anabaptist · beauty · being a mom · justice · oppression · soaps

Bringing Justice with Bars of Soap

Want to know how to live healthier, fight oppression, seek justice, and get yourself clean?
I’ve mentioned to my husband for a few months how badly I wanted to make this blog entry.  Rob has this obsession of sorts with not using shampoos or soaps that have dangerous chemicals in them like Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate which are used in many bathroom products but are actually not safe at all, can cause cancer, irritation, hair loss, damages the scalp and skin in general, and more.  It is even in many toothpastes!  It is cheap, so it is put into much of what we use.  Most countries around the world refuse to use these chemicals!barsofsoap1

Although I wanted to be all, “Oh well for you! You’re going to continue using the shampoos I buy for you and the soaps too,” when Rob began his journey of not using them a year ago, I caved and said, “Oh okay.”  I went searching for organic products that didn’t have these chemicals.  It was harder than I thought.  I found out a lot of organic companies also use these chemicals.  Thankfully, we found our body wash: Refresh from Trader Joe’s which is easy for us to find and wasn’t too much money.  We both use it and it lasts us a long time and they don’t have traces of nasty chemicals.  The bottle is made with #2 plastic that is supposed to be more helpful and easier to recycle.  It is also not tested on animals.barsofsoap2

As for shampoo, I found this great baby shampoo in CVS that was created by a widow in Sierra Leone who started to create it from coco butter and such to create her own business.  I loved her story and bought it.  I was using if for a while (Rob still does) but it made my hair more oily as I don’t wash my hair every day as Rob usually does.  HOWEVER, next time I buy shampoo, they have a men’s one made with shea butter, avacado, and mango as well as a few for women (I’ll be getting the Superfruit Complex 10-in-1 Renewal System Shampoo).  The boys will soon be using the Mango and Carrot shampoo!  When you buy from this company, you are giving right back. Read all that this company helps out with.barsofsoap3

My semi-new fascination: bars of soap!  I used to use Irish Spring growing up and my mom was always using Dove bars to wash her face with.  I hated how the bars would get stuck or would slip around and make me fall or it would slide out of my hands, so I didn’t take the time to appreciate how long they last for!  I bought a couple bars of soap to use for washing hands for Rob from Trader Joes in the spring time (one still is unopened and pictured: the Lavendar one). The one we used lasted for about 6 months or more! I saw these soaps were safer, lasted longer, and saved me money.  I bought all these bars of soap shown here on sale for 40% off, mostly through Ten Thousand Villages (a Mennonite non-profit organization that sells artisan products and helps give jobs to the oppressed and poverty stricken). These bars last me about 4-6 months each. The ones shown here will last me a few years.  Simple as that.  I’d spend $1.50-$2.50 every month on liquid soap for our whole family to use and goodness it went so fast and adds up to costing me more than $20 per year. So yes, I have saved money even if these bars cost $5 each (pictured large bars are Mint, Neem, and Sandalwood) – though they had a soap sale when I bought them so I spent even less.  Since buying my Ten Thousand Villages soaps in September, I have only used one SMALL bar of soap and just opened my second small bar (shown on the soap tray – it was a 3 in one package that came in that cute bag all for $2.50).  1 bar lasted 3-4 months.  I love smelling these soaps. SO GOOD!!!  In buying these soaps from Ten Thousand Villages which are made in Tamil Nadu, India, you can help Palam Rural Centre Artisans break down their caste walls of poverty and give opportunity for jobs for those who live in slums.barsofsoap4

Have products you use that you want to share with me that I can possibly talk about here in the future? Let me know in a comment!

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4 thoughts on “Bringing Justice with Bars of Soap

  1. I’ve used Shea moisture. Loved it around here people make their own.soap,I can buy it at our farmers.market.:-) ALSO there’s a way to.make soap.with ash,I’m.planning on looking into.it this summer…

    1. That’s neat that you know people who make their own soap there. I have enough soap right now to last me another year, honestly, so currently I am not interested. That would be neat to make your own! If you do, I may look into wanting a bar come then. 🙂

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