We’re the Rocky Mountain Soap Company. That means we make soap, and lots of it, and they’re all all-natural, biodegradable, and work hard to keep your hands and body clean. But what’s the difference between them? Bars, liquids, antibacterial — we even have a soap paste.
We tackle your frequently asked questions about natural soap in this handy guide. If you want to know more and you don’t see the answer here, you can always reach out on Facebook, Instagram, or through customer service.
If you have questions or concerns about coronavirus and COVID-19, please refer to a source like Health Canada.
We have so many different kinds, but this FAQ will focus on:
Yes! Proper hand washing with any kind of soap will clean your hands. People have been using soap to kill germs for hundreds of years. Your skin naturally secretes sebum (oil) which both lubricates it and protects it from the elements Germs (good and bad) are oil loving, so they like to adhere to the oil in our skin. When we wash with only water it's difficult to remove these germs, but when you add soap into the mix... it's a different story. Our natural soap has a pH of 8-10 so in scientific terms it is known to be negatively charged. It is this negative charge that decreases the surface tension of water to dissolve and lift dirt and germs from our skin.
That higher pH also means that the soap is more alkaline. You know who hates alkalinity? Viruses. That’s why the alkalinity of natural soap will deactivate viruses on your skin. When you lather and wash your hands with natural soap for at least 20 seconds and as much as 30, you remove the most amount of germs from your skin.
Soap is more effective than water alone, as the surfactants — meaning the soap molecules have an end that bonds to fats and an end that bonds to water — in natural soap lift dirt and germs off of your skin, then rinsing with water sends all that stuff down the drain. Proper hand washing with soap and water for 20-30 seconds can remove germs (including viruses and bacteria) from your skin. Thirsty for knowledge? You can read more about the science on the CDC’s website.
These are package free, so that means zero-waste. We’ve been making bar soaps since we started, 20 years ago and carry over 20 scents. The bar soap base is made of Water, Olive Oil, Sunflower Oil, Organic Shea Butter and Organic Coconut Oil. Other ingredients change based on the scent or desired function of the soap (like for oily, dry or normal skin).
This is an efficient liquid soap that’s made from a base of Water, Olive Oil, Coconut Oil and Jojoba Oil. We say efficient because the thin liquid bursts into a luxurious foam when it comes from the pump, and that rich lather takes less product to produce than other liquid soaps. You can also use foaming wash to get a nice lather using the pump one-handed, which makes it great when you’re juggling precious things, like your little one.
This workhorse natural liquid soap is made from a base of Glycerin, Coconut Oil, Olive Oil, Jojoba and Water. This is actually a castile soap, which is a traditional style of soap that goes as far back as the 11th century. You can use this liquid soap to effectively wash your hands and body, but also to clean your home. You’ll need to dilute it for different home cleaning methods. You can read more about that on our blog.
This is an ultra-gentle, naturally antibacterial soap that we created to work overtime for your hands in cases where you want an extra antibacterial kick, like food preparation. The base of this soap is Glycerin, Coconut Oil, Lactic Acid, Water, Olive Oil and Jojoba Oil. It’s then enhanced with Lavender, Rosemary and Eucalyptus.
You may have noticed we mentioned Lactic Acid in the base of the soap. That’s our secret weapon. Lactic Acid is a gentle exfoliant, but it also prevents the growth of bacteria by altering the PH of your skin, making it inhospitable to bacterias. Note that bacteria is different from a virus. All of our soaps will effectively remove dirt, bacteria, and viruses with proper hand washing.
Our other soaps do not contain an antibacterial agent. That doesn't mean they don't get your hands germ and bacteria-free. Proper hand washing techniques with all of our soaps will leave your hands clean and healthy.
Yes. With proper hand washing, all of our soaps will effectively remove dirt, bacteria, and viruses from your hands. Some antibacterial soaps that are commercially available may contain triclosan, an antibacterial ingredient you'll never find in Rocky products.
Triclosan is an antibacterial agent that is sometimes found in soaps, body washes and even toothpastes to prevent bacterial growth. It's actually banned for use in soaps in the United States after the Federal Drug Administration asked for proof that antibacterial soaps were more effective than regular soap and water. When no proof came, the FDA ruled to ban triclosan from soap products. There has been no such ruling in Canada. It's believed that exposure to triclosan can contribute to antibiotic resistance.
For hand sanitizer to be truly effective at removing germs from your hands, you should be using it on clean hands, after washing your hands properly with soap and water. Hand sanitizer — with a concentration of 60% Ethyl Alcohol or more — can help you out in a pinch, but it really is best used to remove any residual germs from your hands after soap and water. Like peanut butter and jelly, cowboys and Yeehaw! Proper hand washing with soap and water followed by hand sanitizer are the perfect pairing.
1. Wet your hands
2. Apply soap and work into a lather. Make sure to get in between your fingers, on the backs of your hands and under your nails.
3. Scrub scrub scrub! For at least 20 seconds, but if you make it 20, may as well go for 30! (hint: that’s singing “Happy Birthday” in your head, twice).
4. Rinse well under running water.
5. Dry your hands (with a towel or air dry).
Other than the fact that we make them by hand with love in our workshop in Canmore, our soaps never have any ingredients that are bad for you, your family or the planet. That means you’ll never find sulfates in our soaps. We make our soaps with only sustainable ingredients and work to make them from ingredients that are as local as possible.
SLS is sodium lauryl sulfate, and you will never find it in any of our products, ever. SLS is a foaming agent that can be made from petroleum. While SLS is thought to be safe for humans in low doses, there is too much of a correlation between SLS and skin irritants for us to feel comfortable putting it in our soaps. It is and always will be on our red list.
Our bar soaps dry for six to eight weeks before we can get them in your hands. The reason why is that they’re super fatted. That means we make them with lots of hydrating, nourishing oils — more than many soap companies — and that we need to add more water in the process. Because of that, the bars need longer to work their magic and for the water to evaporate.
Super-fatted is a term you’ll find soap makers using. It means the oils of the soap that were not saponified (turned into soap) during the soap-making process, which is a result of oils and lye turning into soap and glycerin. The superfat stays behind to moisturise your hands while you wash. Learn more about saponification here.
Yes. All of our soap have rich, nourishing oils as their base and work to keep your hands moisturised. However, if you've been washing your hands more often than usual and they're drying out, check out our collections of hand creams, lotions, and organic butters.
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