As the retail druggists and perfumers do not generally make their own soap in the first instance, it is only necessary to mention the means by which the soap, as it comes from the manufacturers, is prepared for the toilet.
Scented Soaps, in general. Cut the best white curd soap, (or for some kinds, palm soap) into thin shavings, and place it in a copper vessel, with sufficient distilled water, and heat it by a water-bath till the whole is uniformly liquefied. Let it cool to 135° F.; then add the colouring matter and perfumes. On the large scale these additions may be mixed with the liquid soap at the maker's, before it is poured into the frames. The quantity of perfume used must depend on the price at which it is to be sold.
Almond Soap. To one hundredweight of the best hard white soap, melted as above, add 20 oz. of essential oil of bitter almonds. (Soap really made from expressed almond oil is, we apprehend, rarely met with in commerce.)
Rose Soap. Put into a copper vessel, placed in boiling water, 20 lbs., of white curd soap, and 30 lbs. of olive oil soap, both in thin shavings; add 5 lbs. of soft water, or rose-water; keep the heat below boiling till the soap is uniformly liquefied, then add 12 oz. of finely sifted vermilion, or enough to produce the required tint. Withdraw it from the fire, and when sufficiently cool, add 3 1/2 oz. of otto of roses, 1/2 oz. of oil of cloves, 1/2 oz. of oil of cinnamon, and 2 1/2 oz. bergamot. For a cheaper article use less perfume.
Windsor Soap. This is said to be made with lard. In France they use lard with a portion of olive or bleached palm oil. Dr. PEREIRA states that it is made with one part of olive oil to nine of tallow. But a great part of what is sold is probably only curd (tallow) soap, scented with oil of caraway and bergamot. The brown is probably coloured with burnt sugar, or umber.
Honey Soap. White curd soap 1 1/2 lbs., brown Windsor soap 1/2 lb.; cut them into thin shavings, and liquefy as directed above for scented soaps: then add 4 oz. of honey, and keep it melted till most of the water is evaporated; then remove from the fire, and when cool enough, add any essential oil. According to Piesse the honey soap usually sold, consists of fine yellow soap perfumed with oil of citronella.
Floating Soaps. These are made by liquefying, as described above, 30 lbs. of oil soap with about 5 lbs. of water, and agitating the mixture, by a suitable wooden apparatus turned by a handle, till the froth arises to the top of the vessel. It is then put into frames to cool. These soaps are variously perfumed and coloured.
Transpaeent Soap. Cut fine white curd soap into thin shavings, and dry them with a gentle heat till they can be reduced to powder. Put 2 lbs. of this powder into a water-bath with 5 or 6 pints of rectified spirit of wine, and heat it gently (taking care that the water does not quite boil) till the solution is complete; add the perfume and pour into the frames. When cold, cut it into squares. They must be kept some time in a dry place before they can attain their full degree of transparency. By using a still, most of the spirit may be recovered for future use.
Wash Balis. Savonettes. These are made from various kinds of soap, usually with the addition of powdered starch, or hair-powder, or of rice flour, together with perfuming and colouring ingredients. They are formed into spherical balls by taking a mass of the prepared soap in the left hand, and a conical drinking glass with rather thin edges in the right. By turning the glass and ball of soap in every direction, the rounded form is soon given; when dry the surface is scraped to render it more smooth and even. One or two examples of this kind of soap will suffice.
Common or Lemon Wash Balls. Cut 6 lbs. of soap into very small pieces; melt it in a pint of water in which 6 lemons have been boiled. When melted, withdraw the soap from the fire, and add 3 lbs. of powdered starch, and a little essence of lemon; knead the whole into a paste and form into balls of the desired size.
Cream Wash Balls. White curd soap 7 lbs., powdered starch 1 lb.; water or rose-water, q. s. Beat the whole together, and form into balls. - Gray's Supplement.
Mrs. Symond's Soap Paste for the Hands. Best soft soap (from olive oil and potash if procurable) 16 oz., spermaceti 4 oz., best olive oil 1 oz., camphor 1/4 oz., rectified spirit 1/2 oz., soft water 1 pint, essence of lemon 1/4 oz., M.S.A. With 8 oz. of puinice-stone, powdered and sifted through fine book muslin, it forms sand soap paste.
Powdered Soap. Any of the hard soaps may be pulverised, if first cut into thin shavings, and kept at a gentle heat, till sufficiently dry. This process renders the soap more mild.
Shaving Powder. Melt together in a water-bath 1 lb. of white soap with 1 oz. of powdered spermaceti and 1/4 oz. of chlorate of potash dissolved in a little water, or rose-water. Pour the liquefied soap into a shallow mould; when solidified, shave it fine and dry as above.
Shaving Paste. 1. Melt together 1 dr. each of spermaceti, white wax, and almond oil; beat it up with 2 oz. of the best white soap, and a little lavender or Cologne water.
2. Naples soap, beaten up with sufficient powdered soap to form a stiff paste.
3. White soft soap, 4 oz., powdered Castile soap 1 oz., oil of olives, or almonds 1/4 oz.
Shaving Liquid. Essence of soap. 1. White soap 3 oz., proof spirit 8 oz., distilled water 4 oz., carbonate of potash 1 dr., essence of lemon q. s. Dissolve the soap without heat, and add the potash and essence.
2. (Italian essence of soap.) White curd or Windsor soap 10 parts, rectified spirit 34 parts, rose or orange-flower water 34 parts. Digest with a gentle heat and filter.