I have a friend who has a special needs kiddo that needs a bar of soap that won't burn the eyes. She wants homemade since she is tired of all the chemicals. Do you guys (and gals) have any suggestions?
Syndet refers to synthetic detergent. J&J "no more tears" is my classic example. Below is their "improved" formula straight from their website.
No castile will not burn less - Pure castile soap will be less cleansing than say a soap high in coconut or babasu oil.
JOHNSON'S® Baby HEAD-TO-TOE® Wash
Improved formula. Hypoallergenic fragrance. Free of quaternium-15, parabens, and phthalates in addition to being soap-free and dye-free. Dermatologist- and pediatrician-tested. Allergy-tested. This NO MORE TEARS® Formula is as mild to the eyes and skin as pure water. It gently cleanses even sensitive infant skin without drying.
Ingredients: Water, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, PEG-80 Sorbitan Laurate, Sodium Trideceth Sulfate, PEG-150 Distearate, Glycerin, Polyquaternium-10, Tetrasodium EDTA, Citric Acid, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Benzoate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance
No, castile has a higher pH than other lye soaps, so it will burn in the eyes just as much as any other lye soap. Carolyn is correct -- a lye soap will not work for what you need. You need a syndet (synthetic detergent) formulation.
A lot of people say they don't want to use "chemicals" but that's unrealistic. Just because some chemicals have names that don't immediately sound "normal" or familiar doesn't mean they're bad -- and in this case you're going to have to consider these unfamiliar products, because lye soap is not the answer for this particular need.
I shared this information with her. I had to at least try to help her. I pretty much told her she will need to continue to use J&J for his hair and could use a handcrafted soap for the rest of his body. This made her happy, so win-win.