The Bathhouse & Soapery's Makers Blog

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  1.  

    Welcome To 2017, as we try to get back into the swing of things here at The Bathhouse and Soapery - Mevagissey - Cornwall, We are working hard on some new and exciting products, We will tell you more in another post!.

    Firstly We would like to tell you a bit about our ethical aims, as some of you might know, in the last couple of years, we stopped using Palm Oil, as we could not guarantee that it was coming from a sustainable source, even though the oil was rspo registered. The traceability of the product raised concerns, So we took the decision to eliminate it from our products. Over the last 12 months we have pre-empted the governments decision to enforce a ban on micro-beads. 

    Now we don't use Microbeads as abrasives in our skincare products or our face washes, however, the glitter that we used in some of our bath bombs, would fall under the ban, the ban is due to become in force by the end of 2017, So over the winter we decided that we would stop using glitter in our bath bombs and bath truffles and have replaced it with natural mica. 

    Image: NOAA

    As a business that is located on the beautiful Cornish Coast, we believe that it is our ethical duty to help protect the environment around us and the removal of Microbeads from our ingredients is another small step that The Bathhouse and Soapery have taken over the years. 

    What Have We done so far:

    We Stopped Using Plastic Carrier Bags (Changed to Bio-Degradable)

    We have reduced the amount of packaging that we use.

    All of our plastic packaging is fully recyclable.

    All of our glassware packaging is fully recyclable

    All of our aluminium packaging is fully recyclable.

    We have removed the use for Parabens in our products

    We have Stopped Using Palm Oil in our products.

    We Do Not Use any SLS, SLES in our products.

    We have removed the need for Microbeads in our products.

     

    What Are We Going to Do In The Future:

    During 2017 we are going to be working towards minimising the amount of plastic that we use in packaging our products. Why.

    Well again it has to do with our responsibility to the environment as a manufacturer and retailer of Skincare and Personal Care Products and our location on the beautiful Cornish Coast.

    The Ocean gives us a beautiful view from a distance but when we look much closer, you see that everything is not as it seems.

    Sky's Ocean Rescue is a campaign to help reduce the amount of plastic that makes it to our oceans, Not just here in the UK, but also worldwide, They say on their website (www.skyoceanresuce.com)

    "We simply cannot afford for our oceans and seas to reach a critical tipping point. Our ocean makes up three-quarters of our planet. No matter where we live, we all depend on our ocean for the food we eat and the air we breathe.

    Every minute, the equivalent of a rubbish truck load of plastic goes in to our oceans, it never decomposes and will remain there forever. If nothing changes, by 2050 all the plastic in the ocean could weigh more than all the fish. Plastic impacts on an entire ecosystem, marine life get caught up in it, eat it and live in it. It also has a direct impact on our health, acting as a sponge for toxins which can end up in our food." 

    Now we have been reducing the amount of plastic that we use over the past 3 years and we have reduced it from 180 kilos of plastic a year, that was used for packaging our Bath Milks, Fizzes and Salts to ZERO. We have Reduced the plastic used for packaging our Body Lotions, Cleansers and Toners from 60 Kilos of Plastic to under 10 Kilos, over a 12 month period.

    As we speak we are working on reducing the rest of the plastic that we use to package our Shampoo/Shower Gels, Hand and Face Washes, Soaps, deodorants and remaining gels and creams.

    We will not be able to reduce our plastic use to absolute zero, due to the pumps that our bottles require to dispense the products, however at present a shampoo and shower gel bottle has a plastic weight of 120gm, we can reduce this by 92% to under 10 grammes per product sold. Now all of our plastic is clear plastic and can be fully recycled at present (need to remove the spring from the pump, first)

    However this then comes with an added problem of glassware being used as a container for a shampoo/shower gel, What if it fell in the bath, and the associated risks with breakages. So as an alternative we are also looking at aluminium bottles.

    We are also looking at changing the packaging of our soaps from Plastic, again recyclable at present to a wax paper.

    Overall we believe that we would be able to reduce our plastic packaging by at least 90-95% overall if these changes were to be made.  We expect to be able to announce more details on our efforts to Stop Plastic entering our oceans during the summer.

    Until then we encourage you to recycle your empty bottles and look out for a poll that we will be running soon.

    The Bathhouse and Soapery are proud of its products, its ethical responsibility and its location in the world, in an area of outstanding natural beauty on the South Cornwall Coast. We aim to provide our customers with the very best natural products, that are ethical in their making and packaging and give our customers the confidence that they are purchasing from a responsible retailer that cares for the environment as much as they do for their customers.

    You can watch Skys Report on Ocean Rescue Here:

     

    #OceanRescue

  2. Recently, Palm Oil has become as important to consumers, as Parabens and SLS! Using Palm Oil in Soaps and Cosmetics has become popular, as the cost factor is low. However environmentally the cost is extremely high. What about RSPO, Well even though the organisation has strict guidelines that producers and growers have to abide by, We as a company didnt feel comfortable that even with traceability, that any palm oil cultivation, was going to affect the forests and wildlife. What about the companies involved and the growers businesses and their livelihoods? That is a question that we have been asked on numerous occassions, and we agree that the rspo approved suppliers do support many people and businesses, But our decision was made on environmental and ethical grounds. There are still plenty of business using Palm Oil, including big businesses. Some not RSPO approved, but many moving to it!

    However, we Do Not Use Palm Oil in any of our products.

    What is Palm Oil? Palm oil is a form of vegetable oil obtained from the fruit of the oil palm tree (Elaeis Guineensis). It has recently become one of the world’s most widely-produced oils and is a key ingredient in many cosmetic products and Food Products.

    Why dont we use it? It is our opinion that the wide use of palm oil has severe consequences. To make room for palm tree plantations, tropical rainforests have been cleared on a massive scale. Some sources quote that areas of rainforest the size of 5 football pitches disappear every minute due to palm oil cultivation.

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    Deforestation of course has horrific consequences including, but not exclusive to increases in greenhouse gas production and habitat destruction. The situation is worst in Indonesia and Malaysia, who between them produce 83% of the world’s palm oil, It is estimated that in 15 years, 98% of Indonesia and Malaysia’s rainforests will disappear because of deforestation.

    Inevitably along with the destruction of expansive rainforests comes the destruction of natural habitats. Orang-utans have suffered the most, with their population in the wild declining hugely in recent years.

    ​​SMXLL

    There are numerous campaigns that have been launched in order to combat deforestation and the devastating effects of palm oil production, from Rainforest Action Network to Greenpeace. 

    In skincare, even if palm oil doesn’t appear on the label’s INCI list - as “Elaeis Guineensis Oil” or “sodium palmate” – the form used in soap bars – it might still be hidden in the product. Palm oil is commonly used to make emulsifiers and detergents. We make sure that none of the ingredients that we use contain any derivative of palm oil.

    Although RSPO, which is responsibley sourced palm oil is available, and it claims to come from areas that are not encroaching on habitat or deforestation. We believe that it must make more  sense to re-plant the rainforest species which provided more benefit for the local economy, even if the short-term economic losses are hard.  And in cosmetics, there is no real excuse for using palm oil. Better alternatives are numerous and include olive oil and coconut oil which produce fantastic, high-quality soaps and cosmetic products.

    That is why The Bathhouse and Soapery is proud that it does not use any palm oil at all in ANY of its products!