How We Define Handcrafted Soap

The Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetics Guild defines Handcrafted Soap as:

  • A majority of the time, energy and processes used in its creation by the handcrafter are "by hand", and
  • A minimal use of mechanized equipment is employed, and
  • The product manufacture is overseen manually, not by an automated system.

  • They go one step further and state that:

    The processes of making and selling handcrafted soap and cosmetics are complex and involve many steps. These may include creating the recipe; measuring and mixing; adding scent and color; creating the shape by molding, cutting and/or trimming; selecting containers and closures, designing and creating packaging; as well as marketing, displaying and selling the final product. Depending on the methodology of the individual, some of these steps are done “by hand” through creative and artistic expression of a pre-fabricated base or all of these steps are done “by hand” beginning with the raw ingredients.

    By this definition, melt and pour, cold process, and hot process soaps all fall into this category.  

    This is a great thing, because it allows the soap makers to be creative in many different ways, yet still adhere to the concept of handcrafted soaps.  There are many things that can only be done by utilizing one of these processes.  For example, most extremely detailed soaps are made using the melt and pour method.  This process allows for greater detail because the soap base cools faster and can be manipulated in various ways more easily.  (Although if you haven't checked out Sorcery Soaps and their molded cold process soaps, you're missing quite a treat!)

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