When you buy handmade natural soap or body products have you ever wondered what all those different oils and butters really do? What benefits do they have on your skin? What are their different properties? What is wrong with regular store bought soap? This guide will answer these questions and explain some of the oils and butters that you should actually be using daily for vibrant skin and hair.
The soaps sold in stores aren’t really soap. They are detergent bars. Detergent, as in, the harsh cleansing agent you use to wash your dishes or dirty laundry. These beauty bars, as they are sometimes called, over cleanse the skin, leaving it dry and abused which is why they are called “harsh”. The detergents used in these soaps clean away the dirt which is great but, they also strip away the natural oils that your skin needs to be moisturized and healthy. Stripping away your skins natural oils is what makes your skin dry, flaky and “ashy”. This harsh stripping could also heighten the effects of eczema, psoriasis and acne!
Handmade natural soaps are made with the proper balance of cleansing and moisturizing properties. A well made bar of handmade natural soap, should clean well, while also leaving your skin’s natural oils intact. Your natural oils, combined with the moisturizing oils in handmade soap help seal in moisture and soothe rather than irritate dry skin. After a few days of using handmade natural soap, you should start to notice a natural shine on your skin. This shine will come from the many natural oils used in handmade soap such as, olive oil, coconut oil, castor oil, shea butter, cocoa butter, avocado oil, and more!
What are the good Oils and Butters?
- Coconut oil is useful in formulations for dry, itchy, sensitive skin. It will not clog pores, and it absorbs readily into the skin. Coconut oil helps to make a hard bar of soap with fluffy lather. It is also used in some body care products such as lotion bars.
- Palm oil helps to make for a hard bar of soap when used with coconut and olive oils. It also helps the soap to saponify more quickly.
- Olive Oil is one of the best moisturizing oils available. It happens to be one of our favorites here at Adunni Organics. Olive oil is high in oleic acid and is a good skin cell regenerator. It attracts external moisture to the skin and still permits the skin to properly release sweat, shed dead skin and release sebum.
- Sweet almond oil is a great emollient for softening and conditioning the skin and hair. It is well suited for eczema, psoriasis and itchy, dry and inflamed skin. It is rich in essential fatty acids and vitamins A, B1, B2, B6 and E, and is an ingredient of our popular Almond Biscotti Bar Soap
- Jojoba oil is actually a liquid wax. Jojoba offers the traits of both an oil and a wax to make it an ideal ingredient within soap, cream, lotion, balm and massage oil formulations. It is highly penetrating and closely resembles the natural sebum within our skin.
- Shea Butter is my favorite butter because it does so much for the skin. It is an ideal treatment for dry or aging skin. Its high content of non-saponifiable fatty acids gives it the ability to moisturize and retain the elasticity of the skin. Shea butter also helps to protect the skin against the damaging effects of the sun while repairing cellular degeneration. We use it in many of our natural soaps, body butters, and hair products. Many people can’t stand it’s natural scent, so adding Essential Oils to it is a good way to get the best out of it. If you can’t go through the stress, then you could jut buy from us and have it delivered to your doorstep anywhere in Nigeria!
- Cocoa butter is a soothing emollient that has been used for centuries in Africa for skin care. It has been traditionally used to heal and moisturize skin that has been exposed to the elements. Cocoa butter helps reduce the formation of stretch marks during pregnancy by keeping the skin supple. It is a key component of our Coco Cocoa Body Butter
What ingredients should I avoid in choosing a body care product?
1. Surfactants- Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside, Coco Glucoside, Lauryl Glucoside, Decyl Glucoside- these are foaming agents used to make commercial soap lather. In handmade soaps, natural oils such as Coconut & Castor oil are used for bubbles and moisture.
2. Sulfates– Sodium Lauryl (Laureth) Sulfate (SLS), cocamidopropyl betaine (cocabetaine), diethanolalamine (DEA)- these are detergent based foaming agents, which have been shown to cause skin irritation.
3.Parabens-“At the concentrations used to preserve cosmetics and medicines, parabens may sensitize and cause topical contact dermatitis”-The FDA. An independent study also found when applied on the skin, methyl paraben can react with medium wave ultraviolet radiation and increase DNA damage and skin aging.” SOURCE
Suffering from dry, itchy, ashy skin? Now you should see why! In other words, most of the “soaps” sold in stores are junk and don’t belong on our skin or in our bath. Wouldn’t you just prefer all natural, oils and butters on your skin that you know are helping, rather than harming it?
The next time you purchase handmade natural soap or body products look out for the ingredients on the label. Your skin will thank you!