What is Vegetable Glycerin and why do I want it in my soap?
Vegetable Glycerin is a by-product of the soap-making process. It’s a natural humectant, which means it attracts moisture from the environment to its surface. Glycerin’s most common function in beauty products is to prevent soaps, creams and makeup from over-drying. South of France soaps are made with only the most pure vegetable ingredients: olive, palm and coconut oil. Because Vegetable Glycerin is a valuable commodity to the health and beauty industry as an additive in lotions and cosmetics, many soap manufacturers sell the glycerin that results from their soap-making process to other companies. South of France retains this important ingredient and adds it back into the soap. The resulting bars are excellent for dry skin, as the Vegetable Glycerin content helps hold moisture in the outer layers of the skin.
What are Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Sodium Laureth Sulfate and Sodium Tallowate?
Sodium Laureth Sulfate and its close relative, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLSs) are inexpensive synthetic foaming agents and degreasers, widely used in commercial soap production. In industrial application, SLSs are mainly used as engine degreasers, floor cleaners and car wash soaps. SLSs are commonly used in clinical trials to intentionally irritate the skin, so that researchers can measure the rate at which skin heals. SLSs are linked to eye irritation, rashes on the skin and scalp, and other allergic reactions. South of France soaps do not contain Sodium Laureth Sulfate or Sodium Lauryl Sulfate. SoF soaps produce rich, dense foam naturally and are gentle to the skin.
Sodium Tallowate (or Tallow) is animal fat, and is found in many commercial soap products. It is inexpensive, plentiful and has been known to clog pores. South of France takes pride in the fact that our products never contain any animal by-products and are cruelty-free (never tested on animals).
What is Shea Butter?
Shea Butter is derived from the nut of the Karite Tree, which is native to the dry savannah belt of West Africa, from Senegal in the west to Sudan in the east, and onto the foothills of the Ethiopian highlands. Shea Butter is a natural moisturizer, possessing a high concentration of Vitamin E. It nourishes, rejuvenates, hydrates, conditions the skin and promotes cellular growth. Although the Shea Nut is essentially a tree nut, it does not belong to the list of commonly allergenic tree nuts; there are no reports of allergic reactions to Shea Nuts or products containing Shea Butter. Additionally Shea Butter has been proven useful in relieving dry skin and dermatitis.
Why is the Lavender soap green and not purple?
An important point to remember is that fragrance does not impart color. In beauty products, ingredients that impart fragrance are typically used in much smaller proportions, relative to the other ingredients used to compose the product. Think: a little goes a long way. South of France soaps do not use synthetic colorants; a decision that was made with your safety in mind, due to the fact that synthetic colorants tend to have harsh chemcial properties. Rest assured that our Lavender soap is naturally green and safe for you to use.
Are South of France soaps made in France?
South of France Natural Body Care was created by a French-American transplant who had become frustrated by the lack of quality body care products on the American market in the early 1990s. His vision was to bring artesian soap-making practices to America, to prove that it is possible to make high-quality, fragrant, natural soaps affordably. Nearly 20 years later, South of France has established itself as an innovator and leader in the American body care industry. Althought the techniques used to create our body care products originated in the South of France, due to current economic pressures, all South of France products are now produced domestically, ensuring that South of France products are always available at a value.
Are South of France soaps hypo-allergenic?
South of France soaps are free from the following harsh chemical ingredients that are commonly used in the body care industry:
- Sodium Laureth Sulfate/Sodium Laurel Sulfate
- Tetrasodium EDTA
- Animal By-Products
- Animal Testing
- Synthetic Colorants
- Synthetic Fragrances
South of France cannot make the claim that our products are hypo-allergenic because we do use essential oils and blends of fragrance to impart scent to our products; often the ingredients used for fragrance can trigger specific allergic reactions. Typically, an individual who is sensitive to fragrance can work with his or her dermatologist or allergen specialist to isolate and identify which fragrance(s) trigger their specific reaction and thereby avoid using products with that particular fragrance. Because SoF products do not contain harsh chemical ingredients, often individuals who have (1) sensitive skin or (2) an allergy to one of the afore-listed harsh chemical ingredients, find that SoF products provide relief from their allergies/sensitivities while other, synthetic products fail to do so.
Some of the fragrances used in our products are described as “blends of fragrance,” which means that, while natural essential oils are used in formulating the fragrance, trace amounts of synthetic ingredients are also used. (These synthetic ingredients are not petroleum-based and do not contain phthalates.) This is necessary because it is impossible to achieve some fragrances naturally, without using harsh chemical preservatives. It is worth noting that fragrance typically accounts for less than 1% of the total composition of any one product. All South of France products are at least 99.1% natural, if not 100% natural.
What is the shelf-life for South of France soaps?
South of France soaps have a shelf life of at least 4 years, if not longer; however, the fragrances contained in our products will begin to fade after approximately two years. This is due to the fact that South of France products do not use harsh chemical preservatives, a decision that was made with your safety in mind. So, while your bar of Lavender soap (for example) may begin to lose its fragrance after two years, the bar itself will remain perfectly good & useable for up to four years.
Is South of France packaging recyclable?
Yes! Our bar soap packaging is made from a dual layer of recyclable plastic that keeps the soap fresh. It is considered to be a plastic #5 for recycling purposes.