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A question about shaving soaps

Most of the shaving soaps that I have seen are opaque. The one soap that I have from QED is translucent as is the picture of the soap on Mama Bears website. I really like SCS, and QED (have ordered more) and have ordered from all three (not having received MBs as yet). Still, what is the fundamental difference. I think it has something to do with fats and glycerin and I know that chemistry from a biologic standpoint but what is going on in the soapmaking world that makes some opaque and others translucent. What are the theoretical advantages and downsides to each.

I'm not positive myself, even after all this time. I see the translucent soap referred to as "cold poured", it is usualy (always?) vegetable based, and has the glycerin still in it. Although, for it to be a good shaving soap or cream, it would have to contain glycerin no matter what I'd imagine.
Glycerin soaps are usually somewhat clear! Adding fragrance will change the color. Virtually anything with vanilla will turn a brownish color, orange turns orange and for some reason my dragons blood FO turns soap red.. Each fragrance blend and essential oil has it's own coloring (Vanilla being the most well known) and will tint the soap. Adding cocobutter will turn it white.

Cold process soaps (which can be vegetable based or made with tallow) are the same way! Vanilla soaps are a lovely brown/cream color.

Many people will add colorants to soaps also... this (if done right) can make a soap with Gorgeous swirling! and Yes! it can be done naturally using micas or synthetically using colorants. A bar of CP soap that is colored and swirled properly can look like a piece of artwork. I do not use any coloring in my shaving soaps.. they are all different shades and take on the tint of the fragrance or essential oils that are added to them... but here is a rose soap that I colored that I am very proud of... I am also including a bar of CP soap that has been swirled... fabulous!! The rose is glycerin. The winter ice rainbow is glycerinView attachment 1258

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Sue (Mama Bear)
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