As you begin making your own soap and chatting with other soapers, you'll discover one important fact: Soapmakers spend great amounts of time in the tub or shower. Relaxing? Certainly, but there is work to be done! Each soap must be tried, mental notes made, and future plans outlined. You'll enjoy placing your soaps around the tub or shower. If you have more than one bathroom, even better. Don't forget the kitchen. Just be sure to use that soap.
Another form is research is to buy soaps made by other soapers. Shop at craft fairs, farmers' markets, and over the Internet. You'll educate yourself, but you'll also support a fellow soaper. It is amazing how much you can learn by using another person's soap.
Be sure to let yourself simply enjoy the fruits of your and others' labors. Like an actor cringing at a bad play or a chef eating at a bad restaurant, your heightened senses will always be ready to analyze any soap you find. Try to turn off your internal soapmaker and simply enjoy. If you come across a soap you don't like while bathing, put it aside and save the critical assessment for later. Enjoy the wonderful community of soap buds!