Friday, December 26, 2008

Natural Bar Soap VS Body Wash

You've tried cold process bar soaps and you love what they do for your skin, but do you prefer a liquid soap? Is there any such thing as a natural body wash?

You absolutely can get the same wonderful benefits from a natural liquid soap! Making a liquid soap is basically the same process as making bar soap, the difference is a different type of lye. Sodium hydroxide produces a firm bar soap, potassium hydroxide produces a sticky paste that the soapmaker mixes with water to make liquid soap. If you want a gel you use less water in the paste, if you want a liquid you add more water. The same wonderful base oils are used and the glycerin stays in the finished soap, leaving skin nice and soft.

When you're looking for a natural liquid soap, read the labels to make sure you're getting a soap that is made from scratch, not a pre-made base. If the ingredients are not listed, or if you see ingredients like sodium lauryl sulfate, cocamidopropyl betaine, disodium laureth sulfosuccinate or tetrasodium EDTA, it is most likely a commercial base, not a natural product. I'll use our ingredients as a reference point for you.

Ingredients: Olive, coconut and palm oil, cocoa butter, distilled water, potassium hydroxide, essential or fragrance oils, natural colorants if used.

If you're not sure if a soapmaker makes the product or uses a base, ask them. Ask for the ingredients and a basic explanation of how the soap is made. If they can't or won't tell you, move on.

Body washes that are made from scratch may have to be shaken every so often, don't be alarmed if they separate with non use. A good shake is the perfect alternative to chemical emulsifiers. Soaps may be clear or opaque, either is fine. Our body wash gets more opaque in cold temperatures and clearer in warm, this is normal and doesn't affect product quality.

You won't see as many natural liquids for sale because liquid soaps are more labor intensive to make. They're also heavier to ship with the water content, and more expensive because they have to be packaged in plastic. We offer large refill sizes on our website, to help cut down on packaging expenses.

Here are a few Etsy sellers that sell a made from scratch natural liquid soap:





Try a natural liquid hand soap or body wash, you won't be disappointed!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Kindness- A Lost Art?

Kindness makes the world a better place for all of us to live in. I honestly think that people are simply too busy to be kind. Always in a hurry, we zoom up on people in traffic and tailgate until they move. Check our cell phones while the elderly woman in front of us at the grocery store struggles to lift the items from her cart. Barely acknowledge our children as they excitedly try to tell us about their day. Sound familiar?

Kindness really doesn't take that much time, and it is so satisfying! Kindness will stay with you, make your world bigger, warmer, a wonderful place to be. Here are a few tips to get you started, not one of these takes more than a minute or two.

  • When your children come home today, stop what you're doing and listen, REALLY listen. It's important to them, they love you and want to connect. Have an actual conversation.
  • Kiss your spouse and tell them you love them when they get home from work. Make eye contact and put some feeling into it.
  • Say thank you when someone does something nice for you. Not just the big stuff, the little stuff too. Notice the little niceties in life. Our daughter emptied the dishwasher last night without being asked, such a little thing but so helpful! Today I think I'll surprise her by doing and folding a load of her laundry.
  • When the dog or cat nuzzles you tonight, looking for a little affection, spend a minute or two lavishing some love on the family pet. Let the kitty snuggle up in your lap while you rub her ears. Throw the ball for your dog and see the joy in his eyes.

Joy goes beyond our families, imagine the possibilities if we showed even one kindness to a stranger each day!

  • Leave a huge tip for the obviously pregnant waitress
  • Hold the door for the person behind you- people aren't used to it anymore
  • Smile at people- even the most surly will usually crumble if faced with a smiling face
  • Help the short person at the grocery store reach the top shelf
  • Buy a GOOD toy to donate this year, not the dollar store junk
  • Elderly people next door? Shovel their snow like it's your own. Call and ask if they need anything if you're on your way to a store
  • Pay the toll for the car behind you on the freeway

What's your favorite way to show kindness in the world? I'd love to hear them!