What is Soap?
Soap is made up of sodium fatty acids. This occurs through the saponification process by combining oils and/or animal fats with an alkali solution of either sodium or potassium hydroxide.
I'm often asked why someone should buy a handmade soap vs one you can get for cheap at the store. I often ask them in turn what they use and if it is real soap or if it's a detergent. 90% of the time they are using a detergent and don't even realize it. I challenge you to think about the products in your shower. Are they a "bath gel", "shower gel", "moisturizing wash", "moisturizing bar", "cleansing bar", "cleansing wash" or any variation there of that doesn't actually use the word soap?
Guess what? Those are all detergents, synthetic cleansing agents that aren't actually soap. A product can't be labeled soap unless it's actually soap, and in order to have soap you have to have saponified oils. Often someone wants to know another reason (or several) besides the fact what they are using isn't actually soap so here are my top reasons you should buy handmade soap.
- Its Economical- When properly taken care of one of my large bars of soap will last longer than the bottle of shower gel, or the cheap store bought bars.
- Supports an Actual Person- You know the person who actually made it, it directly supports someone you know vs some large corporation.
- Ingredients are Better- Despite what large corporations would lead consumers to believe, artisan soap makers often use higher quality and purer ingredients than the large corporations do. Making our products better for you than mass produced products full of cheap fillers.
- Better Customer Experience- Another benefit to knowing the crafter is that you can form an actual relationship with them. I have many customers who stop by my booth at the farmers market just to say hi! (I love that by the way!)
- They feel amazing- Each Nordic Allure soap is a little different so each one is a unique experience, but they all feel amazing.
What's your favorite Nordic Allure product? I would love to hear your thoughts!
Some Quick Detergent Facts
- Detergents have been around since 1914 when they were created in Germany by Mr. Otto Rohm with his research on enzyme uses.
- They became a bigger part of American life in 1933 when Proctor and Gamble's first synthetic detergent, Dreft, hit the market.
- Sixteen years later Tide was introduced and has been the leading laundry detergent since going public in 1949.
The Chemical Romance
So often people ask me how I got started making soap. Honestly, it started as a sanity project. I was in the Navy and had just had my first son at the end of my active duty enlistment. I was suddenly facing something I never imagined myself being... a stay at home mom.
To say I was unprepared for the whole SAHM gig would be an understatement. Don't get me wrong, I now love being able to work from home in order to spend time with my boys and watch them grow. But at the time I really needed something I could do that was just for me. Something that would give me some kind of mental break from the mom tasks that can quickly and easily overwhelm new moms.
I actually decided to try soap making because of a lady my mom knew when I was growing up who made soap. I remember her talking about it and a couple times my mom and I had gone over to her house and she was making some when we arrived. The whole process fascinated me and I always thought it was neat someone could make their own soap. Fast forward about 10 years and it was one of the first things I started looking into when I decided I needed a hobby for myself.
It was a chemical romance from the very first batch of soap I ever made. I fell in love with the whole process. Mind you that first batch of soap was...not the greatest...but it was the beginning of something that has brought me to where I am today.
It's always amazing looking back on those first few batches and seeing the progress I've made in the last 7 years. From recipe development and learning about the different properties various oils provide to a soap to the creative element it provides, it has be an exciting journey. One I hope I can share more about with you in the future!