Giving Soaps a second chance with Rebatching
As much as soap making is fun, it can be sometimes frustrating and expensive. Experimentation
can sometimes end in failure and soap batches rendered useless. The ingredients used like lye, fragrances or
colorants can cut through the budget if one isn't careful. In order to let some soaps not go to waste, the
Rebatching process is usually used.
Rebatching isn't really soap making but more of reusing. It is cutting, grating then melting already made soap
in order to let it set again, this time hopefully it comes out just the way you like it. One can use a grater, meat
slicer or food processor.
When it is heated in the double boiler or microwave, it should be placed in a boil-proof bag. Water should be
added in order to give it the moisture it needs. Beer, milk or tea can also be used depending on the effect that
you want. Other soap makers attest to the use of milk to give the batch a smoother texture. Place just enough
liquid to wet the batch but do not let it drown in liquid. Using too much liquid will make it more difficult for
the soap to harden.
Lye water can be added although the soap maker should be as careful as possible as lye is more dangerous with a
Additional fragrances or colorants can still be used. The soap will not completely melt but will have an
oatmeal-like texture that can be molded or casted again. More water will make it softer depending on what kind of
texture one wants. If the soap maker is trying to correct the mistake of having too little fragrances or colorants,
use a little more oil than usual because fragrances have a tendency to be swallowed by a semi-solid substance like
that of a rebatched soap texture.
Again, as it does not completely melt, the soap maker can now place it by pushing it out of the bag and placing
it in molds. To let air bubbles out, the mold will have to be whacked over and over a hard surface to let the soap
base fit the crevices of the mold.
The soap will never be as smooth as the first batch. Instead it will have a very rough, rustic look that may
serve other soap makers' purposes while others not. Still, rebatching helps if only because it gives expensive
ingredients a chance to be used again.