Cold Process Soap

Cold Process Soap
4 October 2018 Body Délice
cold process soap

Body Délice creates handmade, natural but fancy soaps thanks to the traditional cold process method which guarantees high quality products.

What is a cold process soap?

Soap is a mix of chemistry and Art!

Generally, soap is obtained by the chemical reaction between fatty acids (animal and/or vegetable oils) and sodium hydroxide (caustic soda) diluted in a liquid (generally water).

The chemical reaction is as followed:


chemical reaction of saponification

This chemical reaction is called saponification reaction and occurs with the mixing and blending of the ingredients which also creates heat (we say it is exothermic).

The hydroxide part of the sodium hydroxide (caustic soda) is corrosive. But with the saponification reaction, the carbon from the triglyceride collects hydroxide and we obtain glycerin, a humectant which attracts and retain moisture on your skin.

The fatty acids released from the carbon structure by the saponification reaction are the foaming agents.

In other words, at the end of the saponification process, there is no more sodium hydroxide as it was transformed into soap and glycerin.

That’s how Body Délice creates unique hand cut bars of soap!

What is the difference between the cold process and the hot process?

A cold process soap is a handmade soap which follows a manufacturing process known as “cold” as opposed to the hot process which is industrial.

As you know now, the saponification reaction is exothermic whatever the soapmaking process chosen, cold or hot.

But the difference with the industrial process, which supplies more than 80% of the soap in the world, is the fact that the mix is heated during the saponification reaction from 176°F to 248°F (80°C to 120°C). The heat accelerates the soapmaking process, the soap is cooked and quickly usable.

But this soapmaking process, due to the heat, alters all the benefits of the vegetable oils. Moreover, the glycerin is removed from the soap as it obstructs the machines (so you lose all the moisturizing and softening benefits) and it is sold separately because of its high market value.

On the contrary, the cold soapmaking process does not involve heating the mixture. The oils are blended with the sodium hydroxide releasing heat until the mixture reaches the consistency of custard. Then the preparation is placed in the molds for 24 hours / 48 hours to allow the saponification reaction to continue.

After this time, the bars of soap are unmolded, hand cut, and allowed to dry for at least 4 weeks.


What are the benefits of a cold process soap?

As you can understand, the benefits of the cold process soap compared to a hot process soap are many:



The artisanal cold process soapmaking guarantees the preservation of the vegetable oils’ benefits thanks to the low temperature used during the production.



Cold process soap is naturally glycerin enriched, the perfect moisterizing and softening agent for all kind of skins, above all dry skins.
Cold process soap is a skin care in itself.




Body Délice soap is always superfatted meaning crafted with the intent of creating a “surgras” effect as it is vegetable oil enriched.



The cold process is an environmental-friendly soapmaking process which allows 100% biodegradable soap.




No Body Délice soap is tested on animals (>>article ”Being Cruelty Free”).



The possibilities of cold process soap are endless and rely on a qualified cold process soapmaker. From the vegetable oils and essential oils, to other natural additives such as charcoal, honey or coffee, the soapmaker selects the best to produce Body Délice soap.



Body Délice does not use palm oil, an ecological disaster (here to know whythat unfortunately many soapmakers still use. There are no paraben neither, PEG, silicon oils or waxes, mineral oils, BHA, BHT, phthalates and DEA.



Each cold process soap is completely unique both concerning the recipe and the design, and is handcrafted and inspired by the soapmaker himself!

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