Soap is a cleansing and lubricating product that is the result of a very specific chemical reaction called saponification. It holds a special place in our hearts and business as it was one of the first products that we started making for ourselves when we were transitioning to more earth and body-safe grooming products. It also happens to be one of the products that we get asked about the most.
WHAT IS SOAP?
Soap is the specific result of saponification, a reaction that is fabled to have first been discovered by Ancient Greeks. The story goes like this: at the foot of Mt. Sapo, fats and wood ash from animal sacrifice would collect in the river, mingling together and creating a frothy, cleansing lather in their wake. Since then, recipes for soap have popped up in numerous different cultures around the world, always including three main components: wood ash or lye, some type of fat, and water
WHY SHOULD I BUY NATURAL, HANDMADE SOAPS?
Soap is not the only product that results from the process of saponification; the remaining hydrogen and oxygen from lye and the glycerol leftover from fat combine to create another product, called glycerin. Many mass producers remove the glycerin from their soap in the interest of using it to create other products and maximize profits. Handmade soapmakers, on the other hand, rarely separate the glycerin from their soap. Artisan soapmakers are proud to retain the glycerin in their soap as it is highly moisturizing and helps to balance out the drying effects of soap on your skin. We further ensure that our soap is amazing for your skin by “superfatting,” or using more fat than is necessary in the recipe. This allows some of the fat to avoid being saponified, resulting in a beautiful, emollient, and moisturizing soap. You will never need to buy a moisturizer again!
Most mass produced soaps rely on synthetic ingredients instead of glycerol because they are cheaper and can result in what feels like a more satisfying end result. For example, most mass produced soaps contain parabens and sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), both ingredients that produce a frothy lather and help extend shelf life. Unfortunately, these ingredients are also irritating to sensitive skin and are known endocrine disruptors which can cause potentially serious health issues down the line. Synthetic soaps also often contain a “free alkali,” which also helps the product last longer on the shelf and create a visible lather when used. But free alkalis will strip all of your skin’s natural oils away, leaving you feeling squeaky clean but ultimately dehydrated and sensitive.
Soap is undoubtedly a big part of our everyday lives, helping us to stay healthy and keep our skin clear of dirt and grime. Our soaps are always handmade in small batches, retaining their glycerin component and therefore working to moisturize and retain the balance of your skin, naturally.
We love coming up with new scents and combinations for our soap, often inspired by what we forage (seasonal soap) you can always find a great selection on our website.
HAND CRAFTED – SMALL BATCH – OLD SCHOOL RECIPES Honest ingredients wildcrafted into natural grooming products