8 Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Organic Soap Bars
8 Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Organic Soap Bars
We all love our morning cleaning ritual. But are we cleaning the right way? Everyone has their own routine but we wanted to give you some tips on how to get the most out of your organic soap bars.
1. Wash Your Face with Lukewarm Water
Who doesn’t love a hot shower in the morning?! We all do! But that hot water might not be the best temperature for washing your face. While it may be convenient, washing your face in water that is too hot may contribute to dry skin. But, washing your face in water that is too cold may cause excessive redness and irritation, particularly if you have sensitive skin. We recommend washing your face with lukewarm water and your favorite organic soap bar prior to hopping in the shower.
"I didn't know I could use soap bar soap on my face." Was that your first thought? Yes, you can! In fact, soap from your organic soap bar may be better for you than the cleanser you are currently using. Organic soaps are gentle on your skin and do not contain any harsh chemicals that can cause imbalances in your skin like over drying and promoting excess oil production as a result. Choosing a truly natural plant-based soap to clean your face can promote the balance of your skin's natural functions.
2. Use Soft Water
Most people know what hard water wreaks havoc on your hair, but do you know it impacts your skin as well? Hard water has a high mineral content that creates a film that prevents moisture from entering both the skin and hair. The result is dry, dull, fly away hair and dry skin. In contrast, soft water has de-ionized sodium in it and is better for plumbing, cooking, and cleaning.
Soap is less effective in very hard water because it reacts with the excess minerals to form calcium and magnesium deposits. These are not easily soluble in water and can result in soap film. Washing in soft water will have a different result because it leaves fewer deposits. One way around this is to use plant based soaps. plant based oils contains no animal fats and lather up even in the hardest water.
If you think your water is too hard a simple and inexpensive solution is the add a filter to your shower head. We use one at home and it has made a huge difference for us. If you are so inclined, try the AquaBliss Shower Filter water softener is a good option to soften the water and improve your skin.
3. Only Use Essential Oils, Stay Away From Synthetic Fragrances
Colorful, fun, great smelling soaps might make your bathroom smell great, but they are often full of synthetic fragrances which may be irritating your skin. Did you know that companies are not required to disclose the ingredients they use to create their fragrances? A "fragrance" is considered proprietary information so you never know what they are made from. But we do know that there are potentially thousands of chemicals and combinations of chemicals that are used to create artificial aromas and that "[f]ragrance mixes have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system."
Usually when someone complains about a soap making their skin dry or itchy, particularly if it is a "naturally made" soap, it is usually the fragrance that is the issue, not the actual soap. So help yourself when you are choosing your soap and use only organic soaps that are made with truly natural essential oils so that the soap's true essence can give you the greatest benefits.
4. Use a Soap Dish that Drains
We love our Eco-Friendly Soap Lifts because they drain the water from the soap. This extends the life of the soap and reduces the possibility of bacteria build up created by standing water around the dish. The great thing about the soap lift is that you can use it inside of your favorite decorative soap dish, or as a stand-alone option next to your sink or bath, or in the shower. Other options are wire soap dishes or any holder that drains the water.
5. Wash Your Eco-bag, Loofah, or Wash Cloth Regularly
We love using Natural Cotton Soap Bags as they help extend the life of your soap, make great lather and are machine washable. To make sure you are getting the most out of your soap, it is a good practice to wash your eco-bag, loofah, or washcloth on a regular basis to make sure what you are cleaning your skin with is clean itself. Eco-bags are also large enough to hold most soaps and you can collect all those end pieces of your favorite organic soap bars and enjoy them until their very end.
6. Exfoliate Once a Week
To properly exfoliate, give your skin a gentle scrub every now and then, but not necessarily every day. Your skin regenerates once a month so being overly aggressive with daily exfoliation can damage the fresh skin and may irritate it further. We recommend exfoliating once a week with a natural bristle brush, loofah or sponge, rather than a commercial exfoliating wash or scrub.
To learn more about how exfoliating can improve your health, read The Other Detox.
7. Dab Dry, Do Not Rub!
I know, I know, this concept can sound comical rather than necessary. However, dermatologists do recommend patting your skin dry. If you have sensitive or irritated skin, dragging a towel over your skin may contribute to further irritation or redness. Plus, you have already exfoliated so no need to double down!
8. Moisturize Immediately After Showering
Moisturizing your skin immediately after showering or bathing is optimal as your skin absorbs better when your skin is nice and warm. You are also replacing any moisture that is lost from being in hot water. We recommend Organic Body Balm, Organic Body Butter, or a non-toxic Luxury Lotion for optimal moisturizing and healing.
One great tip to get the most out of moisturizing is to look for products that contain pure, raw, organic shea butter. Most shea butter on the market has been processed to the point that it no longer contains the nutrients you are looking for. Added emulsifiers, synthetic preservatives and who knows what other petroleum-based byproduct to shea nuts not only dilute the real percentage of shea in those products, but interact with the organic chemistry of this natural wonder in unknown ways. Raw shea butter is as close to picking the nut and putting it in your own blender as you can get. Stay close to nature and pay attention to your ingredient lists! To learn more about how shea butter helps your skin, read Benefits of Shea Butter.
You may already follow most of these tips, but if you don't, try incorporating one or two and see what happens. Changing a routine starts first in your shopping basket and then with little intentional steps of love, but if it makes for healthier skin it is worth it!
Hoping your skin is happy,
Kristine Sperling is a wellness enthusiast and co-founder of Makes 3 Organics, an organic brand dedicated to providing consumers organic alternatives to conventional personal care products. She lives in Santa Barbara, California, with her co-founder husband, Dan, their now teenager, Alice, and their blue Shih Tzu, King.