Real, handmade soap is made from natural ingredients and contains glycerin, a natural byproduct of “saponification”, the soap-making process. Glycerin is a humectant, which means it attracts moisture from the air. This makes glycerin an excellent moisturizer because it helps maintain moisture on your skin throughout the day.
Most mass-produced bars you find at the store do not contain glycerin, instead containing harsh detergents or hardening agents that strip moisture away from the skin and can leave your skin feeling dry and irritated. In fact, most commercial soaps aren’t even considered real soap because they are made with a synthetic detergent which can lead to skin disorders, rashes, and additives that can cause many skin sensitivities.
So, what is real soap? Soap is made from the natural process of combining fats and lye. This process is called saponification. Now, lye may sound like a scary ingredient but don’t worry, lye is a natural ingredient that can be obtained by running water over the ashes from a fire and there is no lye left over after saponification – it’s all been turned into soap! As for the fat portion, there are many different skin-loving oils and butters a soap maker can utilize. Vegetable or animal oils and butters are chosen for the properties they will bring to a bar of soap. For example, a traditional castile-style soap bar is extremely hard and made from olive oil, while avocado oil can make an extremely moisturizing bar of soap. There are many different all-natural soaps out there for a variety of different skin types and lifestyle choices. It’s always a good idea to read the label and see what ingredients are included in your bar of soap if you have extra sensitive skin or are leading a Vegan lifestyle.
Here at Healing Hands by Ashley, we offer a variety of different soap options – feel free to ask your soap maker about ingredients or how to find a bar of soap that’s right for you! Click Here to see all of our options. Remember, they make great gifts!
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