There is so much debate over the term “natural”. The debate extends to food, and in my case, natural soaps. There are some who argue that natural is only a word given to pure, unadulterated materials that come straight from Mother Nature. Certainly, that IS natural in the clearest sense of the word.
But for other things that are produced or made that nature only gives us the materials to make them with, comes the debate. Natural soaps are produced from those materials such as oils from the olive and coconut. How the oils are produced spurs a debate as well. Are they produced using solvents, are they refined, deodorized, or even bleached?
Natural soap claims are widespread and the competitive nature of humans causes them to question whether this person has the more natural soap or that person. Clearly, part of the problem is the race to the finish line to see who has the better or more natural product in the end. The other part of the problem is the splitting hairs one – is soap that contain fragrance oil “natural”, or does it contain a preservative, and if so, is the preservative “natural.” On and on it could go. I will not even mention the fact that all soap is made with lye.
Since my life is complicated enough as it is, trying to decide what is natural only makes more confusion and doubt. I have decided to take the wider road, as it is, in terms of natural soap or even food. When we buy food from a box, it is not natural. If you buy fresh meat to cook, is it natural? Yes, it is natural, although it may contain other ingredients not indigenous to the animal it came from.
When you buy soap from the store, is it natural? Likely not, since it contains detergents, which are all synthetics. So, when you buy natural soap, is it really natural? I would say yes, even though it may contain fragrance oil in a small percentage. It was produced from materials that occur in nature and those materials were produced with as little adulteration as possible so that what I am ending up with is a soap that is as natural as natural can be.
It becomes a major ordeal at times to try to discern what is in this and what is in that. I hope that at least where my soap is concerned, the only choice is to decide which one is the favorite, and there is no worry as to what it contains for those who are using it. It is one less thing to think about in today’s really crazy world.