After all these years in business, the most often asked question we hear remains, “Why is natural soap better?”
I have been using only natural soap on my face and body for over 20 years. It is the first product I learned to make.
My skin has become so accustomed to the benefits of these lovely bars, that everything else makes my skin itch.
Our soap bars travel with me everywhere I go. I even keep one-time-use scraps in my purse to use in public restrooms!
While I believe that many of the "reasons" listed below may apply to some natural handmade soap companies, I will focus on the one company with which I have intimate knowledge and experience--CHAGRIN VALLEY.
1. Handmade Soap is Actually Soap
Most of the soap you purchase today is a commercially manufactured chemical cocktail of ingredients. It is not natural and is not even really “soap.” They are nothing more than detergents in disguise.
Here is what the FDA has to say:
“Today there are very few true soaps on the market. Most body cleansers, both liquid and solid, are actually synthetic detergent products. Detergent cleansers are popular because they make suds easily in water and don't form gummy deposits. Some of these detergent products are actually marketed as "soap" but are not true soap according to the regulatory definition of the word.” Source
2. Natural Soap is Made With Natural Ingredients
The very best reason to use natural soap is the ingredients. A product is only as good as the ingredients used to make it.
OUR skin-nourishing ingredients are USDA Certified Organic, sustainably produced, cruelty-free, and ethically traded.
Harnessing the Power of Nature we make each soap bar unique by adding a variety of organic butters, purifying natural clays, organic herbs, seeds, grains, spices, flowers, vegetables, fruits, chocolate, and pure botanical essential oils to provide natural color, aromatherapy, texture, and gentle exfoliation.
3. Natural Soap Is NOT Made With...
- synthetic ingredients
- artificial fragrances or perfumes
- artificial colors
- synthetic preservatives
Our soap bars contain only the ingredients that they need—no extra preservatives that liquid body washes or commercial bar "soaps" require to increase their shelf life to years, and no foam boosters to make them lather.
4. Natural Soaps Are Moisturizing
Sadly many people have the misguided perception that all bar soaps will dry your skin. The problem is that most commercial bar “soaps” are detergents and not real soap.
So why are natural soaps so moisturizing? Of course, it's the ingredients! Natural soap made of pure ingredients derived directly from nature is a rare find these days. Here are a few other reasons.
Superfatting is the process of adding extra fats (oils or butters) when formulating a soap recipe so there is more fat in the mixture than the lye can react with during the chemical reaction. This process creates a more hydrating bar with superior moisturizing and emollient qualities.
Our soap bars are formulated with lots of extra plant oils and butters. We superfat our bars at a higher rate than most soapmakers.
Glycerin is not added to a natural handmade soap recipe – it is created during the natural soap making process called saponification. Once saponification is complete, the ingredients have combined and chemically changed into soap, glycerin, and a bit of water.
Glycerin, a precious and gentle emollient, is a humectant that draws moisture from the air to the skin creating a moisturizing protective layer.
Commercial soap manufacturers remove the glycerin from their soaps because excess glycerin decreases the shelf-life of soap and they can sell the glycerin or use it in products that command a higher price like the lotion.
Think about it! Commercial soap companies remove the moisturizing ingredient (the glycerin) which in turn creates a soap that dries your skin and then they use the glycerin they removed to sell you a skin-moisturizing lotion. Quite an ingenious profit-making strategy!
Thus skin-nourishing ingredients, plus superfatting and natural saponification create a soap bar full of moisturizing, natural oils, and natural glycerin.
5. Scented Natural Soap Provides Real Aromatherapy
Our scented natural soaps are made with pure essential oils, not fragrance oils, and offer aromatherapeutic benefits.
Fragrance oils, whether artificially created or derived from natural components, may duplicate the smell of a flower or herb, but they do not offer the therapeutic advantages of essential oils.
Furthermore, the generic term, “fragrance” or “parfum” on a label can indicate the presence of up to 3,000 separate ingredients and the FDA does not require companies to disclose what is in a “fragrance,” because it is considered a “trade secret.”
6. Natural Soap Helps Maintain Healthy Skin
The body’s largest organ, our skin, is incredibly porous and absorbent. How we treat our skin can have a major impact on our overall health as well as the look and feel of our skin.
Everyone wants healthy skin and our skin is not a fan of synthetic chemicals. I cannot count how many times customers have told us that our natural soap has not only helped improve their skin but has improved their lives by relieving itchiness and dryness, and easing irritated skin conditions such as eczema and acne.
7. Natural Soap Provides Rich Lather Without Synthetic Foam Boosters
People absolutely love bubbly lather. The foam, bubbles, and lather we know and love from commercial liquid and bar soaps are produced by surfactants--synthetic foam boosters, lathering agents, and detergents.
A properly formulated and cured bar of natural soap needs no synthetic additives to create a lather or to clean because natural soap is a natural surfactant. So it not only makes great bubbles and lather, but it also helps clean oily dirt from your skin--naturally!
8. Natural Soap is Economical
Some consumers are put off by the cost of handmade soap. You probably look at a bar of natural soap and wonder why it costs more. I mean, soap is soap, right? Both bars clean your skin, right?
While I may agree that both bars clean the skin, the similarity goes no further. Simply put, commercial soaps contain synthetic ingredients that are very cheap to produce in a lab.
If you use a liquid body wash the main ingredient is water. You pay for water. A properly cured soap bar has very little water remaining, meaning you are getting exactly what you pay for.
I believe that old saying, "You get what you pay for," rings true when comparing a handmade bar of a natural soap to a commercial brand!
9. Natural Soap Has a Smaller Environmental Impact
It may seem odd that a product we use to keep our bodies clean is doing quite the opposite for our environment.
If you are not using a natural soap, as you take a bath or shower you coat your skin with synthetic compounds like fragrances, dyes, preservatives, and detergents. These synthetic ingredients wash down our drains into our septic fields or water treatment facilities. Now imagine the millions of people who use these soaps each day.
Also, if you use a liquid body wash, how many plastic bottles and pumps do you dispose of in a single year?
10. Natural Soaps are Unique
I make handmade natural soap. I did not invent anything new.
But what I know is that our natural soap is made in small batches by people who have a passion as well as a mission for making natural products.
For me, soapmaking is a synergy of science and art that took years to perfect. It is a labor of love. I take the time to create wholesome soap recipes that do not sacrifice beauty or scent while incorporating amazing natural and organic ingredients.
11. A Natural Soap Company Has Social Consciousness
While I am sure there are some large commercial soap companies with a social conscience, natural soapmakers tend to have the utmost respect for the earth and all its creatures.
Environmental stewardship is not a buzzword for us. It is not a talking point, not a political stance nor is it about optics!
At Chagrin Valley it is our practice to use raw materials that are sourced in an environmentally and ethically responsible manner.
- We use organic ingredients which supports organic farming
- We are Leaping Bunny Certified--Cruelty-Free
- Our palm oil and other ingredients are certified sustainable
- We buy Fair Trade whenever possible
- Our products are biodegradable and minimally packaged with recycled and recyclable materials
- Our packaging is over 99% plastic-free
- Our natural ingredients will not add synthetic chemicals to our ecosystems
Dedication to a kinder and gentler way of living is a big part of why we do what we do.
12. You Are Supporting A Small Business
If you are holding this soap in your hand, I probably don't need to convince you that shopping small business is important. Your purchase really does make a difference.
When you buy a handmade bar of natural soap, you are supporting a small business that truly cares about and believes in the products they make.
Small businesses are run by people - not by boards or stockholders. They are often entrepreneurs who bring a creative freshness into an otherwise regimented world.
We do it all ourselves--from start to finish--from our hands to your hands--from our family to yours! Thank you!
Before I conclude I would like to add one final reason to the question of "Why You Should Switch To Natural Soap Bars."
The simplest answer is, Why Not?
From its composition to its benefits for the skin and health, to its impact on the environment, natural soap is very different from commercial liquid “soap,” bar “soap,” or syndet bars.