Handmade Soaps

Great Gifts

Everything Else

Artists

Knitters

Quilters

Home :: FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

Soap Shed FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

Handmade Soap Process and Ingredients
What's in your handmade soap?
Do you test on animals?
Are Soap Shed Soaps "cruelty free"?
Do you use any animal products in your soaps?
What are"superfatted" soaps, and are yours superfatted?

Allergies and Sensitivities to Soap and Fragrance
I'm allergic to fragrance. Do you have any soap for me?
I have sensitive skin - Will I be able to use your soap?
What's the best way for someone with sensitive skin to try your products?

Soap Bar Size, Use and Storage
What's the size of your soap?
How long does a bar of your soap typically last?
What should I do to make my soap last longer?
How long does your Soap stay Fresh?
How should we store our year's worth of soap?
What is the "white powder" on top of some of your bars?
Why don't you make round soap or molded soap?
Can I use your soap to wash my hair?

Ordering Our Products
Can I Order by Phone?
Can I Order by Mail or Fax?
What are your business hours?
What kind of Credit Cards can I use?
Can I pay COD?
Do you take PayPal?
Do you accept checks?
Do I need to create an account to buy from your store?
Do you have a catalogue?

Shipping, Return Policies and Product Guarantee
How is my order shipped?
When will my order be shipped?
Will you ship to International Locations?
My order was damaged in shipping. What should I do?
How do I file a claim if my order arrives damaged?
What is your return policy?
I received your soap as a gift. Can I exchange it?
Do you guarantee your products?

Wholesale, Fundraising and Office Parties
Do you sell your soap wholesale to other stores?
Can our Non-Profit group use your soap as a fundraiser?
Can a non-Business Owner sell your soaps?

Weddings, Showers and Gift Baskets
Do you do guest favors for Weddings?
Do you do favors for Bridal and Baby Showers?
Do you create custom gift baskets?

What makes Soap Shed Soaps so great?





Handmade Soap Process and Ingredients

What's in your handmade soap?
We use a base recipe of four oils: Olive, Castor, Coconut and Palm Oils. We refer to soaps made using our four oil recipe as Regular Recipe Soaps. To increase the moisturizing ability of our soaps we sometimes add goat milk (we have 65+ varieties of goat milk soap), or shea and cocoa butters (we have about 25 fragrances of shea soaps). These three levels of moisture will take care of most skin types. We even make 100% Olive Oil Castile soap and Grandma's Ole Lye Soap made with lard. To learn more about what's in our handmade soaps, please visit our Ingredients page.

Do you test on animals?
No, we never test our products on animals. We've always tested them on friends, family, thousands of customers and other enthusiastic volunteers who were excited about trying out new products.

Are Soap Shed Soaps "cruelty free"?
We do not use animal products that result in the death of that animal for the primary use in making our product. All our soaps are vegetable oil based except for two: Grandma's Old Timey Lye Soap which is made with lard, and our Dirty Dog Shampoo Bar, which has about 30% lard.

Do you use any animal products in your soaps?
Yes, we do. We use goat milk in over fifty soaps, and make the two soaps with lard - Grandma's Lye Soap and Dirty Dawg Shampoo Soap - mentioned above. All other soaps are vegetable based and contain no animal products.

What are"superfatted" soaps, and are yours superfatted?
Superfatting a soap means that the amount of lye used has been reduced, so that there is extra oil that is not turned into soap. These extra oils are then available for your skin to make use of, in addition to the glycerine for their moisturizing properties. Soap Shed Soaps contain a lot of extra oils that act as lotion - often called saponifiables - and this is one of the reasons that Soap Shed Soaps feel so wonderful on your skin.

Return to Menu



Allergies and Sensitivities to Soap and Fragrance

I'm allergic to fragrance - Do you have any soap for me?
Yes, we make unscented versions of every soap we make, from our 100% Olive Oil Castile Soap, to our goat milk and shea butter soaps. You may detect a slight odor in some of our unscented soaps due to the natural ingredients used, especially unscented goatmilk or soaps with cocoa butter. If you purchase both unscented and scented soaps in an order, the shipping box will have a scent to it, but since each soap is wrapped separately, your unscented soap will not absorb scent from other soaps while being shipped. Please order conservatively with your first order because we do not accept returns of soap simply because you think you might like one of 129 other scents more than what you ordered! And that includes our unscented soaps as well.
Take a look at our Unscented Soaps.

I have sensitive skin and can't use most soaps. Will I be able to use yours?
Yes, most likely you will be able to use our soaps because they are incredibly mild and gentle. Most commercial soaps are detergent based, using lots of synthetic ingredients, and that's what usually causes skin reactions. That's very different from how we make our soaps. We don't use any artificial colorants, hardeners, latherers or preservatives. We are not aware of anyone who is unable to use our soaps. If you have allergies to fragrance, then we suggest you either select scents derived from 100% natural 'Essential Oils' or an unscented soap. We make about 40 soaps using essential oils, and also make an unscented version of every soap we make, just for people like you.
Take a look at our Unscented Soaps.

What's the best way for someone with sensitive skin to try your products?
If you've experienced problems with other products, we recommend that you start with our unscented soaps and test yourself. Select the moisture level you need, and do a test. If you are pleased with our unscented soap, but really want to have a scented soap, then try one of our soaps scented with a natural essential oil. If all goes well, perhaps you can then try one of our soaps made with fragrance oils. We use very high quality fragrances that you may be able to tolerate, even if you haven't been able to tolerate fragranced products from other makers. You'll have to be the judge on what is best for you. However - as we state clearly on our Unscented Soaps category page, our vegetable oil soaps will still have the natural odor of vegetable oils, milks and butters! If you cannot tolerate the smell of olive oil, for example - please don't order our soaps!
Take a look at our Unscented Soaps.

Return to Menu



Soap Bar Size and Use

What's the size of your soap?
Our regular bath size soap bars are approximately 3 inches long, 2 inches high, and 1 inche wide. We sell these bars at a minimum weight of three ounces. These bars are cut from our soap logs, which are also handcut from our 100 bar blocks into rectangular logs approximately two pounds in weight. Each handcrafted log is approximately 10 inches in length, two inches high and three inches across. Our soaps can also be purchased in 'Chunks' which are the same 2 inches high and 3 inches across our regular bath bars are, but Chunks are 2.5 inches thick and weigh approximately 7 ounces. Shaving Soaps are 2.25 and 3 inches in diameter and are sold at a minimum weight of 2.5 ounces. Soap shrinks as it ages and cures, so we cut larger to allow for drying and ensure our bars do not fall below their advertised minimum weight. Our Samplers contain our smaller soap slices that are 1.25-1.5 ounces in weight, which add up to the total package weight advertised for each Sampler Set.

How long does a bar of your soap typically last?
Most of our customers say a bar of our soap lasts them between 3-4 weeks. This is based on normal use. If you're lathering up six different times because you're enjoying the scent and experience, obviously a bar isn't going to last that long! As the saying goes - your mileage may vary.

What should I do to make my soap last longer?
Let your soap dry out between uses, by putting your soap on some kind of a soap dish that allows air to circulate around the bar. A 'proper' soap dish will either raise the bar up for air to circulate from beneath, or contain air holes for drainage of water below the soap. If you store your soap in the little alcove built into most shower stalls and tub surrounds, the shower spray will continually soak your soap. You will literally see your soap's glycerin, and your money, go down the drain. You can also use a sisal bag or netted sponge to further extend the soap's lather. Our handmade natural soaps will last longer if you take care of them!

What is the "white powder" on top of some of your bars?
Occasionally, you may see some white stuff on top of our soaps. This is called 'soda ash' and is a harmless substance that forms when air reaches a batch of soap in its first 24 hours of life. You are most likely to see it on our peppermint soaps, and on batches made on especially humid days. It will rinse off the first time you use the soap.

Why don't you guys make round soap or molded soap?
We used to, but we learned early on that we were adding a lot of steps to an already labor intensive, handmade operation. We make our batches in 100+ bar amounts, and a typical soapmaking day for us produces 1500-2000 bars. To pour that much soap batter into that many individual molds, remove the soap from the molds, and try to prevent any 'design' from being squished, chipped or marred, adds a lot of time and money to the process. And that means we'd have to charge you more. So, the only round soap we make is our shaving soap, and one of the reasons it costs you more to buy than our bar soap, is because of the additional work involved in making the soap round. J

How long does your Soap stay Fresh?
Our soaps usually stay 'good' for years. In fact, the older a soap gets, the longer it will last when you finally combine it with water in your shower. However, time does affect the intensity of a soap's fragrance. For best fragrance, we recommend that you enjoy your soaps within six months of purchase. But we have had customers tell us about soap forgotten for years in their linen drawer that they are able to identify by scent years later! Remember that we don't use any preservatives in our soaps, so protect them from humidity and extremes of heat and cold.

We visit you each Summer and buy our year's supply of soap. What is the best way to store our stash?
If you want to store your soap before you use it, store it in a dark dry area like a linen closet or drawer. Some customers report being satisfied with how soaps stored in plastic zip lock bags fare over time. We have had some customers store their soap in the freezer or refrigerator, but be sure to isolate it so the soap scent won't permeate your foods. The soap will have to reach room temperature again before it regains its scent, so don't panic if you take it out of the fridge or freezer and you can't smell it. And we definitely advise labeling your soap as "soap" so that some poor, unsuspecting family member doesn't grate a bar of soap thinking that it's parmesan cheese, and sprinkle it over a pan of lasagna. No, I'm not kidding about this. See the Soap Shed's very own 'Believe It Or Not' stories on our Testimonials page.

Can I use your soap to wash my hair?
Absolutely, YES! Our soaps are made with high percentages of Olive and Castor oils which provide wonderful conditioning for your hair and scalp. You'll find it rinses out fast! Just as different people's skin requires different levels of moisture, you'll need to test out which of our soaps gives your hair the look and feel you want. Our regular recipe soaps are generally used as shampoo bars by people with oilier scalp and hair, whereas if you have drier hair, you'll probably want to try a goat milk or shea butter soap.

Return to Menu



Ordering Our Products

Can I Order by Phone?
Yes, absolutely. Just call 1-(828) 765 - 6001 or 877 - 40 -4-SOAP

Can I Order by Mail or Fax?
Yes. If you go all the way through Checkout, shipping will be calculated for you to your zip code, so you will know the exact amount for shipping and therefore the total amount to make your check out for. Submit your order online after checking that you will pay via mail order and personal check, and we'll prepare your order and wait for your check. You will have the option of sending in your mail order. Just print out our Fax/Mail Order form and fax it to 1- 828-765-0189 or mail it to The Soap Shed, 179 Meadow View Road, Spruce Pine, NC 28777

What are your business hours?
Our Online Store operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our shipping and receiving hours are Monday to Friday from 10 AM to 5 PM Eastern Standard Time in western North Carolina USA.

What kind of Credit Cards can I use?
You can use Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express.

Can I pay COD?
No, we do not accept COD payment for individual retail orders

Do you take PayPal?
Yes we do accept PayPal.

Do you accept checks?
Yes, we accept checks via mail order and soon online.

Do I need to create an account to buy from your store?
No, you do not need to set up an account. But we strongly encourage you to register. It will make checking out a snap, and also provide you with many perks, like your very own order history for easy re-orders, discount points, wish lists and easier checkouts in the future.

Do you have a catalogue?
We sure do, and you can download a pdf of our retail catalog right here.

Return to Menu



Shipping and Return Policies

How is my order shipped?
We generally ship all orders by US Postal Service Priority Mail. You may select UPS options, but the 'no more than $7.00' special on US Postal Service shipping doesn't apply. Other options are available upon request. Just email info@soapshed.com for rates.

When will my order be shipped?
We normally ship individual customer orders within 3 business days - but during holidays, please don't expect 'Mom & Pop' to be able to keep to that schedule! (Wholesale customer orders take 2-4 weeks.) So if you place your order over a weekend, please don't start counting business days until Monday! Or if it's a holiday weekend, Tuesday! Orders placed during the Christmas season often take longer, especially if you are ordering custom scented salves and lotions, gift sets that need assembly, or if your order is especially large. We thank you in advance for your understanding.

If you are in a hurry and want to select expedited services like UPS Next Day or UPS Second Day Air, please keep in mind two things. One, UPS doesn't deliver Next Day or Second Day Air on Saturday or Sunday unless you pay extra for Saturday delivery. So PLEASE don't order on Friday night expecting that we are somehow going to get your package to you by Sunday. Count only weekdays - Monday through Friday - in your Next Day or Second Day estimations. And Second, please remember that we are located in Appalachia, not a big metropolitan city, and simply can't get orders out after about 3:00 in the afternoon. So if you order at 5:30 pm, please understand we cannot get your order on its way that night.

Will you ship to International Locations?
Absolutely, yes. Go through checkout and provide your international address, and our shopping cart will calculate the various shipping options available to you, along with the associated charges. You can then decide how you want to proceed. PayPal offers international customers easiest, fastest checkout.

My order was damaged in shipping. What should I do?
Please contact us immediately to let us know what happened, and we'll arrange for you to return the damaged item(s) to us. We will replace the item(s) free of charge including shipping.

How do I file a claim if my order arrives damaged?
If a package is obviously damaged upon arrival, please refuse delivery and notify us immediately. If there's no visible damage on the outside of the box, but when you open it, the contents are damaged, please notify us within 48 hours of receipt of order to place a claim. The shipping carrier who delivered your package might need to come to your home to inspect the damaged order, so please keep all boxes, packaging materials, and product intact if you want to process a claim.

What is your return policy?
Please contact us for return authorization before you pack the item for shipment. If we've made a mistake in what we shipped to you, the cost of shipping the incorrect items back to us is our cost. Shipping costs are non refundable, as are customized product and gift wrapped products. Examples of customized products are custom cut products (soap favors as an example), custom scented lotions and salves in fragrances you selected, custom wrapped or seasonally wrapped soap, samplers or gift set orders. We do not accept the return of products because a customer doesn't care for the scent of the product they ordered, and this includes our unscented soaps that have the natural odor of the vegetable oils from which they are made.

I received your soap as a gift. Can I exchange it?
We want you to be 100% satisfied, so yes, you can. Return your items unopened, un-used and in re-sellable condition within three days from when you received your purchase and we will exchange it for another item of your choice less shipping costs. Contact us for return authorization before you pack up the item(s), and we'll guide you from there.

Do you guarantee your products?
We want you to be 100% satisfied with our soap. If for any reason, you are not satisfied, let us know. We'll do our best to make it right for you. Please keep in mind the nature of natural, personal care products, and understand that we cannot accept for exchange items that you have opened, handled, cut or used. We do not accept the return of products because a customer doesn't care for the scent of the product they ordered, and this includes our unscented soaps that have the natural odor of the vegetable oils from which they are made. Shipping costs are always non-refundable.

Return to Menu



Wholesale and Fundraising

Do you sell your soap wholesale to other stores?
Sure do. Please visit our wholesale page for more information and apply to set up an account. If you have a specific question not answered there, please let us know at wholesale@soapshed.com.

Can our Non-Profit group use your soap as a fundraiser?
Absolutely. We have many groups who buy our soap for fundraisers! Contact us at info@soapshed.com to explore what might be right for your group, considering your community and time of year your event will be held.

I'm not a business owner, but I love your soaps and think I could sell a lot of them to co-workers at my office. Is that possible?
Yes, that's possible too. The reason our business has grown over the years is because of loyal customers like you, who love our soap so much they spread the word about us! If you'd like to re-sell our soap, you'll have to buy the same quantities as if you were a store owner (minimum 36 bars), pay sales tax and actual shipping costs. Our wholesale page will provide you with more information. If you're interested, let's talk. Call us or email us at info@soapshed.com.

Return to Menu



Weddings, Showers and Gift Baskets

Do you do guest favors for Weddings?
Yes, we provide guest favors for Weddings just about every weekend of the year. All our soap varieties are available for you to select from, and our favor packaging options allow us to provide labels with the names of the bride and groom and your wedding date. You can select from sample squares (1.5 x 2 inches, 3/8 inch thick), sampler slices, regular bar sizes or even Samplers - all of which affect your price per guest. We can wrap soap in fabrics that are the same colors of your wedding party, and you can select a soap that has meaning for you both. We've even done a 'Dirt Soap' guest favor for the marriage of a landscape architect and a real estate appraiser. No kidding. Didn't get a whole lot of follow-up sales from wedding guests on that one, thoughÅ .. You can get a mixture of manly, floral and any other soaps that will please your guests. We consider all wedding favor orders to be custom orders, requiring a 50% down, 50% upon delivery (or shipment) payment arrangement, thus we don't process them as internet orders. To learn more, take a look at our Wedding & Shower Favor page, call us or email us at info@soapshed.com.

Do you do guest favors for Baby and Bridal Showers?
Yes, we do, please read the section above on Wedding Favors and view our Favor page to get some ideas of what might be right for you, your guests and your event.

Do you create custom gift baskets?
Sure do - give us a theme, preferred colors, and a dollar amount and we'll select soaps, candles, and food items from our retail shop to create a great smelling gift to be enjoyed any time of the year, for any occasion. We hope to even have a 'gift basket' option on this website soon, so you can cruise our products, select what you'd like, and build your own gift baskets for us to ship to friends and family for you. Until then, though, gift baskets are a custom item, requiring a phone call or email to get started. If you're in a hurry, and want to order something right now, check out our Trios, large Samplers and Gift Bags for other wonderful gift ideas.

Return to Menu



What makes Soap Shed Soaps so great?

Okay, this is the sales pitch part, but since you asked -

There are lots of things that make our soaps great.

We know what we're doing - our recipes have been formulated by a retired Chemistry professor and we've been selling soap since 1998 through our website, mail order, craft shows, wholesale and at our own retail shop. We have thousands of loyal customers.

We make these beautiful soaps by hand using traditional methods and ingredients, and each bar is cut and packaged by hand. The small differences between each bar and each batch is part of their hand made charm.

Soap Shed Soaps are "Made in the USA" using the highest quality standards. During most of the year, our soapmaking operation in North Carolina is open to the public, and you can actually come by and see how we make your soap. You, and your opinion of us and our soap, provide the ultimate 'quality control'.

Our Soaps do not contain artificial hardeners, preservatives or latherers, or cheap filler oils like soybean or hydrogenated vegetable oils (i.e.Crisco). We do not use synthetic preservatives or colorant dyes, so the colors of our soaps reflect the ingredients used to create them. Nothing but the best for our soaps.

Our scents are strong and true to their name. Whether you select lilac or lavender, musk or mint, each soap scent will smell exactly as it should, not mutated, weak or with a chemical undertone. We pride ourselves on scents that smell like 'the real thing', lots of single note flowers and herbs, rather than perfume-y combinations.

Soap Shed Soaps have been designed to be mild and gentle enough for everyone to use, including people with allergies, sensitive skin and skin conditions.. We make unscented varieties of each soap we make, specifically for people with sensitivity to scent or those who just don't like fragrances.

Our business model is also designed around repeat buyers who purchase soap from us year after year. Repeat buyers who know what they like and want don't need to pay extra for wrapped soap. Repeat buyers who like to 'stock up' and buy their favorite soaps in larger quantities. Thus, we offer you money-saving opportunities on 'naked' bars, and when you buy at least five bars of the same scent, which we can package in one bag with one identifying tag, we offer you a discount. When it takes us less labor and packaging to prepare and ship your order, we pass on that savings to you.

We provide great value for your money, a bar that lasts longer than what you're used to, and is so moisturizing you may not need lotion anymore. We are not aware of any other soap business that sells the excellent quality of soap we do, for the prices we ask.

And with well over 100 varieties to select from - more like 150 these days - we're not aware of any other soapmaker that offers our selection of soap, either.

We truly do make soap for Every Body.

So what are you still doing here, reading this stuff? Start looking at the soaps listed down the left column and try some of our soap!

Return to Menu

1-877-40-4-SOAP

Contact Us

Cart / Checkout

Cart is empty
never more than

$7

shipping for all
USA deliveries
for Retail Customers
regardless of order size


Subscribe to our Newsletter!



PayPal Verified, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express
Credit Card Processing
Find us on Facebook