Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Organic Soap?

I had a request from a spa to make some organic soaps for them.
Now we do make a 100% natural soap. Made with the finest oils and botanicals that can be found.
So I made a quick order from my suppliers for everything I needed to make my first batch of 100% Organic Soap. There was one problem! Finding an organic
sodium hydroxide, better known as Lye, seems that Lye can not be organic, even if organic wood ash was used in making it. Now I did do some reseach about labeling soap organic.

Being a soap making, I am always looking at other soap maker's products.
I was amazed at how many "Organic" soaps that are being sold.
The FDA does not oversee the labeling of soap.
If a soap does not make a claim such as "moisterizing, healing, or "contains vitamins" then it is not consider a cosmetic.
Now there are some organic police, that have come up with recommendations on what soap can be called "Organic", such as if the soap has at lease 70% organic ingredients, it can be label as organic.
Plain and simple, there is no such thing as 100% organic soap, since soap is made by a process known as saponification. When oils are hydrolyzed by the addition of an alkali, yielding soap, glycerin, water and other by products. Glycerin is not organic, lye is not organic.
So Eros Soaps will not be labeling our soaps as Organic, since it contains glycerin, a by product of saponification of oils and an alkali.
Sure we could call it organic like a lot of handmade soapers do, but we don't jump on bandwagons to try and make a buck. We take pride in our soaps!
I am glad that I was asked to make 100% organic soap, other wise we might have been like "those other soapmakers" It's nice to be green and all, but not going to try and pull the wool over anyone's eyes. We do make an "All natural" soap. Guess I will have to use all those organic oils in a salad!

1 comment:

  1. to get an organic certification for your soap in Europe, it only has to have 50% organic ingredients - this is, because the fact that lye & water aren't organic and because the saponification process creates something that isn't organic. What can be done though is stating that this soap is made with organic oils and essential oils. The problem is, that the Health Food Shops in Germany will from 2011 onwards only sell soaps that have been certified organic or natural. This is a pain in the neck as this means quite a lot of expense for the soaper.