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Smell is a sense that we use for soap. The smell is what makes us love it or leave it. Or so I thought.

I now make over 50% 'naturally scented' soaps compared to scented soaps. I don't like saying 'unscented' as it makes it sound like I forgot to add the scent. There is an awareness out there of artificial scents and I'm always quick to point out that my soaps are scented with essential oils from nature only, nothing synthetically manufactured. Despite this I get a lot of comments from customers who state they don't even like natural smells. They want a soap that cleanses and that's it. They leave the scent for a leave on product, if that. I'm reminded that clean people shouldn't smell. The overwhelming smells of people who've drenched themselves in perfume can really affect our senses quite a bit.

The more I use these naturally scented soaps myself, the more I love them. This is because a lot of essential oils, and those synthetically manufactured fragrance oils, speed up the trace of the soap batter. So you need to be reasonably fast if you are pouring those batches into lots of individual molds. I like the time to be arty with my soap - to try out complicated swirls and patterns and experiment on different pouring techniques. If I don't add essential oils I have the the time to do this. And the more I do, the more I love it.

So now when selling at local markets instead of compliments on smell, I get compliments on how the soaps look. This is what catches customers eyes in the first place, how detailed the soaps look, all with natural colourants and their own smell. Despite not being actually scented, depending on what oils and butters are used, they do have their own unique scent. Customers will always smell the essential oil ones too and love the smell, but they still buy the ones that first caught their eye.

Handmade soap has many benefits and one of them with Bare Naked Soap is no fragrance oils. These are the number one irritant for skin and one of the most potentially harmful ingredients we cone across - because they contain phthalates. Artificial fragrance oils are linked to many health issues, including allergies, eczema, psoriasis, asthma and can also be hormone disruptors. Do we really need to wash ourselves in products that send our systems into overdrive? No scent soap, unscented soap, naturally scented soap, non scent soap, whatever way you look at it, it's not nonsense, it makes perfect sense.

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