Lucy's Soap Kitchen Natural Skincare Blog

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Category: Behind The Soapy Scenes...

  1. What makes Lucy's Soap Kitchen Salt Soaks unique for your bath time?

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    Why Lucys Soap Kitchen Salt Salts are Unique for Your Bath Time!

    Rest? Relaxation? Soothe muscles? Me Time? Yes please!

    I've always found bathing really helps me unwind and also ease muscle and joint pain (mine stems from hypermobility - eds 3, coupled with weeding & picking up small people far too much). With the current halt in water charges it seems Ireland is relaxing and enjoying bathing again too.

    I've been blending our salt soaks for 4 years now and offer 6 varieties. I called them Salt Soaks rather than Bath Salts as it seems Bath Salts are another name for a particular kind of narcotic. Googling Bath Salts gave me all kinds of lovely images and an education I wasn't looking for, so Salt Soaks it became!    

    I wanted to share why our blend is unique and why I make them this way. 

    Lucys soap kitchen 1000px wide (2 of 10)

    Our Salt Soaks Contain Avocado Oil

    What's so special about that you ask? Avocado is a brilliant moisturiser for dry, irritated skin and eczema. It's also good for inflammation and a great oil for nut allergy sufferers. But it's not just beacuse I love Avocado Oil.

    It's why I use it.

    The essential oils are weighed and added to the avocado oil before blending with the salts.

    Why is this important?

    This is an excellent question. Epsom Salts and other salts alone do not disperse essential oil. Once added to water the essential oils will potentially sit on the surface of the bath water and to qoute Robert Tisserand...

    "...there is a high risk of irritation, since undiluted droplets of essential oil attach to the skin, often in sensitive areas. Because the oils are warmed up by the water, and also cannot evaporate, they often sting like crazy. This can happen with any essential oil..."

    I've added a brilliant bath safety infograph for easy reference in a link at the bottom of this page.

    If you have sensitive, allergy prone skin you can see why this is especially important.

    Would you like to try one of our unique blends of Therapeutic Salt Soaks, especially created for sensitive skin?

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    Bath Safety - How to use essential oils in the bath http://tisserandinstitute.org/safety/bath-safety/

    Bath Infograph - http://tisserandinstitute.org/learn-more/bath-safety/

  2. Time to pucker up! Chocolate Lips, natural lip balm for dry & chapped lips

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    Luxury Lip Balm for dry and chapped lips, Lucys Soap Kitchen, Irish Skinca

    I'm certainly noticing that the colder weather means drier skin and lips for me. I'm making sure I have Chocolate Lips, Lip Balm, in my pocket wherever I go to protect and nourish my lips. Its my little sliding tin of lip smacking goodness! Have you tried it yet? 

    It gets its chocolate colour from raw unrefined organic Cacao which looks and smells just amazing with its earthy goodness. I've also used a virgin, organic and unrefined coconut oil that also retains its wonderful coconutiness and benefical properties ! This is blended with Jojoba, Organic Castor Oil,  and unbleached Beeswax and a beautiful quality tocopherol (Vitamin E).

    Importantly for very sensitive and reactive skin I have not added any essential oils to this luxurious lip balm. The lips are part of the oral mucosa and as such are extra sensitive. Anything in contact with the mucosa is transferred much quicker into the bloodstream. This means any sensitivities or allergies will have an increased possibilty of manifesting themselves. (Incidentally, this is why Lip Balms need a separate, different cosmetic safety assessment to a skin balm. The precentages of ingredients permitted in the formula are adjusted.) 

    I love the subtle aroma of the raw cacao and coconut but it will never be a strong as a synthetic fragrance or flavour oil. So if you are wanting a 'wham, bham, knock 'em dead' aroma then this probably isnt the product for you.

    The raw cacao also gives a natural, fabulous, lip tint that I don't need lipstick with it.  You can see the rich colour in this super short slow mo pouring video.  

     

    Were you watching this licking your lips, realising just how chapped, red and sore they are? Or were you (gulp - even worse) picking at that dry skin peeling on your lips that you just can't leave alone? (It happens to the best of us......)

    If the thought of a subtle chocolate and coconut aroma, a light glossy sheen from the organic castor oil AND a natural tint sounds all too delicious, then you'll find Chocolate Lips here!

    Yes, I am applying it now.....

    Natural Lip Balm with raw cacao and beeswax, made in Ireland

  3. Behind the scenes..."Honey Bee" natural handmade soap

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    This week has included the making of my favourite handmade soap bar "Honey Bee". Honey Bee has completely natural, plant based, ingredients including unrefined organic shea butter, organic honey and finely ground, certified, gluten free oats.

    Here's a short 'behind the scenes in the soap studio' video of me cutting the soap bars and explaining this soaps skin loving qualities. (Loving the afternoon sunshine in the video!)

     

     

    Did I mention at all it was my favourite soapbar? I did?! Well here are the reasons why.

    It's gentle and extra moisturising

    Unrefined and organic shea butter is added at the end of the soap making process. This means more of the shea butter is available to 'super-fat' the soap. This is what makes a bar more gentle and less drying on the skin. Organic honey also is a natural humectant. That's quite a fancy word but just means it draws moisture to the skin.   

     It's naturally antibacterial

    The organic honey is also good for skin healing and has antibacterial properties. To keep as much of these properties within the soap, Honey Bee is blended at the lowest possible temperature. It's also kept cool during the next 24 hours so the soap doesn't overheat.

    It's skin soothing and exfoliates gently

    Honey Bee natural handmade soap also contains finely ground gluten free oats. Oats are known to be soothing to dry skin conditions. For example, many people use preparations of oats in bath water to help soothe eczema prone skin. These oats are really finely ground so that within the soap they exfoliate gently. They are certifed gluten free as for some individuals their gluten intolerance is so high that even oats cause an immune reaction.   

     It's unscented

    If you are really sensitive skinned, like me, then unscented soap bars (and skincare products in general) may be better for you on a long term use basis. 

    Is your dry and sensitive skin ready to try Honey Bee Natural Handmade Soap?

    Honey, Oats and Shea Butter Handmade Soap, Gluten free

  4. What to do when your child says "NO!" to eczema treatments

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    We have entered a new phase in our eczema home. Our co-operative toddler, who used to love to help moisturise her itchy little body, has gradually been replaced. In her place is a fiercely independent little girl of almost 4 who knows excatly what she wants, or in this case what she doesn't want!

    I appreciate that she knows her own mind, as I grew up afraid to say boo to a goose, but in this case she is saying No to something that is good for her. Moisturising her eczema skin is vital to keep it in it's current, excellent conditon. I don't want to battle her all the time so what can practically can I do to keep skin moisturised in 'sneaky ways'?!

    Use a fish oil supplement or one high in Omega oils

    There have been many studies done to show how beneficial fish can be in the early years management of eczema, allergies and hayfever. (Not only that, it's believed to be important in the management of adhd). Choose one appropriate for your child and the best quality you can realistcially afford. 

    Don't over-bathe

    Children love to spend ages in the water and it will dry out the skin especially if you've gone heavy with the bubbles. Ensuring the bath water is not too hot is helpful as heat will make exzema skin more itchy.

    Use easy, moisturising peasy, bath melts

    Children love bubble baths, but it won't do your child with eczema any good at all. Our bath melts are solid pieces of shea and cocoa butter. Just add one to warm bath and it will melt and disperse in the water. These are an absolute life line for anyone whose child says "no" eczema treatments or whom wriggles and fights so much it makes the vital moisturising stressful.

    My girls splash away in the bath with their Barbies and Thomas & Friends engines, but little do they know they are also coating their bodies with the highly moisturising and protecting plant butters. They are moisturising themselves so that I don't need to. All I need to do then is lightly pat them dry and dress. It's super easy and no battles!   

    Beacause we realise that children still want to enjoy the bath and have fun we have melted the natural plant butters and created fun bath melt shapes. A bag of Baby Buff Bath Melts will contain a mix of cars, lego men, hearts, teddy bears and dinosaurs. They are unscented so ideal for the most sensitive skinned children (and sensitive skinned adults beacuse, lets face it, a bath with a dinosaur is way more exciting!).

    The unscented "Baby Buff Bath Melts" come in a sample trial size. Click here if you'd like to try them! Be warned...you may have too much fun!

    Natural Baby Bath Melts for Dry, Itchy Skin   

  5. Our #1 bestselling, allergy friendly, "Cider & Ginger Shampoo Bar"

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    Natural, allergy friendly shampoo bar, Made in Ireland

     

    I launched the Cider & Ginger Shampoo Bar in the spring of 2016 and it has steadily been growing in popularity. It is now in 80% of the order boxes I package up each week and recently over took "Rose Blush" Natural Soap and "Nourish Bed Time Face Mousse" in my bestseller rankings!

    What makes it so popular?

    No Synthetic Ingredients

    Typically shampoo and conditioner include a lot of synthetic ingredients. Turn the back of your bottles over and read them. Many of these can do nice things for your hair but a growing number of people want to reduce these synthetic additives and find what they are terming 'cleaner' alternatives with fewer ingredients. Our shampoo bar doesn't need to contain a preservative, making it a good option for those with preservative sensitivities.    

    It Helps With Shine

    One of it's main ingredients is cider which, it turns out, is really conditioning for your hair. I found this out initially by accident after receiving feedback from a customer who had used one of my red wine soaps on her daughters hair, with brilliant results. The cider helps to lower the ph level of the shampoo bar.  

    It's Really Bubbly

    We all seem to like bubbles in our shampoo, finding easier to use and a tactile message to our brain that the product is working. It certainly does make it easier to lather and distribute through the hair. If you have mid length or long hair I recommend massaging the bubbles into your scalp, and letting the water wash the suds through the rest of your hair, as you may be more prone to dry ends.

    It's Amazing For Shaving

    Beacuse it lathers so quickly and is naturally skin conditioning it is really effct for shaving. It's a unisex product so whilst I use it myself my hubby also uses it for his daily shaving. (In fact he uses it all the time as it's his fave!). 

    Minimal 'Zero Waste' Packaging

    The Cider & Ginger Shampoo Bar is supplied in a compostable pouch made from cornstarch. Some of my customers keep it in the pouch as it goes with them to the gym and swimming pool. The corn starch bag can then go on the compost (if you compost yourself) or in the brown bin (if you live in Ireand and your council offers this facility). It will totally biodegrade if it goes into landfill. There is no plastic shampoo bottle left at the end of use!

    It's Perfect For Travel

    Being a unisex product for hair, hand and body washing, as well as shaving, the shampoo bar is ideal for any time you want to pack minimally and travel light. Being a solid bar makes it both travel friendly (no spill!) and customs friendly (no liquids).    

    Coming soon is the blog post Improving Your Scalp Health Naturally...

    Ready to try the Cider & Ginger Solid Shampoo Bar?!

    Natural Shampoo, Made in Leitrim, Ireland

     

     

     

  6. Craft Fairs & Events for Lucy's Soap Kitchen

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    Lucys Soap Kitchen, Natural Irish Skincare

    Although I primarily sell my products online via my online skincare shop, I attend a small number of events each year. They are always local to me here in Leitrim or my neighbouring counties of Longford, Roscommon, Sligo and Westmeath. It's the best way to chat face to face with customers and for you to try before you buy! I always have 'show specials' and some soap samples I give as gifts. I do love it, there is such a buzz setting up and interacting with everyone. Each year I improve on my display in some way. For 2017 I have my newly designed and printed leaflets for my safety assessed, suitable from birth, sensitive skincare  and some really fab POS (point of sale) which tell you at a glance what's in the product and why it's beneficial. They basically do my job for me and are rather gorgeous!

     Baby Safe Eczema Sensitive Skincare

     

    Lucy's Soap Kitchen, Natural Irish Allergy Free Skincare

    You can also visit The Leitrim Design House (shortlisted for Best Shops in Ireland for the last 3 years!) at The Dock in Carrick on Shannon. They have an excellent range of my natural soap and sensitive skin friendly products. Ardagh Heritage Centre in Ardagh, Co.Longford, also carry a small selection. Some products are available from the Inside Craft pop up shops taking place in Cavan, Roscommon, Leitrim and Longford this Autumn.

    Of course don't forget you can shop 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, from my online shop with the added advantage of it being delivered to your door.

    So here are the details of the craft fairs and events where you will find Lucy's Soap Kitchen in 2017. It will be added to when events are confirmed. Please follow us on facebook for up to date event details, information and a peak behind scenes. Orders can be arranged for collection at any event and I look forward to meeting you there,

    Lucy xx

     

    Wednesday 1st March 2017  - Kilronan Castle - Neven Maguire Cookery Demo from 6pm 

    Lucys-Soap-Kitchen-Leitrim-Ireland

    Friday 10 March - Southern Hotel Sligo "Sista's are Doing it forThemselves" Ladies Night  6-9 pm

    This is a free event organised by Sligo women in biz (and some Leitrim ones!) to promote their local businesses. Entertainment on the night includes female quartet NoteOrius4.

    Reserve your free ticket here  

    Friday 28th -Sunday 30th April -The Roscommon Lamb Festival, Market Square, Co. Roscommon 

    Inside Craft Pop Up Shops

     Friday August 4th to Monday August 7th - Virginia Show Centre, Co. Cavan and Wednesday 23rd for the Virgnia Show

    Friday September 22nd - Sunday 24th - Boyle Forest Park Visitors Centre, Co. Roscommon

    October 24th - November 4th - Backstage Theatre, Co. Longford

    Sunday 12th November  - Cavan Craft Fair, Hotel Kilmore 11-5.30pm

    Friday 24th & Saturday 25th November - The Providers Building, Co.Longford 10-5pm

    Inside Craft with Lucys Soap Kitchen, Longford

     

    Saturday 25th & Sunday 26th November - Belvedere House, Food & Design Winter Fair