblend to trace.
Pour it into the mold. I let mine set up a bit and teased the top with a craft stick. Then I added some lavender buds.
Since the top of the soap didn’t reach above the mold I covered with a piece of wax paper and a piece of wood and set it on a heating pad to go through gel. Here it is in gel stage.
The next morning it was ready to cut. Here’s a tip on cutting soap with botanicals on the top without getting the “botanical drag” through the soap. Lay the soap on it’s side and cut in that position. It won’t drag the buds down through the soap like if you were cutting from top down.
So overall I’m pretty happy with the outcome. It’s not a dark or very striking purple that you can achieve using alkanet. It’s more of a dusty vintage type of purple. I think if it were a flat plain bar it would be a bit boring…but the sculpted tops and light sprinkle of lavender buds make it all come together and look pretty good. I’m happy with it.