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Ingredients Commonly Found in Commercial Soaps 2

These are the ingredients found in commercial soaps and why we don’t use them.

When shopping for a natural soap you may not know what ingredients to avoid and why so here is a handy list to guide you to make the right decision.

So you know what natural ingredients to look out for in an eco friendly, zero waste, organic, chemical free, vegan, natural soap bar or natural liquid soap that have a positive impact on your skin and the environment, but what about the negative ones? These are some of the ingredients most commonly found in commercial soaps along with the reasons why at Peace With The Wild, we are not fans and recommend choosing an eco, organic, chemical free, natural soap bar or natural liquid soap.

Foaming agents

Sodium lauryl and laureth sulphate are common ingredients in soap, shampoo and other foaming products. They clean via corrosion and are a source of irritation for the skin, often leaving it dry and red. It also eats away at skin and hair proteins and can even damage the follicles of the hair. If you can, avoid it and seek chemical free, organic, vegan, natural soap bars, natural liquid soap or natural facial cleansing soap bars that clean without it. At Peace With The Wild, we stock an all natural collection of eco soap on a rope, natural hand soap bars and vegan body soap bars that are all SLS free!

Animal fats

If you are vegan or vegetarian, the last thing you want your soap to contain is animal fat. Sodium tallowate is used often in soap and creates a thin lather. Whilst it is not really bad for your skin, it is a product that comes from the slaughterhouse, therefore undesirable for those who prefer not to use animal products. At Peace With The Wild we always recommend going for a eco, natural soap bar, such as an eco soap on a rope, natural hand soap bar, vegan body soap bar, natural facial cleansing soap bar or natural liquid soap that is vegan and cruelty free. 

Palm oil

Sodium palmate and sodium palm kernelate are mild cleansers and are not considered as ‘bad soaps’ but they are made from palm oil. As you most likely know, the cultivation and harvesting of palm oil has a devastating impact on the environment and has been responsible for the destruction of many types of wildlife’s habitats as well as the extinction of some species. Choosing a natural soap bar or natural liquid soap that is palm oil free is a far more eco friendly alternative. At Peace With The Wild, we even have a collection of natural hand soap bars, vegan body soap bars, natural facial cleansing soap bars and even eco soap on a rope, all are palm oil free.


Polyethylene glycol is a plastic and when used in soap, comes as a thick, sticky liquid. It works by helping other ingredients get absorbed into your skin so if your soap contains other harmful ingredients, PEGs will aid them in being absorbed into your body. So be kind to your skin and opt for a plastic-free, natural soap bar, vegan body soap bar, or natural soap liquid. 

Cocamide MEA

Otherwise known as cocamide monoethanolamine, it moisturises and conditions the skin and is made from coconut oil that has reacted with monoethanolamine. Unfortunately, cocamide DEA has a high irritation potential and is known to have adverse effects on the skin so it is best to avoid it and go with a 100% natural soap bar, eco soap on a rope, natural facial cleansing soap bar or natural soap liquid.

Petrol by-products

Mineral oil and petrolatum are often used in commercial soaps and as byproducts of the fuel industry they contain impurities that have been linked to serious medical conditions. So avoiding this and opting for a chemical free, eco friendly, natural soap bar such as a natural hand soap bar, vegan body soap bar, natural facial cleansing soap bar, natural liquid soap, or eco soap on a rope is not only the eco decision but is also better for our health.


Common preservatives in commercial soaps include EDTA or potassium sorbate. Whilst they are not bad per se, there is some debate around their safety once it goes down the plug hole and into the waterways. Going for a chemical free, natural soap bar or natural liquid soap is far more beneficial and eco friendly as there is evidence to suggest that they can be pollutants in large quantities therefore negatively impacting wildlife.

Want to shop for a natural soap bar without the nasties? Click here!


  1. Do you sell any hand soaps that don’t leave skin feeling waxy? I live in a very hard water area, and find that even natural ingredient soap bars still leave residue. Definitely a big fan of switching to soap bars though, so I don’t want to give up yet!

    1. Hi Jay,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      Our shower blocks might be good for you! they are designed to be like a solid shower gel, but work really well as a hand soap too!

      I hope this helps!

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