- Castile Soap
Olive oil has been used throughout the ages for skin care due to its gentle cleansing ability. Handmade Soap made from olive oil retain that mildness and go by many names.
Castile Soap has come to refer to any soap made with a high percentage of olive oil in its formula, whether a hard bar soap, or a slightly thickened liquid soap (the type of lye used will determine the form of the finished product). However, 13th century Castile Soap, named for the Castile region of Spain, was a 100% olive oil soap made by boiling the oil with plant ash and brine.
Castile Soap made with only olive oil tends to be very creamy and feel somewhat slimy. It lacks the bodacious bubbles that many people, including us at The Natural Bar Soap Company, crave.
Savon de Marseille is another type of olive oil-blend soap made in the "hot-process," milled tradition of the Marseille region of France.
Hot process soaps are often made in a slow cooker or oven, undergoing hours of cooking and stirring time. This creates a bar that is instantly usable (no cure time required), but they typically lack the smooth, consistent texture that cold process soaps have.
Bastille Soap is a more recently invented term used to describe olive oil soap that contains a large percentage of olive oil in the base recipe, but includes a blend of other oils as well that can help with the finished qualities of the bar soaps; namely hardness, conditioning/moisturizing ability, type of lather, and quantity/quality of bubbles.
Making soaps from a blend of oils allows the soap maker to have more control over the qualities in the finished bars.
The majority of the handmade soaps our Soap Alchemist makes are of the Bastille-type, and are hard, smooth, cold-process olive oil soap bars.
They contain a blend of olive oil, sustainable palm oil and coconut oil which creates long lasting, firm bars with an abundance of creamy, luscious bubbles.
We offer Bastile-type olive oil soap that is hypoallergenic and fragrance free, as well as many varieties that contain only natural ingredients; pure essential oils, Certified 100% natural fragrance oils and/or dried botanicals for beautiful scents and textures.