What Is Soap Made Of?

What Is Soap Made Of?

If you are reading this, gone are the days when you have someone reminding you to wash behind your ears. Good hygiene practices were likely enforced starting at a young age. We know by now how important it is to wash with soap AND water but are our favorite products actually good for our skin? What is soap made of?

How do we decide what is worth our while to continue using or if we should make a switch to something that benefits our skin? Modern soap looks a lot different than when it started. Let’s talk about what key components are needed to help your body stay squeaky clean and still protect this delicate barrier.

How Did Soap Get Its Start?

When you glance over at your tub or shower, you are likely to see a number of bottles in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. From cold process soap and hot process soap to castile soap and liquid body wash, these all contain amazing mixtures to cleanse various parts of your body with ingredients like olive oils, coconut oil, and sodium chloride.

Thousands of years ago in Ancient Babylon and the Roman empire or in 19th century Italy and Spain, soap didn’t even resemble what we now use to clean our faces and body. Salts combined with vegetable oils, natural fat like beef fat, lye, and animal oils were once combined to use for washing as well as treating skin disease.

Although we are so grateful for the plethora of options that are now available to wash with, not all of them live up to the standard that they should. Not only do ingredients matter for your skin, but they also matter for the environment as well. Moral of the story: just because soap isn’t coming from ashes and animal fat, doesn’t mean it’s good for you.

Ingredients Are Important

In the same way ingredients are important when it comes to the food we put in our body, what we put on our body is equally as important. Quality ingredients from soap manufacturers can make all the difference in the world in how our skin behaves.

If you have sensitive skin, you are no stranger to the kind of reactions that can happen when ingredients in liquid soap or bar soap don’t agree with your skin. If you don’t have sensitive skin, the signs are still there. Rashes, itching, and overly dry skin can all be signs that your skin doesn’t agree with what you’re putting on it, whether it be essential oils or sodium hydroxide.

Here are some ingredients to look for that help support your skin, no matter your skin type.


A huge benefit of glycerin is that it aids in preventing your skin from becoming overly dry. It locks in moisture and allows your skin to maintain hydration. This can be especially helpful if you have an underlying condition such as rosacea, psoriasis, or eczema to name a few.

It is also considered friendly to the environment and non-toxic.

Vitamin B5

The properties of vitamin B5 have many skin benefits. It has been recognized to help with aiding in the healing process of the skin, can help with skin conditions like rosacea and eczema and, may even help with fine lines. Vitamin B5 helps to stabilize the barrier of your skin. This results in helping it to maintain its elasticity and softness by holding in more water.

It is recognized to be safe for all skin types and has excellent moisturizing abilities.

Amino Acids

Amino acids in skincare can help by acting as antioxidants and can moisturize and soothe your skin. Amino acids work really well with other products that are already meant to help moisturize your skin. So adding amino acids to go along with power ingredients like glycerin and vitamin B5 will help up the ante with your skin's ability to retain moisture.

Why Should You Be Selective About Products?

It can seem safe to use the products you always have. Product selection can feel tricky sometimes, but as we have mentioned, ingredients matter and so does the role they play on your skin.

The risk of side effects decreases when you are using products with a recipe specifically designed with hydration in mind. For us, it makes sense to use products that are all in one and get the job done.

How To Support Your Skin?

Your skin has a diverse environment and its number one job is to protect you. When its environment is disrupted, it can be more challenging for it to keep harmful organisms out.

Think of your skin like an onion. It has several layers to it. The outermost layer is a moisture barrier and keeps the things you don’t want out and things you need, like moisture, in. The barrier of your skin can be impaired by many different factors.

Certain products contain things like harsh ingredients, acids, and alcohols that can cause your skin to become irritated and dehydrated.

The best thing we can do for our skin is provide it with the nourishment and support it needs. This boils down to choosing products that contain ingredients meant to hydrate such as glycerin and vitamin B5.

Signs of a Damaged Skin Barrier

Our body is always giving us clues to let us know what it needs. Some signs of a damaged skin barrier can be itching, redness, inflammation, uneven texture, just to name a few. If you experience burning or stinging when you apply products, this can be another sign that something needs to change in the soap recipes you use.

Making the change can feel scary but once you see how much they benefit your skin, you will never look back.

Top Favorite Body Cleansers

Here at Spongellé, we care about our products being as good for you as they are for the planet and animals. We offer cruelty-free and vegan-friendly body wash that is made for all skin types. You can also count on our products being free of harsh solvents, gluten, and sulfates.

Another feature we had to include was our fragrance quiz. This allows you to get a sneak peek at what fragrances might be a great fit for you. You simply take our fragrance quiz and based on your preferences it can help you decide between our variety of scents.

All of our body washes and soap bases are created with patented technology and ingredients that are naturally derived and meant to support and nourish your skin.

Here are a few of our favorites:

  • Freesia Pear Body Wash: This scent is a combination of your favorite floral bouquet, pear, and musk to balance it all out. Each of our scents comes with multiple layers to add to the depth and beauty of the fragrance. With over 70 plus washes you will love how long it lasts and all that it does behind the scenes for your skin.

  • Papaya Yuzu Body Wash: You will not believe the tropical scent of this body wash. Created with a sugary caramel base, the smell is like a tropical summer night in a bottle. You can almost feel the humidity of a sultry beach day after one pump. Designed to soothe, protect, and nurture your skin, you will have these body washes on subscribe to add to your beauty arsenal in no time flat.

  • French Lavender Body Wash: If peace and tranquility are the names of your scent game, you will fall in love with our french lavender body wash. With notes of amber and Hesperides added, your bathroom will be transformed into a spa retreat with each lather, rinse, and repeat.

Pro Tips for Getting Squeaky Clean

We all want the sweat and grime of the day to just magically be gone. With quality products and a great routine, you won’t have to worry about dirt and gunk sticking around. There are a few key steps that can help step your shower game up.

  1. Make sure you are washing in lukewarm water to keep your moisture locked in. Extreme heat can actually dry out your skin and strip it of much-needed oils.

  2. Keep your shower quick, especially if you can’t resist hot temperatures.

  3. Exfoliation using exfoliating scrubs or gloves is crucial in assisting skin cell turnover and making sure your skin stays soft and smooth. Using a multi-functional body sponge can do the trick by exfoliating, cleansing, and hydrating at the same time, leaving you without a trace of dirt.

  4. Pat dry after your shower and hydrate with lotion containing fatty acids that melt into your skin. By patting dry you leave a little bit of moisture on your skin to lock in with the oil molecules in your lotion.


Soap-making has evolved into an art form. Soap base has gone through so many phases and we couldn’t be more pleased with the end result. We no longer have to worry about what is going in or on our skin. Can you even imagine all of the strange iterations that lead to the perfectly crafted products that are actually suited to help our skin?

At Spongellé, we understand how important it is to have products you can trust. We strive to continue to create products that are safe for you, the environment, and animals. You never have to worry about added ingredients that you don’t recognize and can’t pronounce. The next time you’re looking for a cleanser that stands up to the grime of the day and is great for your skin, you’ll know where to find it.


Soaps & Detergents History | The American Cleaning Institute

The skin microbiome | nih.gov

Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid) | Healthline