Natural handmade soaps are made using a variety of oils and butters, some being more traditional than others, such as olive and coconut oils or cocoa butter. The beauty of handmade soaps is that there are many other unique ingredients that are a gift from Mother Nature and may be added to a soap recipe to enhance its amazing skin benefits.
No matter your skin type, personal preference or need, there’s a natural soap just for you. In addition, almost all natural soaps are biodegradable and thus environmentally conscious, and they are also free of preservatives and toxic sulfates, such as SLS.
Let’s take a look at some unique ingredients and their wonderful properties.
Charcoal works by removing dirt, pollutants, bacteria and by attracting other micro-particles to the surface of the skin, enabling you to attain a flawless complexion. For that reason, charcoal is particularly beneficial when it comes to fighting acne. Charcoal cannot be metabolized, adsorbed or absorbed by the body. It basically acts as magnet and is wonderfully effective in purifying the skin.
See Charcoal & Anise Soap
Himalayan salt is prized for its high content of minerals, 84 in total. It is known to improve moisture, elasticity and softness; it may even reduce the appearance of fine lines and cellulite. Used in soap as a natural exfoliant it will draw out impurities while the warm water will help your pores absorb its incredible skin benefits. See Himalayan Salt soak, soap and bath bombs.
Clays have been used for hundreds of years for their wonderful skin benefits and there are a number of different clays that can also be added to natural handmade soaps to enhance their purpose. Clay is a star component when it comes to the absorption of oil and impurities. These are some of the most common clays used in soaps and their main qualities:
Bentonite clay: tightening, acne-clearing
French Green clay: exfoliating , pore-tightening.
Rhassoul clay: great for both skin and hair, with a high mineral content.
Kaolin Clay: white kaolin is very gentle and great for sensitive skin, yellow kaolin clay is slightly more absorbent and a good exfoliant and red kaolin clay is ideal for oily skin due to its more potent absorbing properties.
Fuller’s Earth Clay: ideal for oily skin, very absorbent. See Detoxifying + Clarifying Clay Mask
Seaweed is very versatile and is not only used in cuisine, but has many incredible properties that make it an excellent addition to our skin care routine. Seaweed is a natural anti-inflammatory, rich in minerals and in vitamins B-1, B-2, B-3, B-6 and B-12. Seaweed is also an effective exfoliant and a fantastic skin detoxifier. It is ideal for acne and rosacea prone skins, and is also added to natural shampoos for its scalp and hair strengthening properties. See Seaweed Oat Bran Soap
Coffee is best known as a stimulating beverage that helps millions of people wake up in the morning. But did you know that coffee also offers many valuable benefits for the skin? Coffee is fantastic at diminishing under-eye circles, reducing inflammation and redness, and for the reduction of cellulite. In addition, coffee is also a great skin exfoliator, has skin softening, brightening and tightening properties and is rich in antioxidants. How about that?
These are just a few of the wonderful unique and natural ingredients that can be found in handmade natural soaps. Next time you look for soap, be adventurous and try something different. You might discover your perfect match!