5 Soap Myths Busted
Let me guess.
You use soap everyday.
But you rarely think about it, whether it's bar soap or body wash/shower gel.
Cleansing is the first step when it comes to taking care of your skin. Do it right, and the rest will follow.
Is the soap you're using really soap?
Liquid soap and body wash (and many “beauty” or “cleansing” bars) are detergents in disguise - the foams and bubbles are produced by surfactants - chemical petroleum by-products.
And that's not all.
Any products that contain water must be properly preserved with preservatives.
Because you don't want moldy goo in your bottle.
Not all preservatives are harmful, but why not avoid it altogether when you have the option?
You may be thinking "Isn't bar soap drying?"
Let's do a reality check.
Myth #1: Lye soap is harsh
Soap is salts of fatty acids.
Huh? Say what?
Soap is the result of a chemical reaction between fatty acids (oil) and a strong base (lye).
No lye = No soap
Why would I put lye on my skin!?
You don't. There's no lye left after the chemical reaction. The lye with oils are transformed into soap and glycerin.
Like mixing baking soda with eggs and sour cream, producing bubbles of carbon dioxide to rise your coffee cake.
I have no idea if that make sense to you. But trust me, coffee cake is yummy and "lye soap" is not harsh.
Myth #2: Soap made with chemicals is bad for your skin
Until we cease to exist physically and actually live in a virtual world, all things are chemicals.
Water is H2O. It can also be called dihydrogen monoxide i.e. two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. Would you say water is bad for your skin?
This begs the question:
What, exactly, is a "chemical-free" product?
It's a marketing hype that, once you pause and think about it, doesn't really make sense.
The truth is on the ingredient list. Always.
Myth #3: Antibacterial soap is better than regular soap
In case you didn't get the memo (do they even have memos nowadays?):
Back in September 2017, FDA banned 19 ingredients, including triclosan, from over-the-counter consumer antiseptic washes.
There was no scientific evidence that the ingredients were safe for long-term daily use or better than soap and water at preventing illness or the spread of germs.
Myth #4: Natural soap doesn’t lather well
Soap with coconut oil gives us big fluffy bubbles because of its high lauric acid.
But there's a trade-off.
Too high a percentage of coconut oil and the soap becomes too drying for your skin.
On the other hand, olive oil, high in oleic acid, is mild and conditioning but produces low lather.
Yap, it's a fine balance to create the perfect formula.
Artisanal soaps are not all the same, just like artisanal pizza are all different.
When I design the formula, the goal is to give you a spa experience in your shower.
I also want your skin to feel soft and supple without relying on lotions and potions.
- I don't use pre-made melt-and-pour soap base. Because that gives me no control over the main ingredients in the formula.
- I don't use synthetic fragrances. They may give you a headache (it does for me) and all other nasty things.
- I also don't put dry herbs and flowers on the soap top because that's too scratchy on the skin and you'll have to rinse the bathtub afterward. Making you work is not my goal.
- I don't make neon colour soap that looks like a cupcake. I'm not against cupcake. It's just not what we're looking for here.
Other artisanal soap may have a different focus.
Ellen DeGeneres and Oprah. Beyoncé and Lady Gaga. Coffee cake and bran muffin.
They are all amazing (okay, maybe not the bran muffin).
The best part? You're free to choose what's right for you! (cue Louis Armstrong's What a Wonderful World).
Myth #5: Soap dries out your skin
This is the biggest myth of all time, right up there with the Kidney Heist.
Handmade soap contains naturally occurring glycerin that attracts and retains moisture. A well-formulated handcrafted soap also gives you the skin-loving properties from the high quality oils and butters used.
Skin so soft you can't stop touching.
And unlike that dreamy coffee cake, treating yourself to a well-made bar of Coffee Soap will not give you a muffin top.
Now I want to hear from you. What's your experience? Did I missed anything? Leave a comment to let me know.
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Meet Sandy Lerner. Thank her for the internet and black nail polish.