Featuring Amazing and Thoroughly Addictive Things
Okay, I’ll confess: I am completely and hopelessly addicted to handmade soap.? I was hooked since day one, when I took a chance and ordered some off Etsy.? Handmade soaps are nothing like what you buy at your local Big Box.? In fact, have you walked down the soap aisle recently?? Chances are not, because many stores don’t even have one anymore.? They have a “beauty bar” aisle, because the major brands are technically not soap.? They have to call their products “beauty bars” or “deodorant bars” or some other wannabe name.? And you probably didn’t even notice.
But handmade soap is the real deal, baby.? What’s the difference, you ask?? The same difference as between the chocolate bars your neighbor’s kids sell door to door and the Godiva you secretly hoard for when no one else is home.? Yeah, that good.? They are a creamy, luscious soothing experience that will make you never turn back.? Add the fact that many soap sellers make their creations look and smell like decadent desserts, it is a treat for all your senses.
Now handmade soap is a little more expensive than the wannabes.? You can expect to pay about $1 an ounce, so an average 4 oz. size bar of soap might run $4.? I’ll admit my frooogle side was a little put off before I tried it.? But now that I have, I realize that it takes the place not just of ordinary bar soap, but of all the expensive “sensitive skin” face washes and creams and bottles of lotion I used to go through.? In that light, it’s quite a bargain.? Plus my skin feels way better than it did when I had to use all that stuff.
Some of my favorites:
Magic Hands is my all-time go to girl.? One of the first soapers I discovered on Etsy, she got me completely hooked.? Her bars are thick, generous slabs of goodness, and she always includes a healthy sample in the box.? (I took her last sample with me to work and the darn thing lasted nearly 5 months.)? For everyday use, Magic has wonderful, energizing morning shower varieties like her Pink Grapefruit Salt Bar and Valencia Shea Butter soap.? I’ve also gotten completely addicted to her Zen Tea scent, which is a lovely earthy unisex variety.? But if you’re going for the Friday night candlelit bath experience, Turkish Mocha is the motherload.? Your skin will feel unbelievable after using it, but it will make you seriously crave chocolate — so plan accordingly.
Savor’s soaps are the equivalent of the dessert tray at a five star restaurant.? A cut above in terms of style, presentation and packaging, they are pampering and exquisite and divine.? You’ll be able to find those unusual scents that you adore, like vanilla cardamom and anise.? Now I’m convinced that there are two types of people in this world — those who love anise, and those who don’t.? And those of us who know they are in the right on this one are smart enough to not bring it up in mixed company.? But if you are an anise lover, the Little Black Dress soap is to. die. for.? Savor’s shop includes an amazing selection of soaps and scrubs and lotions, all with beautiful packaging, so they are perfect for giving as gifts to your best of friends.? Just remember to order extra, because I guarantee you can’t let them all go.
Arcadia Aromatics is where I buy my charcoal soap, a wondrous bar that has completely replaced every face product I have ever used.? I have that crazy winter skin that is simultaneously sensitive, acne-prone, and painfully dry.? Charcoal soap, with its natural purifying properties*, has been the best product ever, bar none.**? Arcadia’s Egyptian Sassafras and Charcoal Handmade Coconut Milk Soap is amazing, not to mention incredibly inexpensive.? It has a wonderfully light, clean scent, and at $5 for a massive 6 oz. bar, it is a huge bargain that will last for months.? The Cinnamon Spice and Vanilla Bean soaps are also seriously incredible.
Concord Soap is my new local favorite.? Her Red Clover Tea soap is amazing, but impossible to describe.? One of those “just trust me; you’ll love it” sort of things. But seriously, trust me — you’ll love it!? Last time I used it someone blurted out “You smell GOOD” as I walked by.? Yeah, it’s like that.
with love and eco-goodness,
* don’t ask me to explain — I truly have no idea.? But it WORKS, and they’ll have to pry it from my cold, dead hands to make me ever switch back.
* bad pun: +2 points