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  • Writer's picturePauline Susman

The Case for Handcrafted, Natural Soap

Updated: Apr 12

Do you often suffer from dry and itchy skin? Are you still using conventional mass produced soaps? I’ve become more and more aware that how we treat our skin can have a major impact on our overall health and well-being. People regularly reach out to me looking for alternatives to the commercial products that are causing their dry and flaky skin.

The body’s largest organ, our skin, is incredibly porous and absorbent. Mountains of research show that toxic chemicals can be drawn through the skin and transferred into the bloodstream. Many of these are not skin nourishing and tend to dry out skin, stripping it of its naturally protective layer.

“ Nourish natural hand made soap is skincare in a bar. My skin feels silky soft after using it. The lather is luxuriant, and the plant oils and extracts are healing and therapeutic. My bathroom smells heavenly, and this really lifts my spirits as I begin my day. A real treat."

~ Bev Mc Neill.”

Launching Nourish Natural Soaps, 11 years ago, was a huge deal for me. A big reason why I chose hot-processed, natural soap back then was to provide my customers with safer, more nourishing body care options. As it turns out handmade natural soap has a lot going for it. Each artisan bar is made from scratch and takes weeks to cure. This maintains the integrity of the nutrients, essential oils and vitamins in each soap. Moreover, because each soap is made by hand, with the enjoyment of the craft, an essential ‘feel good’ energy is added to each bar. My customers often comment on this and so I feel it is important to always create a happy, contented space in my workshop as this seems to translate into more nourishing soap!

Tell me why natural soap is better

Its a common question from individuals who have never bought a handmade bar of soap (or shampoo) before. In fact, its a question I used to get asked all the time when I was still doing markets. After all, commercial soaps are cheaper and perhaps last longer so why buy a natural soap bar? There are some very valid reasons why handmade, natural soap is the better way to go for your own health and well-being.

Less Chemicals

Many years ago, our great-grandmothers used to collect lye water (from water that had run through ashes) and stir that into a pot of lard, making soap. Those days are long behind us though. Soap making has gone from those humble beginnings to becoming a thriving worldwide business for a number of large companies. Because the soaps are being produced in such large quantities, commercial soaps are filled with chemicals and additives to prolong shelf life. Additives that not only dry your skin out but can lead to rashes and other irritations.

In fact, the commercial soap bars that line most chain stores’ shelves are more like synthetic detergents. The ingredient list of these soaps reads like a chemical formula and technically are not considered to be soap but rather beauty bars. While detergents are great for your dishes, they are not very good for your skin…