The nature of cold process soap – the making of soap through the process of saponification – lends itself easily to the marbling of one color of soap into another. Melt and pour soap, on the other hand, presents more of a challenge when it comes to swirling two or more colors together.
For one, the melting and cooling process can make creating evenly distributed swirls difficult as a skin begins to form on the surface of the soap as it cools. Furthermore, since the melt and pour soap bases have already been through the drying and curing process, the colors tend to bleed more readily than when swirling a cold process soap.
That being said, it is possible to create a marbled look from melt and pour soap using the following tips and instructions.
Choose scents for each soap base and prepare according to the general instructions for melt and pour soaps.
Melt the soap bases, paying close attention to the temperature. As melt and pour soap solidifies quickly, it is important to determine at what temperature the two soap colors should be swirled.
- If a slightly blended combination of the colors is desired, the soaps can both be poured at relatively warm temperatures.
- If a more distinct contrast in the marbling is desired, it is best to allow the base color to solidify somewhat before adding the contrasting color which should also be somewhat cooled at approximately 120 degrees.
Pour your first colored base into mold and allow to cool for just a minute or until it is just starting to set.
Pour the second colored base, which should be cooled enough to just start solidifying as it hits the base color.
- To create a swirling pattern, pour the second colored base in a stream so that it swirls naturally, or quickly run a toothpick or other utensil through the soap.
- Keep in mind that additional swirling with a toothpick or utensil will diminish the color contrast of the bases. To create a more defined color contrast, try to accomplish most of the marbling during the pouring phase.
Allow the bars to cool as you would any solid-colored soap bar.
These instructions are for utilizing two contrasting colors. More colors can be used, but keep in mind that you must swirl all the bases together before the soap hardens. This gives you a small time-frame to mix all the colors. The more soap bases used, the faster you will need to work!