TracysTrueSoaps.com

I Don't Cut Corners

FAQ

 

Is this "lye" soap?

If this is lye soap, how is it not harsh or irritating?

What does "Saponified" or "Saponification" mean?

Why do you put Goatmilk, Oatmeal, and Honey in some of your soaps?

Why should I use natural soap instead of the cheaper, store-bought bath bars?













Is this "lye" soap?


Yes, it is made using lye.  However, there is no lye remaining in the finished bar of soap - it is all "used up" converting the fats to soap and glycerine.  By definition, soap is a "sodium salt of a fatty acid," which can only be accomplished by using an alkali (AKA caustic or base) to break down and convert the fats.  Soap cannot be made without lye.


























If this is lye soap, how is it not harsh or irritating?

Many people associate "lye soap" with something harsh, but that is far from the truth.  When people hear the term lye they may think of how lye (by itself) is harsh (and very much so.)  Or they may have heard of lye soap (of decades ago) that would burn or irritate the skin of their parents or grandparents.  But that was before the day of accurate digital scales, pure lye that is constant, and exact saponification values for any type of oils/fats.  Many old-time lye soaps were made from water that soaked in hardwood ashes, providing their lye (of unknown and varying strength), and mixed with fats based on experience or guessing by the appearance as it cooked.  If they did not have enough lye water in their mix, they would end up with a soft, almost unusable soap (which they tried not to do).  But if they had too much lye in their mix, they would end up with a hard bar of "usable" soap - but that was irritating and harsh, so that was preferable.  Today's handmade soaps are much different in that with a constant strength of pure lye, known saponification values, and extremely accurate digital scales, there is no chance of any lye remaining as long as your calculations/math are right.


























What does "Saponified" or "Saponification" mean?

Saponified means "converted into soap," speaking of a fat being converted, and is the only way to make real soap.  A caustic (lye, a base, with an extremely high ph) is used to do this, breaking the fatty acid into three parts pure soap and one part pure glycerine.  In listing my ingredients, using the term "saponified oils" is actually the most accurate.  Were the individual oils and lye to be listed, it would be inaccurate due to the fact that there is not any lye left at all, and very little (unsaponified) oils left.  I do always figure for just a small bit of extra oils to be left - maybe 5% - both as a safety factor to make sure all the lye is used up and as an additional moisturizer.


























Why do you put Goatmilk, Oatmeal, and Honey in some of your soaps?

These natural additives add to the already beneficial properties of pure, natural soap in ways that many people enjoy.

Goatmilk adds to the skin conditioning and softening properties of natural soap in a distinct way that you have to experience, along with adding a slight hint of natural aroma.  It is great as an all-over bath soap, and I have several family members who will not wash their faces with anything but my goatmilk soap.  They say it feels like nothing else.

Oatmeal is very soothing for the skin and is a very gentle exfoliant.  If you or a family member has eczema, you may recall the dermatologist's prescription to take oatmeal baths (ie Aveeno) when you have an outbreak of eczema or itching, as it is very soothing to irritated skin.  Colloided (finely crushed, powdered) oatmeal is also a great exfoliant.  Once in the presence of water, the oatmeal is not rough or abrasive, but actually begins to soften into a wonderfully gentle exfoliant to slough off dead skin cells.  Oatmeal, especially paired with olive oil, makes for a wonderful skin-healing, skin-relieving soap.

Honey is basically nature's "health food store."  You have probably heard about the benefits of eating honey, such as relief from many respiratory allergies and digestive problems.  But there are also many benefits from honey used on the outside of the body as well.  Natural honey has antibiotic properties (containing natural hydrogen peroxide), aids in the healing of skin, aids in the reduction of scarring, and is a great natural humectant (attracts moisture to itself, and thus your skin).  As an extra benefit, honey adds a mild, sweet scent and, of course, a "honey" color to natural soaps.



























Why should I use natural soap instead of the cheaper, store-bought bath bars?

If you have any skin problems (or want to help prevent them), even as simple as dry skin after showering or bathing, you will notice the benefits of using all-natural soap.  I would encourage you to read more on my
home page about the benefits of using natural soap.  While I do not make any FDA-backed "medical claims" regarding the use of my natural soaps, in my experience it has proven very beneficial in many ways.

We live in a day and time where the sun's rays are more and more damaging, and the resulting wrinkles, skin damage, and sometimes even skin cancer, is more and more prevalent.  We stress the importance of keeping up the health of our cardiovascular and respiratory systems with regular exercise, the importance of "cleansing" our digestive / intestinal tracts with supplements, and the importance of exercising our brains with mental challenges to keep them vital.  But many times we don't really acknowledge the importance of our skin / integumentary system.  Your skin is actually the largest organ of your body.  While we really don't associate "sudden death" with our skin being unhealthy, it is the body's first line of defense against many things like outside bacteria, germs, contaminants, physical damage, and excessive cold or heat.  Your skin also performs vital functions in the regulation of your body's temperature and the elimination of wastes.  And as an added benefit, healthy skin is young-looking skin.  I have heard several people speak of grandmothers who "never washed with anything but lye soap" and who had youthful skin into their old age.

Using natural soap is also better for the environment.  Since these soaps are all free of phosphates, or any other chemicals, they will not contribute to the ruining of our natural bodies of water and aquatic wildlife.  Phosphates contribute to the proliferation of algae growth, which consumes massive amounts of oxygen from the water, leaving aquatic wildlife an environment that becomes unable of sustaining it. 











I will be adding more FAQ's in coming weeks.  If you have a question that is not addressed here, please
contact me.  I will be sure to answer your question, and may add it as one of my FAQ's.




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