Thursday, October 20, 2011

There Is Nothing To Fear From A Bar Of Soap

I get asked from time to time, if I make liquid soap "because I don't want to touch the bar" and I hear a few people say that they don't use bar soap anymore "because of the germs".  I tell them that soap bars are the original hand sanitizer!  It's soap and has been around for-ever!  It is fine!  But I never quite get through to people.  Some have already made up there minds, I guess.  Well, her is Ruth's take on the matter.  Thanks Ruth!

My new friend Ruth over at Sirona Springs Soaps put together and posted a great article on her blog. I asked and she said it was A-okay to re post it here. Credit to her blog and a link:
"As the maker of bar soap, I often get asked by customers if I also make liquid soap. Many folks believe that bar soap is somehow unsanitary. I’ve even read that bacteria can grow on soap bars, and that people shouldn’t share bars because it can spread disease. Ick.
So I went looking for some evidence that bar soap is this vector of contagion. I found several studies that show that bar soap, especially when left to sit in a puddle of water or in a wet soap dish can harbor colonies of bacteria. It makes sense since bacteria love to hang out in wet places.
But one study in 1988 went a step further and asked the question, “Can the bacteria found on soap get transferred to someone else?” That’s really the issue, isn’t it? What happens to the bacteria that is living on a bar of soap?
So the researchers took some bars and spread a whole lot of bacteria on them: 70 times more than anyone had ever found on any soap bars before! Then they asked the volunteers (brave volunteers) to wash their hands with the soap. When they tested their hands for bacterial contamination, there was no detectable bacteria on any of their hands. So they reason that it’s very unlikely that germs that are present on soap bars will be transferred to someone using the soap to wash their hands. It makes sense to me, since that’s one of the great things about soap, that it dislodges bacteria and makes it much easier to just rinse it away.
I don’t make liquid soap, by the way, because I believe that handmade bar soap is better overall for the environment. It doesn’t contain any detergents or petrochemicals that can get into our waterways. And there is much less packaging involved with a bar of soap: some shrink wrap (like mine) or maybe a paper wrapper or box. While plastic pump bottles may be recyclable, I still like the idea of trying to make less of the plastic stuff to begin with.
And you can’t beat handmade soap bars for variety! You could never get bored with all the scents and colors and designs…
So fear not! Use your bar soap, keep it in a draining soap dish to let it dry out between uses, and enjoy!"

thanks Ruth!


Soapchick said...

Great post, I get asked the same thing all the time as well, so much so that I even thought I had better start making liquid soaps, but I haven't! Anyway, I love the good old soap bar too much to bother!!

Heirloom Natural Soap said...

Love this post! While I have made all natural liquid soap before I don't find it to be nearly as mild and such a pain (to me) to make! YIKES! No one would pay what I would have to charge for a bottle of what I made! LOL