Choosing your body soap, a basic hygiene product, can easily become a real headache when faced with the wide variety of body hygiene and cosmetic products available on the market today. The first dilemma you may face is choosing between a solid soap or a liquid shower gel. Apart from their obvious difference in form, these two products have notable differences in manufacturing processes, skin benefits, costs and environmental impact.
Long relegated to the background in favor of liquid shower gel, solid soap has been making a comeback in recent years. So why should you follow the trend and switch to solid body soap?
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Why use solid soap?
Long neglected in favor of shower gels and other creams, bars of soap are once again making headlines in beauty trends. For Shirin von Wulffen, co-founder of the Provençal brand Bastide, this renewed love is not surprising: ” consumers increasingly want simplicity, well-made products and natural ingredients that reassure . Handmade soaps tick all of these boxes. » All these boxes and many more: in this period of ecological awakening, solid soaps have the advantage of requiring little (or no) packaging and therefore fit perfectly into a beauty routine. eco-responsible . Bar soap is also an ally of choice for taking care of yourself: “ In our lives at 100 an hour, soaping up allows you to have a moment just for yourself. It’s a ritual that soothes and does good not only for the body but also for the mind ,” explains Shirin von Wulffen.
Solid body soap- An ecological product
Harmless to the environment, due to their completely natural composition, bar soaps are the perfect choice for zero waste enthusiasts. Indeed, very little waste is produced during the manufacturing process and no packaging is necessary for their marketing. They are sometimes served in bulk, cut up or at most wrapped in a small packaging made of biodegradable and entirely ecological paper.
This is not the case with liquid soap, which is most often presented in plastic bottles. Just one of these bottles requires about 9 liters of water and 200 ml of petroleum to make. In France each year, 186 million bottles of shower gel alone are sold. Including shampoos and shower baths, the French Environment and Energy Management Agency (ADEME) estimates that they generate around 16,000 tonnes of packaging per year.
Only 40% of this packaging will be recycled, and even then it may only be recycled two or three times before going to incineration. Similarly, a study by the Institute of Environmental Engineering in 2009 proved that liquid soaps have a 25% greater carbon footprint than solid soaps and that it takes about 7 times more carbon emissions and waste. energy to produce them. The ecological cost here is very significant for our already very damaged planet.
Solid soap benefits- moisturizes, softens, protects and cleanses the skin
During saponification, a chemical reaction that leads to the manufacture of solid soap, glycerin is naturally produced. This chemical compound, known as a moisturizing agent , works not only by preventing the water in your skin from evaporating, but also by attracting water from the surrounding air to the skin. Thus, when you use a solid soap your skin is covered with a layer of glycerin which softens and hydrates it.
In addition, the latter, thanks to the fatty film left on the skin, reinforces the cutaneous hydrolipidic film and consequently plays a protective role of the cutaneous coating. The water droplets that form on your skin after a shower with soap prove the presence of this protective layer. Solid soap also has washing properties far superior to shower gel since the latter is far too diluted with water and contains fewer surfactants.
4 benefits of Solid soap you need to know
Solid soaps are sometimes accused of tugging and abusing sensitive skin. However, this is giving them a bad reputation, because they are actually very sweet and rich in glycerin. They gently moisturize your skin, soften it and protect it. Some soaps have existed for several decades (donkey’s milk soap, Marseille soap, Aleppo soap, etc.), their benefits no longer need to be proven.
As with liquid soaps, you must choose a solid soap adapted to the needs of your skin and favor quality.
The high price of solid soaps (sometimes 5 to 9 $ for 100 g) is justified most of the time by the nature of the ingredients and the handmade production. However, if they seem more expensive to buy, they are almost three times cheaper to use!
A solid soap is very practical when you travel: it lasts longer, it takes up less space in the suitcases and above all, if you only take hand luggage, you will no longer have problems with the quantity of liquid you can carry: no more shopping for expensive miniatures. In addition, with a solid soap, you will no longer have the unpleasant surprise of the bottle that has leaked into your toiletry bag.
You can take your solid soap everywhere with you: dry it easily by putting it in a net attached to your bag or slipping it into a terry cloth pouch directly in your luggage.
Even if the plastic bottles of shower gels are recyclable (provided they are put in the right bin), they require a lot of resources to produce.
One of the advantages of solid soap is that it produces (almost) no waste! You can buy them in a simple cardboard packaging or in bulk in some stores. Be careful when choosing soaps packaged in plastic: does the company really have an approach that respects the environment? Are the ingredients used healthy?
In addition, the manufacturing process of 100% natural solid soaps is environmentally friendly, especially if it involves cold saponification. The environmental impact of transporting solid soaps is also reduced, because they are lighter and take up less space in a truck, so you can transport more during a trip and limit the number of round trips.
By choosing solid soaps produced locally, you will further reduce your carbon footprint and favor often ethical and committed companies that highlight traditional know-how.
Why Solid soaps are better composition
Solid soaps are made with the process of cold saponification, a reaction that occurs after mixing vegetable oil or animal fat with a strong base, in particular soda. This reaction occurs without the intervention of heat, and the properties of the vegetable oil used remain intact. These virtues will then be reflected in the effects of the soap thus obtained.
Each vegetable oil contains its own active ingredients. For example, shea butter softens and nourishes sensitive skin. Rapeseed oil has revitalizing and emollient properties. Sweet almond oil, on the other hand, hydrates and soothes the skin. You can also turn to a natural and organic Marseille soap with olive oil, which is an antioxidant and anti-aging.
The raw materials used here are very important. If they are natural, they will give an organic soap, perfectly harmless for the organism. Your skin can only thank you for it. In addition, bars of soap can be produced in an artisanal way, by hand, without any chemical or industrial transformation being implemented.
On the contrary, the manufacture of shower gel requires chemicals such as hydrocarbon derivatives, parabens, synthetic fragrances and dyes as well as Triclosan, an antibacterial agent. It is far from being an organic product and above all it is closer to a detergent. It is worth remembering that these different chemicals can be irritating to the skin, cause allergies and sometimes act as endocrine disruptors.
Solid soap vs liquid soap- A healthier composition
Just compare the composition of solid and liquid soaps to realize that there are many more ingredients in bottled soaps. The main substance is often water, present in large quantities, but these liquid soaps also contain potentially dangerous products for health and the environment, preservatives and parabens.
Solid soaps generally contain natural ingredients and traditional recipes do not require preservatives, as soaps are more stable. However, you have to be careful when buying solid soap. Choose organic soaps whose composition is clear. Avoid products containing palm oil and animal fats which clog the pores of the skin and suffocate the epidermis.
Yes, manufacturers also manufacture solid soaps and they use the same harmful ingredients as in liquid shampoos: sulfates, dyes and synthetic fragrances. They regularly replace vegetable oils with beef fat (sodium tallowate), which is much cheaper. In addition, they recover the glycerin produced during the saponification process to resell it to the cosmetics industry, while it is very beneficial for the skin in solid soaps.
How to choose the right soap?
As with many cosmetic products, there is soap and soap, and not all are created equal. It is therefore important to find out about the method of making the breads as well as their origin before being seduced.
At Bastide, soaps are made in Provence by a master soap maker with key local ingredients such as olive oil, sunflower oil and rosemary. Clémence et Vivien, another French brand, manufactures 100% natural soaps, cold saponified and handcrafted in New Aquitaine. As for Enfance Paris, which offers natural cosmetics for young and old, the brand relies on soaps with impeccable formulas, without preservatives, mineral oil, silicones and other controversial ingredients.
How to use solid soap?
Soaping up well takes time, but this ancestral gesture is not difficult to master. To enjoy all the benefits of your soap, start by wetting your skin. Then take a small amount of product in the palm of your hand and gently wash your body in circular motions. By rubbing the soap, you will create foam and release the cleaning agents naturally present in the bar. After scrubbing for a few minutes, rinse off. If you have chosen your soap well, you should not feel the immediate need to apply cream, the oils it contains should be sufficient to moisturize the skin.
How to properly store your solid soap?
When treated with care, bar soap is a very economical product that can provide its benefits over a period of two to three months. To ensure maximum longevity for your soap bar, it is important to dry it in the open air, on a soap dish that allows water to flow freely, and to keep it in a dry place . ventilated between each use. Small tip: if the soap has become pasty due to humidity, just let it dry quietly for a few days so that it regains its original consistency.
My name is William Lais, I am the chief editor of Rasoirelectric.com. My aim with this site is to help you to get the best shaving products & also help you to know the proper use of shaving and Beauty products…
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