Diamond Candles – Rings

What is better than Candles and jewelry? (chocolate?…. yeah.. ok.. maybe)

My daughter Cassie bought a bunch of candles for early Christmas presents – I say early, because she was so excited she couldn’t wait. These candles are 21 oz. and inside each one is a piece of jewelry – most is costume jewelry, but we’ve seen quite a few with real stones, or sterling silver.

I requested Cinnamon Tea.. It has a nice scent – strong enough to smell, but not overbearing. I set it to burn and figured it’d be the next day before I got to the foil wrapped baggie containing my ring.

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After a few hours, I could see the foil, but I let it go another hour or so, just because I didn’t want to dig it out. In the above picture, you can see the foil in the liquid wax. One really nice thing is because the candles are soy (I’m assuming so, since they liquefy), the wax burns down nicely. If you do dig the prize out, lighting it again will quickly liquefy chunky wax.. so it’ll be pretty again very quickly.

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The ring location is marked on the inside of each candle by a gold circle, making it easy to find. we used needle nose plies to pull it up out of the wax.

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These would make a great gift for any woman. Diamond Candle 20% Off Coupon Code

Nana’s Vegan Lavender Soap Recipe

This lavender soap recipe was created for vegan friends and family. It contains no animal bi-products, and is gentle and soothing to sensitive skin. [Updated recipes at bottom of post to include no palm or pko and another for just a castile.]

If you’re not vegan, you can try Nana’s Lavender Goat Milk Soap, a creamy soap that is also gentle on all skin types.

Lavender essential oil has been known to be soothing to dry, itchy skin; calms the mind and eases stress. Lavender eo has been used to treat various skin disorders because of it’s antiseptic and anti-fungal properties, such as acne, wrinkles, and psoriasis. Adding lavender oil to chamomile helps eczema.

I used a few different base recipes, but my all-time favorite was a very simple one.


2 pounds

24 oz. Olive Oil (75)
8 oz. Palm Kernel Oil (25%)

4.38 oz. Lye (6% superfat)
8.8 oz. lavender tea *

1.5 oz. lavender essential oil
2 TBSP lavender powder

* This is your liquid and it determined by your lye amount x 2.

[See bottom of post for information regarding PKO not being considered Vegan – and an alternate, simple recipe.]

To make lavender tea, heat water amount (plus extra a little extra) to boiling. Pour over lavender buds and let infuse for 10 minutes or more. I usually do this the night before and leave to infuse the whole time. Once done, filter out the lavender buds and chill the tea.

When the tea is sufficiently chilled, add your lye (remember, add your lye TO the tea, not the other way around). I put my lye mixture container into a bowl a cold water to cool – (sometimes adding ice, depending on how quickly I’m wanting to get things going).

Once mixed and set to cooling, put aside (in a safe place!).

Measure your Palm Kernel Oil (PKO) and melt (not hot, just melted) – I have used a microwave in the past to do this, just make sure your container is microwave safe. If you are able, a stove top works well.

While your PKO is melting, measure your lavender essential oil and lavender powder into separate containers (I always use glass for my essential and fragrance oils).

Have your mold clean, lined and at the ready.

When your PKO is melted, add the olive oil. Feeling the side of the pot, it should not be hot. I prefer working with all the ingredients at a luke-warm temperature. It allows for more time.


Now, your lye mixture should be cooler to the touch and your oils cooler to the touch… again, think “luke warm”.

Have your stick blender (immersion blender) at hand and ready. Slowly add your lye mixture to your oils (note: always add the lye TO the oil). Blending while you pour…

Bring your soap mixture to trace (trace is when your spoon or blender leaves a trail and takes a minute to disappear back into the mixture). Once trace has been reached, add your lavender powder, mixing, then your essential oil, mixing..

Everything should be mixed well, now pour into your mold. I do not insulate my soap, I put it on a shelf for about 24 hours before I unmold and cut. Once cut, I leave on a shelf for another 24 hours before I bevel edges.

Give it a couple weeks before using, though a good month would be best as the soap will harden up nicely over time.





UPDATE

In a recent comment, Lisa informs me that PKO, palm kernel oil, is not considered vegan.  I am unable find any information to support that it is not vegan – however there is a lot of information regarding palm oil and the destruction from it’s harvesting.  I have, on the other hand, found sites where people do consider PKO vegan.  Whether you consider it vegan or not, the choice to use it is up to the soap maker.

I prefer really simple recipes – it’s not only easier on the pocket book, but it’s easier to make – and then I can add my extra goodies to spice it up.  Here is a recipe using coconut instead of PKO – coconut is derived from the Coconut Palm (not the same plant that palm or pko come from).

2 pounds – No PKO

25.5 oz. Olive Oil (~80%)
6.5 oz. Coconut Oil (~20%)

4.37 oz. Lye (6% superfat)
8.8 oz. lavender tea *

1.5 oz. lavender essential oil
2 TBSP lavender powder

* This is your liquid and it determined by your lye amount x 2.

….

If you want a true Castile Soap, use only Olive Oil:

2 pounds Castile Soap

32 oz. Olive Oil (100%)

4.07 oz. Lye (6% superfat)

8.2 oz. lavender tea *

1.5 oz. lavender essential oil
2 TBSP lavender powder

* This is your liquid and it determined by your lye amount x 2.

Castile takes longer to cure, but makes a very hard, long lasting bar of soap.

Enjoy!