January—a time for new beginnings, resolutions and staying warm and cozy indoors.
Unfortunately, this time of year also means cold and flu season, as well as the return of itchy, dry skin.
To combat these winter hardships at the same time, you may consider using a hydrating castile soap for hand washing and as a shower wash.
Castile soap has been used since the 11th Century and is made from natural vegetable oils, like olive or coconut.
In addition to the sustainable nature of the soap’s base, castile soap also offers buyers a cleaner lather, including smaller bubbles and a more even foam. The soap itself also has an extremely long shelf life and can be a great option to buy in bulk for crafters or those who think frugally.
Furthermore, Castile soap works just as well as its animal fat-based counterpart at disinfecting and cleaning hands or anywhere else on your body. This makes it an excellent choice when looking for a natural option to fight off the flu or any number of the colds floating around this season.
Regular hand washing, in fact, is an incredibly important part of staying healthy this time of year. A two-year study by the Naval Health Research Center found that people who wash their hands at least five times per day were 45% less likely to come down with respiratory illnesses than those who washed less frequently.
One downside to frequent hand washing (or bathing and showering, for that matter) is the loss of moisture in the skin. This happens when the soap breaks down in a water solution, leaving alkali deposits in the form of sodium on the skin. Those salts, in turn, sap the moisture from the skin and leave it dry and itchy.
To combat this, some castile soaps, such as the one Belli Fiori has created, infuse hydrating agents like sweet almond oil, grape seed oil, or shea butter into the solution. These oils help rehydrate the skin as the soap is used and combat the effects of alkali deposits.
Belli Fiori’s own castile soap also contains lavender oil, which readers of the column will know aids in the improvement of skin conditions like eczema and can even help overall complection.
The farmhouse at Belli Fiori is open all year, so be sure to stop in this winter try and our Lavender Almond Body Wash for yourself or pickup some lavender essential oil and try your hand at making castile soap at home.