Seven Scruples Soapworks

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Anna Downing

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Anna Downing


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About sevenscruples

Sales 96
On Etsy since 2011

Why Girl Scouts suck, when “vegan” doesn't mean cruelty free, and how soap saved my life.

I think I did a melt and pour soap project in girl scouts when i was 8. i thought it was lame. everything i did in girl scouts was lame. I mean we camped out at the mall instead of getting dirty and doing cool boyscout stuff. Lucky for me I had a kick- ass Grandpa that let me play with caustic chemicals at a young age:)
Grandpa is 90 and still keeps a vat of bacon fat on his kitchen counter. He is saving it for soapmaking. The soap he taught me to make was simple- lye and lard. No fragrance, no additives just saponification at its finest. He would mix the whole thing by hand and to my child self the vat was huge- Then he would pour the whole kittenkaboodle into an old dresser drawer to set up. Later we handcut, stamped and wrapped each bar. I waited for that soap to cure for what seemed like centuries and finally, FINALLY got to scrub down with my very own bar of the stuff me and Grandpa made.
Today my process has changed a little but I still approach each new batch with childlike excitedment. I like to think I have improved on Grandpa's methods a bit. with the help of precise scales, infrared thermometers and THE INTERNET.
Also, I have a voracious appetite for locally sourced and discerningly selected ingredients: this means Minnesota Mania! my backyard calendula, Beeswax and raw honey from B and E Apiary in Hendricks MN and fresh goat milk from Mora Minnesota. I am still working on locally sourcing my oils though.
As you may or may not know there is a huge problem with supply of palm oil (the main ingredient in most bar soaps) I am talking global shortage here: deforestation, sustainability issues and massive QOL problems here. As a result I am trying to convert all my soap recipes to be palm-free. This means I use tons of California Olive Oil, Sustainably grown Coconut Oil, Rice Bran Oil as well as Fare Trade Cocoa Butter, Shea butter and hempseed oil I am even finding that animal tallow makes fantastic non-vegan bars. I am hoping to get my hands on some elk or venison tallow this hunting season so I can make a Camo bar.

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  • Anna

    Owner, Maker, Designer, Curator

    Yup. I'm a one woman show!

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