33 of 36 people found the following review helpful
For serious soapmakers.,
By A Customer
This review is from: The Soapmaker's Companion: A Comprehensive Guide with Recipes, Techniques & Know-How (Natural Body Series - The Natural Way to Enhance Your Life) (Paperback)
An excellent reference manual that's good for years of use. It's the only consumer-level soapmaking book I've seen that was written with the assistance of a professional chemist. None of the usual folk wisdom and clumsy techniques. Cavitch discusses the physical reasons for batch failures and provides solutions using personally tested formulas. Information on balancing saturated and non-saturated vegetable fats is especially good. Basic information for starting a small business is also included. However, the 40-bar recipes are way too large for average home users and measurements are based on the metric system. Reducing high yields to reasonable levels and converting measurements to the U.S. system will cause the failures you're trying to avoid. Also, many of the raw materials suppliers listed are industrial wholesalers who don't sell to consumers. Given the amount of use this book will receive, it should have been published in a hardcover edition, on much better paper and loaded with color photographs. Well worth the additional cost.