Natural colours and oxides

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Soapprentice

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Hey guys,
I have been reading a lot on natural colourants and oxide colours in soap and a lot of the people consider oxides ( which are synthetically made because of presence of heavy metals in natural ones) as natural colourants.. do you guys think it is fine to say that your soap is 100% natural while using oxides as colourants? I absolutely have no problem using oxide coloured soap as it is very safe for skin but there are people who want to go chemical free... is it ok?
 

Susie

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Everything is a "chemical". Everything. Even water (dihydrogen monoxide). I would never say that soap was 100% "natural" if I used store bought sodium hydroxide (NaOH). After all, that is not a naturally occurring compound. It was created in a lab.

"Natural" is a word with no legal definition. You can claim that anything is natural, no matter how much of it was created in a lab.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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It is a utterly nonsensical word for what we do, when you really get down to it. The good thing is that you can just explain when you give it to your friends and family that the ingredients are found in nature, even if these happen to have been produced in a clean environment
 

penelopejane

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Hey guys,
I have been reading a lot on natural colourants and oxide colours in soap and a lot of the people consider oxides ( which are synthetically made because of presence of heavy metals in natural ones) as natural colourants.. do you guys think it is fine to say that your soap is 100% natural while using oxides as colourants? I absolutely have no problem using oxide coloured soap as it is very safe for skin but there are people who want to go chemical free... is it ok?
If you are talking about what people consider "natural" soap then oxides and micas would not be included in a list of "natural" colourants. You said it yourself - they are synthetic.

You can use pumpkin, carrot, spirulina, turmeric, paprika, coffee, clay etc. for "natural" colourants.
 

Soapprentice

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I understand you point of view guys.

If you are talking about what people consider "natural" soap then oxides and micas would not be included in a list of "natural" colourants. You said it yourself - they are synthetic.

You can use pumpkin, carrot, spirulina, turmeric, paprika, coffee, clay etc. for "natural" colourants.
Coming to paprika, doesn't it irritate the skin? I mean infusing it into oil ?
 

Susie

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I understand you point of view guys.
Coming to paprika, doesn't it irritate the skin? I mean infusing it into oil ?
I have used paprika infused olive oil to color soaps for as long as I have been soaping. I have never had a problem.

I used 1 oz paprika to 6-8 oz olive oil, infuse in a glass jar, with the lid loosely on it, placed in a pot of water (put a dish cloth or a canning rack underneath the jar to prevent breakage). Heat to simmering, simmer for half an hour, remove from heat, and allow to cool to room temperature. If you wait until the next morning, you can gently pour the oil off without straining it, as the paprika settles to the bottom.
 

dixiedragon

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Here in the US (I can't speak to other countries) natural isn't an FDA recognized term. But I think honesty is important, so I would view it as wrong to use a lab-created mica and label it "natural".
 

Soapprentice

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Many here, actually most of the people I came across Dont know the chemistry behind soap making... when I say I started making soap, they ask "all natural"... and I explain that the making of soap requires a chemical but the soap does not have a chemical when it is cured. I don't think anyone can say yes or no for that question. I like bright colours and would like to use oxides and micas.. I suppose I will follow dragon girl and say nature identical from here on.
 

toxikon

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It's tricky business working with buzzwords like that. "Natural" evokes a certain feeling of reassurance to a lot of people, even if it doesn't really mean anything. If I were to sell, I think I'd push words like "homemade", "small batch", "simple ingredients" instead of "natural" to try to evoke a similar response. Homemade soap does have a special quality to it and it's hard to find honest words to describe it. "Simple" is nice.
 

penelopejane

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I understand you point of view guys.

Coming to paprika, doesn't it irritate the skin? I mean infusing it into oil ?
It depends how sensitive you are. I'm allergic to paprika but if I strain off the paprika and just use the coloured oil (it takes about 2 hrs over a double boiler on low to get a good colour) then it doesn't irritate me. But I am particularly sensitive to it. Others might be ok.

The good thing about doing this is you strain off the grainy bits too which can be a bit scratchy. My son doesn't like cinnamon or unstrained paprika because of the scratchiness.

Regarding "natural" most people understand that you can't avoid lye in soap. Some producers say in brackets after it in a label: none remaining in cured soap (or similar). It really depends on your market.
 
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