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We want to take you behind the scenes, to give you insider information you won't find anywhere else. This is where we pull Bloomington's hip happenings together with recommendations from our team, first-hand accounts from project producers, and guest blogs by local gurus.  The Backstage Blog helps you stay in front of it all.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Try something new: Make natural soap with the experts

Categories: Family Fun, General

Maybe you're a skin-care fiend, or maybe you've never given a second thought to what creepy chemicals might be living in your soap. Either way, I bet you don't know what the "volcano technique" is, or whether oatmeal or coffee (yes, coffee) is more exfoliating. You also probably don't know how cool it is to explore a local soap-making facility and then make some yourself.

Soapy Soap
Julie gets to check the temperature on our soap-to-be

You get to do just that at Soapy Soap, a local natural soap company owned by three young IU grads (actually, one is still a student). Co-owners Mohammed and Anthony gave us a tour around the facility on the near south side of town, and then a demonstration right there where they make all their fancy products, which include soaps, lip balms, and some cool carved wood items like photo frames and holders for candles or succulents (yeah, they're creative).

Soapy Soap
A giant bar of freshly made soap

These workshops are open to the public, so shoot them an email if you want an unusual, hands-on experience that you can't get anywhere else.

Soapy Soap
The finished product

You'll also learn how important it is to have the right ingredients in your soap, what's good for your skin, and how to get your hands on anti-poison ivy soap (I bought a bar the moment they mentioned it). Everyone left the workshop with two or three bars of soap that they just made, with all sorts of essential oils, exfoliators, and shapes. It's a perfect event for a weekend, a family group, a college reunion, or for anyone who wants to try something new. They sell their products right at the production facility, and you can also pick them up at retail stores around town.

Soapy Soap
Laura, our always-practical Associate Director, perfects the simple bar soap shape

Soapy SoapDanielle gets creative (she is our Graphic Designer, after all)

Abby Perfetti

Abby Perfetti