So you’ve been bitten by the soap-making bug, and you love silicone soap molds. But you wish there was more of a variety in soap molds. Perhaps you are getting ready to launch your own business, and in doing so, you want a unique design for your molds. It is all very understandable and expected; after all, you need to set yourself apart from your competition. The soap-making world today is full of good old-fashioned competition.
Silicone Soap Molds
Silicone soap molds are ideal for when you want to create a one-of-a-kind soap mold. It is quite a simple process. Let’s learn how to make silicone soap molds. First, you need to get RTV silicone (preferably one with a Shore hardness of 20 or higher for the stability of the mold, so your soaps don’t come out twisted if your mold is not flat). Secondly, you will need wood, plastic, or cardboard strips about 5-9 cm tall. Anything that makes a decent corral would work. Last but not least, you need to get some plaster of Paris.
How to make soap molds
Once you’ve gathered all the materials you need, we can begin. Make sure your environment is well vented, and you are wearing an apron to protect your clothing. Mold-making can be a very messy project. Silicone does not remove well from the carpet, so make sure you are working in a room that is easily cleaned. It is time to mix the plaster. You will find it has a pudding-like consistency. You pour it into a ready-made container in the shape you want once entirely mixed. You can either use a standard block or get creative and carve your own. After filling the molds, set them aside for thirty to forty minutes to cool. The plaster will gradually warm up as it slowly hardens.
It’s time to unmold your plaster soap after the hardening process is complete. It is crucial to work under a light stream of water so you can smooth any jagged edges on your mold. It also helps to remove debris and keep the cuts smooth. If you need to polish or patch your bar, you can take fresh plaster and lightly dab, then smooth a tiny amount over the bar. The plaster will fill in the groove and smooth it out once you run it underwater. It is advised to make another plain soap mold just in case the engraved mold doesn’t turn out as expected. Accidents happen, so having a backup mold if you drop one or want to change your engraving is a good idea.
You will need to get your design ready to transfer to the plaster. It is best to use water-based ink in your printer, so the design bleeds when it gets wet; making the designs in another color of ink other than black is advisable because black does not transfer very well. Blue ink transfers best. When placing your design understand that it must be horizontal; so the text will flow in the right direction.
Once the design is damp and placed on the plaster, press down on the paper with a wet finger until you can barely see the design bleed through the back of the paper; Make sure you don’t use too much water. But if you do, lay the plaster on a dry towel for a few minutes to soak up the moisture.
Engrave the design by carefully carving into the plaster where the pattern has left the imprint of ink. The ink itself will eventually fade. It is best to be quick since the ink could fade before you have time to finish. If you think you don’t have enough time, then go over the design just enough to leave an imprint you can use as a guide. When engraving, it’s a good idea to start small and work your way up. It is a vital step that will help you keep from breaking the plaster. There are all kinds of tools you can use to carve plaster. Small screwdrivers with a flat edge, needles, and tweezers are just a few. Keeping the plaster moist while working with it will make it easier to carve and prevent chipping.
When you are finished carving, rinse the plaster and set it down on a towel to absorb excess water. You don’t need to towel dry it, and it’s not recommended. The lint from the towel will stick to the mold and keep your soap from having a smooth surface. Since the plaster is porous, you don’t need to dry it directly. The towel will absorb the moisture from the surface. Next, set your frames upon a sheet of paper, leaving 5 to 10 mm around the model. Use tape to seal any cracks, corners, and edges. You can use putty or hot glue if you prefer.
Finally, you are ready to pour the silicone. To keep bubbles from forming in your mold, rub silicone into the details of your carving, then place the frame. It is best to pour the silicone into a thin stream around the sides and slowly fill in the mold. Once pouring is done, leave your tools and anything that has silicone on it. Let the silicone harden then you can clean it off easily. After the silicone has hardened, you can unmold it and trim any scraps.
If you want an even more rustic mold, there are wooden soap molds with silicone liners. Making them is different, but the outcome is the same. Silicone soap molds are essential for entrepreneurs who want to start their own business or make homemade organic soaps. Some companies will make the molds for you. But once you learn how to make them for yourself, the possibilities are endless. You can create your logo and have it impressed on every soap bar. You can even get creative and make your own brand of soap.