Tuesday, February 23, 2010

SOS: Save Our Soap

Love love love this post by Ruth Esteves of Sirona Springs (aren't her soaps lovely??). I am just as frugal with my soaps as Ruth is!! She was kind enough to let me re-post here. ;)

It always pays to be frugal, but when it comes to something as wonderful as handmade soap (yes, I’m biased; so shoot me) you can never be too neurotic about saving every last bit of that soapy goodness. I’ve collected some ideas on how to use up those tiny little bits of soap before they end up going down the drain or (gasp!) into the trashcan.

Stick it on a new bar

Once you find yourself with a soap sliver, start a new bar of soap, but keep that sliver handy. Once both are good and wet, score each one with little hatch marks. I use my fingernail, since pointy tools are hard to come by in the shower (well, in my shower, anyway). Then slap the little bit onto the new bar and leave them to get to know each other better. By the next day they should be as one. If not, just repeat the scoring and slapping and leave it to dry a bit longer. (Interestingly, this is also the method used by potters to attach pieces of wet clay together; another of my past hobbies!)

Make something new

When you find yourself with a collection of soap scraps, grate them up and make soap balls! Just use your regular box grater (or even your food processor, if you’re making a lot of these) to shred the soap. Then moisten lightly, just until the shreds start to stick together. Now just squeeze the shreds together to make a ball of soap whatever size you would like. Set the balls aside to dry for about a week so that they get good and hard. I love doing this with scraps from different bars and allowing the scents to mingle, creating something totally unique!

Get yourself a soap bag

Of course you can go out and get yourself a specially designed thingy for saving your soap bits. I sell such a sack at the Sirona Springs online store. I like it because it’s made of a natural fiber and exfoliates gently. Nothing could be easier; just toss in your slivers and lather away. There are also some that are made of a nylon mesh, or even terry cloth. And if you already own a bath mitt, you could certainly turn it into a soap saver by just tossing your slivers into that.

Make yourself a soap bag

But if you want to be really frugal, throw your soap bits into the leg of some old pantyhose: tie off the end and hang it in your shower or outside by the garden hose. Or make your own soap holder from a mesh onion bag like in this tutorial at Instructables.com! Not only are you saving your soap, you’re also repurposing something and saving it from a landfill.

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