Evolution of Spirit Tree
For most of my life, I have struggled to find products that are suitable for my sensitive skin and effective on my eczema. I have used various products prescribed by my doctor and over the counter remedies which all provided little to no long-term relief for my dry, painful skin.
I decided to do some research on the ingredients commonly used in the skin care industry and quickly became concerned about the effects they were having on my skin. From petrol-derived ingredients, parabens, phthalates and sulphates to synthetic fragrances there were many culprits to choose from.
I removed all these hard to pronounce ingredients from my skincare routine and created natural alternatives that were based on active, botanical ingredients instead. These have been tremendously effective on the health of my skin and I am pleased to say I no longer have any symptoms of eczema.
Soap has been the most important product in my transition to healthy, moisturised skin as it has allowed me to completely removed sulphates from my routine. Commercial shower gels and hand and face wash contain sulphates, primarily Sodium Lauryl Sulphate. Not only is SLS sourced from palm oil, which we completely avoid, but it is a harsh surfactant known to compromise the skins moisture barrier and cause long-term skin issues and irritation. It is also a pollutant of groundwater, toxic to fish and other aquatic organisms with the potential for bioaccumulation in the environment.
I have completely fallen for the whole process of sourcing, designing, creating and using natural products and I have such confidence in their effectiveness that I made the decision to sell them and bring you Spirit Tree Natural Skincare.
Who are we?
We, actually started out as just me, and what I do is design and create luxury artisan soaps and skincare products.
Everything is made with 100% natural ingredients that I have personally selected for their cleansing, moisturising and healing properties and suitability for sensitive skin.
Campaigning and educating people about the Palm Oil industry and its links to the toiletries market is something we are passionate about.
The impacts of this industry include forest conversion, habitat and species loss and climate change, not to mention social conflicts and indigenous rights abuse.
Palm oil is found in 70% of all cosmetics and toiletries products and is often hideen under names such as sodium lauryl sulfate and cetearyl alcohol. We don't beleive it is necessary to use these products to keep clean and instead we choose to use more sustainable, natural options.
We then add essential oils, mineral pigments, botanicals and clays to give each bar a distinct look and scent. The liquid mixture is then poured into wooden soap moulds and left to saponify and harden for cutting.
All our soap is made in small batches to ensure quality and design and left to cure for a minimum of 6 seeks to ensure the bars are mild. Everything is then hand wrapped and packaged ready to be purchased and enjoyed. Come and have a look at our range and available gift boxes.
I studied Conservation and Ecological Management at The University of Edinburgh in my early twenties and this definitely influenced my decision to produce natural skincare products.
The course highlighted the rate and extent of environmental destruction and species loss and the need for more sustainable business practices and life style choices. I was especially interested in the cosmetics and toiletries industry and the extent of processing of products and the toxic ingredients widely use - from parabens to surfactants, pthalates to petrochemicals. These ingredients and the process of production not only harm our bodies but also have a detrimental, long term impact on the environment. I intend to use Soul Tree Natural Skincare as a platform to educate and encourage people to make more conscious choices when it comes to cosmetics and toiletries.
How to care for your soap
As mentioned our soap contains natural glycerin that conditions and moisturises the skin. Glycerin is a humectant, absorbing water from the air and attracting moisture to your skin. Therefore we recommend storing your bar away from the shower in between uses and allow it to dry on a soap dish as this allows the bar to harden between uses and last much longer.
You can purchase one of our biodegradable soap dishes here.
Where you can find us
Spirit Tree Natural Skincare products are available to purchase online and at farmer's markets and craft fairs around Scotland. We love meeting and talking to our customers so please come down and visit at our markets listed here and we can find you something to suit your skin type.
We also stock craft shops and independent retailers and you can find a list of our stockists and information about wholesale enquiries on our Stockist and Wholesale page.
Who are we?
How we make our soap
How to care for your
Where you can find us
How we make soap
We make our soap using the traditional cold process method. First we melt down oils and butters and mix it with sodium hydroxide (naturally derived from sea water) to create a thick liquid soap mixture. This mixture undergoes a natural process called saponification which involves molecules of oil reacting with molecules of sodium hydroxide to form glycerin, the main component of soap. Different oils and butters enhance different qualities of the soap and our recipe has been selected to produce a hard bar of soap with a rich creamy lather and extra moisturising properties.