AFTER 1 WEEK IN THE SHOWER: rectangle bar - triple milled soap from Whole Foods...round shape - OSB (Lemongrass from Organic Soap Bakery).
Handmade soap preserves the integrity of the oils/fats/butters. Coconut oil goes in, saponified (made into soap) coconut oil comes out. Shea butter goes in, shea butter comes out. Because of this, the oils/fats/butters maintain their vitamins, minerals and skin-loving qualities in the final soap product.
Glycerin is a natural skin emollient (skin softener) that attracts water from the surrounding air. Because of this, glycerin is highly prized in soaps, lotions and creams for maintaining moisture in the skin throughout the day. Animal fats and vegetable oils contain between 7-13% of glycerin as a part of their natural chemical makeup.
During the soap making process, the fats/oils and lye blend together to form soap while the natural glycerin maintains its integrity as glycerin and basically settles in between the soap molecules. Too much glycerin and the soap will become mushy and disintegrate quickly. Too little glycerin and the soap becomes very harsh and drying to the skin.
Typical store-bought soaps have had all of the glycerin removed and placed into additional products such as lotions and creams. The reason is instead of buying one product that will clean AND moisturize, (such as handmade soap) a consumer now has to buy two products to serve the same purpose, thus, an increase in profit for the company.
When profit is placed as a higher priority than quality of life, the consumer is the one who suffers. By removing the glycerin, store-bought soap takes on a skin-moisture-stripping quality that will dry the skin and leave it vulnerable to cracking and flaking. Which one would you chose?