Wednesday, 3 December 2008

My Soaps Aren't Natural and They're Full of Chemicals

I don't harvest them from bushes in my garden - there are plants which are "natural soaps" in that they contain saponins (chemicals of course, like the rest of the plant); plants like Soapwort, which is still used to wash some old and delicate fabrics.

But a bar of soap can't be "natural" as it is formed by a chemical (re)action between lye and fats. Lye itself isn't natural either, the sodium hydroxide used in solid soaps is usually formed from brine by electrolysis and is often a by product from the manufacture of hydrochloric acid.

So don't let anyone tell you their soap is "natural".

Nor can it be "chemical-free" - think about it!

Everything is composed of chemicals, some are good and some are bad.


SoapyChica said...

Yay Elaine! Mine are choc full of chemicals too-Its great!

Lomond Soap said...

Very true Elaine! However I do describe my soaps as "natural", I'm not trying to pull the wool over anyones eyes, merely trying to get across that what I make is not crammed full of unnecessary foaming agents, preservatives etc.
Consumers like natural, they are told natural is good for them. Perhaps I should say "as natural as possible"?
Great post though ;)

briallen said...

I think most soapers describe their soap as "natural" because it's become the accepted word and "natural" = "good"; but there are some who will insist that it's "natural".

There are some very effective "natural" poisons (which is one reason why we have our recipes sent for Safety Assessments).

FairyAlchemy said...

I'm a natural bod too but only so far as the natural stuff that goes in and that is mostly in the body products umm how about made from 'natural products'.... oh sorry might get shouted at here but I love playing with SLS in my own use stuff and family things!!! have you seen those bubbles...nice post.

briallen said...

Yes SLS has had bad press but has been used safely for decades.

For products which I sell I use SCS, SCI and SMC Taurate - then they can be labelled "SLS Free". The bubbles are just as good!

Mary @ Annie's Goat Hill said...

Good points! I love our different "twists" on things.