Why Natural Handmade Soap?
The Benefits of using Natural Soap.
"Why use natural soap?" It's a common question from people who have never tried anything but commercial soap. We often worry about what goes in our bodies by reading ingredient labels before deciding what is healthiest for our families. The next time you are at your favorite store buying soap for you and your family. Take a close look at the labels. Most of the products on the shelf don't say 'soap' on their labels.
They call it a beauty bar or a moisturizing bar or maybe it says body bar, but not soap. That's because these bars aren't soap and can't legally claim to be; they're detergents. The manufacturers have removed most of the 'good' stuff that occurs in the soap making process, and replaced it with synthetic lathering agents and harsh chemicals.
Why do they do this?
They do this to create more profit. Commercial soap manufacturers make it a practice to remove the glycerin that is produced during the saponification (soap-making) process. The glycerin extracted from the soap is highly profitable and, often sold to other companies who use it to make lotions and moisturizers. This makes you purchase another product.
Our skin is the biggest organ of our body and is porous and absorbent. It absorbs whatever it comes in contact with. Chronic use of chemical laden products will cause the body to store the chemicals in the body fat or even in the brain. With enough accumulations of toxins in the body, illness can occur.
What are my alternatives?
All natural, handmade soap. There are many small businesses selling extremely high quality, all natural - yes real soap. The Soap Shack for example. Sure, these soap bars generally cost more than the detergent bars you'll find at Wal-Mart. But the difference is these soap bars are actually good for your skin and give you all the benefits that you should get from your soap.
There are basically three ways to make soap. One common way is called "Glycerin" or "melt and pour" soap. These are generally glycerin based transparent soaps. They're not as harmful (usually) as the commercial bars, but they're not the best choice. Although they are very nice to look at.
The other two methods are "hot process" and "cold process." The hot process method utilizes heat after the saponification process has taken place, while the cold process method does not. The cold process method takes the most time, but is undoubtedly the best method for producing the highest quality soaps.
Now, we need to discuss the ingredients. Cold process soap bars are made using a combination of oils or fats and lye. Lye sounds a little scary, but all the caustic qualities of the lye are removed during the saponification process. When the lye interacts with the oils or fats, it creates glycerin. The type and percentage of the oils and fats used make a difference in how hard or soft the soap bar ends up being, and how well it lathers.
To sum it up, the best soap for your skin is a handmade, all natural cold process soap bar. Once you've tried real natural handmade soap, you'll never again be satisfied with 'store-bought' bars. So do yourself and your skin a big favor and start using REAL soap.