Old school soap bars are back: The best artisanal homegrown soaps we love

Posted by Jimmy Gould on


Have you tried switching to solid cosmetics? These are the best artisanal homegrown soaps to know.

If not, then there’s no time like the present, as these solid formats are the shape of the future when it comes to beauty routines. It’s out with shelves of bottles and endless ingredient lists, and in with new-gen shampoos, conditioners, toothpastes and soaps that are light on packaging — and preservatives — for a revamped, 100 percent-responsible beauty routine that’s good for your skin and for the planet.

Old-school soap is where it’s at

The move towards more responsible and environmentally respectful consumer habits can sometimes — in fact, often — mean taking a step backwards. And cosmetics are no exception, with the solid bars of soap used by our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents slowly creeping back into bathrooms in recent years. And for good reason, since these soaps — suitable for face and body — don’t need any plastic packaging and are kind to skin, so long as you stick to natural varieties.

In fact, solid soaps contain virtually no water — unlike liquid shower gels — which is good news for the environment and which also means that there’s no need for preservatives or chemical additives. With soap, the endless lists of ingredients typically found in standard shower gel labels are largely simplified — and generally more transparent — with a majority of raw and natural ingredients that are less likely to damage your health.

Another plus point is that the standard solid format is, by definition, portable. That can help cut unnecessary consumption, because there’s no need to buy special travel formats for trips away. Moreover, they’re generally suitable for facial use with gentler formulations than body-specific versions.

Soap gets an update

Some of the oldest and best-known soaps are Aleppo soap and Marseille soap, which are mostly made from vegetable oils. Today, however, there’s a slew of solid soaps to choose from, that are each more fun and original than the next. Forget your grandmother’s dull old wash bars, as today’s soaps come in all kinds of vibrant versions. And they don’t have to rely on chemicals or potentially unhealthy ingredients to put the fun into bath-time — just look at the endless options from Lush, a brand known for its colourful solid cosmetics that come in all kinds of wacky shapes.

While there are plenty of options from specialist or niche brands (Lano, Seaweed Bath Co, Nubian Heritage etc.), recent months have also seen a growing number of launches from mainstream brands like Garnier (solid shampoos), and Love Beauty and Planet (soaps and shampoos). There’s now enough choice out there to ensure everyone can find their own accessible solid beauty routine.

And soaps aren’t the only products using this “innovative” format, since nearly everything in your bathroom cabinet can now be switched to solid, from face wash to shampoo and conditioner, not to mention makeup remover, deodorant and toothpaste. It can even be easy — and cheap — to make solid cosmetics yourself thanks to the many online tutorials.

This story was published via AFP Relaxnews (Hero and featured image credit: Photos by Getty Images)

Here are the 7 best soaps we recently found on the internet that are unique offerings from popular labels. Not only do they help you detox but also rid your skin of all impurities, black heads and almost all of them are handcrafted and produced in small batches.

Neemli Matcha and Avocado Exfoliating Bathing Bar, Rs  450

If you’re looking to feel refreshed and take care of stress while having that beauty bath, look no further than this exfoliating bar by Neemli. It mainly helps to detoxify and matcha, the main ingredient is known for its anti-oxidant properties while avocado helps take care of irritated skin by soothing it. Neemli’s soaps are handcrafted, plant-based and organic. 


Juicy Chemistry Carrot, Rosehip & Neroli Organic Cold Pressed Soap, Rs 600

Especially known to target pigmentation, this soap is very popular among bloggers. Formulated with organic carrot juice known to tackle marks and scarring, the soap also contains oils and butters that nourish and soften the skin. The soap is perfect for those who have acne scarring and it also regulates sebum production and removes excess oil.


Bare Necessities An Anecdote, Annatto Spa Bar, Rs 170

Personally we love spa bars and our favourite eco-friendly label, Bare Necessities has a bar that’s as fragrant as it is effective. It contains Annatto oil that is derived from the seeds of the Achiote tree and is replete with antioxidants that help plump up your skin and reduce wrinkles and even take care of acne scarring. Plus, it contains the very nourishing coconut oil and sesame oil – so good for the skin.


Kama Ayurveda Turmeric & Myrrh Skin Brightening Soap, Rs 625

Kama is always known for their meticulous details when it comes to ingredients and processes. This face and body soap comes with the goodness of turmeric (an old-school ingredient that performs beautifully) and Myrrah. As you know, turmeric can brighten and take care of pigmentation while Ayurvedic ingredients like banyan and sacred fig  purify the skin.


Cinnamon Soul Luxurious Lavender, Rs 550

Everyone loves a purple soap and when it’s made with lavender, it’s just another good reason. This mood lifter of a soap from Cinnamon Soul, a new-age spa label, is best for night-time use, just before you sleep. Made with dried lavender buds and shea butter, it offers comfort like no other. Mildly exfoliating and nourishing at the same time, this soap is perfect for those looking to leave their stresses and head for a good night’s sleep and is perfect for those with dry skin.


Ohria Ayurveda Orange, Lemon peel & Brown Sugar Bathing Bar, Rs 425

Known for their unique ingredients, Ohria Ayurveda soaps are really jam-packed with the goodness of wellness and natural glow. The handcrafted bar combines orange and lemon peels in brown sugar for days in natural sunlight to give you. bar that is like no other. First, the smell is invigorating and then the natural coconut oil nourishes and soothes the skin.


Good Earth Amritam Soap Gulab, Rs 850

Good Earth sure knows how to keep it exclusive and ingredient-friendly. Thesingle note artisanal handmade soaps of their label Amritam are fragrant and pure indulgence. The rose soap is a blend of pure rose damascena and rose fragrance that are masterfully put together with skin softening oils such as virgin coconut oil, jojoba, vitamin E and glycerin.