Making your own soap can be fun and can be a great way of creating unique bath products. You choose what products go into your product and the customization options are nearly endless. You can complete your soap with real flower extracts and fragrances. You also have control over which color to choose.
Colorants render a beautiful look to handmade soaps. Using food colors may seem like a safe option however, the tint will fade away quickly. While mixing two colors, these dyes tend to bleed into each other.
Can you use food coloring to color soap? Food coloring does not work in cold-process soap making. There will be no clear definition between two colors when you use food colorants, and some colors may not survive the saponification process. Food coloring is soluble in oil and water. If you wash your hands with soap made with food coloring, then the color will transfer your skin.
The colors used in soaps are pigments that are insoluble in both oil and water. You can try soap colorants meant specifically for the purpose such as oxides and mica.
3 Types of Dyes for Making Soaps
The kind of dye that you use varies greatly amongst soap makers.
There are 3 main kinds of dyes used in the soap making process:
- FD&C colorants: These dyes are preferred by some crafters and are produced synthetically. These are approved for food, drugs, and cosmetics. These are quite popular and come in a wide range of colors. These are available in both liquid and powdered form and generally used in melt and pour soaps.
- Soap making pigments: These consist of oxides and ultramarines. These are quite stable when it comes to soap making and are ideal for almost any soap making process including hot process, cold process and melt and pour. These are quite inexpensive and are available in a multitude of colors.
- Micas: These are used as a dye in different kinds of soap making process. Mica colorants have a glittering effect when they are subjected to appropriate lighting. This is best noted in soaps with a clear melt-and-pour base. Although micas are available in a variety of colors, these are not entirely natural.
How To Color Soap
If you love crafting your own soaps, then here are some simple steps you can follow to color them in your favorite hues.
Step 1: Prepare a batch of soap
Melt a soap block in a microwave until it has turned liquid if you are making melt and pour soap.
Step 2: Add a few drops of dye in the melted soap base
Purchase liquid dyes from the craft store (or you can purchase this highly rated soap dye kit on Amazon) that is meant specifically for making soaps.
Do not use food colorants or fabric dyes for the process. The final outcome may not be desirable if you opt for such dyes that are not meant for use in soap making process.
Step 3: Add dye into the soap
Use a dropper to mix the dye with your melted soap base. 0.5ml of liquid color is enough to be used per pound of soap.
Stir the dye into the soap base. If you feel the color is not dark enough, then you add two or more drops of the dye and mix well.
Step 4: Pour soap into the mold and let it dry
Melt the soap into the mold and let it harden. Usually, melt-and-pour soap is ready to use in two to four hours. You can pop the soap out of the mold and use it accordingly.
In Conclusion – Don’t Use Food Coloring For Soap
Crafting your own soap is a rewarding craft activity. You can also sell your handmade soaps as they are very much in demand.
While using dyes, make sure to choose something appropriate for your DIY soap making project else the end result wouldn’t be what you had anticipated.
Check the manufacturer’s label for establishing the suitability of any dye for your project.