Meet Angela Youngs and Glenn Forester, Creators and Owners of Ground Soap. This husband and wife duo hand makes cold-process soaps using ONLY natural and organic ingredients. From plant-based fats to local Canadian honey to the Indonesian Batik fabric packaging, no detail is left unnoticed.
Follow us this way to find out how Ground Soap got started and what music-related tool Glenn uses to cut up soap! —>
Since she was a young girl growing up in Cornwall, Ontario, Angela has been obsessed with scents and the outdoors. She spent many days playing in the garden with her parents, taking in the natural surroundings and fragrant aromas. As she got older, Angela became a bit of a beauty product junkie and was only interested in using all natural products on her body. After some encouragement from her rockstar husband, Glenn, Angela started whipping up her own soap samples and passing them out to friends. It wasn’t long before friends started requesting bars to be dropped off in their mailboxes, because it was helping with their skin issues.
How it’s Made:
Glenn worked with his brothers, who happen to be process control engineers, to create a tank system to make the soap base.
1. Angela starts with a plant-based fat, like shea butter, mango butter, coconut oil, or olive oil.
2. A very precise amount of lye (a caustic cleanser) and water is measured and mixed with the fat base (shea butter, coconut oil, etc.). This mixture saponifies, turning into soap. Ground Soap “super fats” their soap, meaning there is extra fat in the recipe so there is never a chance of leftover lye.
Did You Know? Lye in large quantities is dangerous and can burn the skin, but it’s essential to making soap. That’s why Angela has her recipe down to a science and uses only what she needs. 3. Angela then mixes in the essential oils and other natural ingredients, like local honey or oatmeal.
4. After the soap solidifies, it is cut into blocks using a contraption Glenn created. The automatic soap cutter is made from guitar strings! Think of a giant cheese board cutter, but for soap. How neat is that!
5. The soap takes three weeks to cure and then it’s time to cut the soap into bars to wrap.
6. Each bar of soap is wrapped by hand around a table of friends and good conversation. Angela traveled all the way to Surakarta, Indonesia to pick out the colorful, handmade fabrics used in the Ground Soap packaging. She feels a really strong connection to the people who create the fabrics.
7. The fabric-wrapped soap is then tied off with a cord from Hungary and an eco-friendly label. Every time Ground Soap purchases labels for packaging, a tree is planted.