© 2019 by The Sussex Handmade Soap Company.

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OUR INGREDIENTS

All of ours soaps are made with a carefully selected blend of different oils and butters. These oils and butters have been chosen for the different qualities that they each bring to the recipe, resulting in what we like to hope is the perfect bar.

Once the base recipe has been mixed, each of our different varieties of soap has extra ingredients added, such as Beeswax, Clay, Honey, Essential Oils or natural colourants. These additions when mixed in, create the different colours, textures and scents that make up each of our soap bars.

We know that our customers like to know exactly what goes into their favourite bar, so we have listed our most common ingredients below, along with a brief description of what each addition brings to our bars.

Cocoa Butter

Cocoa Butter is a vegetable fat that we use in small quantities in our soap recipes. Cocoa butter is very hard at room temperature, with a waxy texture.

Cocoa Butter helps to give a firmness to the soap bars that we create. Because we do not use Palm Oil in any of our recipes (which adds hardness) we needed to find something to use in place of it. Although it is more expensive than Palm Oil, Cocoa Butter is kinder to the environment and does not have the same ethical questions over its use. It adds similar qualities to the finished bars as Palm Oil would and so this is why we use it.

Cocoa Butter does not produce much of a lather on its own, which is why we use it in small amounts. When combined with our other ingredients it forms part of a bar that is nice and firm but also lathers and cleans well.

Shea Butter

Shea Butter is made by cold pressing the seeds of the Karite tree. At room temperature it is softer than Cocoa Butter. 

Shea Butter is similar to Cocoa Butter in that when used alone, it does not contribute much in terms of creating a lather in soap. It is, however, great at conditioning the skin as well as adding a little hardness to the finished soap bars.

We use Shea Butter in fairly small amounts in each of our recipes (though we use more Shea Butter than Cocoa Butter) as you do not need a huge amount to enable you to feel its benefits.

We have chosen to use Shea Butter in our soaps as we believe the skin conditioning properties that it adds are fantastic. Being derived from trees means that is is suitable for both vegetarians and vegans alike.

Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil is one of the oils that we couldn't live without in our soap bars. At room temperature, Coconut Oil is very soft and will melt almost immediately upon contact with the skin.

Coconut Oil is incredibly cleansing, which is primarily why we use it in our soaps. It also adds a fantastic lather to all our bars and helps to add firmness too.

Because it is such a good cleanser, Coconut Oil can sometimes be drying to the skin. We combat this by not using too much in our recipes and by combining it with other oils and butters that are known to moisturise and keep skin soft.

We really love the bubbly lather that Coconut Oil adds to all of our bars. As the Coconut is not technically classed as a nut, people with nut allergies should be able to use products containing Coconut Oil - but it is always best to check this with a health professional first.

Olive Oil

Olive Oil is the oil that we use in the highest quantities in our soap bars. It really is the number one oil for us!

When used in soap making, Olive Oil adds many important qualities to the soap. It is an incredibly moisturising oil and helps to ensure that your skin feels soft and conditioned after using one of our soap bars.

Olive oil also adds firmness to our soap bars, ensuring that they won't be used up too quickly. It is an incredibly mild ingredient and can be used by almost everyone, including babies and those who suffer with sensitive skin.

Soaps made with Olive Oil do remain soft for a long time after making and if used to soon they can wash away quicker. For this reason, all of our soaps are cured for at least 4 weeks before we package them ready for selling. This ensures that you receive a perfectly cured, firm bar all ready to be used immediately.

Sweet Almond Oil

Sweet Almond Oil is a light oil that absorbs well when used in soap making. It helps to create a rich lather and is a very soothing oil.

Sweet Almond Oil is high in vitamins A, D and E, which are all beneficial to the skin and help to provide nourishment.

Sweet Almond Oil is fantastic at moisturising the skin, making it great for use on dry or flaky skin. It is reported to be good for skin conditions such as rashes, psoriasis and eczema.

Sweet Almond Oil does not produce a very hard bar of soap, but when combined with our other oils and butters it form an integral part of our bars.

Castor Oil

Castor Oil is a very thick, sticky oil and because of this it is the oil that we use the least of in our soap recipes. If we were to use too much it would result in a sticky soap, that would not feel good on the skin.

In the small amounts that we use it in, Castor Oil is great at adding a rich, creamy lather to our soaps and for helping our other oils and butters to lather well.

Castor Oil is a humectant, which means that it attracts moisture to the skin. This helps to ensure that our bars are as moisturising as they can possibly be, while also performing well as cleansers.

Beeswax

Not all of our soap bars contain Beeswax and when they do, this will be clearly labelled on the ingredients list. The addition of Beeswax does have the slight downside of meaning these specific bars are only vegetarian and not vegan.

We use Beeswax in some of our soaps in very small quantities - if we were to use too much it would result in a bar of soap that would not lather well. When used in these small quantities and combined with our other ingredients, Beeswax does not detrimentally affect the lather of our soap bars.

Beeswax adds a hardness to some of our soaps that would otherwise be fairly soft. This will ensure that your soap bar lasts a little longer than it may otherwise have done. 

Essential Oils

Essential Oils are used in almost all of our soaps to both enhance the scent of our soap and to add beneficial properties.

We use a variety of different essential oils and try to blend the different scents together to give the best, longest lasting result in our bars. Essential oils are classed as either top notes, medium notes or base notes and this defines how the scent will behave in the finished soap. For example, base notes tend to stick in the soap better than top notes do and for this reason we always try and add base notes into our blends.

Unlike fragrance oils, essential oils are natural ingredients and the essential oils we use are all 100% pure and distilled through the steam distillation method. This means that you can be sure that the scents in our soaps are from all natural ingredients and the beneficial properties of each essential oil will be incorporated into the soap bars.

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