How are Leaf and Lore soaps made?  

Our soaps are crafted via the “melt and pour” method which begins with a high-quality, ready-made base and includes the addition of the special formulation of essential oils, herbs, and natural colorants that make our soaps truly unique. All Leaf and Lore soaps start with a premium base from SFIC, a manufacturer of luxury soap products since 1967. From Concord, California, SFIC soap bases are made of the “finest quality glycerin soap made the old-fashioned way and adjusted for crafters' use.” Bases use a natural vegetable oil recipe, palm oil sourced from companies that comply with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, food grade oils (originating from plants) farmed by sustainable growers, and non-GMO raw materials. They are hypo-allergenic, non-comedogenic, biodegradable, vegan, gluten free, soy free, SLS and SLES free, not tested on animals, and they contain no animal products. SFIC Website

Is soap made with the "melt and pour" method considered handcrafted?   

Yes! Beginning with a ready-made soap base allows the soap maker to focus on artistic, aesthetic and/or other beneficial aspects of the soap. The Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild recognizes any soap made by cold/hot process OR melt and pour process as “handcrafted” as long as at least 50% of the process, from creating the soap to additives and embellishments and on to the final packaging, is done by hand. HSCG Handcrafted Soap Definition

Why should I purchase handcrafted soap?

Handcrafted soap is manufactured in small batches with the personal oversight and care of the soap maker. At Leaf and Lore, we use high-quality ingredients and add essential oils and natural colorants to make our own unique soaps. 

True soaps are the result of a chemical reaction between vegetable or animal fats, water and lye. When combined, they transform into soap and glycerin, with no lye remaining in the soap. Glycerin is a humectant, which means that it attracts and retains moisture on your skin; it is a natural by-product of the soapmaking process. Most commercial soap manufacturers remove the glycerin from soap, process it, and then sell it to other industries where it's used in pharmaceuticals, foods, cosmetics and other products. With handcrafted soap, glycerin remains in the bar. The end result is a mild, pure soap that gently cleanses your skin without being harsh, irritating or drying. (Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild, Inc. Why Handcrafted Soap?. Saratoga Springs, NY: 2021)

Furthermore, by buying handcrafted soaps, you are supporting a small business, and in our case, one that is female managed.  When you use a bar of handcrafted soap from Leaf and Lore, you can be assured that it was made with joy and love. If you are interested in learning more, check out this short video created by the Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild: Why Handcrafted Soap?

Since the essential oil products are made from natural plant essences, is it safe to use them on any part of my body? What about ingesting them?

Leaf and Lore products are made with high-quality essential oils. Although essential oils are natural, they are potent and should only be used as directed. Even mixed with carrier oils like jojoba, some oils may cause skin irritation in some people. We recommend always performing a small skin patch test before continued topical use. Discontinue immediately if reaction or irritation occurs. Our products should not be ingested or come into contact with the eyes. Because of the potency of essential oils, our products are not suitable for use by children or during pregnancy/while breastfeeding. Also, always keep them out of the reach of children and pets. 

FDA Disclaimer - the information we provide (regarding essential oils and other herbal products) has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent any disease. The information on our website and customer testimonials are for educational purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical professional.

How do I maximize the shelf life of Leaf and Lore products?

  • Herbal Balms - store out of extreme temperatures and direct sunlight.
  • Essential Oil Blends and Perfume Oils – store in a cool, dry location away from sunlight with caps tightly closed.
  • Soaps - Since the ingredients in handcrafted soaps attract moisture, keep soap dry and away from water as much as possible when not in use. Hang soap in our Sisal SOAP SAVER Pouch to keep it dry and extend the life of bar. 

Why do my products have an expiration date?

As with most cosmetics, once opened, products mix with oxygen giving bacteria a greater chance to contaminate them. Because of this, products are recommended to be used no longer than one year after opening, especially Herbal Balms. The expiration date listed is approximately a year after expected opening. For best results on maximizing shelf life, please refer to the answers in the previous question.

Why is there a batch number on each product?

We keep track of each batch made and individual ingredients used to make it along with the name of each person who purchases a product from that batch. If the essential oil manufacturer issues a recall, for instance, we can tell exactly which products are affected so that we can contact you immediately.