As organics become more and more mainstream many people are beginning to grow their own organic produce, or buy local organics. They may even be purchasing eco friendly cleaning products for their homes in an effort to reduce the impact and use of pollutants and toxins in their home environments. But take a closer look into self care products. Have organics made as much of an impact on consumer choices in terms of our skincare or make-up products? I think the answer is a resounding, No!
So, why haven’t organic self care products become as popular? Well, for starters, organic self care products carry significantly higher price points. Back before I started manufacturing soap I would purchase a single bar for $18! This was certainly not something I could do on a consistent basis. But, when I could afford it, I bought it. My skin and my general health were worth it! And my extremely sensitive skin enjoyed the break from the harsh chemicals and toxins it normally got slathered with from commercial “soaps”.
So what are the benefits of switching to organic soap?
Here are my Top 5 completely bias but totally factual reasons to switch to organic soap:
- Most commercial “soap” isn’t soap at all, its DETERGENT! Mind blowing, right?! The FDA has strict regulations on soap labeling and classifications. According to the FDA, “Today there are very few true soaps on the market. Most body cleansers, both liquid and solid, are actually synthetic detergent products.” That is why you will see terms like Cleanser, Beauty Bar, and Body Wash on the shelves rather than the word SOAP. Those descriptions sound much sexier and far more desirable thanks to excellent marketing and branding efforts backed by a billion dollar industry.
- Most organic soaps only use essential oils rather than the chemically questionable fragrance oils that are found in commercial cleansers. The FDA considers fragrances ‘Trade Secrets’, so companies do not have to tell consumers what is in them. Thousands of unregulated chemicals go into fragrances. Some that are even believed to be harmful to health (though those claims haven’t been accepted by the FDA… why risk it?!) Phthalates for example is a class of chemical connected to hormone disruption which can affect development and fertility. No thanks!
- Organic soaps are made with ingredients free from chemical pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers that can cause skin irritation and rash, allergic reactions or, most common, dry skin. Organic soaps are biodegradable and are not harmful to Mama Earth either. If you spend extra money on organic produce its usually because you don’t want to support non eco friendly business practices OR you do not want to consume toxins. Which leads me to my next point...
- Toxins are absorbed through the skin. Nuff said!
- Transparency. True organic soaps are primarily handcrafted from small businesses and individuals who are usually more than happy to answer openly and honestly questions about the ingredients in their soaps. No need to wonder about what you are putting on your body. But most of the time that is not necessary. Though it is not required by the FDA many soap crafters include all of their ingredients directly on their labels. No smoke and mirrors.
The question remains..What’s the difference between organic soap and commercial um...detergent?
Well, soap is made by combining fats or oils and an alkali, such as lye (sodium hydroxide), to form a chemical reaction. The lye reacts with the oils, turning what starts out as liquid into solid soap. This process is called Saponification. No lye remains in the finished product. I repeat, No lye remains in the finished product.
True soaps are handcrafted by artisans in small batches. Historically, people crafted their own soap using animal fats and lye that had been extracted from wood ashes. (Side note, WildRoots does not use animal fat at all but will be harvesting wood ash to extract lye for next years soaps).
So then detergent is...???
Detergents are mass produced (to the tune of 15,000 to 50,000 pounds per hour) by combining chemicals, and petroleum based oils. This combo of questionable ingredients is wetted by more liquid chemicals and ingredients and then heats up on its own. Then the liquid spills out of the bottom of an enormous Agglomerator vat and dried with heat and air. It is pulverized and sifted to create a fine powder. That powder is then used and mixed with more ingredients and chemicals to create the final product.
Bottom line, commercial “soap” is not soap at all and it is full of unregulated and harmful chemicals that will cause skin problems and may cause more serious health problems. Organic soap is a stress free, safe and simple solution to everyday self care for you and your loved ones.
So, with that said… ready to make the switch?