Thursday, June 11, 2009

Lye Soap

I know every soaper has heard it and most have commented on it, but I'm going to add my two cents. So I was at a show and a lady walked up and asked me if I made my soap using lye. My response (of course) was "yes, all soap is made using lye, but through a chemical process all of the lye is reacted to form soap." She told me that she couldn't use soap with any lye in it. I tried to explain that there wasn't any lye left in my soap, and all soap was made using lye (again). She informed me that she knew for a fact that you could get soap made from glycerin instead of lye and this was a much gentler way to cleanse your skin. I can recognize a lost cause, so I let it go, but its still irritating.

You cannot mix oils and glycerin to get soap, although depending on the mix, you might have the beginnings of a very nice lotion. Glycerin is a by-product of saponification (or the soap making process), so guess what! All true soap has glycerin in it, its not added and its not used in the soap making process. Even the glycerin soap bases that people buy to melt and pour into molds were made using lye. There simply is no way around that! Oh well, at least I didn't have someone telling me that Ivory was the only thing that doesn't irritate their skin.

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