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Spring Has Sprung Giveaway!

The latest giveaway from The Country Chick and my Etsy shop, MaidenHillFarm, is finally here! 

Enter to win the following:

1 Preservative Free Beeswax Solid Lotion Bar

1 Beeswax Lip Balm

And 1 Small Beeswax/Cocoa Butter Cellulite/Massage Bar

In a cute, reusable muslin gift bag. 

Spring Has Sprung Giveaway

Now for the legalese: Open to entries from the US only. One lucky winner will be chosen at random when the contest ends on March 22, 2015 at 12:00 AM CST. The winner will be contacted by email to obtain their mailing address – if after 48 hours I haven’t received a response, a new winner will be chosen. When you sign in to Rafflecopter make sure to include an email address so that I can contact you. As soon as possible, I will mail out the prize.

P.S. If you don’t want to wait until the end of the giveaway, please visit my shop on Etsy here.

Best of luck to everyone!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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DIY Neapolitan Bubble Bath Bars (um. . . Scoops).

I’m always on the lookout for new DIY bath/body type products to add to the Etsy shop. And one of those things that I’ve had my eye on for a while were bubble bath bars. 

Now, you might have seen bubble bath bars sold at stores that sell Luscious bath products. See what I did there? Totally not going to say the name of the store, but you get it 😉 

But if you haven’t seen them before, here’s a little rundown on what they are. . . . 

DIY Bubble Bath Scoops

Imagine if you took a bath bomb, but instead of fizzing, it created lots of thick, creamy bubbles. And I really do mean lots of them. 

Now, what creates the bubbles? 

Sodium Lauryl Sulfoacetate.

Or better known as SLSa. Not to be confused with SLS (a.k.a. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate), which is something totally different and unrelated. Now, for a little explanation about their differences. . . . Because honestly, I had to google it when I first started researching bubble bath bars. 

SLS is a chemical detergent found in most commercial shampoos, toothpastes, soaps (not mine, of course!), and cleansing products that need to foam or lather up. It’s used throughout the commercial bath/beauty industry because it is extremely cheap and it does it’s job. But here’s the troubling part, and why you won’t see it listed on any ingredients list of a product that I make. 

Because of it’s small molecular structure, SLS is easily absorbed into the skin. Which wouldn’t be so bad, if it wasn’t connected with skin irritations, headaches and migraines, nausea, possible carcinogenic ingredients, etc. 

SLSa, on the other hand, is derived from coconut and palm oils. It’s known to be skin safe, and because it has a larger molecular structure, it isn’t as easily absorbed. But it is a little more expensive, which is probably why most bath/body companies choose a cheaper ingredient for their products. 

So, there you have it, the difference between the two ingredients. Which means, it’s time to tell you how to make bubble bath bars. Um, I mean, scoops. Because it’s so much easy to scoop them than to do all that rolling, patting, and slicing . . . . no thanks!

 

The ingredients: 

1/2 cup baking soda 

1/2 cup Lathanol LAL Powder – aka SLSa 

2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Cornstarch 

2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Bubble Bar Hardener (a.k.a. Cream of Tartar)

3 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Vegetable Glycerin*

3 teaspoons Castor Oil

1.5 mL Strawberry Kiwi Fragrance Oil

1 mL Chocolate Espresso Fragrance Oil

1 mL Vanilla Buttercream Fragrance Oil

1/4 teaspoon pink colorant

1/2 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin

1/2 teaspoon cocoa powder

1 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin

Small ice cream scoop

*There’s a chance you might use more than what is listed. 

Begin by measuring the dry ingredients (Baking Soda, SLSa, Cornstarch, and Bubble Bar Hardener) and placing them in a large bowl.  

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Be sure to wear a face mask while measuring the SLSa as it is very fine and will irritate your throat/lungs.

Using a whisk or fork, stir together the dry ingredients until they’re completely combined together. 

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Measure out the Castor Oil and Vegetable Glycerin and add them to the mixture. Using your gloved hands, mix together the ingredients until the liquid is completely dispersed throughout. 

Divide the mixture into three different bowls. 

In a small cup, combine about a 1/4 teaspoon of pink colorant (this is the one I use) with just enough vegetable glycerin to wet the powder. Mix together and set aside. In another cup, combine about a 1/2 teaspoon of cocoa powder with just enough vegetable glycerin to wet the powder. Mix together and set aside. 

In one bowl, test to see if the mixture is the right consistency by squeezing a small amount in your palm. If the mixture holds its shape when you open your hand, then it’s ready. If it’s not the right consistency, add a small amount of vegetable glycerin. Mix it in by hand, and test again. Once it is the right consistency, set this bowl aside for now. . . . Since it is supposed to be the vanilla part of our bubble bath scoops, it will remain uncolored and unscented. 

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In the second bowl, add Strawberry Kiwi body safe fragrance oil and a few drops of the pink color mixture. Using your gloved hands, mix together until completely combined. Test to see if the mixture is the right consistency in the same manner that you did above. Set aside once it is.

In the third bowl, add the cocoa powder mixture and the Chocolate Espresso and Vanilla Buttercream fragrances. Because vanilla scented fragrances can cause products to turn brown, I added to this mixture instead of the white mixture. Mix together using your gloved hands (use a new pair of gloves to keep from contaminating the brown bubble bath mixture with the pink). Test to see if the mixture is the right consistency. 

Pour all three colors of bubble bath mixture into one large bowl. Very lightly mix them together using your gloved hands; you don’t want them to be completely mixed together. 

Pack an ice cream scoop or small cookie scoop with the mixture, pressing down hard. Place each scoop on a lined tray.

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***I know, I know. The above photo is completely the wrong color to be Neapolitan scoops. Simple explanation for that: I was actually making three different batches at once (Wild Blackberry, Neapolitan, and Frosted Cranberry), and I completely to take the requisite photo until the last batch. Which obviously wasn’t Neapolitan. 

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Allow them to air dry for at least 24 – 48 hours before using. 

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DIY Neapolitan Bubble Bath Scoops

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1/2 cup Lathanol LAL Powder - aka SLSa
  • 2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Cornstarch
  • 2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Bubble Bar Hardener (a.k.a. Cream of Tartar)
  • 3 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Vegetable Glycerin*
  • 3 teaspoons Castor Oil
  • 1.5 mL Strawberry Kiwi Fragrance Oil
  • 1 mL Chocolate Espresso Fragrance Oil
  • 1 mL Vanilla Buttercream Fragrance Oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon pink colorant
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin
  • Small ice cream scoop
  • *There's a chance you might use more than what is listed.

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients (baking soda, SLSa, cornstarch, and bubble bar hardener. Stir together with a whisk or fork.
  2. Add the vegetable glycerin and castor oil. Mix together using your gloved hands.
  3. Separate into three different bowls.
  4. In a small cup, mix together pink colorant and vegetable glycerin. Set aside.
  5. In a different small cup, mix together cocoa powder and vegetable glycerin. Set aside.
  6. Add pink colorant and strawberry kiwi body safe fragrance to one bowl. Mix using your gloved hands. Test it for the right consistency.
  7. In another bowl, add the cocoa powder colorant and chocolate espresso and vanilla buttercream fragrances. Mix using your hands (with clean gloves). Test for the right consistency.
  8. Pour the three different colors of bubble bar mixture together into a bowl. Lightly mix together.
  9. Use a small ice cream scoop or a cookie scoop to scoop the mixture up. Pack tightly into the scoop. Place on a lined tray/pan.
  10. Allow to harden for at least 24 - 48 hours before using.
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DIY Bath Truffles

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. 

Bath truffles are a new-ish addition to the Maiden Hill Farm lineup (visit the Etsy shop here), and let me tell you, they’ve been really popular. 

With good reason. Imagine a bath bomb (or fizzy, as they’re somtimes called) with a boatload of skin nourishing cocoa butter added to it. What does that make? A bath truffle!

So, how do you make these little truffles of goodness. Well, it’s as simple as three ingredients. 

No, seriously. There are three main ingredients in them.

Baking Soda. One.

Citric acid. Two.

And cocoa butter. That’s three.

Of course, if you’re like me and dream in bling-tastic, add a little fragrace (or essential oils), a bit of color, and the ultimate in bling, glitter, and you’ve got the bling-iest of bath indulgences. 

Okay, so maybe that’s a little much on the bling wagon, but these babies are seriously cute. 

Pink Champagne

So, let’s make some. . .

Ingredients:

5 oz baking soda
2.5 oz citric acid
3 oz cocoa butter
0.17 oz fragrance or essential oil (I used Strawberries & Champagne body safe fragrance oil for this batch)
1/4 tsp Pink Mica Powder mixed with vegetable glycerin (optional)
Silicon Ice Cube Mold

Drizzle on top:
2.5 oz baking soda
1.25 oz citric acid
1.5 oz cocoa butter
.08 oz fragrance or essential oil

Cosmetic Grade Glitter (optional)
Pink Himalayan Sea Salt (optional)

Directions:

First, I should mention that all ingredients (other than colorants, glitter, etc) are measured by weight. 

Weigh the citric acid and baking soda into a heat safe medium sized bowl.

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Use a fork or your hands to break up any clumps and to also mix the two powders together. Set aside.

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Weigh the cocoa butter into a microwave safe measuring cup. Heat in 30 second bursts until completely melted, making sure to not leave it unattended. Handle with care when removing it from the microwave as it will be very hot.

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Slowly pour the melted cocoa butter into the citric acid/baking soda mixture, using a fork to completely combine them.

At this point, you can add in the fragrance and/or essential oil (I used Strawberries & Champagne for this batch). M It’s very important that you only use body safe fragrance oils. 

You can also stir in colorants if you’d like. To get a beautiful soft pink color, I used an eighth of a teaspoon of pink mica mixed with just enough vegetable glycerin to dissolve the powder. 

Spoon the mixture into the mold of your choice (I use a silicon ice cube tray – similar to this one)

Allow to harden for about 24 hours before unmolding. 

To create the drizzle on top, make a second smaller batch of bath truffle mixture, following the same instructions above. But instead of spooning it into the mold, place it into a plastic storage bag, snip one corner off, and drizzle a little on top of each bath truffle square.

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Then, add a little cosmetic grade glitter (regular glitter won’t work and can irritate skin) and a pinch of pink Himalayan sea salt and voila!

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Directions For Use:
Drop one in to a warm bath (or foot bath) and enjoy.

Please note: Bath truffles may make floor slippery, so please use caution.

DIY Pink Champagne Bath Truffles

Ingredients

  • 5 oz baking soda
  • 2.5 oz citric acid
  • 3 oz cocoa butter
  • 0.17 oz fragrance or essential oil
  • 1/4 tsp Pink Mica Powder mixed with vegetable glycerin (optional)
  • Silicon Ice Cube Mold
  • Drizzle on top:
  • 2.5 oz baking soda
  • 1.25 oz citric acid
  • 1.5 oz cocoa butter
  • .08 oz fragrance or essential oil
  • Cosmetic Grade Glitter (optional)
  • Pink Himalayan Sea Salt (optional)

Instructions

  1. Weigh out baking soda and citric acid in a heat safe bowl. Combine completely with fork or hands, breaking up any clumps. Set aside.
  2. Weigh out cocoa butter in microwave safe measuring cup. Melt in a microwave in 30 second bursts until completely melted. Don't leave unattended and use care when removing from microwave as it will be hot.
  3. Slowly pour in to baking soda/citric acid mixture, using fork to make sure it's completely combined with no clumps.
  4. Stir in fragrance or essential oil and colorant if you're using any.
  5. Spoon in to mold. Allow to harden for about 24 hours before unmolding.
  6. Drizzle:
  7. Once the bath truffle squares have completely hardened, remove them from the mold and set aside.
  8. Weigh out baking soda and citric acid in a small heat safe bowl. Set aside.
  9. Weigh out the cocoa butter in a microwave safe measuring cup. Microwave in 30 second bursts until completely melted. Handle with care when removing from the microwave as it will be hot.
  10. Slowly pour the melted cocoa butter into the baking soda/citric acid mixture, using the fork to make sure it's completely combined. Stir in the fragrance and colorants if you're using any.
  11. Spoon into a plastic storage bag. Snip one corner off with scissors and drizzle on top of each bath truffle square.
  12. Top each square with a sprinkle of cosmetic grade glitter and pink Himalayan sea salt. Allow to dry for a couple of hours.

Notes

I can somtimes unmold the bath truffles a little earlier than 24 hours later, but not often.

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End of Summer MHF Giveaway!!!

Or should I call this the Beginning of Fall MHF Giveaway?

Maybe, but since it still feels like it’s 100 degrees here, I’ll just keep Summer in the title. And actually, there’s no sign of ending, yet. But let’s get back to the giveaway.

That’s right! It’s time for another giveaway. And the prize this go around?

A bath and body gift set from my Etsy shop, Maiden Hill Farm, including one bar of goat milk soap, one sample box of sugar cube scrubs, and a lip balm!

Summer 2015

Please Note: The Sugar Cube Scrub set pictured above is a full set not a sample.

A sample set will include 2 or 3 actual sugar cubes.

Now for the legalese: Open to entries from the US only. One lucky winner will be chosen at random when the contest ends on September 30, 2015 at 12:00 AM CST. The winner will be contacted by email to obtain their mailing address – if after 48 hours I haven’t received a response, a new winner will be chosen. When you sign in to Rafflecopter make sure to include an email address so that I can contact you. As soon as possible, I will mail out the prize.

P.S. If you don’t want to wait until the end of the giveaway, please visit my shop on Etsy here.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Talking Soap.

A couple of weeks ago, we were invited to do a soap demonstration at the Claybank Master Gardeners Club meeting.

By the way, a big thank you for inviting us! We had such a wonderful time!!

We (Mom and I) had so much fun talking soap and goats and all of the benefits you get when you combine them (soap and goat milk, that is 😉 ). And of course, making soap. 

Cotton Pickin’, one of my favorites to make because of the pretty blue color.

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I think it turned out really well (find it listed in the shop in about two more weeks).

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If you’d like to have us do a Soap Making Demonstration at your event or club meeting, feel free to visit the Contact Me page.