We started out as Birthday Suit Essentials...what I thought was a very clever name. What more do you need for your birthday suit than soap and water? Water is usually plentiful around here. So, we just needed some soap. However, a company in Las Vegas filed a cease and desist order, and we had to change our name. They were concerned their customers might get confused. And while the names were similar, and they did have their name trademarked I didn't quite see the connection between a waxing salon in Nevada and handcrafted artisan soap in Texas. Oh, well. The only thing we can really count on is change. And so we did.
I am forever telling someone, "Here, smell this!" What I really mean is please smell this, and tell me you love it as much as I do. And, voila, we had our new name!
And while I love to make soap that is not only beautiful but also smells fantastic I realize that there are many people who are very sensitive to fragrance. For that very reason we also offer soaps without any added fragrance or color.
If you have a special request for an unscented product or one without a particular oil, or any other ingredient, please let us know. We would love to help you. Just remember though, we cannot make soap without lye.
By its very definition soap is a water soluble compound made by a reaction (called saponification) between caustic soda (sodium hydroxide, aka lye) or caustic potash (potassium hydroxide) with animal and/or vegetable fats. After saponification lye no longer has the same properties and is perfectly safe to use in soap.
Soap has surface active properties (think surfactants) to help suspend oil and dirt in the water for rinsing off. Most of the "soap" purchased at your local drug store or grocery store is actually detergent, made from petroleum-based products. Do you really want to sit or soak in that?
We have both vegan and paleo soaps, and both types are very luxurious. Plant oils and butters make a luscious soap, and soaps made with tallow or lard can be very soothing for many skin conditions. While we certainly don't advocate killing animals for their fat, why waste it if they've been raised for consumption?
Just remember that soap is a wash off product. Even with fragrance, the smell will not last long. And it's not any type of cure for any skin condition. It may soothe irritated skin, but it won't cure anything - it's not medicine. At the same time, it probably won't contribute additional irritation to a skin condition (unless an allergy is involved) because it lacks the extra chemicals commercial soaps (which are really detergents) contain.
Soaps with added essential oils may or may not be helpful because the oils are subject to the lye, just like the fats are. Fragrance oils are formulated to withstand the saponification process. But if you've ever used a particular soap which you are convinced helped your skin, who cares if it's all in your head or not? Keep using it if it makes you happy!
As soon as we've made enough soap to retire or win the big lottery, (either one is equally likely to happen) we'll be retiring to some tropical island...one without any flying spiders.