OUR PLANET SOAP SIGNATURE PLANTS INFUSIONS: Most of our soaps include a majority of our Olive Oil infusion of these skin soothing & healing plants: Calendula Flowers, Plantain, Marshmallow Root, Comfrey Root, and Chamomile Flowers. Our philosophy of skin care is to treat our skin with gentle respect so that even our exfoliating products leave the skin pampered and happy.
OUR PLANET SOAP HAIR PLANTS INFUSION: Our shampoo bars include an Argan Oil infusion of these hair loving plants: Horsetail, Fenugreek, Burdock Root, Calendula Flowers, Plantain Leaf, and Marshmallow Root, which stimulate hair growth, strengthen hair strands, and encourage a healthy happy scalp.
ACTIVATED CHARCOAL is made specifically for use in the cosmetic industry by steam activating coconut or hardwoods. Helpful for many skin problems, it gently exfoliates and absorbs toxins and dirt from clogged or congested pores, as well as helping reducing body odor. All of our soap bars that have any black or gray coloration to them contain activated charcoal.
ALKANET ROOT, an herb from the borage family and native to the Mediterranean area, is mainly used as a dyeing and coloring agent, especially for fabrics, soap, and lip balm. In the past, it was used to improve the appearance of low-quality wines and ports, and to give an aged appearance to wine corks! We use a smidge of Alkanet in our Wolf Soap Bar.
ALOE VERA, a member of the cactus plant, and believed to have originated in the Sudan, has long been known as a miracle worker. We added aloe vera to all of our products for a soothing silkiness. Aloe’s lists of benefits are almost endless. It moisturizes, treats sunburn and skin irritation in a variety of skin, hair and scalp problems. It contains two hormones: Auxin and Gibberellins, which provide wound healing and anti-inflammatory properties that reduce skin inflammation, speeds healing and reduces scarring. Gibberellin also acts as a growth hormone stimulating the growth of new cells. It contains over 75 different nutrients including vitamins, minerals, enzymes, sugars, anthraquinones or phenolic compounds, lignin, saponins, sterols, amino acids, and salicylic acid. soothes in periodontal disease and aids in digestion. It seems there is nothing it can’t do!!
ANISE STAR ESSENTIAL OIL comes from the flower of the Star Anise tree, a medium-sized evergreen tree of the magnolia family. It has a sweet yet fresh scent of black licorice, which is the secret ingredient in traditional “Fishermans’ Soap” as the Anise essential oil is said to mask the human scent from fish and game. In fact, fish seem to be attracted to the scent of anise. The tree fruits are harvested before they ripen, then sun-dried. The Japanese plant this tree around their temples, and use the pounded bark as incense. An anise seed infused tea, or chewing anise seeds is also really good for indigestion. We use this EO is our delicious Penguin Soap Bar.
ANNATTO SEEDS, which produce a dark orange powder, comes from the South American Achiote Lipstick tree, an amazingly diverse & useful plant. People take annatto for diabetes, diarrhea, fevers, fluid retention, heartburn, malaria, and hepatitis. They also use it as an antioxidant and bowel cleanser and tasting a bit like paprika, it is widely used as a colorant in food. The seeds inside the pod contain bixin, a bright red carotenoid pigment, giving foods like cheddar cheese it’s orange color.
ARGAN OIL comes from the fruit of the Argan tree, native to Morocco. It is high in Vitamin E, is softening and hydrating, used to reduce blemishes and scars. It moisturizes and relieves chapped and dry skin. It’s also used to protect skin elasticity and promote healthy skin and hair.
BAOBAB OIL comes from the African Baobab Tree, also known as ‘The Tree of Life’. It is a prehistoric species which predates both mankind and the splitting of the continents over 200 million years ago. Native to the African savannah where the climate is extremely dry and arid, it is a symbol of life and positivity in a landscape where little else can thrive. They can live for up to 5,000 years, and during the rainy season absorbs and stores water in its vast trunk. Every part of the baobab tree is valuable - the bark can be turned into rope and clothing, the seeds can be used to make cosmetic oils, the leaves are edible and can store water and the fruit pulp is extraordinarily rich in nutrients. Used for centuries as a rub to relieve aches and rheumatism, and rich in vitamins A, D, E and F and other essential fatty acids, Baobab oil provides excellent moisturizing benefits to the skin and hair. It absorbs easily into the skin, improves tone, elasticity, and regenerates and renews skin cells. It is said to have antioxidant properties and is an excellent ingredient in formulations for eczema and psoriasis.
BEER, when added to soap, adds tremendous lather. The yeast in beer can help improve the acne symptoms by slowing down overactive sebum productions, and killing the bacteria that triggers acne, as well as softening the skin. We use beer in our Grizzly Soap Bar.
BTMS (aka Behentrimonium Methosulfate) is a natural, conditioning emulsifier very widely used in hair and skin care. It has excellent detangling properties, leaving hair with body and spring, and can also be used as a leave-in conditioner. BTMS is naturally derived from Colza oil (obtained from the seeds of rapeseed) and is very gentle on the skin and hair.
BERGAMOT ESSENTIAL OIL has a lovely green citrus scent used in many famous perfumes and teas. It is cold-pressed from the rind of its fruit, which looks something like a pear-shaped rustic orange. A flowering tree originally from SE Asia, it is now grown around the Mediterranean and Africa as well. Bergamot is an excellent skin cleanser and helps balance oily skin, is said to help relieve depression, anxiety, reduce pain and prevent infections. It is used extensively in cosmetics as it can help wound & scar healing. It can be skin sensitizing, so we use it only in small doses, and never in a leave on product.
BLACK CUMIN SEED OIL has been used for thousands of years to heal skin. Rich in essential fatty acids and vitamins, this anti-fungal oil helps calm inflammation, heal dry skin and eczema. It also infuses our Bison Soap with its own spicy scent.
BRINE SOAP is soap made with a saturated salt solution, delivering all the mineral, toning, and healing qualities of sea salt, but in a smooth lotion-like bar. Our customers love our Whale Brine Bar.
BURDOCK ROOT has been used in both western and eastern herbal medicine for centuries. It is cleansing, smoothing, and soothing to the skin. It can heal wounds and treat conditions like fungus and yeast infections. Used in hair products, it helps stimulate growth, fortifying and shining hair. Burdock is one of our central herbs we use in almost all of our products.
CALENDULA FLOWERS is another one of our central plants we use in olive oil infusions, as well as adding it directly to our products. From the same species as marigolds, it is very calming to the skin, a powerful anti-oxidant and a strong anti-viral. Whereas most herbs and fruits eventually turn brown, calendula has the rare quality of retaining its sunny yellow color ever after being dried.
CASTOR OIL comes from pressing the seeds of the castor bean. It gives the soap a rich creamy lather, as well being a humectant, meaning it attracts moisture to your skin and is especially appreciated in shampoo bars. It is said to increase hair growth, including eyelashes and eyebrows. Castor oil is also used for many digestive ailments.
CEDARWOOD ESSENTIAL OIL is extracted directly from the wood of cedar trees. A natural antiseptic, cedarwood oil can prevent the development and growth of harmful microorganisms that can negatively affect skin health, can promote hair growth and sooth the skin, as well as treat skin problems like eczema. Plus it has an irresistible clean woodsy scent that can be used on its own or combined with other essential oils, as it is in our Wolf Soap Bar.
CHAMOMILE FLOWERS are a gentle daisy-like herb used for centuries, with a sweet apple-like scent. Besides using the tea for soothing the nerves and aiding sleep, chamomile is just as calming for the skin. Anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, it has a very low allergen rate and helps to reduce skin irritants by neutralizing free radicals. Chamomile has antioxidants that help protect the skin from environmental stress and is mild enough to use on babies’ skin. Used on hair, it calms the scalp and helps emphasize the golden hues.
CLAYS: ROSE CLAY, KAOLIN WHITE CLAY, SEA CLAY, ORANGE ILLITE CLAY: We use a variety of natural cosmetic clays in our products. They lend a silky feel to the soap but more importantly give the soap a very gentle and detoxifying, exfoliating, & tightening action on the skin. Rather than using harsh chemical exfoliators, clay is an ancient method to polish the skin and shed dead skin cells. Different clays have different drawing powers, as well as give the bars natural colors. Clays are also said to help cold process soap retain the scent of essential oils. Rose Clay gives our Leopard Soap Bar it's beautiful hue.
COCOA BUTTER is the pale-yellow, edible vegetable fat which is expeller-pressed from the seeds of the cacao tree, the same tree used to make chocolate. It is great for healing and moisturizing sensitive skin. Besides smelling like chocolate, it gives soap a very creamy lather, and helps a natural bar soap last longer.
COCOA POWDER As we know, chocolate is full of antioxidants, and is a great skin detoxifier, sloughing off the dead skin cells and allows the newly exposed, fresh skin to breathe freely. It also gives a lovely warm brown color to natural soaps.
COCONUT OIL is one of the keys to making a hard, bubbly soap bar, especially since we don’t use palm oil. In a salt bar formulation, which is usually 100% coconut oil, we ‘superfat’ the recipe meaning there is a higher % of oil than would be normally required for soap, in order to make it more gentle on the skin, as well as counteract the sea salt, which naturally depresses bubbliness. In soap, coconut’s caprylic, capric, and lauric fatty acids are anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial. We are less enthusiastic than most about using it as a makeup remover or moisturizer because it is very high on the comedogenic scale and can be irritating or pimple-inducing. The oil does make a great hair mask though.
COCONUT MILK in a number of our soap bars adds a rich moisturizing creaminess to the lather, as well as vitamins like C and E.
COFFEE, when used in soap, provides a strong exfoliation action, and the caffeine is said to increase blood circulation under the skin thus aiding in the elimination of cellulite. It definitely improves the texture and tone of the skin with regular use. Our Rhino Soap Bar is a bit messy in the shower, but so worth it for baby-soft better skin!
COMFREY LEAF, sometimes called the Healing Herb, has been used for thousands of years to soothe skin and help heals abrasions, burns, sprains, and scars. Despite it being drunk as a tea since antiquity, these days doctors do not recommend taking it internally. But used externally in oil infusions, salves, and soap, it can stimulate skin healing and calm inflammatory conditions. We use comfrey in all our olive infusions for soaps, butters, and salves.
CUCUMBER SEED OIL is very moisturizing & anti-inflammatory, yet is easily absorbed into the skin leaving no greasy feel. It encourages skin cell regeneration, helping to heal many damaged skin conditions including sunburn, stretch marks, and acne.
CUCUMBER POWDER is a powder made directly from the skins of the cucumber, making it a fragrant light green powder. The skin of the cucumber contains Vitamin C and Caffeic Acid, which is believed to have potential anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, and can soothe skin irritations, lighten skin, and reduce swelling.
EUCALYPTUS ESSENTIAL OIL is made from the leaves of certain eucalyptus tree species. The essential oil is probably most known for its sinus-clearing respiratory benefits, including coughs and sore throats from seasonal allergies, as well as soothing headaches, and reviving energy. The potent medicinal benefits of eucalyptus oil are due to a compound called eucalyptol (also known as cineole). Researchers have found that it can boost immunity, relieve muscle pain when used in salves, and fight common fungal infections like candida and nail fungus. This EO helps give our Gorilla Soap Bar it's kick!
FENUGREEK SEED has been used in the kitchen, as a medicine both internally & externally, for a thousand years. In our case, we use a fenugreek oil infusion in our shampoo bars, as it is said to promote hair growth, strengthen the hair shaft, and leave hair shiny and smooth.
FIR ESSENTIAL OIL, extracted through a process of steam distillation from fir needles, has antiseptic and detoxifying qualities, can improve respiration and aching muscles, and is great at fighting body odor. Plus it smells like you’re in the middle of a forest! Fir EO is part of the secret scent of our Wolf Soap Bar!
FLUORPHLOGOITE otherwise referred to as Synthetic Mica, is the new standard for an environmentally friendly alternative to sparkling mica or even glitter. Fluorphlogoite is made in a lab from natural minerals. Mined mica has disturbing connections with child labor, and glitter is basically tiny plastic film pieces that never degrade. We still want a little sparkle in our lives, so we use a tiny amount of fluorphlogoite on the top of our Polar Bear bars, as a nod to their life on the snow.
FRANKINCENSE ESSENTIAL OIL is the distillation of hardened tree resin that comes from cuts made in the trunk of the Boswellia carteri tree, commonly grown in Somalia and Pakistan. It has been used and valued since ancient times for its medicinal, cosmetic, aromatic and spiritual applications. Its skin benefits are legion and include strengthening and toning the skin, fighting signs of aging, and helping to heal scars. We use frankincense infusions in our salves and other products.
GRAPEFRUIT ESSENTIAL OIL (both white and pink) is extracted from the grapefruit peel. It has a bright and uplifting scent and has been known to help with mental alertness, depression, hangovers, acting as an appetite suppressant, as well as helping with acne issues, microbial infections, and as a deodorant. Rich in antioxidants and Vitamin C, it’s major component limonene has been found to possess anti-cancer properties. Our Lion Soap Bar combines white grapefruit EO with honey and oatmeal.
HIMALAYAN PINK SALT comes from the Punjab region of Pakistan, and contains trace amounts of iron oxide, which gives it a pink color. Natural salt is very helpful in detoxing the pores, and getting rid of unwanted bacteria, including body odor. It has good healing properties, can treat acne, and tones the skin.
HONEY is another one of nature’s miracles. It’s moisturizing, antiseptic, heals by stimulating wound tissues, anti-parasitic, as well as conditioning to hair and skin. Mixed with milk or yogurt makes wonderful skin and hair treatment, and a terrific mask for combatting acne.
HORSETAIL is a plant that contains a substantial amount of silica, which is a principal ingredient in growing hair, as well as increasing its strength and sheen. Horsetail is also anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, healing, antiseptic, and antimicrobial, so it’s good for both hair and skin.
KELP & SEAWEED contain an array of vitamins and minerals that are good for the skin, aiding intoning. Its antioxidant qualities can reduce sun damage, age spots, and discoloration. The natural seaweed smell can be strong, so it is best used lightly.
KOMBUCHA and probiotics are relatively new ingredients in skin care. Used directly on the skin, probiotics might help restore the balance of “good bacteria” to your skin, help with exfoliation, and have an anti-inflammatory effect that can alleviate skin issues like acne and rosacea. It is also said to balance the skin’s pH, improve skin elasticity and fight the appearance of aging skin. We make our Tiger Soap Bar with our own black tea kombucha blend.
LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL, in the same family as mint, combines a floral, camphor, and rosemary-like scent. Arguably the most useful essential oil we have, it has an almost miraculous reputation for healing & calming anti-inflammatory properties, reducing headaches, relieving stress, repelling bugs, fighting infections, cold sores, bees stings, acne, great for hair, scalp, and skin! Both our Butterfly and Wolf Soap Bars have healthy doses of this magical essential oil.
LEMONGRASS ESSENTIAL OIL, long used for it's anti-bacterial, antifungal, analgesic, and skin healing qualities, lemongrass is a natural addition to our Bison Soap Bar. Its lemony scent is a wonderful deodorizer, and while humans love the scent, many insects like mosquitoes do not!
MANGO BUTTER comes from the fruit kernels of the mango tree. Harder than shea butter, but a bit softer than cocoa butter, mango butter adds a wonderful moisturizing quality to body creams and soap.
MARSHMALLOW ROOT, found on the banks of rivers and in salt marshes, is a plant that has been used for at least 2000 years to treat mucous membrane conditions, ulcers, and coughing. In soap, it provides a nice slip to the skin, and it also really good for detangling hair. It has low concentrations of ceramide precursors, a natural hydrator which helps to repair the skin barrier. For hair, the marshmallow root mucilage also binds to the proteins to make strands look thicker.
MARULA OIL is extracted from the nuts of the African Marula Tree, aka The Elephant Tree. It is high in oleic and linoleic acids making it wonderful for dry skin and various skin disorders, is packed with antioxidants to help fight aging skin and UV damage. It is also said to reduce redness and improves skin texture, and its high content of palmitic acid creates a protective coating on the skin. The traditional tale says that when the Marula fruit drops to the ground and lightly ferments, it “drives elephants mad.’ Maybe they mean tipsy! So of course, we had to add some Marula to our Elephant Soap Bar.
MAY CHANG ESSENTIAL OIL (aka Litsea Cubeba) is a floral lemony scent that is a produced from the small fruit of a shrub native to China and Southeast Asia. Along with being antifungal and antibacterial, it can be toning for oily skin. May Chang is also used aromatically to alleviate stress, anxiety, and relieve respiratory conditions. Our Giraffe Soap Bar makes good use of this EO for his lemony floral scent as well as the natural color it adds to the bar.
MEADOWFOAM OIL, which comes from the fields of the Pacific Northwest, is a light but moisturizing oil that is easily and quickly absorbed into the skin. One of the most stable oils known, it also has a fantastic ability to extend the shelf life of all other oils to which it is added, making it very useful for longer shelf lives of natural products.
MORINGA OIL is another wonderfully moisturizing yet light oil for the skin. Moringa trees are an attractive sustainable crop, as they grow quickly, thriving in hot dry climates. Originally growing in Africa and SW Asia, they are now are being grown in other areas of the world. The moringa tree is used for most of its parts, including the seeds, flowers, fruit peels, and unripe pods, and is now considered a ‘super food’. The leaves, in particular, appear to have antibacterial activity against human pathogens. Imagine all this goodness packed into our soap! Moringa is rich in sulfur, assists in the production of keratin and collagen, helping to keep your skin smooth and resilient.
MYRRH OIL comes from the resin extracted from a number of small, thorny tree species of the genus Commiphora. It has been used medicinally for thousands of years for its antiseptic, detoxifying, and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as perfume and incense. It was actually used in the mummification process by the Egyptians 5000 years ago, so perhaps gives us a clue as to its ability to preserve skin’s youthfulness! Seriously though, it is great for anti-aging, skin smoothing and new cell rejuvenation, and wound treatment, so it’s especially useful after shaving and healing small cuts. It can offer relief from colds and congestion, as well as strengthening hair roots thus reducing hair loss.
NEEM and NEEM OIL comes from the Azadirachta indica tree that’s native to India and has been used for centuries because of its antiseptic and skin healing qualities. It can be a very effective antifungal ingredient for acne or scalp problems, fighting conditions such as dandruff and folliculitis (a common skin disorder where the hair follicles become inflamed and sometimes infected), improves hair texture and stimulates new hair growth. Neem is also moisturizing, helps lessen itchy skin, assists in smoothing wrinkles and stimulating collagen. Referred to in India as the “Village Pharmacy,” neem is a key herb used in Ayurvedic medicine.
OATMEAL is a very gentle cleanser, is a humectant which helps your skin retain moisture, and its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties calm and soothe sensitive or damaged skin. Colloidal Oatmeal (which is a very finely ground oatmeal powder) is often used in a bath or soap to combat itchy skin. Our Lion Soap contains a good amount of colloidal oatmeal.
OLIVE OIL has been used in soap making for thousands of years, making a very gentle soap by combining olive oil, sea water, and lye. After an extra long cure period, olive oil makes a very hard bar of soap that is a mild, low lather, and moisturizing soap, wonderful for babies or people with extra sensitive skin. Most of our soaps contain a majority of high-quality olive oil, with other oils added for more lather and bubbles, or other desired ingredients.
PAPAYA FRUIT EXTRACT POWDER contains papain, a natural enzyme that promotes skin renewal, removes impurities and sloughs away dead skin cells. Papaya also has restorative properties that soften the skin, and its antibacterial properties are used in the topical treatment of cuts, rashes, stings, and burns. Papaya fruit extract makes an effective, nonabrasive exfoliant. And a great additive to our Puerto Rico Soap Bar.
PATCHOULI ESSENTIAL OIL is distilled from the leaves of the Pogostemon cablin plant, a perennial herb native to tropical regions of Asia, and a close relative of mint and lavender. A traditional Asian medicine used to treat hair, scalp, and skin problems, depression, dry chapped skin, healing and scar reduction. Historically, Romans used it as an appetite stimulant and in India was used it as an aphrodisiac! In fact, it stimulates the sex hormones estrogen and testosterone and is said to boost your sex drive. Most of us remember it as a very popular perfume used by hippies in the 1960s, and its rich musky scent is still used primarily as an incense and perfume base. We mixed Patchouli EO along with Ginger in our Tiger Soap Bar.
PEPPERMINT ESSENTIAL OIL, derived from the leaves of the mentha pipertita plant, has active components of menthol and menthone, which are known to reduce pain and tingle on the skin, invigorate, energize, and prevent the growth of harmful bacteria, disinfect and soothe inflamed skin. Peppermint oil can be used as an expectorant and decongestant, clear phlegm in your respiratory tract when used as a chest rub or inhaled through a vaporizer, even battle bad breath. Peppermint EO is what makes our Polar Bear Soap Bar so invigorating.
PINEAPPLE FRUIT EXTRACT POWDER, like Papaya Extract, contains papain, a natural enzyme that promotes skin renewal, and is a gentle exfoliant that helps dissolve dead skin cells on the surface leaving soft skin behind. Pineapple Powder is also a good astringent for use in toners and has some antioxidant and skin-soothing properties. It is also a source of exfoliaton and natural color in our Puerto Rico Soap Bar, while adding a crisp fruit scent that adds to its cleansing and invigorating properties.
PLANTAIN, another one of our key healing plants used in almost all our products, from soaps to salves to butters & solid perfumes. In fact, ancient civilizations considered it a sacred plant. Native Americans used plantain leaf extensively in a poultice to treat insect bites, allergic reactions, and healing bruises. In soap, plantain leaf soothes and relieving itching. Plantain is considered an annoying weed by some, but they clearly don’t understand its wonderful qualities!
POMEGRANATE POWDER is vitamin-rich dried & ground pomegranate seeds. Wonderful for use as a gentle exfoliator, it is also anti-inflammatory, & encourages skin cell regeneration.
POMEGRANATE SEED OIL contains a unique omega 5 fatty acid, punicic acid, which has strong anti-inflammatory properties that helps fend off free radicals to keep skin aging at bay, and may provide protection against sun damage. It is ideally suited to acne-prone skin because it has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. It penetrates deeply into the skin, moisturizing without leaving an oily residue. We add Pomegranate to our Orangutan Soap Bar.
PUMPKIN SEED OIL is an all-star for both skin and hair. It helps skin retain moisture, fight free radicals, and support a youthful appearance. It is a powerhouse of nutrition, rich in carotenoids, vitamin E, zinc, omega 3- and 6- fatty acids as well as antioxidants, boosting skin’s elasticity and tone by encouraging collagen production. Pumpkin Seed Oil may inhibit the undesirable activities of the 5-alpha-reductase enzyme (DHT), which is a leading cause of hair loss or thinning hair. Our Orangutan Soap Bar contains pumpkin seed oil.
ROSE GERANIUM ESSENTIAL OIL is produced by extracting oil from the leaves and stalks of Pelargonium plant. The ancient Egyptian upper class used it to improve and beautify their skin and to relieve anxiety, an antidepressant, an antiseptic, and wound healer. Geranium oil may also be one of the best oils for congested skin, eczema, dermatitis, and helps tone the skin. When I was a child in France, we used this oil as a mosquito repellant and substitute for deodorant. Its scent is calming and serves as a good scent alternative to rose essential oil, which is extremely expensive. We add this fragrant EO to our Leopard Soap Bar.
ROSEHIPS OIL is a cold-pressed seed oil, extracted from a small red seed pod of two types of wild roses. The inside of a rosehip is a bright orange, which is where the oil gets its notorious bright orangey-red color. Rosehips were used by the ancient Egyptians, Mayans and Native Americans because of its amazing healing properties. It's a powerhouse for the skin with brightening vitamin C and vitamin A carotenoids, stimulating collagen production, helping with eczema and scarring, and fighting hyper-pigmentation.
ROSEMARY ESSENTIAL OIL is wonderful for skin and hair, is said to protect skin cells from sun damage, is a good disinfectant, as well as stimulating to your scalp and perhaps increasing hair growth!! We use Rosemary Essential Oil in all our hair products, as well as in our Bison Soap Bar. The antimicrobial and antiseptic qualities make it beneficial in efforts to eliminate eczema, dermatitis, oily skin, and acne. It also helps with alertness and memory, making it a great way to start your morning shower.
SEA BUCKTHORN OIL is a bright orange oil extracted from the seed and berries of the Sea Buckthorn plant, a deciduous shrub native to Europe and Asia. It has sebum-balancing linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid, which helps with acne and rosacea, preventing and treating sunburn, helps to heal cuts, dermatitis and can rejuvenate dry skin.
SEA SALT is very helpful in detoxing the pores and getting rid of unwanted bacteria, including body odor. Sea salt is full of important minerals like calcium, magnesium, and zinc. It has good healing properties, tones the skin, and reduces redness and inflammation, drawing out toxins from the skin, which is very important in fighting acne and other skin conditions. Used in our salt and bar bars, it also gives the light lather a smooth lotion-y fee, rather than bubbles.
SALT SPA BAR is a soap that contains around 50% sea salt, resulting in a soap block full of the good minerals contained in seawater and a very lotion-like lather. Sea baths have been used for millennia as therapy to cure all sorts of ills. See our Puerto Rico Salt bar.
SHEA BUTTER is a thick butter obtained from the nuts of the African shea tree. It is a mainstay in soaps and cosmetics, providing deep moisturization, anti-aging and healing benefits to the skin, all while being very low on the comedogenic scale (doesn’t clog pores or cause pimples). The high level of cinnamic acid also gives shea butter a bit of natural sunscreen. We use a refined version, as raw shea butter can be allergenic to some people.
SODIUM CITRATE is the salt of citric acid (which is an organic acid that occurs naturally in plants and animals). Sodium Citrate helps to increase the shelf life of the oils in our soap, and is very helpful in reducing the amount of sticky soap scum that can be left behind when using real soap, especially if you have hard water. Your shower is left cleaner, as well as being very useful in shampoo bars, helping eliminate that sticky hair feel that so many complain about with shampoo bars. Sodium citrate is also really helpful in increasing lather, and we all like that! EWG rates it as low hazard: https://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ingredient/706027/SODIUM_CITRATE/#.WyBG1zNKhR4
SODIUM HYDROXIDE, otherwise known lye, is one of the two main ingredients to making soap. The chemical reaction of combining oil and lye together forms soap. There is zero lye left in a properly formulated soap. In fact, in order to make the soap extra gentle, we actually “super-fat” the soap by 8% or more (meaning there is 8% more oil than is needed to form soap). There is no such thing as a soap that was not originally manufactured without lye.
SPEARMINT ESSENTIAL OIL is extracted from the leave of the leafy spearmint herb. Gentler than peppermint, it is often used in aromatherapy to help ease fatigue, headaches, migraines, nervousness and even digestive problems. Ancient Egyptian, Greek and Roman physicians were said to have used it for centuries. It was mentioned by Pliny, the Roman herbalist, in 41 different potions, highlighting its potential as a restorative and for improving digestion. In modern times, both the essential oil and the herb itself are widely used as a cure for digestive discomforts like gas and indigestion, as well as for alleviating nausea, cramps and pain. Our Gorilla Soap Bar contains both Spearmint and Eucalyptus EOs.
SUGAR is added to soap to increase bubbles. We use raw brown sugar, powdered sugar, or honey, depending on the recipe. Sometimes yogurt or coconut cream will substitute for the sugar addition.
TAMANU OIL, sometimes called Beauty Leaf Oil, comes from the pressed & dried nuts of the tamanu tree, found in SE Asia and Madagascar. It makes a thick dark green and rich warm smelling oil, yet absorbs very easily into the skin. It has incredible skin benefits, is wonderful in leave-on creams and salves, and is recommended for acne and eczema, to heal wounds and burns, fade scars and stretch marks, and also as an anti-fungal, which can be useful in a soap! We add Tamanu Oil to our exfoliating coffee Rhino Soap Bar.
TANGERINE ESSENTIAL OIL, is a sweet, tangy, bright, happy scent, made from cold pressing the rind of tangerines, and can relieve anxiety, depression, and nervousness. It is antiseptic and antifungal, making it good for skin and scalp conditions. When applied topically as a massage oil, it may help fight cellulite. Tangerine EO gives our Orangutan Soap Bar its bright note!
TEA TREE ESSENTIAL OIL comes from the leaves of Melaleuca alternifolia, a small tree native to Australia, and has been used as a traditional medicine by Aborigines for centuries. It is a real workhorse because of its antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antiviral, anti-odor, and insecticide components. Tea tree can reduce inflammation and is effective at reducing acne, encouraging healing. As a purifier, it is often used to relieve for itchy scalp, nail fungus, athletes foot, lice and bacterial infections. We use a Tea Tree EO blend in our Migratory Bird Soap Bar.
TURMERIC, besides having great anti-inflammatory benefits as a food spice, it is known for its medicinal and healing benefits for the skin, due to the presence of an active ingredient called curcumin, as well its yellow color added to food and soap. When applied topically, turmeric can help heal acne scars and refine the complexion, speed up wound healing, and control psoriasis flares.
VINEGAR, both apple cider vinegar and white vinegar, have a myriad of uses for the skin and scalp. Vinegar helps restore the proper pH levels to your skin, is great at fighting dandruff and scalp irritations. Diluted in water, vinegar makes a healthy and detangling hair rinse.
YOGURT is a great ingredient for your skin. Besides adding moisture, yogurt contains lactic acid, a gentle alpha hydroxy acid, which helps unclog pores. In soap, yogurt also adds a creamy lather, and provides sugar, which in soap means more bubbles!
ZINC OXIDE protects against UVA and UVB light rays by forming protective layers atop the skin, scattering away from the harmful ultraviolet lights. It also protects skin by calming skin inflammation, helps soothe redness, decrease the size of pimples, and helps to dry out excess oil production. We add a touch of zinc oxide to our Polar Bear Soap for skin soothing purposes.