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August 2020 Soap Challenge Club: Layered Soap with Drop Swirls

The Soap Challenge Club, hosted by Amy Warden, is a group of soap makers who come together to learn new techniques and engage in a little healthy competition each month. Amy shares a tutorial and soap makers have the month to practice the technique, ask questions, share tips, and finally enter a soap for competition. For August, the challenge was to create a soap that has layers and a drop swirl on the top. An additional design element of the soap maker's choice was also required.

I attempted this challenge three time. The first time I did a pink gradient soap with black, white, and dark pink drop swirls. The additional design element I used was gold mica lines between each layer. I'm not into perfectly straight layers at all (too much pressure), but did want them as distinct as possible so I used Amy's tip of adding an accelerating fragrance just prior to pouring the soap batter. The accelerating fragrance I used was a rose scented fragrance. Rose scented fragrances are notorious for accelerating soap batter and this normally annoying feature actually worked like a charm here. I added the rose fragrance after coloring soap batter for that layer and right before pouring it in the mold. I worked fast before the soap batter solidified. When I added my mica and poured the next layer, the previous one had solidified enough so that the layers remained separate. I made a second batch of soap; this time using a blue gradient with white, blue and black drop swirls. Having to decide on an entry for the Soap Challenge, I was torn between the two soaps; therefore, I posted both the pink and blue soaps on my social media and asked my followers to vote. They picked blue by a slight margin. 

two examples of layered soap with a drop swirl in top layer

I originally was going to stop after two attempts, but on a whim, I decided that I was going to do a third attempt. I abandoned the idea of any type of separate or straight layers and used an in-the-pot swirl as my additional design element instead of a mica line. I like this soap a little better, but I think that my red drop swirls got a little lost in the black and white mixed layer. This soap is quite different from the other two, but I still decided to submit my blue soap for this month's challenge. All in good fun anyway.

layered soap with uneven layers. In-the-pot swirl for one of the layers.


Thanks to Amy Warden for the creative inspiration each month.

layered blue soap


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  • All of your soaps looked amazing. Fantastic job!

    Lori Mackey
  • So fun to see all the different designs you made, Lori! I do love the blue and I’m so glad the accelerating fragrance tip worked so well for you. The layers turned out really straight, while the drops remained nice and fluid. Great job!

    Amy Warden

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