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Christmas Mint Cold Process


Did you know that Christmas is only 37 days away?!? If you’re anything like us and have been busy prepping for the holidays, but haven’t actually gotten around to making your cold process soap, this is the tutorial for you!  This is number 4 in our 12 Blogs of Christmas series. It’s quick, easy, and smells spectacularly minty! And the best part is it only needs 4 weeks (28 days) to cure. So instead of stressing about how behind schedule life can get, we encourage you to celebrate victories of all size this season.

What you’ll need:

12 oz Distilled Water
5.2 oz Sodium Hydroxide
12 oz Coconut Oil
12 oz Palm Oil
12 oz Olive Oil Pure

1/4 tsp Chrome Green Oxide
1/2 tsp Light Gold Mica
1/2 tsp Apple Moss Mica

2.1 oz Moroccan Mint FO

10″ Silicone Loaf Mold
Easy Pour Containers

**If you are not local, you can get all of this and more at Bramble Berry! They will ship directly to you!**



In small ramekins or dixie cups, measure out each mica and add 1 tbsp. of any fixed oil. We used avocado oil. Then, mix using Bramble Berry’s mini mixer and set aside.

Weigh out 2.1 oz Moroccan Mint FO into a small container and set aside.

We also drew a line on each easy pour container to indicate how much soap we needed for each color. On one easy pour container, draw a line to 8 oz, and on the second draw a line 10.5 oz. There will be 29.5 oz left in your original container. This will make it easier to separate the soap batter out.


Separately weigh out the distilled water and lye into glass containers. As always, carefully add the lye to the water and gently stir with a stainless steel whisk until solution is clear. You can label and set aside, or you can put it into a designated freezer to cool down faster.

While the lye is cooling, weigh out all the oils in a large glass Pyrex bowl and heat in the microwave until the oils are around 115 degrees.

Once the oils and lye solution are around 115 degrees (between 10 degrees of each other) you can now make your soap. Make sure you have gloves, goggles and long sleeves on while you are starting to make soap.

Put the stick blender into the oils and burp the blender so you avoid mixing in any air bubbles. Pour the lye solution down the arm of the stick blender and start mixing until you have reached a medium trace.

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Once you have reached trace, pour the soap batter into the two easy pour containers at 8 oz and 10.5 oz.

Add your dispersed colors to each designated container.

8 oz soap gets Chrome Green Oxide
10.5 oz soap gets Light Gold Mica
29.5 oz soap gets Apple Moss Green Mica

Since you don’t want to make the soap batter any thicker, use a whisk or fork to mix in the colors really well.

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Next, eyeball the fragrance into each container and mix in thoroughly.


Take the chrome green soap and pour it into the apple moss green at 12, 3, 6 & 9.  This will design an in-the-pot swirl effect.  Once all of the chrome green is poured into the apple moss, take a stirring utensil and give the batter one big stir to give movement to the greens.

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Now you are ready to pour! Take the swirled green batter and pour the entire amount into the 10” silicone loaf mold. By this time it will be fairly thick, which is good because afterwards we will be pouring the light gold soap on top.


Carefully pour the light gold soap on top of the green soap (be sure it doesn’t break through the green soap as you’re pouring)


Once the light gold soap is on top, use a spoon to manipulate the top to the way you like it.

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Spray the top with 99% rubbing alcohol to prevent soda ash, and insulate to encourage gel phase.

After a few days, unmold the soap and cut.


12 Blogs of Christmas Schedule:

November 21st Eucalyptus Shower Fizzy
November 28th Lavender Rice Bag
December 1st Christmas Bubble Bars
December 8th Snowman Melt & Pour
December 12th Nose Chap
December 15th White Chocolate Lip Icing & Lotion
December 19th Travel Lotion
December 23rd Otion Cookie Exchange


For the month of November, take 15% off all essential waters.

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Diluting a LabColor


We love color here at Otion: The Soap Bar and using LabColors opens the possibilities so much…but if you’ve ever used LabColors, you know that half the battle is diluting them before use! Here are the steps for success, thanks to our very own Austyn. Let the soap coloring begin. 🙂

What you need:

LabColors you wish to dilute (we used small Soft Jade, Gulf Stream, Bright Cherry)
4 oz Bottle w/ cap
Optiphen ND
Easy Pour Container
(or other microwave safe container)
Mini Mixer
Small Funnel
4 oz Warm Distilled Water



Fill a bowl with hot water and submerge the LabColor in the water with the cap on. Since the LabColors are in plastic bottles, this is a better alternative than placing the LabColors in the microwave to avoid the plastic from melting. I left the LabColor submerged for about 4 minutes.

Note: If you have LabColors in glass bottles, you can just heat them in the microwave with the cap off for 10-15 seconds only.

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While you’re warming your LabColor, weigh out 4 oz of distilled water into an easy pour container and microwave it for 30 seconds. The water should be warm, but you don’t want it scalding hot.

Note: You can dilute the small LabColors in up to 8 oz of water, but for the brightest and best results we like to dilute in 4 oz.


After the LabColor has bathed for a few minutes. Take it out of the hot water and give it a good shake. Then carefully remove the lid and pour the LabColor into the 4 oz of warm water. You want to get as much of the color out of the bottle as possible so you may want to “rinse” out the container by adding a small amount of warm water using a dropper, shaking again, and pouring out whatever excess color that may have been left in the container. Once all the color is added use a mini mixer to mix together completely.

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Now it’s time to add your preservative, Optiphen ND. The usage rate is 1%, so for diluting 4 oz, add 1 mL. Mix together with the mini mixer.

Note: Make sure that your temperature is under 176 degrees F when using Optiphen ND

Double note: You can also use Germaben at the same usage rate, but make sure that your temperature is below 140 degrees F.


Once completely mixed together, pour the LabColor into the 4oz clear bottle using the small funnel. You are going to want to leave the cap off until the liquid is cooled to avoid condensation.


Don’t forget to label your bottle! It can be tricky to tell the diluted lab colors apart. To save time and resources, I re-used the original Bramble Berry tag. It can also be helpful to note an expiration date. The LabColors are best by 1 year after the time you dilute them.

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Wear gloves! Diluting LabColors is messy, so be sure your wearing gloves, an apron, and have paper towels handy. I didn’t use gloves and had colorful hands after I was finished!

Label ahead of time. Especially since you have to leave the lids off the bottles until they cool, it is helpful to label the bottles before you pour to avoid confusion


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Just Keep Swimming


Here, Fishy Fishy! We LOVE experimenting with fun projects and soap designs. This particular project was inspired by our namesake: Otion! This project was a rather ambitious one, with two different embeds and a melt & pour break-through technique, but with some time and patience our creation was unveiled to reveal some beautiful and unique soap! Keep reading to find out how to make fun and creative Ocean fishy soap (and don’t forget to just keep swimming)!

What You’ll Need:

Seaweed Embeds:

7 oz Honey Melt & Pour
2 mL Apricot Freesia Fragrance Oil
3 drops Liquid Green
3 drops Liquid Nearly Neon Yellow
2 mini scoops Fine Iridescent Glitter
approx. 2 tsp Liquid Glycerin
Glossy Silicone Mold

Goldfish Embeds:

6 oz Honey Melt & Pour
1 1/2 mL Apricot Freesia Fragrance Oil
4 drops Liquid Orange
10 drops Liquid Nearly Neon Yellow
7 drops Liquid White
Milkyway Guest Goldfish Mold

Cold Process Soap:

14 oz Aloe Vera Liquid
5 oz Sodium Hydroxide (lye)
5 oz Apricot Kernel Oil
3 oz Avocado Butter
12 oz Coconut Oil
3 oz Jojoba Oil
5 oz Olive Oil Pure
8 oz Palm Oil
1/2 tsp Activated Charcoal (dispersed in Meadowfoam Oil)
1 tsp Neon Blue Raspberry (dispersed in Meadowfoam Oil)
Snowflake Sparkle Mica (to dust on top)

Melt & Pour Soap:

16 oz Low Sweat Clear Melt & Pour
4 mL Apricot Freesia Fragrance Oil
1/4 tsp Ultramarine Blue
3 mini scoops Fine Iridescent Glitter


Making Goldfish Embeds:

Weigh out and melt down 2 oz of honey m&p on 10 second bursts. Melting down small amounts of soap on small increments in the microwave helps prevent burnt soap. Check out this SoapQueen blog on burnt soap here.

Add 2 drops liquid orange and 5 drops liquid nearly neon yellow. Then add .5 mL Apricot Freesia FO and mix well.

Using a dropper, fill in just the goldfish, spraying with rubbing alcohol when bubbles form. If the soap begins to thicken, pop it back in the microwave for 10 seconds. Detail work is much easier when the soap is hotter, thus thinner. You can fill in as many as you like with this color. We chose to only use one.

Again, melt down 2 oz of honey m&p. Once melted add 5 drops liquid white and .5 mL Apricot Freesia FO.

Using the left over orange soap as well as the white soap, use droppers to fill in more goldfish. Disperse both colors randomly throughout the fish to give it a swirled look. Spray with rubbing alcohol when bubbles form.



Making Seaweed Embeds:

Melt down 7 oz honey m&p. Add 3 drops liquid green, 3 drops liquid nearly neon yellow, 2 mini scoops fine iridescent glitter and 2 tsp liquid glycerin. Mix thoroughly and pour into the glossy silicone mold. Wait until the soap hardens and is at room temperature to unmold. Once the soap is out of the mold, cut into strips, then carefully knead soap strips into wavy seaweed-like shapes. The extra glycerin in the seaweed embeds makes the soap more pliable so you can manipulate it better.



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Once the embeds are made, set them aside!

Making Cold Process Soap:

 **If you’ve never made cold process soap before, check out this SoapQueen YouTube video on how to make soap and learn about lye safety.**

Color Prep: Disperse 1/2 tsp activated charcoal and 1 tsp neon blue raspberry in two separate small ramekins with meadowfoam oil. Using Bramble Berry’s mini mixer, mix each color until the color is completely incorporated.

Supplies: After the color is all mixed in and set aside, get out all the supplies you will need. Set the melt & pour goldfish and seaweed embeds to the side as you will use those later.

Once all the supplies are out, weigh out the lye in a glass bowl and the aloe vera liquid into a separate glass pyrex. Using a stainless steel whisk, pour the lye into the water and start stirring. Be sure not to pour the water into the lye as this can cause a volcano! Stir with the whisk until the lye solution has been mixed in thoroughly. Label and set aside or put in the fridge to help cool down faster.


While the lye solution is cooling down, weigh out all of your oils and butters into a large pyrex container. Put in the microwave on 15 second bursts until the butters are melted and you are around 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

While you are waiting for the oils and lye solution to now is a great time to get the melt & pour ready. Microwave 2 separate cups with 8 oz of LCP Clear M&P in them. Once melted and at approximately 140 degrees fahrenheit, add 1/4 tsp ultramarine blue, 2 mL Apricot Freesia FO and 1 mini scoop fine iridescent glitter to one cup and mixed well. To the other add only 2 mL Apricot Freesia FO and 2 mini scoops of fine iridescent glitter.


When the oils and lye solution reach around 100 degrees fahrenheit (10-15 degrees of each other) you are now ready to make some some. Burp the stick blender in the oils before you start blending. This makes it so you won’t have any air pockets in your finished product. Slowly pour the lye solution down the shaft of the stick blender and start stirring and blending.


After coming to a light trace, divide the soap into two containers. Add 1/2 tsp of dispersed activated charcoal to 16 oz of soap and then 1 tsp of dispersed neon blue raspberry to the remaining 34 oz. Use a fork or other stirring utensil to get the colors incorporated completely. Once the colors are fully mixed in, add 0.7 oz of Apricot Freesia FO to the black soap, then add 1.4 oz to the neon blue soap. Make sure the embeds are close by and then pour the black soap into the bottom of the mold and then a small amount of the neon blue soap over the top. Let the blue soap break through the black soap layer. Then place the seaweed-shaped embeds into the soap.





Now you are ready to pour the melt & pour soap. Check the soap’s consistency and if needed, put it back in the microwave on 10 second bursts until it is completely liquefied. Once the melt & pour is ready, pour another layer of the neon blue cp soap over the seaweed. Continue to pour alternate layers of each melt & pour soap and the cp soap from different heights. This way each layer has some break through while you pour. Keep alternating soaps until you run out of soap.

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Spray the soap with 99% isopropyl alcohol to help prevent soda ash and then take a small amount of snowflake sparkle mica in a spoon and lightly blow a layer over the soap to create a bit of fun before topping the soap with the goldfish embeds.


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Then step back and admire your work before covering the soap for 48 hours to a) prevent soda ash and b) encourage gel phase.

After the 48 hours we tried unmolding our creation, but the soap was a bit too soft. So we gave it one extra day to harden up. We were so excited to finally unmold and cut our soap. These bars of soap are going to be BIG! The average weight turned out to be right around 8 oz per bar. We were not exactly sure what to expect with all of the different embeds and layering between the cold process and melt and pour, but we were pretty satisfied with the results.

When cutting the soap we did notice a bit of a tacky consistency between each bar that quickly dried after several minutes. This was probably due to melt & pour soap not being able to fully harden before cutting into it. This didn’t seem to affect the bars negatively.


This was a project where we weren’t exactly sure how it would turn out. Sometimes doing projects like that can work out and other times can fail. Take a look back at the projects that we had to try and try again to get right.
Embracing Our Failures

Don’t forget for the month of August take 40% off select fragrance oils as well as 15% off when you sign up for our Naturally Clean Home Class!

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Parties at Otion!

Our Crafter’s Corner is officially 1 year old! We are celebrating by offering 15% off all projects during the month of May. There have been lots of visitors who have taken advantage of this fun promotion. Our most popular project is melt and pour soap making! But a close second is making custom nail polish. Did you know that both of these options are also available as a party?

Come celebrate with us! Birthdays, gatherings, & festivities of any kind are welcome. Bring in your group and use our loft to create your own handmade memories. We offer melt and pour soaping and nail polish making parties for all ages. If you have a group of 21+ years of age, we also offer bath bomb and lip balm making to the list of other projects to create! It’s never a dull moment around here! Spots fill up quick, especially on the weekends, so for more details check out our website or give us a call at 360-676-1030.

party loaf

If you choose to have a melt and pour party, you and your guest get to create a party loaf!

We are also a great destination for an afternoon activity! Bellingham has a wonderful college crowd, and when parents come to visit, the Crafter’s Corner is a great hands-on experience. With so many ways to customize your own lip balm, bath bombs, and now offering a seasonal sugar scrub, the possibilities for fun are endless!




A great way to connect with us and other crafter’s on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter is to use #otionsoap when posting to social media. Plus, if you show us your hashtag, Crafter’s Corner projects are 10% off during your visit!

These projects are a great way to get your DIY on and not make a mess in your own home! Get crafty, get creative, get glittered and go home with a bag full of goodies plus some fun handmade memories! Stop by or make your appointment today. Check out our menu and our class schedule to see full details of everything we offer!


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Crafter’s Corner – Sugar Scrub

Another great project we offer in the Crafter’s Corner is a Sugar Scrub! Now that summer is on it’s way it’s the perfect time to scrub away that winter skin! We utilize Lavender Buds, Lemon Peel Powder and Jojoba Beads as an extra exfoliant in our sugar scrub kits.


In this sugar scrub we use fine granulated white sugar, but you can use any kind you’d like. Even brown sugar! The liquid we use is Potassium Cocoate, which is a coconut oil liquid soap. We have placed Aloe Extract along with a preservative in the soap for extra healing properties and to make sure no bacteria grows in your scrub.



In the Crafter’s Corner you get the option of two 4 oz jars or one short 8 oz bail jar to put your scrub in!


Now lets get right into it! There are 6 easy steps in making a sugar scrub.
Keep reading to find out how!

Weigh out 1 cup of sugar into a bowl.
Add 12-14 pumps of the liquid soap into the sugar.
*Be sure you don’t over saturate your sugar, it’s supposed to be kind of crumbly and not gooey! Otherwise it will expand and not fit in your jars!*
Once the liquid soap is added to the sugar, mix mix mix!
Now you can choose your exfoliant! Add four 1/8tsp into the scrub and mix together.
You also get to choose from a variety of fragrance and essential oils. Once chosen, add up to 30 drops and once again, mix well.
Once all your goodies are added to the bowl and mixed together, pick your desired package and scoop the sugar scrub into the jar.


Every 3-4 months our Sugar Scrub Kit changes. We started out with a Salt Scrub Kit, utilizing pink himalayan sea salt and epsom salt. Check back in a few months and who knows what we will have planned for you!


Don’t forget that for the month of May we are offering 15% off all Crafter’s Corner projects!
Come in and make Melt & Pour Soap, Lip Balm, Bath Bombs, Nail Polish & a Sugar Scrub. Walk-ins welcome, but reservations are encouraged!

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Crafter’s Corner – Melt & Pour

Can you believe it has already been a year since we redecorated and opened our Crafter’s Corner? A lot sure has changed in a year!

This month, Otion will take a look into the Crafter’s Corner. We will take you through each of our projects and show you all of the fun options we offer!

The Crafter’s Corner is a feature at Otion that gives you the opportunity to not only hand craft your own soaps but also lip balm, bath bombs, nail polish and a sugar scrub. This is a great addition to the many weekend classes we already offer! Reservations are encouraged, but walk-ins are welcome!

Want to know how it works? There are four stations available to accommodate multiple people at one time. These projects are for any age and there is always a teacher close by to lend a hand in creating your handmade memories.

Our most popular project is by far the Melt & Pour Soap!

melt and pour

We offer 6 of Bramble Berry’s premium soap bases from which you can choose: clear, olive oil, honey, white, shea, & goat’s milk.

When choosing a base it’s good to remember that when you add color, you will get more vibrant colors from the translucent bases and more pastel colors from the opaque bases.


Once you have decided on a base, it’s time to move over to the giant selection of molds that we offer. With so many choices this sometimes takes an extra moment to make sure you’ve picked the best ones. There are many molds that we sell, but we also have a handful of discontinued molds that are exclusive to the Crafter’s Corner.

Our wide selection of molds!

Van Gough’s Starry Night & President Reagan molds have since been discontinued, but we have them available to use in the Crafter’s Corner!

Now for the goodies! With 10 fragrance oils and 13 liquid colorants to choose from the combinations are endless! We also offer a variety of essential oils including Lavender, Lemongrass, and Peppermint.


Now it’s time to make some soap!

We help you divide and melt down your chosen soap bases. Then we hand the liquefied soap over to you to add color, fragrance and glitter if you desire. Once your goodies are fully mixed in, pour the soap into your molds. From here we pop them into our freezer. It takes about 15-20 minutes for the soap to get nice and hard again.

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We are adding our liquid color to our melted soap base.
Now add glitter and mix in!
Now pick your fragrance oil and add to the melted soap base.
Once all your goodies are added, pour into your chosen molds.

Spray the soaps with rubbing alcohol to get rid of any bubbles on top.

This is a good time for customers to pursue the store or walk across the street to grab a sweet treat from Rocket Donuts!

Finally, we help pop your handmade soaps out of each mold and they are ready to enjoy!

With shapes and sizes for all soaping needs, these make great gifts, party favors, and help spruce up any soap dish!

Melt and pour soaping is a great project for all ages! And how great is it to be able to not make a mess in your own house? We take care of set up AND clean up so you don’t have to fret. So give us a call and reserve a spot for you and the kid to come down and make some handmade memories.

If you’re looking to get fancy with your melt and pour we offer a detailed Melt & Pour Class! It’s 3 hours filled with tips on detail, layering, and embedding. One of the coolest things taught in this class is how to use water soluble paper! Print out a picture and let it be the design of your soap!


Check out how we used it to make Otion’s Family Portrait Soap!


All projects in the Crafter’s Corner are 15% off for the month of May! Hurry in!

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