Keeping Your Winter Skin Hydrated.

Skin, Uncategorized

If you are finding that the cooler seasons suck your skin dry of moisture, you are not alone! We all get the winter skin blues and experience the tight, flaky dryness that comes with the season. During winter the humidity levels drop, meaning the moisture from your skin evaporates for more quickly – especially when exposed to windy conditions! Indoor heating and long, hot showers may feel like blissful escapes from the cold, but they, too, are actually stripping your skin and mucous membranes of their good oils! So, while there is little chance at avoiding these conditions (unless you can afford a three month holiday every year… in which case, avoid away!), you can at least protect yourself from the worst of it by following these few simple steps.

  1. Scrub away the dead skin cells. When we go from heated rooms to freezing outdoors, our skin becomes dehydrated and flakey. Since we are usually covered from head to toe in clothing to stay warm, the dead skin cells build up and are trapped underneath. If you have oily skin you could scrub once or twice a week, if you have dry skin you might stretch it out to every fortnight. Our Pharmaoil scrub is made with sea salt and plant oils which work to really buff the skin smooth and hydrate it at the same time.
  2. Cleanse gently. Since winter tends to leave us dry, you don’t want to over clean your skin and make the problem worse by removing the good, natural oils and throwing out the balance. We highly recommend the Absolute Avocado soap, which has more oil than any of our other soaps, to softly pull away dirt, sweat and makeup. Avocado is also naturally antibacterial, so it’s a good choice for many skin conditions.
  3. Hydrate… immediately. Straight after you bathe your pores are open and your skin is supple. This is the prime time to moisturise because it will be absorbed far more deeply than if you applied it to dry skin. For this reason, it’s important to be wary of what ingredients you are applying to your skin in this time frame. Our Pharmaoil Skin Therapy is made of 100% pure plant oils and does not contain any preservatives or additives, so you can use as much as you like without a worry! Your skin will love you for the healthy serving of essential fatty acids and vitamin E.
  4. Drink up. Nothing will save you from the dryness more than drinking lots of water! We know it’s a lot harder to keep up with when it’s cold than when it’s hot and you’re actually thirsty, but this will be the key factor in bright, radiant skin all year round. Also aim to eat more foods that contain “good fats”, especially omega 3 fatty acids, to keep your skin cells soft and flexible!

Mother’s Day

business, donations, ethics, Uncategorized

The point of this day can get a bit lost in the fluff of flowers & chocolates, but deep down it’s not just another hallmark holiday; it’s a chance to celebrate and empower women.

It’s an acknowledgment of the strength it takes to raise a family (or the choice not to), build a valuable career, pursue unique dreams or to live any particular way of life as a woman in this world which still struggles widely with issues of equality. As a small business run almost entirely by women, we value the importance of encouragement and support for each other. Not everyone does things the same way, but it’s about accepting that and embracing our differences – not fighting them!

We wanted to do something different this Mother’s Day to support and share those values, so we decided to partner up with The Beauty Bank – An amazing team who take in donations to create gift packs for people in need who wouldn’t normally be able to treat themselves to little luxuries like shampoo & candles.

Nice soap is one of those things that few people buy for themselves, but we all know it makes for a great gift. This means a lot people come in to shop with us for unique presents to give their relatives or friends (and often leave with a cheeky piece for themselves!). But what if for a few extra dollars with your purchase you could pay a soap forward to a woman who is a victim of domestic violence? Or a teenage girl who has to wear the same uniform all week because her parents can’t afford spares? We like to think that you would do it.

So as of now & for the next few weeks, when you come to visit one of our shops or you browse our website, you have the option to pay a soap forward. You buy a soap, we put it in the donation basket, The Beauty Bank packs it up for someone they believe it will bring a little light of joy to. Simple!

It’s a chance for you to treat the women in your life, as well as women you’ve never met, to something a little bit special that might just be the sign of support that they needed!

Leadbeater’s Possum Awareness Week

donations, ethics, Uncategorized
Monday March 28th until Sunday 3rd April 2016 is the Leadbeater’s Possum awareness week – a time for learning and sharing about this precious endangered species.

The tiny Leadbeater’s Possum was presumed extinct by 1960, simply because none had been seen for 50 years. Then, in 1961, a single possum was rediscovered by naturalist Eric Wilkinson near Marysville, 90 minutes east of Melbourne – a long way from it’s original habitat in Gippsland! In 1968 it was made the official faunal emblem of Victoria.   Also known as Fairy Possum, the Leadbeater’s Possum is a tiny, nocturnal creature with large eyes and a long tail measuring around 10 to 15cm in length. It requires old growth eucalypt trees with established hollows for its home.

poss

Due to the effects of logging and the Black Saturday bush fires, much of the Possums natural habitat has been lost. With numbers as low as 1500, they have been declared as critically endangered.

How you can help them:

  • Buy some Donation Soap from us – Profits go to the Friends of Leadbeater’s Possum inc. who are a team of volunteers working hard at preserving and protecting our little furry friends. You can also join them to help out on one of their projects.

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Happy Leadbeater’s Possum awareness week!

Donation Soap – For a Feel Good Clean

business, donations, ethics, Uncategorized

Here at The Australian Natural Soap Company we believe in giving back to the community. We are a small growing business ourselves and we understand the importance of receiving support and encouragement from those around us, so we came up with a concept that allows us to do that kindness for others.

With the release of our Donation Soap in late 2015 came the opportunity to raise awareness and funding for not-for-profit organizations that we see as the positive change makers of the modern world. We are passionate about doing the right thing when it comes to environmental and animal welfare issues, so these are the kind of groups we had in mind to work with.

Our first partnership for this project was a small team of dedicated volunteers who run the Goongerah Wombat Orphanage in Far East Gippsland.

Brians Burrow

Wombats are one of the beautiful Australian animals that fall victim to our roads all too often. Many drivers do not pay enough attention on the roads that pass through bush land that is home to many native creatures, resulting in unfortunate deaths and injuries of our treasured wildlife.

The Goongerah Wombat Orphanage is devoted to saving the lives of the injured and orphaned wombats that survive these accidents. Their work is endless and tiresome, but is fuelled by love and passion. The care of furry orphans from the wild entails unique methods for providing them with the food, bedding and medicine that they need in their vulnerable state of separation from the pouch.

Baby Wombats

Sometimes there are orphans so young they barely have fur, so it really is like taking in a baby! At this age they require very regular feeding and temperature control, which means many sleepless nights and constant attention from the carers. The milk formula that sustains the little ones is about $150 per five kilos. As they grow they are introduced to oats and sweet potatoes, which become their staple diet along with munching on grass.
They start out sleeping in handmade pouches until they are old enough to begin the move outside where bales of hay are provided for the big kids and any grown ups that have been released who return now and then when times are tough.
So, what these carers have taken on is months of expensive milk formula per orphan and maybe years of oats and vegetables to fill the always hungry wombat bellies, plus bedding and vet bills when health issues arise – all out of their own pocket!

Wombats

So that, friends, is why we chose to donate to the Goongerah Wombat Orphanage and we are proud to have raised $336 through the sales of our Donation Soap in store and online. With many thanks from the GWO, and us, we hope that you will continue to support our endeavour to raise awareness and funding for those who are courageous enough to bring positive change into the world around them.

Business has the power to promote change

business, ethics, Skin

With our business going through a significant growth spurt, we thought it a good time to develop a mission statement. I remember learning about mission statements in my Masters in Communication Management and not really getting the importance.

Now I do.

I am a firm believer that business has the ability, even the responsibility, to bring about change. Change that is for the better.

Before we began making our soaps, I was uncomfortable with the fact that I had no idea about what I was putting on my skin. I began researching more into it and got up to speed on issues such as palm oil, animal testing, parabens, micro-plastics and sulfates. Realising that there was very little on the market that we wanted in our bathroom cabinet, we decided to start making our own skincare and soap.

I am a big believer that small changes – something as simple as using a more ethical soap — by many can cause real and significant change. The growing success of our business suggests that I am not alone. And this makes me so happy.

Our business was founded on strong ethics and we believe we are only as good as those ethics. And now as we begin to grow we need to ensure that everyone associated with the Australian Natural Soap Company – from employees, to suppliers, to wholesalers, share these values. And this is why we feel it’s the right time to produce our mission statement.

One of the areas of our business that we’re excited about is our partnerships with not-for-profits and organisations that align with our own values.

For a few months now, we’ve had a product partnership with the Orangutan Project. When we first came up with the idea of donating $1 for every $2 tester bar sold to this incredible organisation, I wondered whether we’d be able to raise anything significant. But it’s amazing how something small, supported by many, can grow. We have already donated more than $1,000 and will keep raising money for the Orangutan Project as we get bigger.

And we have lots more ideas in the pipeline to help other amazing organisations that do equally important work. We always have to be careful that we don’t over extend ourselves. But this is a big reason why we got into this business and one of the most rewarding parts of it.

It’s been a wonderful experience drafting our mission statement and we can’t wait to share it with you… so stay tuned.
– Emma ✌️

orangutanproject

Father’s Day Gift Ideas

Skin

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Can you believe it’s only 3 weeks until Father’s Day!!! We’re already getting lots of people in our store a bit perplexed about what they should get so I thought I’d tell you about some of our best sellers for Dad:

Special release Father’s Day Beer Soap: It’s only been a few days since we released our beer soap and already it is selling like hotcakes. It’s not just a novelty soap, beer is actually an amazing natural ingredient for the skin… but we’re also sure a lot of Dads out there would love the idea of bathing in the amber ale.

Beard Grooming & Aftershave Oil: Combining argan with sweet almond & rice bran oils, this will tame even the shaggiest of beards. The argan is also very soothing on the skin and helps with irritation so it makes a great aftershave oil as well. We also flavour it with spearmint, cedarwood and cinnamon so it smells absolutely amazing.

Beard Soap: Our Beard Soap not only shampoos but conditions the beard leaving it soft & silky. It also soothes irritation. Definitely one to tame the beardruff and also soften a wiry beard.

Shaving Soap: Our shaving soap provides a rich, conditioning lather that will reduce nicks & cuts. The natural oils also leaves skin beautifully moisturised. So much better than the concoction of chemicals we’ve grown used to with shaving creams that come in aerosols.

Soap on a Rope: Soap on a Ropes used to once upon a time be THE THING to give Dad for Father’s Day but then they just got plain uncool…. Well we’re here to bring the soap on a rope back in a big way. Ours look a lot more rustic than the olden day ones and feel amazing on the skin. And what more, they are really practical – making sure your soap remains nice and drained. Don’t forget to put in check out (if ordering online) what soap you would like to give Dad on a rope.

Gift Packs including True Love For Him Gift Pack: Our True Love for Him Gift Pack includes True Love for Him & four complementing natural soaps. Lemon & Lime for calming, Peppermint & Pumice for exfoliation, Cedarwood for aroma & Sandalwood as a cleanser. Our True Love For Him soap in particular smells absolutely amazing.

We also have a lot of other gift packs at our special Father’s Day section at our website.

With all this and more on offer, we’ve really got you covered this Father’s Day.

– Emma ✌️

Why we love using Australian sea salt in our products.

ethics, Skin

new scrub

In this colder weather, we’re often asked in our shop what we would recommend as a natural exfoliant to help smooth the skin.

We firmly believe that natural Australian sea salt is one of the best things you can use on the skin. And it definitely beats plastic microbeads that are used in many cosmetics and are terrible for marine life.

Sea salt is the most effective natural exfoliant around. Unlike table salt, which is heavily processed after being mined from salt deposits, sea salt is made when seawater is left to evaporate helping to retain its natural mineral composition.

Sea salt is full of natural minerals, including magnesium, potassium, calcium, and sodium chloride – all of which hold many benefits for skin. Calcium helps unblock pores. Potassium works to energise skin and help balance moisture levels. And magnesium helps soothe damaged skin. It also has the ability to penetrate the deeper layers of your skin to help repair damaged skin cells.

Our sister company, Pharmaoil, has a natural scrub, which combines Australian sea salt with 12 plant-derived oils to become a powerful exfoliant that helps improve skin in three different ways.

Firstly, massaging it onto the skin helps remove dead skin cells, which can make your skin flaky and dry. Secondly, it helps improve circulation, while removing bacteria and unclogging pores. And thirdly, by removing dead skin cells, it promotes regeneration of new skin cells, which can help tighten your skin and even out skin tone.

We also use Australian sea salt in our bath salts, which are great for this colder weather.

We’re also working on a sea salt soap, which we’re very excited about so stay tuned!!

Winter Warmers

Skin

AK2Q2239Emma says….

It’s been a little while since I’ve blogged. To be honest, I’ve been finding it difficult to write in this super cold weather that most of Australia is experiencing at the moment.

Winter can be some of the toughest months for our skin. Heating can be extremely drying and we generally don’t spend as much time outside. We often get asked in the shop about what are our best soaps and skincare for these colder months so I thought I’d share with you my top recommendations:

For the body:

Peppermint & Lavender Bath Salts:  For those lucky enough to have a bath, our bath salts are the perfect natural alternative to synthetic bubble bath. We combine West Australian sea salt with magnesium salt and pure peppermint and lavender oil. It will not only clean and moisturise your skin but will help soothe muscle aches.

Peppermint & Pumice Soap: For those without a bath, there’s a reason why this is our best selling soap in winter. The pumice (ground volcanic rock) is an exfoliator. The peppermint oil is invigorating and warming. And we use West Australian olive oil, which is moisturising and softening. It’s the perfect soap to use for that early morning shower when it looks way too cold to be stepping outside.

Pharmaoil Skin Therapy: Our sister company, Pharmaoil, produces an amazing body oil if I do say so myself. It makes a 100% natural moisturiser actually possible. It combines 12 plant oils including coconut, avocado, macadamia, rice bran and rose hip – oils that are similar to your own natural oils. It doesn’t sit on the skin, it absorbs. Use a small amount twice a day to combat the drying effects winter can bring for your skin.

For the Face:

Absolute Avocado Cleanser: What? I hear the sceptics say… use a soap on your face? Won’t that dry your skin? I’d agree with you if you were going to be putting a supermarket-bought soap on your face. But this is soap as you’ve never felt it before. This signature soap is made from 100% virgin avocado oil which we source from Queensland. Avocado oil is the richest plant oil that you can put on your skin. It gets deep into your skin and moisturises from within. And if that’s not enough, we put an extra 25% avocado oil in there to make it our most moisturising soap. It’s like velvet on the skin and it’s not going to feel oily like mineral oils do. Most even say you don’t have to moisturise afterwards!

Pharmaoil Daily Mist: Our Daily Mist is best used as a toner between cleansing and moisturising. It uses a range of floral waters such as sandalwood, rose, neroli and witch hazel extract. It doesn’t use the heavy alcohols like a lot of other toners so it doesn’t strip your skin of its natural oils. It’s also great as a make-up remover.

Pharmaoil Intensive Skin Drops for Dry Skin: Our Dry Skin Drops are all you need for moisturising your face this winter. We combine a range of plant oils, including some beautiful smelling essential oils, that will work with your natural oils to moisturise your skin. It won’t sit on the skin, it will absorb, so it’s not going to feel oily like the mineral oils. And as a bonus, you can use it instead of a hand cream. Just a drop in the morning and night, will help soften your hands.

I think I’m going to treat myself to a bath right now!

A completely natural skincare regime made possible.

business, Skin

Did you know that The Australian Natural Soap Company has a sister company? Pharmaoil is our natural skincare range that is also certified cruelty free, vegan and palm oil free.

The philosophy is the same as our soaps – we use only natural plant oils, getting away from the creams and moisturisers that require the preservatives and chemicals. The plant oils we use are similar to your skin’s natural oils so they don’t sit on the skin, they absorb and are packed with minerals and vitamins

Pharmaoil’s moisturiser, for example, is actually a body oil. It combines 12 natural plant oils such as coconut, avocado, macadamia, rose hip, evening primrose and jojoba.

Having both Pharmaoil and The Australian Natural Soap Company means that we can offer a complete skincare regime that is also completely natural.

Pharmaoil_300x250_Animated_V2

From journalist, speechwriter… to soap maker??

business

Emma says… To think less than two years ago, I was making soaps in our kitchen. I was writing speeches for the Foreign and Trade Ministers by day and by night I was experimenting with a new type of creativity that involved scent and texture – it was the start of a love affair with natural plant oils for the skin.

My partner and I had talked for a while about starting a business – still not sure how a doctor and a journalist by training ended up in the soap business… but it kind of all just happened. Like most people we didn’t really think that much about soap but once we started making it and I started researching it, I think I had a light bulb moment where I realised how fundamental soap was to our modern lives and yet how unethical the whole production of commercially available soap was. Not to mention, how bad it actually was for your skin.

The journalist in me did an incredible amount of research on skin care and plant oils (It’s also handy having a doctor as my right-hand man who has an incredible understanding of chemistry and skin). Most of my research focussed on Australian oils. I had a hunch that these oils would be great for the skin and having travelled the country as a journalist with SBS and having written a lot of speeches on our first rate agricultural sector, I was biased.

We also started sharing our concoctions with family and friends and the response was so positive that I started believing that there was a business in this…

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