An odd question
I am a hobby soapmaker here in the States, and one of the ingredients I need is lye (sodium hydroxide). Due to various issues (thank you so much, meth lab people!) lye can be difficult to obtain except from large online shops, many of which will not ship offshore. Transporting lye on a plane is obviously a no-go and I'm not sure if I can even ship it myself.
I'd like to try making soap on STX during my next trip to see the differences that temperature, humidity and locality create in the end product, as well as taking advantage of the opportunity to incorporate local ingredients like herbs and fruit juices and fragrances. I make very small batches (~ 2 pounds), so the amount of lye required is in the ounces. While some drain cleaners contain sodium hydroxide, it is often adulterated with other ingredients that make it unusable for soap. Does anyone know if pure sodium hydroxide is available on St. Croix? Thank you for your help.
Well, this is an interesting question. Most of the soap makes here use melt and pour, and it must be because of the lye issue. I bought soaps on Grenada from http://www.belzepb.net, and I remember her making a comment about how melt and pour was more expensive than the method she used. BTW/FTWIWW/, I LovE the soaps from Grenada, especially her Virginity Soap.
you could have someone ship it to you if you can't find a store to ship it.
Also, hardware stores may carry it...call Seachest, or Home Depot (www.viphonebook.com)
If you can't get it shipped, try Sea Chest Hardware on STT. They often have less commonly sought products or can get them for you.
Thanks everyone for the advice! I'd really like to give cold-process soapmaking a shot on the island. 🙂