“ Brand: Soape / Type: Soap / Subcategory: Exfoliator / What it does: Exfoliates, „
This grapefruit exfoliating loofah soap is the second of the four free samples (pay £2.00 post and packaging) I ordered from online retailer Soape.com. You can order a maximum of four samples per order and each sample weighs approximately 25grams. I think this is a great way to try out the different varieties available from Soape (all of them handmade) because a full bar of any one variety costs between £2.50 and £3.25. This particular soap costs £3.25 for 100grams. The information on the website states that all ingredients in the soaps are 100 per cent natural.
I chose this one for two reasons. One was that I love the fresh zingy fragrance of grapefruit, the other that I liked the idea of combining shreds of loofah with the soap - so obvious when you think about it but not something I've seen before. Apart from containing loofah, the soap element is a glycerine soap.
The soap is a pinky-orange colour and there's lots of shredded loofah running through it. It's not quite clear, nor is it fully opaque but somewhere in between. Before use the grapefruit fragrance is quite strong, not overpowering but certainly very obvious.
On first use I thought this soap was brilliant even if the fragrance mellowed slightly. It lathered well and rubbing the soap directly onto any drier areas of skin felt good - invigorating and cleansing, removing dead skin and leaving the skin feeling clean and renewed afterwards. A note on the Soape website's page for the exfoliating soaps explains "When exfoliating, strokes should be towards the heart, so up the legs and arms. This naturally guides your movements toward your lymphatic glands which are situated in your groin, armpits and neck, and which benefit from the stimulation"
Gradually, though, as the soap started to get used up the loofah became more abrasive and I had to start using the soap differently. It was too rough to rub is directly onto the skin so I had to create the lather by rubbing the soap between my hands, then soap my skin before using the bar against my soapy skin otherwise the loofah was too harsh. I still felt clean after showering but I thought that using the soap this way defeats the point.
After yet more use I've found that the soap is now difficult to lather; if you're prepared to give it a minute then it does lather up to some extent but in the mornings I want to jump into the shower and get moving quickly not stand around waiting to use the soap.
I think this is quite a wasteful soap; once the soap has started to wear down and you're left with the loofah "mesh" with a much smaller piece of soap left in the centre it's really difficult to use and it becomes impractical. It turns out be not such a good idea as I had originally thought it might be.
I liked the fragrance and thought that it left the skin feeling clean and refreshed but after just a short time it becomes too abrasive. This is not a soap I would buy again which is a shame because there are other fragrances that sound quite appealing that I would have liked to have tried (Green tea or lemongrass appealed in particular but there is also lilac or guava and papaya, and one intriguingly called "Rain".)
The experience hasn't put me off trying other varieties from Soape; this soap does feel at first like it is a good moisturising soap and the fragrance is appealing even if I found the loofah too rough.