Crafted Cosmetics and Spark have teamed up for a New Year giveaway. Early in January 2018, one lucky follower will receive a Blackcurrant and Cream hamper which consists of a Natural Handcrafted Soap, a Shampoo and Body Wash, a Room Deodorant and a Natural Body Butter.
Spark met up with Crafted Cosmetics’ director, Wendy Sippel, to chat about their products, their base ingredients and how they can help their customers to live healthier and more waste free lives.
Crafted Cosmetics soaps are made from a blend of goat’s milk, saponified coconut oil, clay, vegetable glycerine and raw honey, which means they are generally safer for people who struggle with eczema and psoriasis. As clay based soaps, they are hot processed. This means that once you have your soap mixture warm and melted, you can reduce the heat of the substance. You can carefully monitor the process by adding the botanicals when you have reached an optimal cooling temperature.
“The value of this is that the volatiles and the healing properties of your essential oils are not lost in the process,” Wendy explains. “Especially because we use ingredients like African ginger in our soaps and our creams, we are very concerned about the fact that it must be as unprocessed and as natural as possible”.
Crafted Cosmetics’ products are also SLES free. Sodium laureth ether sulfate or sulphides are detergents and anionic surfactants. “Now the history of it,” Wendy adds, but pauses: “let’s take you back 300 years”. People made soap with lard and lye, or what we call caustic sodas. When you are making soap and you mix together your alkalis and your acids, you create a natural substance that lathers. “People discovered this a long, long time ago,” she continues. With natural soap-making you have a neutral pH, which is what you want when you are washing your body.
Wendy explains that in the 1950s, with the rise of super consumerism in America, mass production of products literally went through the roof and chemists began to look at ways to make products more attractive to the consumer. “Suddenly everything was consumer driven, everything was about what things looked like, what things smelled like and how things behaved. Together with this you have this advertising drive of ‘oh, look how our soap lathers’. Surfactants don’t necessarily clean, but we were fooled into believing it,” she continues.
Wendy explains that SLES, as a surfactant, can be extremely damaging: “It is detrimental to your skin and what really worries me is how detrimental it is to the environment. People don’t realise that once they have finished washing their faces, once they have finished putting their cream on and they have gone into the shower, it goes into our aquatic systems. It is all that stuff that goes into our drains which ends up in our rivers.”
Wendy explains that it is not only sewerage which we need to be worried about, but all sorts of other products people are completely unaware of. “I think we need to make them aware of it. What you put on your face ends up in your river and you have to be concerned about it,” she adds earnestly. “There needs to be some kind of consequence; we have to change,” she adds. “If we don’t change now, we are absolutely going to destroy ourselves.”
Another way Crafted Cosmetics is actively trying to lighten their impact on the environment is through their eco-card system. If you return any of their glass or plastic packaging, regardless of size, you get R5 discount immediately. They re-use some of the packaging, but they also recycle the plastics which cannot be repurposed. If you return 10 pieces of packaging, you will receive a R50 discount on your next purchase – saving your money and the environment. Crafted Cosmetics products can be found at Crossings and Ilanga Mopani Pharmacy, Earthwise and at Earth & Soul in Mbombela.