Soap Is Not Moisturizing?

Discussion in 'Beginners Soap Making Forum' started by hungryhawaiian, Mar 5, 2019.

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  1. Mar 5, 2019 #1

    hungryhawaiian

    hungryhawaiian

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    Ok people, what’s the deal with the term “moisturizing” in soaps? I’ve been scolded and seen other noobs get scolded for associating that word with soap. Apparently soap cannot be moisturizing?

    In an FB soap group I was dang near burned at the stake for saying it a couple times. They’d say that soap is not moisturizing, but in a lot of the readings I’ve done and are currently doing, they all seem to have no problems saying that this recipe is moisturizing or that soap is moisturizing or add this to make it more moisturizing or take away that to make it moisturizing....

    I mean, handmade soaps, as we all know, retain glycerin, which we also know is a humectant. Glycerin, as a humectant, draws water from the air and into your skin. So how isn’t soap moisturizing based on that alone?

    This thread is probably more a rant than a question, because as far as I’m concerned, that FB group has never been helpful to me and if anything, I’ve only seen them severely deter noobs like myself from even wanting to post questions or maybe their finished products for constructive criticism or just a pat on the back for taking a leap.

    Y’all SMFers have been nothing but helpful and understanding since day one for me, and I’m thankful for you all!

    /endrant
     
  2. Mar 5, 2019 #2

    earlene

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    Well, now if you leave your soap on your skin like you do an actual moisturizer, then perhaps you might obtain some moisturizing effect from the soap. But since most people wash soap off right away, the skin does not have a chance to absorb whatever moisturizing features that the soapmaker may have built into the recipe. I'm pretty sure that is the point that is being made when people say, 'soap does not moisturize.' It's a technicality, if you think about it.
     
  3. Mar 5, 2019 #3

    Dawni

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    The way I see it is...

    Soap cleans. If it has less cleansing properties then less of the natural oils of your skin are stripped off, and with the added glycerin, moisture in the air is drawn in. But it is cleaning you first, meaning it has to take off something.

    A cream for example, on the other hand, is something you add to skin. After cleansing, once the oils n dirt are out, a cream would add whatever properties it had on to your skin and I don't know, maybe keep it there.

    Not sure if any of that made sense but in my head it did.

    It's all technicalities and semantics and perception I think, and so much more than my brain can handle. But to make it simple for myself that's how I think of it.

    Take conditioning for example. My brain doesn't really wrap itself around this idea so in formulating a recipe I just try n find a balance of less cleansing and hard enough, while the rest of the oils are there to lend whatever goodness they do have.

    Here's a short but good read on this topic, too.
     
  4. Mar 5, 2019 #4

    hungryhawaiian

    hungryhawaiian

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    I could get lost in that thread.... But yes, it all makes sense. Shunt2011 and DeeAnna’s responses, wow! Love it.

    I’m in the process of reading Scientific Soapmaking. Just started reading last night. I hope to remember all the technical aspects of the chemical compositions of the entire Soapmaking process, just like DeeAnna.
     
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  5. Mar 5, 2019 #5

    Donee'

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    It just seems a complete hypocrisy when people say that soap only cleans (Ihave also been through the "burning at the stake" scenario) - my simple and confirmed logic comes down to one question
    "why bother with all the oil combinations if soap "only cleans"
    No one has managed to answer that question in any form of intelligent logic for me yet.
    I did do a whole lot of research into white papers written by chemists, professors and the like only to discover that soap has more qualities than "just cleaning" and that the skin has many many more qualities than just "being cleaned"
    Do yourself a favour and go google benefits of soap AND make sure to google the absorbent rate of soap on the skin e.g. how many layers and how quickly the ingredients in soap get absorbed into those layers.
    If hand made soap is indeed only for cleaning then why are there never ending threads on oil combinations and the benefits thereof.
    PLUS an interesting article I found about how soap was discovered revealed that soap was initially used as an ointment.
    But dogma is dogma and sometimes you just have to do your own thing and do your own research.

    Having said that I can speak from personal and business experience that I make and sell medicinal soap and its going very well. I sell to pharmacies and homeopaths and the like and they would know wouldnt they?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 6, 2019
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  6. Mar 6, 2019 #6

    Alfa_Lazcares

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    “Why bother with all the oil combinations?” Well i cant talk for every soaper out there, i bother with all the oil combinations because different oils bring different things to the soap itself. More bubbles? Bring that coconut! Less slime? Less olive. More creaminess? More lard. Too stripping? Less coconut. Things like that. Not because i think an oil (that will stop being an oil once its made in to soap) is gonna bring me any benefits.
     
  7. Mar 6, 2019 #7

    DWinMadison

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    HH...Our brains function similarly. I get your point. When a soap says it’s “moisturizing” I think it means “has less drying effect on your skin than more harsh soaps.” I think, almost definition, that means “less cleansing.” So, I formulate my soap to balance the cleansing effects of , say coconut oil, with the milder, “conditioning” of palm and olive. Castor is for bubbles. I’m pretty much obsessed with hitting the sweet spot of the Soap Bar Quality Scale on soapcalc. I guess all soap gets you clean. It’s just a matter of how clean.
     
  8. Mar 6, 2019 #8

    reeeen4

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    Yeah I think it all has to do with a persons definition of moisturising, or moisturising in relation to soap anyway. I would agree that it, to me would mean a soap that is less harsh and strips less oil from my skin. Like a 100% coconut oil soap will leave your skin tight and dry but an Castille soap will not. A soap is a clenser not a moisturiser so it cleans and strips but it can have moisturising qualities and strip less depending on the formula. If that makes sense. My view of it anyway.
     
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  9. Mar 6, 2019 #9

    DWinMadison

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    ^ What she said.
     
  10. Mar 6, 2019 #10

    lenarenee

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    I don't know how it works in South Africa, but here in the US - no, they wouldn't. Many are happy to sell/make a buck on almost anything that interests their customers whether the product is truly therapeutic or not, and whether they understand how it works - or not.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2019
  11. Mar 6, 2019 #11

    Donee'

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    I think that the focus should shift from "the science of soap" to "the science of SKIN"
    So if anyone is researching anything to do with soap - then make sure to research SKIN
     
  12. Mar 6, 2019 #12

    lenarenee

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    I'm not sure where I stand about soap being moisturizing, and I'm not sure science could really prove or disprove because you have to use water to conduct the experiment and your skin will be at least more hydrated simply from that.

    The thing that keeps me from fully believing that soap is moisturizing is the way soap works. H2O is the miracle polar molecule with different electric charges on each end; one attracts water, the other oil. Add friction and any dirt, particles, oils, etc attach to their matching electric charges and then get rinsed down the drain. My question is - is anything left behind? Well, probably. Natural skin oils, excess oils, dirt that the soap couldn't remove simply because there was more of it than soap therefore not enough molecules to attach to. (italics represent my theory, not necessarily fact)

    This also makes me skeptical that soap can be medicinal - at least to any significant benefit. Even the studies of triclosan in soap show that it doesn't reduce bacteria more than regular soap washing. The chemistry and action of soap washing is all about attracting molecules - not dispensing them.

    On the other hand, maybe soap does moisturize because: 1) the water hydrates the skin at least a little, and a soap with a significant sf might leave enough oil residue to coat the skin and act as an occlusive. However, I read a post of DeeAnna dated Feb 11 which stated that the sf of a salt bar with high coconut oil does not replace the skin's natural oils that the bar cleaned off, but that its sf is emulsified and that prevents the high coconut oil from doing the stripping in the first place. Soooo....I'm still on the fence.
     
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  13. Mar 6, 2019 #13

    KiwiMoose

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    I think (handmade) soap can appear moisturising because I am comparing it with commercial soaps that I have used previously. Let's face it - since I've been making soap I've been washing my hands about twenty times a day or more. I generously lather up my soaps to try them out, and sometimes compare one to another in the same hand washing session. And my hands are not dry - if anything they are more moisturised than they've ever been.
     
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  14. Mar 6, 2019 #14

    Zany_in_CO

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    I like washing with soap that leaves my skin feeling moisturized. 'Nuff said. :cool:
     
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  15. Mar 6, 2019 #15

    hungryhawaiian

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    *high five*
     
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  16. Mar 6, 2019 #16

    Alfa_Lazcares

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    This. Im one of those people that neglects moistourizing after a shower, i never put any kind of lotion on my legs, and i always had that dry skin that looks flaky and ashy on them. And then i started using my soaps and that look on my legs is gone. They also feel softer. Its obviusly the soap since nothing else changed. But is it because the soap is moistourizing? I dont know. Its different and i notice the difference, than when i used store bought soap.
     
  17. Mar 6, 2019 #17

    hungryhawaiian

    hungryhawaiian

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    Because it’s obvious that this is a touchy subject, and if I ask 20 people the same question, I’ll probably get 20 different answers, I just want you all to know that we are all Soap Making Friends, and I value everyone’s input equally. Until there is definitive proof of soaps true moisturizing value, I don’t think anyone is right or wrong.

    At the end of the day, you’re the one that uses your soap. Your clients are the ones using your soap. Your family are the ones using your soap. If it makes them happy, that’s all that matters
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2019
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  18. Mar 6, 2019 #18

    Dawni

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    I was telling the hungry dude this exact same thing. If someone were to use handmade soap after years of using commercial syndets then there is a chance they'd think it more moisturizing, having the glycerin for one thing, the superfat I guess, and just plain having less chemicals on their skin.

    Like I said, it's part semantics. You say your hands have never been more moisturized, I'd say they're not as dry as they've always been.
     
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  19. Mar 6, 2019 #19

    The Efficacious Gentleman

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    As for oil combinations, you'll find a lot of soapers have gone full circle and use a smaller selection of oils than what is available, unless they sell and an oil has label appeal.

    That said, soap is a surfactant and so a combination will impact how it works. Keeping the co at a percentage and using either more olive oil or more lard will change how easily the soap will lather (which will impact how much oil it takes from your skin)

    The combination of oils also impact's how you can soap - temperature, water amount, that sort of thing. People will use different oil combinations because of how they soap, not just what soap they get out of the mould
     
  20. Mar 6, 2019 #20

    Marilyn Norgart

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    is there some difference between soap and shampoo? both basically soap? I have used shampoo that has been marketed here in the US as a shampoo to help psoriasis--which it did help. and there are shampoos that are marketed as cleansing and conditioning. how many people use tar soap for the same reason--granted there has been discussions on the legal end of claiming that it helps but people that use it obviously feel it works or they wouldn't use it for the condition. to me it sounds like our government is saying someone cant say it works but it does. kinda like our government was saying medical marijuana doesn't work until there was a push back on them.
     
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