Aaaaand we’re back

I am so sorry for that extended interlude. Time just slips away, and that’s never a good thing, is it? But let me give you a brief catch up on where I am, and perhaps you will begin to understand why I disappeared for so long.

As I mentioned in my last post, all those weeks ago, I’ve started a business making soaps, candles and beauty products, and that’s where I’ve been spending most of my time lately. My very first show was a couple of weeks ago, at a local junior high.

Booth Set up

It was a really small show, and there weren’t a lot of people there, but it was nice exposure and a chance to try out a booth design to see if it will work for other bigger shows. We found that candles and wax items will be a challenge because of the heat (duh) but we’ve found a couple of ways to get around that. We also found that if people try our soaps, they are more likely to buy. We suspected that would be the case, and we went prepared. If you can see the water cooler at the back of the booth, that’s a very primitive sink type apparatus we set up to let people wash their hands. Two out of three people buy soap after they try it, so we’ll definitely be keeping the hand washing station!

Now, I’m getting ready for the shows I’ve signed up for in June and July. I’ve got soap curing, and a few more bar soaps planned to be made this week. I’ve also come up with a liquid soap recipe made entirely by me, and I am really excited about it!

Liquid Soap

I noticed a while back that most people prefer liquid soaps to bar soaps, particularly in the shower and bath. I tried using some of the liquid soap bases that can be purchased and then scented and tinted to your liking, but the one thing I always noticed was that they thinned out considerably in that process. Also, they are still commercial soaps; they contain all the chemicals and such that most people buying handmade soap want to avoid. So I started looking for a liquid soap recipe. Most of what I found, though, wasn’t really liquid soap. It was paste, or some strange concoction that really wouldn’t be fitting for sale. But I finally ran across a book in Half Price Books that described perfectly how to make true liquid soap. I made my first batch last week, and I have to say that I am extremely happy with the final product. It’s still much thinner than I would like it to be, but it is sooooooooooooo much better than anything you can buy in the stores. I used it for the first time in the shower today and here’s what I noticed …

  1. LOTS of lather! I used it for both a shampoo and a bath gel, and in both instances, there was a LOT of lather.
  2. A little goes a long way. Like I said, it’s still pretty thin, but I dribbled a few drops of the soap on to my wet scrubby and I didn’t have to add any soap to finish my shower.
  3. It rinses off clean. It doesn’t leave a film behind because it doesn’t have anything to give it the “slip” of a commercial soap. That gliding feeling you get from your shower gel is a chemical used to make your skin feel smooth in the shower.
  4. It’s really easy to dry off after the shower. I live in a humid climate (hello, Houston!) and there are times when I get out of the shower in the warm months and it just seems impossible to get dry, but with both my bar soap and the liquid soap I’m not having that problem. I think it goes back to fewer chemicals in the formula (see #3).
  5. My hair dried faster than it usually does. Full disclosure: I have long hair, so I cannot wash my hair and not use a conditioner. I’m going to formulate my own conditioner, but I haven’t gotten that far down the list yet, so today I used a commercial conditioner with my handcrafted soap. But my hair dried much faster than it does when I use commercial shampoos. I don’t use a blow dryer most of the time, so this is air drying in a very humid environment, and it can take all day for my hair to dry sometimes.
  6. My skin feels just as smooth using the liquid soap as it does when I bathe with the bar soap.

If you’ve been hesitating to try my soaps because you aren’t crazy about bar soaps, I think you’re going to love the liquid soap. I’ll be adding it to the website this week, so keep an eye out and get your order in early!