June 1, 2011 7:05 PM Subscribe
Calling all chemistry minded people! Wha' happen to mah soap??
posted by evilcupcakes to Science & Nature (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I have some problemed skin (hello heartbreak of psoriasis), so I tend to make my own skin care concoctions at home. Among these are a sea salt/Epsom salt scrub, a castile based liquid soap, and I tend to use apple cider vinegar as a rinse.
One day, I was in a hurry, and experimented with combining the liquid soap with the salt scrub. Within a few minutes I was covered in a gummy, waxy substance that was next to impossible to wash off. Clearly I had stumbled upon some interesting chemical reaction, but not really being all that knowledgeable about such things, I am DYING to know (in relatively plain English) what exactly happened. I assume it was some kind of "reverse saponification", but what could have triggered it? The salt? The vitamin e oil in the soap? The vinegar?