Because You Asked


Goat milk?

Goat milk has many beneficial properties.  Whole goat milk has a high cream (fat) content, and it’s filled with vitamins & minerals that are good for the skin.  It also contains lactic acid, which helps in the removal of potentially irritating dead skin cells.  We only use whole goat milk from a neighboring Animal Welfare Approved farm.

 
Essential oils vs Fragrances

Essential oils are naturally occurring oils, purified from natural sources such as plants.  The more difficult it is to obtain the oil, the more expensive it is.

Essential oils can be extracted by steam distillation or by chemical extraction. Chemically extracted essential oils are often less expensive because more of the essential oil can be removed from the plant material. However, there are often traces of these chemicals left in the essential oil even after purification. So though they are more expensive, steam distillation is the only way to ensure a completely pure essential oil with no chemical residues. 

“Fragrances” are fake scents produced in a lab, and they can usually be mass produced cheaply.  Many soap makers use inexpensive fragrances in place of more expensive essential oils, such as rose and sandalwood.

Does it matter?  With many folks trying to reduce their exposure to chemical products, eliminating fragrances in their personal care products can be an important step.  Also, natural essential oils often have beneficial properties…lab created fragrances don’t.

 

Properties of select essential oils

Tea Tree oil is an extremely valuable naturally occurring product, purified from the leaves of a tree native to Australia.  Long used by the Aboriginal people, it has potent antibiotic, antifungal, antiviral and antiseptic properties.  Many who suffer from acne find it beneficial.

Lavender oil is much, much more than a great scent!  Known for its calming nature, it's also the only “beauty oil” that's good for all skin types and most hair types.  In addition, it has bacteria, fungus and virus busting attributes similar to tea tree oil, just not as potent, and it is effective in the treatment of burns and wounds.  

Rosemary oil is a great stimulator for the scalp. It is also a great bronchodilator which means it opens up your airways. Perfect for helping to fight a stuffy nose or cold. 


How long will our soaps last?

The lives of our soap and shampoo bars are greatly extended with the use of a soap saver, which keeps the products out of standing water after use.  Customers with soap savers typically report 3-4 weeks of useful life, depending on how often the soap is used each day.  Our shampoo bars last about 30 days with daily use.

Longer lasting soaps typically use palm oil...see discussion below. 



Estimated product weights

Each product is handcrafted, cut & wrapped. The process from making the soap until it is properly cured and ready for sale is 8 weeks.  Each bar is cut 24-48 hrs after it made and the weight is determined at this time. 

During the following weeks/months, the soap can continue to lose water content, and therefore lose weight.  Since the amount of time before a customer purchases a bar is unknown, ranging from weeks to months, it isn't possible to accurately state the weight at the time of purchase.
 

Why Lye?

Lye, or sodium hydroxide, is used to make all bar soaps, though often it isn’t listed as an ingredient. As a strong base (opposite of an acid), lye reacts with the oils to form soap (saponification). A similar ingredient called potassium hydroxide is generally used to make liquid soaps.

If soap is made correctly, then the lye is completely used up during the process. Though absent in our final product, we do list it as an ingredient…because it is.

 

Why “No Palm Oil”?

Palm oil is included as a major ingredient in the vast majority of bar soaps, along with many prepared food products. It is cheap, and provides certain beneficial properties to those products at a very low cost.

Palm oil provides no benefits to the skin however, which means that including palm oil reduces the percentage of skin-friendly oils
, such as olive oil and coconut oil.

Also, the deforestation that occurs when palm oil plantations are planted is reportedly the most significant threat to wild orangutan populations.  It is estimated that only about 7% of palm oil is produced in a non-destructive manner.

Palm oil can go by many aliases, but keywords such as palm, palmitic, stearic, and kernelate usually give away its identity.

Given all this, we opt to make all of our soaps without palm oil.