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How popular are your salt soaps?

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KiwiMoose

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I have made two batches of salt soap in the past, the first one was in the early days which I gave away, and the second one was last year. It just would not sell! It was Pink Grapefruit fragrance, and it was coloured pink and I wonder if both of those contributed to the lack of interest. Over time of course, the grapefruit (EO) scent faded which made it even worse. The recipe was 75% CO and some soft oils, with a 15% superfat.
I am thinking of revisiting the idea and marketing it more towards men, using Caribbean Teakwood FO, changing the colour to blue and green ITP swirl, perhaps lowering the superfat to 10%, and selling it as a 'cleansing soap'. Maybe call it 'Dirty Men'or something? Any thoughts and advice would be appreciated. What do you like about your salt soap? (I'm talking fine ground sea salt here - not brine or soleseife soap).
 

KimW

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"Dirty Men Soap" gave me quite the chuckle. I love it. As to your question, I don't mind them, and I like what I'd describe as an unusual lather, however I am one who feels the faint scratchiness and I'm not a fan. I've never had complaints, but just about everyone makes a comment like, "What's wrong with this soap?" the first time they see a salt bar. I only give away soap and I've never had anyone ask me for more of the salt bars. All to say, perhaps you're onto something with marketing to a different demog. I can imagine that men might not mind, or perhaps not even notice (?), scratchiness from a salt bar and they might more appreciate the look of the bars. Also, I wonder if you could draw your customer's attention to the salt bars with an easily readable explanation of why they look different? Not making any claims, mind you, just a short "These look different because salt has been added to them", etc.
 

Mobjack Bay

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I like the lather of salt bars, which is prolific, but that’s not enough to drive me to the salt bar in my shower. I tend to reach for the bars that make a silky, bubbly lather that has a little slip to it.
 

Guspuppy

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My 90% CO, 10% castor, 50% canning salt salt bars just feel super luxurious when I use them. The lather is nice but the lather in all my soaps is nice. I can't quite describe just WHY it feels different. But it does! It's my favorite bar and I'm using one right now that I almost can't stand the FO in, (too much like an overly sweet perfume, I'm hoping my brother's MIL will like it!) but the feel is so luxurious I can't not use it!
 

runnerchicki

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I like the lather and the way my skin feels after using salt soaps. I don't sell, but I give away a lot of them. They are GREAT shaving soaps and that is what I mainly use mine for (legs, underarms).

I use 70% coconut oil, 20% almond oil, 10% castor,
Salt @ 35-50% of oil weight, and a 15% superfat.

I thought I'd throw this out there - recently I had a fragrance oil accelerate my batch so quickly that I couldn't get the salt stirred in. I managed to get half of the unsalted batter in the mold before it was too hard to do anything with. That soap is fantastic! The lather is so luxurious. So ... I wonder if it's the lather that is what I love so much more so than the salt. 🤷‍♀️
 

KiwiMoose

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I like the lather and the way my skin feels after using salt soaps. I don't sell, but I give away a lot of them. They are GREAT shaving soaps and that is what I mainly use mine for (legs, underarms).

I use 70% coconut oil, 20% almond oil, 10% castor,
Salt @ 35-50% of oil weight, and a 15% superfat.

I thought I'd throw this out there - recently I had a fragrance oil accelerate my batch so quickly that I couldn't get the salt stirred in. I managed to get half of the unsalted batter in the mold before it was too hard to do anything with. That soap is fantastic! The lather is so luxurious. So ... I wonder if it's the lather that is what I love so much more so than the salt. 🤷‍♀️
Makes you wonder if it's just the high CO that's doing that, rather than the salt.
 

cerelife

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Salt bars aren't great sellers for me, but I do have a niche group of customers who love them. Same with Castile soap.
What I have noticed is that customers are more drawn to salt soaps with scents that go with a 'salty' or 'beach' theme. I usually sell out of Margarita salt bars (WSP Margarita Lime) and Beach Bunny salt bars (Peak Beach Daisies FO). And oddly enough people seem to love Tea Tree EO salt bars!? I started making them at my husband's request and continue to make them even though I hate the scent of Tea Tree oil!
 

dibbles

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I don't sell, so take this with a grain of salt (see what I did there?). I love salt bars - probably because I love the lather, but also I like the skin feel and the smooth, hard nature of them. I don't make tons of them and they take a long time to cure (6+ months IMHO). So when I share them with someone, I tell them I am pretty stingy with my salt bars so those people know they are special. I haven't had anyone tell me they didn't like them or didn't want another. I keep them simple - one color which is usually pastel (only when I add too much color are they not).

That said, if you are looking for a marketing approach try calling them a sea salt spa bar, use no more than two colors and I think the pastels would lend to the look of an upscale elegant spa experience. Choose a fragrance that is spa like - cucumber, ocean, aloe, lavender - something soft. I make my salt bars in individual round cavity molds. If your regular bars are all rectangular, a different shape might be another visual differentiation. I would also suggest giving them at least a minimum 6 month cure. They really are better at that point.

I have no idea if any of this would work for you. Just some thoughts.
 

Dawni

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I've only sold one batch as a limited edition thing.. I think what got em is I said its been curing 14+ months. Mixed reviews... Couple of ladies loved it, another said she liked my rice soap better (she was the only one who bought the rice soap with it) and a few others said they like their clay soaps better. My deduction.. No, might not be a great seller here either.

Not selling em regularly yet so I can't really say but that's what happened with the one batch lol
 

Mobjack Bay

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I like the lather and the way my skin feels after using salt soaps. I don't sell, but I give away a lot of them. They are GREAT shaving soaps and that is what I mainly use mine for (legs, underarms).

I use 70% coconut oil, 20% almond oil, 10% castor,
Salt @ 35-50% of oil weight, and a 15% superfat.

I thought I'd throw this out there - recently I had a fragrance oil accelerate my batch so quickly that I couldn't get the salt stirred in. I managed to get half of the unsalted batter in the mold before it was too hard to do anything with. That soap is fantastic! The lather is so luxurious. So ... I wonder if it's the lather that is what I love so much more so than the salt. 🤷‍♀️
I’m going to give your recipe a try. It has a bit more oleic FA compared to the recipe I’ve tried. Do you think you were in the range of 20-25% for the salt in the last batch?
 

gardengeek

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I don't sell but I use salt bars at least four times a week. I love them most when I use them in a sisal or woven soap bag. I don't know why, but the lather is hugely better and the exfoliation from the bag is like heaven.

I gave a husband and wife couple several different soaps to test and the husband's favorite was the spa bar. Yes, he even called it a spa bar! My husband, on the other hand, likes my regular body bars better. I'm going to have him test another bar when my 40% salt bars are cured.

I started making them in a cheapo wood loaf mold I got on Amazon. I like that better than the single cavity mold. They don't get as much ash when I use the loaf mold. You have to pay attention to them though. Depending on the FO I use, some are ready to unmold in 2 hours and others take up to 7 hours. I'm sure that it's the FO affecting the cure times since all other factors are equal.

I like to use sea salt powder from Saltworks. I don't use clay in any of my soaps, but I really think it negatively affects the lather in my salt bars (maybe my hard water). I splurged on a bag of French Grey Sea Salt and that was a total waste, 6 months later and absolutely zero lather! I think it has minerals in it.

I recently tried making salt bars with some lard. It's too early to know for sure, but testing at 6wks (because I couldn't wait any longer) is promising on one of the recipes.
 

GemstonePony

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I know I'm outing myself as never having been to a spa, but I've been wondering about this for a while: Why are they called spa bars? Is this the kind of soap spas offer? Does it have to do with salt treatments at spas?
Never been to a spa either, but I think it's mostly just setting the expectation that it's different than your other soaps so people are less surprised when it looks/feels/lathers differently.
 

runnerchicki

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I’m going to give your recipe a try. It has a bit more oleic FA compared to the recipe I’ve tried. Do you think you were in the range of 20-25% for the salt in the last batch?
I was at 30% salt for my last two batches - but I have been considering dropping the salt a bit more so 20-25% would be a good range.

Sorry for the delayed response!
 
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