Friday, November 18, 2011

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Sahara at Rosner Soap

In spite of the unbelievable amounts of rain this year, we have found leaves for our Sahara soap!

Our beautiful signature bars are scented with a fragrant combination of rosemary, patchouli and geranium; even the patchouli haters will enjoy this one!

Come by on one of the beautiful autumn days we still have in store and see them and smell them for yourself, you will be happy you did.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Your Best Interest At Heart

Whether it is the "Gold in the Jar", quality of ingredients, reliability, or having your best interest at heart, I am describing the key elements that define the service of small business. This is what makes the difference between small business and big businesses where there is nobody home, nobody to answer the real questions and no real accountability.

People have been coming for years to our Sugar Loaf store, not just for the consistency in quality, but for advice, answers and a sense of connectedness in a world starting to lose its humanity. Our service cannot fail, because it involves our heart and soul, our small business is not about numbers and shareholders. Our responsibility will always be to our customers not to some absentee owner.

Think about it next time you buy: in a world of cause and effect who would have your best interest at heart?

Our New Product: Hand & Body Cream

So we finally came out with our new product! The Hand & Body Cream, a cream to complement the Bath and Body oil and the Balms. As with the rest of our products this cream is scented only with the finest pure grade essential oils and all the ingredients are plant based.

Most people are used to creams as opposed to balms, and even though the balms we make penetrate deeper into the skin, this cream is extremely emollient without being greasy, it has a velvety consistency and is a must for this summer's moisturizing along with our All Natural Insect Repellent (because it works, remember?). The scent is light and refreshing something for both genders, and will not interfere with another perfume, but rather enhance it (the beauty of essential oils!).

Time to check it out, and try it!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Good To Know

In our "Good To Know" section we have something about caring for our soap. Now, you might think: "why? soap is soap", but actually not, there are different qualities of soap; most commercial bars have fillers and hardeners (among other things) to compensate for the cheap quality of the ingredients. Our soaps are made with oils pure enough to eat: olive, coconut and palm, we do not need to put any other additives; if you let our bars sit in water they will melt faster, if on the other hand, you make sure to let them air dry nicely, and harden in between usage, they will last a long time (our soapstone and cast iron soap dishes are designed for this purpose).

The difference is significant; that is good to know when you are purchasing quality. The details! It's all in the details!

Saturday, May 7, 2011


People often ask me what my favorite soap is. I have learned over time to name 3, but in the early days of our shop, I'd get confused, name one then another and a 3d and a 4th only to finally admit I loved them all. I just didn't want anyone to miss out on all the wonderful and diverse scents. I would of course confuse my customer, who was by then just as clueless as they were to begin with. Time has taught me to say: "My favorite is the Red Desert but most people's favorite is the Lemongrass with Oatmeal and the Sweet Almond is another great favorite".

The dilemma with the "favorite" is that favorites can change according to mood or season or both. For instance while the Red Desert may be my constant favorite, in the summer I love the smell of the Vanilla & Pomegranate. I find the combination so refreshing and compelling; is it the warmth, the longer days? Who knows? But the sweeter scents suit me more in summer than winter. Then there are the combinations of different bars; I love combining the Peppermint & Tea Tree with the Cinnamon & Orange. I stick the two bars together in the shower and something about the astringent peppermint with the warmer cinnamon and slightly sweet orange loosens my shoulder and neck muscles and gives me such a sense of contentment!

Having said that, scents are so personal that what appeals to some doesn't appeal at all to others, or like Patchouli you either love or hate it with no less than a burning passion! Ah yes the passions that smells evoke! And the memories! But I digress. Certain bars are loved accross the board like Lemongrass with Oatmeal or Sweet Almond, I call those the "unanimous favorites". Then there are the bars like the Basil & Cornmeal that are amazing, cosmetically excellent and relaxing to those who think too much, but those bars get so much interference from all the scents in the store that many customers pass them by until they take one home and discover it there, where the bar becomes a favorite, I call those the "unexpected favorites".

So favorites, yes, short and definitive or long and convoluted which one's yours and why?

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Plant That Never Stops Giving

So we have this great product called an "Ayate Cloth" that so many of you visit on our site but are not sure what to do with. I thought I'd explain a bit further for the curious.

Ayate is the name given to this very strong fiber which is taken from that beautiful huge plant we all think of as a cactus even though it is not, it is actually a succulent and is known as agave or century plant. It is native to Mexico even though we see it in all mediterranean climates, (thanks to the Spanish conquistadores). Now aside from being the plant that never stops giving, because it will provide you with food, drink, clothes and tools, the woven fiber is an all safe mildew resistant body exfoliant, but more importantly it is the only facial grade exfoliating cloth I know of, even for fair skin types.

Once wet the weave tightens and softens, the result is a stimulating and smoothing effect on the skin. It is very pleasant to use and will never smell like a washcloth can... It is also very durable and one Ayate Cloth will last you a good year. For those of you who like to put everything in the laundry, it is also machine washable!

We carry it as a simple wash cloth and also as a mitt with a sponge inside. As summer approaches and you want to revive your winter looking skin, give the Ayate Cloth a try, I think you'll enjoy it, and remember : you can use it on your face as well!

Friday, April 15, 2011

The Small Things

Thirty years ago I found myself working in the cafeteria of a college in Phoenix, Az. A young woman worked there with me, her name was Rotunda, and ironically she was definitely rotund. I was already very health conscious back then and one morning upon seeing her eat some kind of Fruit Loop or Lucky Charm cereal, I asked her how she could eat that "stuff", to which she very candidly replied: "Because it makes me happy!" (with rising intonation). I was so taken aback by her sincerity there was nothing I could say.

I have often thought of Rotunda's reply to my judgment filled question and asked myself: "What makes me happy?", inflection on the "me". Well aside from a beautiful day and the scent of lemons, there is nothing like a shower with a silky smooth bar of my soap scented as if by miracle. Something I enjoy even more when I travel and take my soap with me.

It is in those small things, like a bowl of cereal, the smell of fresh cut grass, the sight of blossoming magnolias, or a really good bar of herbal olive oil soap that we find the comfort to move on; those small things keep us going until the big things straighten out, if they ever do.
What makes you happy?

Friday, April 8, 2011

"Does It Work?"

In our Sugar Loaf store customers will look at our Insect Repellent and many ask: "Does it work?". I imagine that question stems from having used a natural insect repellent which didn't work, or again from this incredible confidence we seem to give the pharmaceutical/chemical industry. They may wonder: "If there is no pesticide how on earth can it work?".
Well, my answer is that the world did not wait for the Petro-chemical industry to repel bugs!

As many of you know we are great believers in the benefits of essential oils. Certain essential oils have been used to repel insects for millennia, all across the world. We have selected five essential oils for their insect repelling qualities, geranium, citronella, basil, cedarwood, lemongrass, and put them in a wonderfully moisturizing base of sweet almond and safflower oil.
If you are someone to whom mosquitoes are attracted, (as they are to me), you will be far less attractive to them; they may fly around you but they will not land on you or sting you. If you are gardening or hiking and sweating you will need to repeat applications, but you can it's harmless!! And NO there is no deet. And the answer is YES our All Natural Insect Repellent works! Try it, see for yourself! Would we sell it if it didn't?

Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Gold In The Jar

Nowadays the outer appearance of what you sell is more important than the actual product inside. In fact, the idea is the more you pay for a product the more value you must be getting and the packaging must give that impression.

In most cases your over packaged/over sized jar contains only 2oz of actual product. In addition the active ingredient (if there is one) exists in a tiny quantity, probably not enough to do much, but who cares? The package is so pretty and makes me feel good! Next is our willingness to believe that the cosmetic industry has our best interest at heart; why should we think any other way?

So what I would like to say is that our packaging is simple, which is our philosophy, and simple is also beautiful, but more than that our packaging carries no pretense. Our content, however, is amazing. We have so much more active ingredient in each of our products than any of the big companies on the market, you are actually getting much more for you money.

Those of you who have tried our soap and realized the difference between regular soap and our soaps, will in all likelihood feel the same about our body care products.

There is no secret; what is made in smaller quantities with far less overhead is of much higher quality. My personal favorites are the Restoring Balm and the Body Scrub which I also use on my face. Check it out!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Why Lavender?

If you are one of those people who read ingredients, (and you should be), here is a story about one of our ingredients and why we use it so much : the essential oil of lavender .

René-Maurice Gattefossé, born in Montchat near Lyon in 1881, is regarded as the Father of Aromatherapy and inventer of the word itself.

A famous French chemist and scholar, in 1910 he discovered the virtues of the essential oil of lavender. While working in his lab, Rene Gattefosse, received 3rd degree thermal burns on his hand and forearm during an experiment and plunged his hand into the nearest tub of liquid which just happened to be lavender essential oil. He was later amazed at how quickly his burn healed and with very little scarring. This started a fascination with essential oils and inspired him to experiment with them during the First World War on soldiers in the military hospitals. He used oils of lavender, thyme, lemon and clove for their antiseptic properties. Gattefosse noted an increase in the rate of healing in wounds treated with essential oils and that the oils seemed to be free from the disadvantages present with other antiseptic agents in use at that time.

Lavender Oil Properties: Lavender essential oil has soothing, calming, and restorative properties. The essential oil is antiseptic, cooling and mild. Considered the universal oil, lavender is readily used neat, or undiluted, and combines well with almost all other oils for a wide variety of benefits. Many aromatherapists say lavender is the first essential oil to get.

Lavender Essential Oil Physical Benefits and Effects:

Skin care – especially dry or acne prone skin

Headaches – rub a drop or two on the temples for tension migraine relief.

Burns – The cooling, soothing and skin restorative effects are good for anti-inflammatory sunburn care. Documented use as an emergency care for heatstroke until medical personnel can arrive.

Insect Repellent/Bites and Stings – Repel bugs and takes the sting away from bites.

Blood Pressure and Heart – Soothes heart palpitations and lowers blood pressure because of anti-stress properties

Congestion/Asthma – Anti-spasmodic and anti-inflammatory effects make lavender good for respiratory support. Suitable for use with children as well.

Dandruff – Stimulating and moisturizing effects help with hair shine and dry scalp.

Lavender Mental/Psyche Effects:

Anti-Stress – Calming and soothing effects help counteract stress hormones

Antidepressant – Lavender is a well-documented antidepressant essential oil.

Refreshing and Uplifting – Can help balance mood swings and PMS symptoms

Insomnia – A mild sedative effect for restless or anxious nights