Saturday, 14 July 2012

Glycerin Soaps: Why to use them?

 The base ingredient in our soaps is glycerin so we thought to bring some  information about this ingredient to help you to decide if using a glycerin soap - specialy a soap BAR - is the right thing for you!

Glycerin Properties:
Glycerin is a colorless, odorless and viscous organic compound.  It  is a neutral, sweet tasting substance, is a good solvent and absorbs moisture from the air, that is, it is hygroscopic in nature. Hence pure glycerin can cause a blister if placed on your tongue. However, it has a soothing effect on your skin when diluted with water and is also known to soften the skin.

Glycerin soaps are easily recognizable from other soaps because  they are translucent. When you buy a white glycerin soap you are actualy buying a transparent glycerin soap in which Titanium Dioxide was added to make it opaque or white.Glycerin is a humectant that helps the skin retain moisture. It is good for the skin because it attracts moisture and keeps the skin hydrated.  Glycerin soaps help remove dark spots, age spots, revive skin suppleness and nourish the skin to make it look radiant and flawless. When natural ingredients and essential oils are added to a glycerin soap it helps to relax, calm and provide aromatherapy benefits.

Anyone can benefit from using vegetable glycerin soap as a gentle and non-irritating way to clean the skin. From infants to people with sensitive skins or skin conditions (such as eczema and psoriasis), Glycerin soap is gentler on skin than most soaps out there, making it a good choice for people who have particularly dry or sensitive skin. 

Althougth it presents many benefits some people still might show some kind of allergy or intolerance to glycerin so it is advised to do an allergy test on the internal part of the elbow 24 hours before you start to use a product or descontinue the use of glycerin if reaction is suspected or noticed.

Soap bars and the environment

Liquid soap came up to the market from 1980 and people often ask which is better: bar or liquid soaps?

For the Bar...
The green website has an interesting argument about the enviromental advantages of using soap bar:
"From an environmental perspective, bar soap is usually the better buy. First, it requires much less packaging. There are no plastic containers and dispensers to fill up landfills.
Liquid soap containers add up to more than two million pounds of plastic trash each year. The paper and cardboard used in bar soap packaging are easily recycled."

When considering costs some people prefer bars because they last longer than liquid soaps.  It is estimated that one bar of soap can be used longer than a 12-once bottle of the liquid variety as people over-estimate just how much they really need to use of liquid soap.  Other important factor is the packaging. A bar of soap might cost less because it is cheaper to pack.

Other considerations:

Glycerin soap bar has its benefits but also has some drawbacks.
In america the Health departments across the country point out that a small amount of bacteria can live on bar soap and some people might be unsure about using a soap bar in public places.  Personaly, one must ask if there is a lot of difference when you have to put your hand FIRST on the PUMP of liquid soap where others have also been!
Other factorsto think about  are:
  •  Glycerin soap generally does not lather up as well as other soaps but still cleans the same. Less leather does not mean less cleaning but might mean less agression to your skin.
  •  It may dissolve if it is left in water or attracts too much moisture from the air.
  •  Although soap bars in general can be cheaper than liquid soaps the glycerin soap can be  more expensive than most other types of soap  when they are handcrafted and all natural ingredients, rather than synthetic detergents are added to the formulation making them significantly more expensive than those that are mass produced.  A handcrafted glycerin soap can be molded to shapes and make your bathroom or kitchen more attractive and cool. Why use a soap smelling of pear when you can use a soap that smells and LOOKs like a pear?
  • To keep glycerin bar soap from melting, it should be stored in a cool, dry place before use and on a soap dish that has holes for drainage.

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