Why use handmade soap?

Why use natural handmade soap?

The benefits of using handmade soap are many: simpler ingredients, fewer chemicals, natural vegetable oils instead of animal fats. All these things are important to many people today. The reasons to use a more natural, handmade product are not always obvious, however. Read on to learn more.

Why is handmade natural soap so special?
 Natural soaps are made in a time-honored fashion. It involves a very simple chemical reaction between oils (or fats) and lye (sodium hydroxide for bars). All soap is made with lye, but there is no lye in the finished product. The chemical reaction converts the lye and fat mixture to glycerin. The glycerin is a natural by-product and, as such, the relationship between the soap molecule and the glycerin means you have a cleanser with abundant, luxurious lather that cleans like nothing else. As a bonus, it does not strip your skin of its natural, protective oils.

Commercially made soap usually contains detergents, fillers, chemicals, petroleum, high animal fat content (read: sodium tallowate) and irritants like SLS or SLES (sulfates). Commercially made soap tends to be less eco-friendly as well. While commercially manufactured soap usually costs less, the impact on your skin and the environment is high.

Natural handmade soaps are made with natural oils, have a high glycerin content, are better for the environment with no detergents, phosphates or sulfates, and are never tested on animals.

At Otter Lake Soapworks, we use all-natural vegetable oils in our soaps. Each oil is carefully chosen for its cleansing and conditioning properties in soap. Go to "Properties of Oils & Butters" for a list of the oils we use in soap making along with their cleansing and conditioning properties.

We use natural plant essential oils and (some) fragrance oils to contribute to each soap's unique scent; natural spices/herbs, oatmeal, and/or flower buds and plant leaves contribute texture and colour. 

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