* Prices may differ from that shown
I'm rather too keen on bath products, and I'm often found in Lush stocking up on far too many of their goodies. The problem is that Lush stuff is rather expensive and it doesn't last very long. Unless you want to take a mallet to a bath ballistic you'll only get one bath out of it. Granted, their bubble bars last slightly longer and are a more economical purchase. However, where you really get something a lot more long lasting is if you purchase one or two of their soaps. I love Lush soaps, but they're not cheap. A simple 100g bar is going to set you back anything between £3.00 to £7.00 depending on the ingredients. What I liked about Soape is that you can buy a 100g bar from only £1.75...and you can add lots of mini 25g samples to your online basket for only 50p a throw.
~~~ SOAP ADDICT ~~~
As you'd expect from their domain name, Soape.com sells mainly...soap. However, this is soap with a difference. All the soaps are handmade, not tested on our furry friends and free from artificial additives such as Parabens or petrochemicals. Added to which, the soaps are truly delightful to look at, sniff and use. Many of them have an almost 3-D effect to them so they're a treat to the eyes as well as the other senses. If you don't believe me, go and have a look at some of the photos on www.soape.com and you'll see what I mean - the pictures make the soaps look almost edible at times.
Although they specialise in soap, www.soape.com don't just limit themselves to cleaning us. Also on offer are a whole range of "Personal Spa" items such as facemasks, body creams, massage bars, scrubs, Dead Sea products and natural deodorants. For those that have exhausted their Yankee Candle stocks, you may be interested to try the handmade candles and wax lanterns that Soape.com offer. There are about 50 or different candles or lanterns to try with prices starting from £4.75.
So far I have just limited myself to trying their soaps, but I can see myself being tempted by their spa range anytime soon...especially as they're always offering special promotions and discounts on their range. The soaps range in price from £1.75 to £3.50 for a 100g bar depending on the ingredients. All in all I reckon they must have at least 50 different types of soap to choose from. Choices range from the cheaper glycerine and cream soaps, up to the more expensive olive oil, exfoliating and Dead Sea mud soaps.
~~~ CLEAN SWEEP ~~~
If you're keen on checking out the range on offer at www.soape.com then it's worth knowing that they often have some kind of promotion going. If you sign up for their email newsletter, you'll be the first to hear about it. Currently they are offering a Valentine's Day promotion giving 30% discount off their soap range and a whopping 50% off some of their candles. If you're not sure which soaps you prefer you can order small soap samples from just 50p. The samples are 25g squares - more than enough for a couple of baths or showers, and certainly big enough to give you an idea of the wonderful lathering and moisturising effects of their soaps, as well as their delightful fragrances. The cheap samples offer is an excellent way of trying out the different types of soap on offer and finding your favourite fragrances. For example, I love the appearance of the glycerine range, but the olive oil ones are particularly good for moisturising your skin...and very good for shaving your legs.
I've now placed numerous orders with Soape.com, and I've been delighted with my purchases every single time. It's worth remembering to go through a cashback site like Quidco or Topcashback as they offer a whopping great 20% cashback on your purchase.
There are one or two drawbacks to the Soape website, but they are relatively minor and don't deter me from purchasing. On the whole the website is well laid out and easy to browse. However, sometimes the pages can be rather slow to load, and that can be a little frustrating. The biggest negative to the site is the lack of description as to what each soap contains. Soape.com just put a very simple description with each photo, and sometimes it's simply not enough detail to convey what the soap is going to smell like. Similarly, beyond telling you all ingredients are natural, there is no individual breakdown of what's in each soap. For example, I'm none too fond of the scent of jasmine as I find it a little too cloying and it makes me feel nauseous. On Soape.com it's just pot luck as what specific herbs, flowers or spices are contained in each bar, and you just have to take your chances you're going to like them all.
You don't need to create an account in order to place an order on Soape.com - you can place your order and then pay/checkout as a guest. Alternatively you can register, and they'll then keep a record of your orders, your favourites or allow you to create a wishlist. You can also subscribe to their newsletter (this comes about once a week so nothing too excessive). Once you place an order, you receive an almost immediate email confirmation listing the items you've ordered. They then send you another email once the items have been dispatched to you.
The delivery charge is a flat rate of £2.00 per order and all orders are sent out by first class post. If you spend more than £18 then delivery is free. Soape.com accept all major credit cards and switch or you can pay via PayPal.
All my deliveries have arrived within a day or two of placing my order, and the soaps were well packaged and undamaged upon arrival. The 25g samples come wrapped in greaseproof paper with a tiny sealing sticker giving the name of the sample inside. The full sized bars are wrapped up in plastic.
~~~ MY PURCHASES (i.e. SOAPE TASTING NOTES) ~~~
Feel free to skip this bit if you have no intention of checking out Soape.com, or indeed, making a purchase as it will be largely irrelevant. I have placed numerous orders with Soape.com - allowing me to test a whole range of different soaps, and I'll no doubt go back for more, as I've enjoyed them all - granted some more than others.
** GLYCERINE SOAPS 100G = FROM £ 1.75 ** Glycerine is the natural moisturiser which is gentle on the skin yet lathers rather well. These are definitely the prettiest soaps to look at on Soape.com as they have an almost 3D effect being shot through with all sorts of different coloured shapes or swirls.
"Green Melon" - A really fruity little number and really does smell like you've cut into a fresh and juicy Cantaloupe. A nice early morning wake-you-up soap - 10/10
"Tuberose" - This soap really is made with lashings of Tuberose. It's sweetly floral in scent and very, very pink. Ideal if you love floral scents, but a little overwhelming if you prefer your smells to be more subtle - 8/10
"Vanilla Ylang-Ylang Patchouli" - A very deep and musky scent ideal for a night time indulgent bath. It's a heady and rich aroma, and really very, very nice - 8/10
"Lemon & Tea-flower" - A gorgeous yellowy amber soap with pieces of lemon encased inside. Sweet in aroma yet tempered with a citrus acidity and resin overtones - 8/10
"Symphony" - Rather similar looking to "Rain", but more mottled in appearance, this soap is fresh and clean smelling. The scent reminds me of freshly ironed cotton. A nice morning shower choice I think - 8/10
"Rain" - This is a gorgeous looking soap - redolent with sea greens and blues and shot through with white streaks of horizon. This really is a very 3D looking soap. Unfortunately Soape don't list their ingredients so I have no idea what's in it. It does, however, contain more than a hint of men's aftershave in it, and it's an extremely woody and rather masculine smelling soap. I like it, but feminine it ain't! - 7/10
"Amber" - dark, deep and mysterious. This one is heady with aroma -almost like being at a Middle Eastern spice souk - 7/10
"Blueberry" - Extremely fruity in aroma - almost good enough to take a bite out of! - 6/10
"Spring" - Yet again I have no idea what this soap contains. It smells rather fruity but quite sharp, so I would imagine that lemon, pineapple or grapefruit is in there somewhere. The over-riding aroma to me is off wood varnish though - most odd - 5/10
"Guava & Papaya" - Almost unbearably sweet in aroma - it's like being set lose in a sweet-shop. A little bit too sweet for my tastes, but you may well love it - 5/10
"Melon & Pomegranate" - A pretty yellowy orange soap, but I can detect no discernable melon aroma which is a shame, as I was hoping for a similar fruity smell as per the "Green Melon" bar. This one smells rather overwhelmingly of beeswax and something else I really cannot identify but it's very cloying -5/10
** CREAM SOAPS 100G = FROM £1.96 ** Cream soaps are suitable for all skin types but are ideal for those with particularly dry skin. All the cream soaps are made from glycerine with lashings of Shea butter and coconut oil to give them a lovely creamy consistency.
"Tropical Vanilla" - This one smells very rich indeed with strong aromas of chocolate and vanilla - almost good enough to eat. Another night time soap ideal for that relaxing bath before bedtime. A rich and sumptuous -8/10
"French Lavender" - A dark purple soap shot through by paler swirls of pale pink. This really is quite a strongly smelling lavender soap, but it's quite harsh in scent and has little sweetness to it -7/10
"Green Tea" - Pale green and creamy in texture. It lathers well, but the over-riding scent is of cupboard here - 6/10
"Lilac" - a pretty pale pinky purple soap, but not a favourite of mine. It's quite floral in scent but has a whiff of cats about it - 4/10
"Vanilla Bourbon & Ginger" - Rather brown and dull looking. It smells strongly of ginger, but isn't a favourite as the texture is a little bit gritty - 4/10
"Strawberry Milk" - Evidently one of their best-sellers but it left me cold. It was far too acidic on my skin and I didn't like the smell of it at all - 2/10
** OLIVE OIL SOAPS = FROM £2.10 ** Olive oil soap is good for moisturising dry or sensitive skin. All the olive oil soaps in the range contain olive, palm, coconut and caster oils all of which are blended to nourish and moisturise your skin.
"Rose" - Lathers nicely and fills the bathroom with a deep and pleasing scent of roses - 8/10
"French Lavender" - Sweetly scented with plenty of this fragrant flower. A delight to the senses - 7/10
"Herb Garden" - The smell of herbs in this one is not enough to over-power the scent of the oil, and it smells of grease rather than herbs - 3/10
~~~ GETTING ON MY SOAPBOX ~~~
Soape.com guarantee that all their soaps are made without detergents, artificial colourants, fragrances or animal products. In their own words:- "Our handmade soap is suitable for all skin types, free from any nasty chemicals, suitable for vegetarians, and is not tested on animals. We do not add detergents which dries your skin and artificially froths, so our soaps are softer, more natural and kinder to your skin".
All the soaps at Soape.com are of 100% of vegetable origin and are made using a "cold process" method with vegetable oils, vegetable glycerine and purified water. Depending on the type of soap being made, they then add in Shea butter, olive oil, cocoa butter, donkey milk and so on. The soaps are then decorated with either organic herbs, essential oils or nut / fruit oils. No artificial fragrances, colourants or preservatives are used in their methods.
Sadly, Soape don't list the ingredients of each individual product other than to say that each product contains 100% natural ingredients. Personally I would like to know what they contain. I don't mean a blow-by-blow exhaustive list, but more of an idea what flower, plant, herb, spice or oil is contained within. For example I love the fresh smelling scent of "Symphony", but I haven't a clue what it contains. It smells of freshly ironed clothes to me but I'd love to know more. Similarly, there's a bit of an unpleasant underlying aroma to both "Guava & Papaya" and "Melon & Pomegranate" and I'd love to know if they both contain the same
ingredient that's giving it that sour finish.
~~~ COMING CLEAN ~~~
I love Soape.com - particularly when they have a sale on - which is often. The mini samples are only 50p and they're a great way to try and test a whole range of different soaps and find the ones most pleasing to your senses. The soaps are a real treat to the eyes as well as your nose and skin. Without exception they all lather extremely well, and they are all kind to my skin. On the whole they are a delightful range of wonderful smelling soaps, and I'll definitely be going back for more.
The soaps are all really pretty to look at as well as smelling delightful and they'd make ideal Christmas and Birthday presents for your friends and relatives. Soape.com even offer gift packaging in the shape of handmade organza bags for an additional 50p.
Recommended with four stars.....with the loss of one star for the distinct lack of ingredient information.
~~~ IT'S ALL IN THE DETAIL ~~~
Soape.com is owned by Britz Ltd and its registered address is:
Jersey JE2 3JY
I first became aware of the existence of the website www.soape.com when I was browsing through the retailers section on my favourite cash-back site- Topcashback. At the time they were, and still are, offering 20.2% cash-back on all purchases. I was reassured by one solitary review that this tracked quickly so I decided to take a look.
The company behind this website are based in Jersey, and they specialise in the manufacture of natural soaps as well as candles and a range of body creams. It was the soaps I was really interested in as I was planning a holiday at the time, and I usually purchase soap instead of shower gel to reduce weight and create less waste. The latter is especially important to me as I was going to an island where disposal of waste creates special difficulties. I also decided to look for some gifts on the website as my first impressions of the site were very positive.
The home page is exactly what I like- clear and simple but attractive, and I feel the colours used were very easy on the eye. The main page has a dominant central band with a banner where free samples are advertised, and my first action was to click through to find out more. Four 25g samples are available for free- you simply have to pay postage of £2. Of course you can add these to an order and if this totals more than £18 you are entitled to free posting. I have to add that I sent off for 4 samples of 25g size which were absolutely gorgeous, and each lasted for 2 days in the shower which I used three times a day as I was sea swimming on my holiday. I concluded from this that I could purchase one of these and it would be just right for a weekend away, so I have noted this and will certainly do this on my next short trip.
What I love about the soap is that it is all natural, and care has been taken to create scents which I feel are very unique and offer something different to the high street. The website has clear headings on the home page which offer links to the various soap types and these are categorised into six groups-
Dead Sea Mud Soaps
Donkey Milk Soaps
In my first order I chose large sizes of two of the cream soaps- Clementine and Lilac, and then I treated myself to the sample sizes of Rain, Rose Olive Oil, Tropical Vanilla and French Lavender.
Delivery was very quick indeed by first class post and my cash-back tracked quickly and was paid within three months so I was very happy.
The soaps were a pleasure to use and looked really beautiful as well. This is important to me as I tend to use a mixture of shower gel and soap, and if I am using soap on holiday I like it to be a bit special. The Clementine soap was absolutely gorgeous with a sunset like appearance of gold and orange swirls, and it left my skin feeling so moisturised and soft due, I think, to the shea butter and coconut oils contained within the bar. My husband really enjoyed using the "Rain" sample which was a lovely blue soap which had a delicate eau de cologne men's fragrance incorporated into it.
Each soap was a pleasure to use and I would have no hesitation in recommending the products. The larger soaps are £2.80 each, and for this you get a large bar which will last three weeks if you use it daily. Also available from the website are presentation organza bags which you can purchase. These make a lovely small gift when filled with soap bars. They also have a range of sizes to allow you to really package gifts beautifully and a lovely choice of colours too from rich golden to contemporary ivory.
The website has a good range of candles and also an ever growing range of body products in their spa range.
All the soaps are suitable for vegans and are totally free from animal products and parabens. I also like the fact that they use herbs and natural oils to decorate and fragrance the soaps, and that they contain enriching oils such as coconut and cocoa butter.
The website runs very quickly and payment is secure, and as I mentioned before the site is very well designed with minimal clutter and it makes for a very rewarding shopping experience.
I don't use these products daily but for special occasions such as trips and holidays they are lovely, and for presents they offer something unique and different that the recipient will be delighted to receive. I am especially pleased with the small sample sizes which were so useful on my recent holiday.
I think this is a website I will continue to use and to enjoy and the added cash-back incentive is also very appealing.