2022 is going to be an amazing year! I have created a list of artisan goals for myself.
High on my list is expanding my natural color options and fragrances. All of my soaps start as my all natural artisan soap. My bars can still be considered all natural if they only contain essential oils, dried herbs & flowers, natural exfoliates & additives like pumice, clay, avocado, coffee, poppy seeds etc. Once I add a fragrance instead of essential oil or a mica pigment the soap isn't considered all natural any longer.
Rest assured my fragrances and mica pigments are of the highest quality. I only use fragrances that are phthalate-free, paraben-free and approved for use in cosmetics. My mica comes from a dealer with a strong ethics statement and steady reputation. This is a place where ethics really matter. Mica mining can involve slave and child labor around the world. My supplier is committed to ensuring the mica in your soap was never involved in these horrid practices.
I split my creative process about 50/50 between the all natural and bright & bold bars. Soap is a necessary commodity, but also a deeply personal choice. I never really thought about what a personal choice my soap and other body care products was until I began making for others. I was surprised by myself and how much subconscious thought I put into my choice.
I work hard to keep that in mind while I create. I don't make for me, I make for you. I try to create a wide variety of soaps. Not just styles and colors, but ingredients too! We are all so different and what we need is different. Some bars have exfoliates, some have extra moisture, some calming oats, others smoothing and softening milks. After I vary the recipe to meet a specific need I play with the design. Both parts of the process are equally fun for me.
I enjoy building a recipe and creating it just as much as I do soap frosting. There is something deeply satisfying about writing a formula, creating it (aka experimenting) and then testing the results. It takes weeks to test recipes. By the time a recipe has hit the store shelves, it spent 4 weeks on the cure rack before testing. I am confident and careful that all my recipes are 1000% safe. I am ridiculously cautious about my calculations. I also do a ph test every batch, but it's honestly overkill. I am a safety first person!
This year that new natural goal will drive a lot of my experimenting. You'll all get to enjoy the fruits of those experiments! I have compiled a big list of naturals with reputable, ethical suppliers. Naturals like annatto seed, chlorophyll and blue cornmeal. I love the color you get from indigo but it stains! That's a firm no. None of my soap, even my brightest bars will stain.
Naturals will continue to branch out into my more intricate designs! Like my Cocoa Swirls Unicorn bars. These bars are an all natural bar in my most popular style. Even the glycerin horn is made from an all natural base. It's SLS/SLES free just like the rest of my soap. The color in the horn and the bar is achieved with organic cocoa powder.
This year carrot powered Unicorns will join the lineup! Carrot powder offers a wonderful way to introduce yellow/orange into your design. Bonus, carrots contain super high amounts of beta-carotene. We all know beta-carotene is good for you when taken as a supplement or achieved through a healthy diet. Did you know it's also good for your skin when applied topically? Soap is a great way to work in a little beta-carotene boost.
It's going to be an exciting year full of making!