A stack of soap bars on a soap dish, on the edge of a bath

Australian Made Castile Soap

A Cleaner Way Forward

As with most Shire House Farm’s products, we believe in the product speaking for itself in its simplicity, natural make up and goodness. So we take great joy in producing hand made, cold pressed, castile soaps with our botanical ingredients. Taking things back to basics, for good reason, we use premium quality extra virgin olive oil which helps to provide a luxuriously, soft feel when the bar of soap is foaming in your hands, under water. Without a drop of palm oil in sight, as we don’t use nasty ingredients. We use our hydrosols for the water element, which contain approximately 1% of essential oils. Though this does not sound like much, and the aroma is not strong, it is present and creating a subtle balance of antibacterial properties without being over powering.

A bar of soap on the edge of a bath

So Let’s Break It Down A Bit

Soaps need sodium hydroxide to create the foam when wetting, and without it, the bar of soap would not hold together easily. Mixing the sodium hydroxide with distilled water is where it made sense to use our hydrosols. So we have created a lavender soap, a rosemary soap and a lemon pelargonium soap, all of which use our floral waters from the distillation of our plants for their essential oils. They have a small amount of essential oil, which have the added benefit of being antibacterial, anti-fungal and gentle on the skin. 

The extra virgin olive oil is a wonderful ingredient to include. Sourced locally to our farm, we can keep the carbon footprint low rather than import the oil. There are many imported olive oils on the market in Australia, so it’s wonderful to have access to such a vital ingredient, on our doorstep. Extra virgin olive oil allows the soap to feel gentle on skin and does not strip your skin of its natural oils. It moisturises your skin, leaving it feeling smooth and soft. Olive oil is naturally rich in antioxidants, which help protect the skins surface.

We add salts and florals in some of our soaps. This provides a gentle exfoliation, and a bit of pizazz! We use Murray River Salts natural washed salt, ground down for comfort and sprinkled into the soap mixture. Sometimes we mix our florals in as well, such as lavender buds or rosemary leaves or pelargonium flowers.

Flowering lavender

              A rosemary sprig in flower                             Flowering pelargonium

Packaging and Environment

We chose to use simple wraps for our soaps, for a number of reasons. Where possible, we want our product to speak for itself, so we try and choose packaging to suit. A simple wrap, made from Australian made recycled paper that is recyclable and printed with vegetable based ink, it’s hard to get more simple than that. As with many of our products, we like that you can see what you’re getting. If it has florals or exfoliating salt in it, you’ll be able to see it as the wrap does not cover the whole bar of soap. We worked with a local printer, Chase Print, who understood and agreed with our environmental values, suggesting a particular paper type that would suit. So we have an Australian made, recycled paper that we can be proud to say is of minimal impact on the environment. 

The wrap also helps to keep the cost of the soap down, which is better for your pocket and a reduced process in manufacturing, as it’s just print and cut. No glues involved, and no plastic. The packaging can be put in your recycling bin, your compost bin or your worm farm as brown food. Did you know that some shiny boxes have a synthetic coating that is not recommended for recycling?

Bar of soap

It is important to us

It is so important to us to keep our product as close to ‘local & sustainable, naturally’ as we can. When you buy our soap, you know you are buying an Australian made product, made by, owned by, grown in – it is all local, in Victoria. When you buy our soap, you know the ingredients are natural and pure. The olives and our botanicals are organically grown, without any chemicals interfering during growth or production of any product. And because of this, the soap feels lovely to wash with and should be used regularly once you have it rather than saved for a special occasion. The shelf life is not years down the track, as there are no preservatives in the product, they are natural ingredients, and therefore should be treated as such – use and enjoy once purchased. We recommend keeping the soap in an airy space between uses, to increase its quality.

Use It And Love It

When you use Shire House Farm’s soap, we’d love to hear what you think of it – how it feels to use, how your hands feel after using it, if you like the look of it and agree with the packaging. Any feedback we get is so very helpful, and you can get involved in shaping our future!

And if you subscribe to our email list, you won’t be spammed, but you will be the first to know of new and exciting products being introduced. So, join our journey!

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