During a supermarket trip over a year ago, my partner and I looked at the many shaving soaps, creams and aerosols sold in the supermarket. Our conversation turned to the packaging used for many of these products. That sparked the idea that maybe we could make our own shaving soap. Luckily, the way to do this lay in a 1940’s recipe book. By making our own, the amount of chemicals absorbed through our skin has been reduced, we’ve reduced our waste/recycling and at the same time, saved money as the supermarket mark-up on some of these products is scary!
Then there’s the idea that the actual contents of commercial shaving products may contain chemicals and additives. Things like Phthalates are used in some cosmetic products to make them last longer, as plastic fillers, help the product feel smoother and often to help bind a fragrance. Some contain preservatives like Parabens and anti-bacterial compounds like Triclosan. For aerosol cans, what about the propellant? What about the energy used to create the can, the plastic nozzle, the propellant, transport the product to the supermarket and so on??
It’s so easy to make your own and uses common ingredients. I find the lather lasts longer on my face than the bought commercial supermarket products.
The final product:
How to make your own shaving soap / cream
- dissolve 1 cup of pure soap flakes in 1/2 a cup of boiling water. The soap flakes used to wash baby clothes would be ideal or choose a brand that says, “mild”, “gentle on skin”, “for delicate items”, “100% biodegradable”, “low irritant”, “no added chemicals” and the like. You may have to experiment a bit with the quantities for the particular brand of flakes used. If you can’t find flakes, consider making your own using a kitchen cheese grater on a bar of suitable soap. You could try an organic or natural soap.
- beat to a cream
- add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and stir
- mix in a drop or two of an essential oil such as lavender
Put it in a screw top jar and it’s ready to use. Easy!
I’m not a chemist so I can’t be sure that the soap isn’t doing any harm, but I can’t imagine it’s any worse than what goes into the commercial products. Note too, I have animal tested it (on myself) for over 12 months!!