There is a huge controversy that surrounds certain ingredients in handcrafted soaps and bath products. One of these is the use of palm oil.
So, for me, there is a little back story. I have been blessed to have been able to travel and live in many different countries through my husband's job and my own. He has worked high level security abroad and I was a flight attendant. Trust me! As glamorous as it may sound and as much as I loved it, it was still a fast paced and intense job that really wasn't all that glamorous. :) Neither job was.
Some of those countries are actually the endangered areas that the plants harvested for palm is located. I had to take a long hard look at my beliefs, my convictions, and what is my truth. So, big breath here as I know a lot of people feel so strongly about this issue.
I use palm in my soaps and some of my other products. But I am careful to use responsibly resourced round table palm oil. While it is quite a mouthful my research has shown me that is the best way for me to help the world around me. I have seen first hand the struggles people have just to obtain water and food in some of these countries. Homes are often 3 walls, dirt floors, a maybe a roof. Their backs appear broken but not their spirit most of the time. I can help the small farmer provide better for their families by purchasing from RSVO.
And the great thing is that RSVO helps to fight deforestation and, in my opinion, helps both our fellow mankind and the animals in the forest. So, my personal research has lead me to believe this is a kind and gentle choice for ingredients for me.
You can find out more information for yourself at https://www.rspo.org/about
I believe part of the joy in making handcrafted items is to impact the world around you in as positive a way as possible.
Willow Bella Soaps is a small, family owned and ran business located in the beautiful coastline of the Grand Strand in South Carolina with roots in the equally beautiful mountains of West Virginia where I met my husband in school many years ago and where we grew up.
Both places hold our hearts captive with family, friends, and memories so we often joke we have one foot each placed in two different states.
"What were your hopes for creating your soap business?" asks Bee of Sorcery Soaps
"That I can make a living doing something that brings me such joy. It sounds like such a simple answer, but it isn’t.
I had been searching for a while for something I could do to create and make some extra money that would allow me to spend time with my daughter and granddaughter. And maybe something they could help me with one day. They both have health problems, not major, but enough that it oftentimes can complicate life. So I needed something with flexibility and something I would love to do without getting bored. A much bigger feat than it would seem.
I had tried woodworking, baking, painting; a lot of things. I jumped from one thing to the next, leaving chaos in my wake. Lots of half-finished projects still laugh at me in the garage and the attic.
But when I started making bath products it was like coming home from a long journey. There is a peace when I am at my lab, a part of me that only comes alive here. All the pieces of my life kind of fell into place and finally made sense, and I am so thankful. I could not imagine doing anything else." replies Sharon of Willow Bella Soaps
An excerpt from a written interview with Bee @ Sorcery Soap, a dear friend and pioneer in the field of soap making and soap dough. To find out more about me and my journey you can find the interview at https://sorcerysoaps.com/blogs/soap-interviews/interview-of-sharon-boyd-chapman-of-willow-bella