Soap Me Pretty Updates

Those of you who have ever so often checked in will have noticed that nothing has happened here since last December. I am so sorry.

I was busy being pregnant and giving birth to my daughter Lily Marie on February 22. Creating soaps and mixing cremes has taken the backseat to shaking milk bottles and mashing purees instead. With Lily now crossing over into the post-6-months age though, I will be returning to making beautiful cosmetics. My friend Faridah came to visit over the weekend and has given me a sample of the oh-so-expensive-and-glamerous Creme de la Mer. It feels great but is very similar to Nivea in texture and smell. I will make it my task till the end of the year to create something similar that’s oh-so-wonderful for the middle aged skin but only a fraction of the price. :-) In the meantime, I am posting some pictures of last year’s Christmas fair in Trim as well as Lily.

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Bath Time!

All in the interest of product testing it’s been bath time in Ashbourne for the last couple of weeks. 2-3 times a week Austin and I immerse ourselves in homemade bath melts, salts and milk powders (mind, not at the same time ;-) ). It’s not going to take long and we’ll develop gills and webs. Seriously.

As per usual some things are great and work at the first try – some need more refinement. Let me share with you a great recipe I found for bath melts which I have tried out but needed to tweak. Note that if you want to be very posh you can also call them “bath truffles” – I did so a couple of times until Austin called me an ejeet and I decided it was safer using the terminology “melt” instead (if you are unfamiliar with the local tongue “ejeet” is defined by the urban dictionary as: A person of lower intellectual abilities. A fool. Used as a colloquial term in Ireland. :D )

Lavender Camomile Bath Melts

  • 50 gr. cocoa butter
  • 50 gr. shea butter
  • 1 table spoon almond oil
  • 1 tea spoon dried lavender buds (taken from my front garden!)
  • 1 tea spoon camomile tea (dry)
  • A couple of drops of lavender essential oil
  • A silicone mould for ice cubes (in my case they are heart shaped)

Putting it together: Grate the cocoa butter and melt over low heat with the shea butter. Once melted add the almond oil, the lavender buds and camomile tea (just cut the tea bag and stir contents in). Add about 5-6 drops of lavender essential oil to the mix last. Get your mould and add a drop of essential oil at the bottom of each form. Spoon mixture in and put into the fridge until solid. I usually leave it in over night.

So this is the original recipe which sounds great, right? When I used it in the bath, however, I was less than impressed with the floating bits and pieces of lavender buds and camomile. Apart from the fact that the buds were sort of scratchy the oils are very heavy and all the floaty bits stick to you like they are glued on. I found myself twisting and turning in bed later like the princess on the pea trying to locate yet another piece of lavender that I had failed to remove previously. Hence, I re-melted all of the bath melts again and strained them through a sieve. Going forward there’ll be no scratchy and annoying solids in my bath melts. Also, I’ll slightly amend the recipe using less cocoa butter and up the amounts of shea butter and almond oil to make the melt a bit “lighter” on the skin. Bath melts go a long way in a bath tub so one (instead of two as used by me) will do for one full bath.

We’ll pack the bath melts into our gift boxes that we’ll bring to the Trim Xmas market on December 8. What else is to be expected there? Bath milk sets! There will be lovely 3 pack (lavender, rose and jasmine) and 4 pack (almond, chocolate, vanilla and caramel) bath milk sets that will make you feel great and smell – to borrow from Jamie Oliver – delish! Sneak preview below.

Bath Milk Lavender

Ooops, we do it again!

Hurray, another market. I know I sounded luke-warm the last time I talked about markets. But it seriously grew on us. So we are going to do it again. :-) Rest assured it’s not a barn this time around. Oh no, it’s a posh hotel in Trim. For those of you who haven’t been to Trim yet – please plan a visit for the 8th of December. Stop by the castle first, then go to the Knightsbrook Hotel and have a hot chocolate. On your way out pass the Knightsbrook Christmas Fair and purchase some lovely handmade products for your loved ones. Simples. ;-)

Knightsbrook