Are you subconsciously limiting your options when it comes to skincare? This may help you wade through the possibilities awaiting you!
Hello folks, and happy new year!
We are spending the first few days of 2017 looking ahead to what wonderful offerings we can whip up for our spring line of products!
While we are looking forward to a brand-new, sparkly new year filled with promise, we are also looking back at our journey in the soap world and taking stock of some of the lessons we’ve learned thus far. And, our minds stop on the age old question: are goat’s milk soaps really the end-all, be-all of the soaping world?
The answer, I’m afraid, is not quite as cut and dried as anyone would think. So, I’ll start with a generalization: goat’s milk soaps are good. In fact, I would venture that ANY properly-made handcrafted soap product, regardless of whether or not it contains goat’s milk, will out-perform commercial versions by their very nature. No detergents? Gentler on your skin.
Die Hard—and I don’t mean Bruce Willis, either…
It is true—there are those folks who fall into the category of die-hard goat’s milk lovers. They drink it, they bathe with it, they use it in their creams and lotions. In favor of goat’s milk, it is a very gentle choice for a soap component and can, indeed, be used on babies’ skin. It is generally, but not always, found in more rustic-type soaps, sometimes mixed with ingredients such as oatmeal, honey, chamomile, and lavender.
Are you getting hungry yet?
Now, to complicate matters: while good for your skin, goat’s milk products may not always be the optimal choice for your skin type and needs.
I am a prime example.
First of all, I find that goat’s milk soaps tend to leave my skin feeling a bit tacky when I use them—even with a thorough rinsing. Secondly, I do not like the smell of plain goat’s milk soaps, as to my nose, they have a faint scent of spoiled milk, unless masked with a stronger essential or fragrance oil. And, finally, I find other soaps to meet my skin’s needs much better. I am an “over fifty” woman whose skin is one of the most sensitive types known to mankind and that is additionally affected by the hormonal changes of menopause. There—I’ve said it —I am…sigh…middle-aged.
So, through years of trial and error, testing and re-testing, I have discovered that, for my skin type, olive oil and aloe vera are my optimal ingredients. Sea water—or what I can closely approximate in my studio (without all the fish poop and other unsavory ingredients), apple cider vinegar, and floral hydrosols also hold places of high esteem in my soapmaking must-haves. For the oil portion of my formulations and in addition to the olive oil staple, I prefer ingredients like mango butter, shea butter, argan oil, coconut oil, and moringa oil. Colloidal oatmeal? Heck yes! Honey, lavender, tea tree, cedar? Yes, yes, YES! Laurel berry oil? Black seed and tamanu oils? Absolutely! You see, as I have matured in my soapmaking experience and abilities, I have discovered a growing number of ingredients that are both skin-loving and texturally wonderful when included in soap. For example, olive oil, when properly cured in a soap, gives a firm bar with a “soft” texture. Butters like shea and mango lend a silky feel. Laurel berry oil, in turn, impart a smoky-green fragrance if left unscented, while coconut oil, when properly formulated, add bountiful bubbles to the mix.
The bottom line of it all?
To bring this information full-circle, I would offer one piece of advice: Don’t allow yourself to be frightened into using only one small segment of the products that are available to you. It is possible that you just may find products outside of the goat’s milk world that add innumerable benefits to your skincare regimen. Venture out–try something new. Who knows—you just may find another weapon (or two…or three…) to add to your arsenal of health and beauty secrets!