I guess it’s okay for me to spill the beans (albeit only partially) on what transpired this morning–I was in talks with a school to start holding soapmaking classes for its students on a regular basis! 😀
This is an absolutely thrilling development–I’m shaking in my chair as I type this! Not only was the chemistry teacher very receptive to the idea, but _other_ teachers who walked past our informal meeting asked if they could join the classes too. Given that the students are already familiar with their lab environment and some have already covered saponification as part of their regular curriculum, I reckon that they’ll have no trouble handling the lye, oils and the various equipment at all!
This has come about after several months of me plotting how would be the best way to offer cold process soapmaking classes without having to set up a facility from scratch. A school’s chemistry lab seemed like the perfect answer–it would have all its safety measures and protocols in place, plus all the necessary sinks and plug points and measuring equipment etc. Unfortunately schools are not permitted to offer any classes of this sort to the public so I’ll only be teaching the students registered there.
So today I met with two lovely teachers, both razor sharp and truly dedicated to their respective fields and to the school, and we discussed budgeting, scheduling and sourcing for handheld blenders and ingredients. Once my arrangements with them are finalised, I’ll let you know which school exactly I’ll be working with. 😉
Hurrah! I’m so thankful that my whacky idea was so warmly received. Now it’s time to make it work, and to put a little excitement into people’s lives. Wish me luck!
While on my usual rounds at the Section 17 market in PJ one morning last week, I spotted an old uncle selling what looked like blocks of pink coloured things from a small table. He instantly picked up on my interest, launching into a barrage of cantonese explaining what the stuff was. I guess he also noted my blank smile that belied the fact that I could barely understand him so he pulled out a leaflet written in english. :p
They were solid bars of salt, meant to be used in the shower. This was totally new to me so I was rather fascinated (albeit a little sceptical). After the sales pitch about it being great for solving all kinds of skin problems, I thought it was worth trying on myself to find out once and for all if all that stuff was true. BUT let it be known that I felt guilty about it supposedly being imported from Poland… the thought of all the carbon emissions from transporting what are practically rocks across vast distances… eep. :”>
Anyway, here’s the smaller, unpackaged chunk of “organic salt soap” that I bought:
This photo was taken after a week’s use. It’s hardly shrunk. It also struck me that the salt looked very similar to the kinds you find on those salt lamps that you put light bulbs in and that supposedly release ions to cleans the air around it etc. Anyway.
Interestingly enough, the eczema on the insides of my elbows which flared up in the heat, seems to have cleared with a day’s use of the salt soap. I also tried it on my face (as instructed by the old uncle), wetting the skin then applying some of the ‘soap’, leaving it on for about 3 minutes before washing everything off under the shower. While I did not notice anything remarkably different after using the salt, I did feel that my skin had a pleasant, healthy texture. It’s like having an isolated dip in the sea, isn’t it?
The only mistake I made was to think that I could rub the bar of salt *directly* onto my skin for a scrubby effect. DON’T DO IT. Not only did it scratch my skin, the salt stung like crazy. Ah, silly me. I should have known better!
So the verdict? It’s an interesting object to have in your bathroom, and for most Malaysians who don’t have bath tubs to use bath salts in, this could be a feasible alternative. I doubt it can completely replace normal soap as a cleansing item. Plus it’s Not something I would use for my hair – and overall I still prefer my soap with all their lovely essential oils and creamy lather! Yes yes, I’m biased…
But here you go – some additional reading on the net yielded these articles that expound the many benefits of salt for our health:
And just in case you’re curious as to what this particular uncle’s claims are on the efficacy of his “Organic Salt Soap”, here’s a reproduction of the contents of his flyer:
Imported from Poland
Contained of natural Organic Calcium and different types of minerals
Provides nutrition to your skin directly
Helt to increase metabolism, removes dead skin cell
Help to improve your skin healthy level
Function: Reduce inflammation, kill germs and bacteria
Smoothen and soften your skin if regularly use
Good for Itchy skin, sensitive skin, smelly feet, ring worm, white spots, black spots, dark skin, pimples, wound inflammation, scrap, crack heels, removes muscles pain, slowing down your aging process, reduces wrinkles, whitening skin.
This blog just got kick-started good and proper about a month back, and only a week ago did we pick this brand spanking new design to play with. I love the look of my home on the web! In the meantime, while we continue to tweak with the design, here are several links that you’d probably be interested in, but may not see on the website just yet. (I’m really sorry about this! :”>)
I’ll be setting up a little table at Educare Section 16 (where my son absolutely enjoys learning!) on May 31st to support the playschool’s “Earth Day Carnival”. It’s an even organised for the public, so EVERYONE is most welcome to join in the fun activities! Among other things, there will be carnival games, face painting, henna art, a recycling project, some earth-themed F&B and plenty of squirmy children going nuts over the hubbub!
On my part, I’ll be bringing a limited array of soap to be sold. More importantly though,Â is that I have to dream up of some hands-on activities for the kids and adults to do with my soap to inject a bit of a fun element to my stall. Hmm… any suggestions, apart from using cookie-cutters to stamp out soap shapes?
Please do come and support this event. If you have children, bring them along – I can testify that the teachers at Educare truly care about their wellbeings and love all their charges to bits. Oh, and if you have plenty of old newspaper and other recyclable items that need to be cleared from your home, drive them over to the Carnival too. Remember to provide your own shopping bags and food containers, or you can purchase “Green Earth” bags at the Carnival and funds collected from these sales will be channeled to WWF and UNICEF.
EDUCARE’S EARTH DAY CARNIVAL
Sunday, May 31st 2009
0800hrs – 1200hrs
Educare Child Development Centre,
42, Jalan 16/6,
43650 Petaling Jaya,
Get ready for this–probably the EASIEST thing you’ll be able to put together for your hair that will leave it with the kind of bounce and shine most commercially-produced haircare products boast of!
1 part apple cider vinegar or lemon juice, strained to remove pulp (I use 1/4 of a lemon for my short hair)
10 parts plain water
What to do:
Mix in a bowl
After washing and rinsing off the soap from your hair, use this solution in your hair and scalp, then rinse off thoroughly. If it gets onto your face, no worries – lemon juice is great for tampering oily skin!
Ta-da! All it takes is a little effort on your part and you’ll have an all-natural hair conditioner to use every day which, I’m sure, your hair will show it’s grateful for. I loved the results–let me know if you do too!
Important note: if you are photosensitive (i.e. sensitive to sunlight) or get sunburned very easily, try not to use lemon juice as the oil from its skin contains limonene, which is phototoxic when exposed to UV light from the sun.
What a fun weekend it was from the 7th till 10th of May, when I set up our first real flea market stall at Jaya 33! Thank you to everyone who took the time to browse through our selection of handmade soap, or stopped to chat. You are all lovely people.
Our top 3 best-selling soaps that weekend were the Goat’s Milk and Patchouli, Cocoa Butter and Just Lavender bars. We also had yet another lucky draw (this will be a regular feature in every flea market outing we do) and CHUA PAULINE was this week’s winner! Still waiting to hear from you, Pauline. 😉
I wish I had the presence of mind to take photos of the stall and my newly-found friends with my camera though. Argh! But nevermind, I promise there’ll be lots more flea market appearances in the future, so watch this space for announcements. I’ve been absolutely up to my eyeballs with minding the children and all sorts of other things of late – my apologies for letting this blog fall silent for quite a while.
(Update: Ah, here’s one shot I managed to coax out of my phone)
Again, it was a pleasure to have met so many of you at the bazaar and I look forward to crossing paths with you once again. I am also humbled that many of you commended The Kinder Soap Company on our principles regarding keeping our ingredients free from artificial additives, and how we are striving to adopt environmentally-friendly practices in our business. Your continued support and belief in what we stand for is priceless. 🙂