I am experienced, educated and carry business insurance to sell my products. I continue my education by actively participating several on-line soap making groups. These on-line communities are a tight knit group who share vast amounts of experience, trials and successes with each other. Also utter failures. And believe me there are many failures, flops and fugly soaps out there.
This leads me to my reason for this post: While there are a great number of legitimate-business Bath and Body makers out there…there is an alarming uptick of newbies hawking unsafe and un-trialed products. This scares me to no end. Not because I’m afraid that they are going to take business away from me. Because some unsuspecting consumer will buy those unsafe products, have a reaction and get hurt. Freaks-me-out City! When that happens it affects the handcrafted industry as a whole.
How do I recognize unsafe products?
READ. THE. LABELS. My first reaction to seeing a hand crafted product is to snort disbelieving at the word “All Natural”. “Natural” is one of the most overused and under-defined words out there. There is no such thing as all natural soap. Ever. If the “soap” doesn't contain lye, it’s not soap by the scientific definition. No lye=no soap. It’s detergent. But if it does have lye (or the chemical name of Sodium Hydroxide) it’s not “natural” because lye is a manufactured product. That doesn’t fit my definition of “natural”.
Does the label contain a list of the ingredients? Does it have the manufacturer name on it? If it contains any water in the recipe does it also contain a preservative? Is the manufacturer registered with the state and do they have a tax ID number? Do they take pride in developing their products, labels and packaging? Or does it look like it’s slap-dashed together with little thought or care…? I
If so, RUN! Run far, far away from it. Don’t risk your health on someone’s scheme to make a quick buck. Legitimate B&B product makers should be able to answer any questions regarding the safety of their products and their manufacturing process without batting an eye and be proud to do so. Ask me anytime, anywhere about how I make my soaps or lotions. I will talk you through the multi-step and several hours process of proper preparation, creation and labeling for making a single batch. And that doesn’t include the hours of research to develop a recipe.
Don’t get me wrong…I want, and heartily encourage, you to try other handcrafted products out there. Trust me: there are enough dirty butts out there for all the legit soapmakers. It’s a consumable product. Buy it, use it and buy more. So yes, by all means, test out other makers and maybe you’ll find another soaper’s recipe will work better for your skin type. That’s terrific…share the love. Just do it by being educated so that you’re a safe and wise consumer by reading and understanding the labels.
Have any questions about what you’re reading on my labels? Ask me. I would be happy to explain things to you. Just be prepared that I might not shut up either. Once you get me going…It’s hard for me to stop. All though if your eyes start to glaze over and you fall asleep from boredom, I might get the hint.
What's up next for Feeding the Habit? Watch Facebook for the announcement of new soaps being added to the website soon.
Until next time, stay sudsy my friends. Stay sudsy!