I started making soaps because I wanted chemical-free soaps for my family and reading the labels of commercial and even the-so-called herbal soaps disturbed me.
Our skin is the largest organ in our body which absorbs anything you apply on it! We should definitely feel comfortable knowing what’s in the products we use EVERY SINGLE DAY & that too multiple times a day, throughout our lives. Imagine the amount of chemical exposure we put ourselves throughout our lifetime!
Commercial bars are often labelled as “beauty bars”, “moisturizing bars” or “body bars”. These bars are what we often refer to as “soap”. But they aren’t actually soap, they are “detergents”. Yup, it’s true. Using the word “soap” is actually heavily regulated. Let me break it down for you in detail. I had to do this research to understand the severity of this commercial menace.
Store bought soap vs homemade soap:
The commercial detergent bars (as opposed to real soap) are made by combining cheap oils and chemicals together and heated to create their product. This process often removes any natural glycerin because glycerin reduces shelf-life. To replace the missing glycerin, chemicals are added back in to help the bars lather like soap. Credit has to be given to the large manufacturers because they do an amazing job at marketing their products convincingly about how good their product is for our skin. I don’t know about you but I certainly believed it prior to making my own soap.
Homemade soap, as opposed to commercial detergent bars, is made using a combination of oils and/or fats and lye. The caustic qualities of the lye are removed during the saponification process, which is when the lye interacts with the oils/fats and creates soap and glycerin. This creates a moisturizing effect, rather than drying like the bar of commercial bars.
Here are the ingredients listed on popular soaps:
Sodium Palmate, Methyl-chloro-isothiazolinone, Methyl-isothiazolinone, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Hexyl cinnamal, Sodium tallowate, Sodium palm kernelate, Talc, Perfume, sodium cocoyl isethionate, sodium cocoate, sodium laurel sulphate, water, sodium isethionate, stearic acid, coconut fatty acid, fragrance, titanium dioxide, sodium chloride, disodium phosphate, tetra sodium EDTA, Trisodium Etidronate, BHT, CI 47000, CI 61565
Scary, isn’t it?
Now let’s look at the ingredients in homemade soaps.
Ingredients in soaps I make:
Coconut Oil, Castor Oil, a few other edible oils, Essential Oils, herbal powders & Lye
(Lye (NaOH) which completely evaporates during the curing process)
Real soap is a blend of oils and fats that nourish your skin. It shouldn’t have anything else. Plus you can custom make using your requirements.
If you’d like to switch to making your own soaps at home, you can check out this Soap Making Course I offer especially for beginners. You will be well on your way to chucking out store-bought soap out of life for good!
Making my own soaps started not only as a way towards chemical-free living, but a way to be self-reliant; an act of rebellion, if I may say so, towards a system that keeps us hooked to being helpless consumers. Not finding healthy choices for myself and my family led me to question a lot of things – food, homecare products, cosmetics and so much more.
Farming and everything that followed came from that place of frustration towards systems and structures as much as my love for all things natural.
Hmm…a soap-maker, an organic farmer – these titles don’t really fit the bill of a rebel, does it?
I don’t know…maybe I am a Farmer-Eco warrior-Feminist-Rebel all rolled in one.
Do you question these systems too?
Are you a rebel too?
I am sure you are as concerned as I am about the conditions we are living in and questioning the things we have been made to accept as normal. If you are reading this, then I am quite sure of that. Questioning lead me to many answers; when I didn’t find any, I created my own solutions. Questioning is the potent gateway to all the answers we seek.
Let’s never stop questioning.