Wild Woman’s “as natural as possible” handmade soap: Part 1

Kathy Neudorf, Wild Woman's Natural Skincare
Kathy Neudorf, Wild Woman Natural Skincare

I met Kathy Neudorf on the Natural Soapmaking/SoapNatch mailing list a few years ago, and was immediately engaged by her questions. Here is a twin soul I thought: someone striving for as natural as possible soap, just like me!

Kathy is a formally trained visual artist, living in British Columbia, Canada. Her interests are varied and numerous: Kathy has been a painter, sketch artist, photographer, writer, vocalist, seamstress, knitter, cosmetician and foodie… and still is many of these things. As she said, “Each day brings new projects to explore”.

Q1. When and how did you get to know about handmade soap?

As in many situations, necessity was the mother of invention. In the 1990s I was diagnosed with an allergy to formaldehyde/formaldehyde releasers, and was dismayed to learn they were in all the skin care products I was using. At the time it was impossible to buy natural skincare, so I decided to make my own. I soon discovered that a well formulated, natural bar of soap can take the place of a host of cosmetics, plus it was a lot of fun to make, so a soapmaker was born!

Way too much soap - the title says it all - my typical setup at an artisan fair.
Way too much soap – the title says it all – my typical setup at an artisan fair.

Q2. When and why did you start your soapmaking business?

I am essentially a hobbyist who loves to make soap, so a few years ago I decided to sell my extra bars to the public. It’s a great way to ‘spread the word’ about natural soap, plus it gives me money for supplies. I mostly sell at artisan fairs, to friends, and consign my bars at a local store. 

Q3. Do you make and sell other products?

I make and sell an all natural, food grade body butter, in keeping with my natural theme. I also make natural skin cream and body powder, primarily for my own use.

But I concentrate on making soap, as it is useful, consumable, and has endless creative possibilities. It’s an artistic endeavour that gives me a lot of satisfaction. 

Kathy’s interview continues in Part 2.

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