February 14, 2012

How to Help Your Handmade Soap Last Looooonger

While it's probably safe to say many of the people that read this blog are other soapmakers or seasoned lovers of handmade soap, I hope that some of you are new to the lovely attributes of handmade soap-so with this in mind I would like to give you a few tips on care.

1. One of the best and most special qualities of handmade soap is "glycerin" a luxurious by-product of the chemical reaction that happens during the soapmaking process. Glycerin is "hygroscopic" meaning it attracts moisture from the air giving handmade soap it's wonderful humectant  quality that attracts and holds moisture to the skin. This also means that if handmade soap is left sitting in water it will begin to absorb water forming a gooey, icky mess that will then begin the degradation process of the soap.

2. Handmade soap is best stored out of standing water where it can air dry between each use. This would mean using a soap dish that allows water to drain out the bottom and even better if it holds your soap up off the very bottom of your dish where water may pool. Also, consider finding a place in the shower where your soap will not be directly in the line of spray- as in directly under the shower head in a caddy etc.

3. Another great tip to increase the life of your soap; use your soap in conjunction with a washcloth or a mesh shower pouf instead of using soap directly on your skin.

4. Use your soap to the very last bubble by collecting the odd bits and pieces and putting them in a soap saver pouch. Place your bits and pieces inside the pouch pulling the drawstring closed and use like a washcloth-when done; hang your soap saver pouch to allow it to dry thoroughly until the next use. Soap savers allow you to use the last remnants of soap and exfoliate at the same time. Multitasking in the shower-I love it.

5. Store your soap in a cool dry place such as a drawer or linen closet-not under the sink where it may attract moisture from condensation etc. Ventilation is very important to properly storing handmade soap-non ventilated storage may result in a "weepy" or rancid soap bar. Always keep handmade soaps stored out of direct sunlight; direct sunlight is not a friend of handmade soap.Storage life varies depending on the formulation of handmade soap.

A good soap dish should allow a way for water to drain out the bottom.

Notice how this soap is not sitting in a puddle-the curvature of this dish prevents the soap from ever sitting in water.


twobloomsdesignstudio said...

Lovely tips and ones I use myself. I like the soap holder too.


Tierra Verde Handmade Soap said...

Hi Michelle,glad you stopped by. I love your new lemongrass soap btw.

dyllis said...

Love the soap dish!! Where did you get it from?
Featured that lovely photo on my blog!

Tierra Verde Handmade Soap said...

@dyllis,Hi and welcome,glad you stopped by. I got this soap dish at http://www.soapanetta.com. They have several styles to choose from. Thanks so much, for the feature-always appreciated.Thanks again!