About Our Soap

What is Soap?

Traditional soap up until the early 1900’s was a combination of water, an alkali usually wood ash, and animal fats; mainly lard from pigs and tallow from cattle. When the fats and alkali were heated and blended a chemical reaction began called “saponification”. If the ingredients were properly combined and heated then a proper soap was produced. That did not always happen, thus tales of the harshness of “Lye Soap”. When alkali and oil fail to merge chemically, Alkali Salts (sodium hydroxide and oxygen) are left in the product. Alkali Salts have a high pH and are very drying to the skin. Many commercial soaps contain these salts. It is estimated that about 25% of us are sensitive to this irritant. In addition, commercially produced soaps add ingredients including Isopropyl Alcohol, DEA, artificial fragrances, FD&C Colors, Propylene Glycol and Triclosan, which can cause severe skin irritation in some people and has been proven harmful to many users. In addition, commercial soap manufactures remove the Glycerin from their soap which is more valuable by weight than the soap itself. It is sold as a very expensive by-product to the makers of lotions, cosmetics, and skin moisturizing products. With the glycerin removed, the end result is a soap that dries your skin!

Today there are artisans still making soaps in the traditional method of combining oils, water, and sodium hydroxide. The difference today is that makers of high quality handmade soaps have a far better understanding of the chemistry involved in the saponification process. They no longer use animal fats, instead use natural botanical oils, and have developed complex procedures for retaining the natural Glycerin in soap.

Modern soap makers use high quality botanical oils like Olive Oil, Palm Oil, Coconut Oil, Jojoba Oil, Palm Kernel Oil, Aloe Oil and many others. In addition, handmade soap retains the natural Glycerin produced in the process. Glycerin is one of nature’s best known “humectants”, an attracter of moisture to the human skin. Commercial soap makers rarely use natural botanical oils in their process. Instead, they use complex chemical compounds… just read your favorite soap label.

How our products are made

All our soap and personal care products are made using only the highest quality natural oils and butters. We carefully choose all our ingredients from suppliers that offer the best quality, in most cases all certified organic, making every effort to buy only the best. From our Shea Butter imported from West Africa to our Kosher Dead Sea Salts imported from Israel, we search the world for the best of the best. Our products are all handmade in small batches on a daily basis. We add no fillers, chemicals, artificial colors, or preservatives to our products. Our soaps contain only natural botanical oils and essential oils, with no synthetic dyes or fragrances. The colors are natural from the oils or the botanicals we add. The greatest benefit to our handmade soaps is the retention of the natural Glycerin which will leave your skin feeling rich and moisturized.

Berry Towne Crafts: Exceptional People - Exceptional Work

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