Category Archives: Packaging

Soap Goodies

Last April, Cee of Oil & Butter had a tagline-making contest and a giveaway. Surprise, surprise, I won the giveaway! I had it sent to my sister in California, to be shipped together with my E.O. and F.O. orders. After 2 long months, the box from my sister arrived the other day.  Woohoo! 🙂 Oh my, the bath cookie smells like the most heavenly shortbread cookie!  It’s kinda hard not to bite into  it.  I have not used the bath tub in a while, but now I have to so I can soak in the yummy goodness of the bath cookie. I immediately used the lip butter and I love the way it feels  creamy and luxurious. The lavender soap will have to wait for its turn but I am sure it will be nothing but awesome.  I still have several bars in the shower and there are a few others lined up to be used – the problems we face with too many soaps! 😀

Soap - Oil and Butter

Oil & Butter giveaway

My best friend went to Japan last April and she came home with the strangest looking soap for me. It’s supposed to be a cherry blossom soap but to my nose it smelled more like lychee. It was packed in plastic-lined paper (shown in the background, under the tag) and it was swimming in a bit of liquid. I had to google about this jelly-like soap, and as it turned out, it was something Lush popularised a few years ago that spawned many copycats. I would not be surprised if Lush got the idea from Japan.  The Japanese are always coming up with the coolest and most unique ideas.  I’ve been saving this soap to blog about.  With that out of the way, I can finally use this squishy fun soap tonight!  Wheee!

Soap -Jelly

Japanese Jelly Soap with gold flecks

Nearly every time I research on soap packaging, I come across Izola soaps. It was thus a pleasant surprise to be holding it in person, thanks to my Hong Kong-based friend who sent it to me for soapy inspiration.  She likes the size of the soap and the way it’s packaged as a set.

Soap- Izola

Izola Soaps: unscented oatmeal

She also sent me a Claus Porto soap for its scent, called Paradise Rose.

Soap - Porto

Claus Poro: Paradise Rose

I am one lucky girl to be receiving all these wonderful bath goodies. Thank you Cee, Candice and Alex! 🙂

Soap - 3 kinds

SoapJam Peppermint Oatmeal, Izola Oatmeal Soap, Claus Porto Paradise Rose


Classic Soaps & Tapeless Plastic Packaging

As a soapmaker, part of the fun and challenge is coming up with creative designs and scent blends, but sometimes we just want something familiar and comforting, like these timeless favourites:

1. Lavender – soothing lavender with a small amount of litsea cubeba, rice powder and kaolin clay to help anchor the scent. The top is covered with soda ash, but I actually like the contrast.

Classic -Lavender


2. Peppermint oatmeal – finally, a pure peppermint soap! At 3% of oil weight, it is perfectly minty.

Classic - Peppermint Oatmeal

Peppermint Oatmeal

3. Honey Orange – a delicious classic pairing of honey, orange 5-fold, and blood orange.

Classic - Orange Honey

Honey Orange

4. Fir and Eucalyptus with Activated Charcoal –  I have not walked through a forest of fir trees, but I imagine this is what it smells like. I adore the fresh, outdoorsy scent. It is a proprietary blend of 6 different essential oils.

Classic - Fir and Eucalyptus

Fir and Eucalyptus

Recently I’ve switched from using paper to plastic for wrapping my soaps. I still have not found the perfect packaging, but for now, the plastic pouch I’ve devised suits my needs.  I wanted packaging that would show the soap designs I’ve laboured on, protect the soap from dirt and dust, help retain the scent, allow customers to smell the soap, and that didn’t take too much time and effort.  This isn’t as efficient as tapeless paper wrapping, but it checks my other prerequisites, and it’s still tapeless!

Plastic Packaging 1

Plastic Packaging 2

It looks like plastic I just folded over and secured with a paper string, but I actually cut the plastic to make it into the shape of an envelope.  I cut and removed the sides of the top half of the plastic at a slight angle.  I then folded one of the flaps and cut it out, leaving behind one to close the “envelope”.  The design leaves a gap on the sides, which allows the soap to breathe and let people smell the soap.

Plastic Packaging 3

Plastic Packaging 4

Valentine Soaps & Packaging

Have I mentioned that I have such an awesome mother-in-law?  Because she is such a great human being, people are naturally drawn to her, and my friends wish she was their mom, even though they love their own mothers.  She is the kind of person who celebrates every possible occasion with a gift.  Last month, she already ordered ahead for Valentine’s her favorite chrysanthemum-shaped soap, and a black and white one that’s scented with grapefruit and neroli.

I still don’t have the proper packaging for plastic-wrapped soaps, so I had to make-do with what I could find. I wanted the flower-shaped soaps to rest on paper doily, but I couldn’t find small ones. I also didn’t want to use wrapping paper because it’s too thin, and I couldn’t find thick paper with a nice print.  I did find, though, this lovely baking cup:

Olive Breeze Packaging 1

I had to stretch out the cups to flatten them, and using a mason jar ring as a guide, I cut-out circles with a paper cutter.  When my friend saw my labor-intensive process, he said that there is a cutter specifically for round shapes.  I had no idea!  Anyway, i just had to cut 30 pieces, but I did look for that cutter the following day.  Sadly, it’s not available in our local stores.

I will have to search where I can find 3.5″ doilies or printed paper boards that I can use as a base for soaps like the ones below.  Please let me know if you have a source to share! 🙂 The cut-outs are not perfectly round but I’m quite happy with the way these turned out.

Olive Breeze 1
Olive Breeze Packaging

The black and white soaps were much simpler to package.  I just used red gross-grain ribbon. I think it would have been cuter if I had a fancier-shaped hang tag for Valentine’s.  I totally missed the opportunity to buy the Silhouette Cameo at a discount last December. It would be really nice to have it, but, well, I can live without it.  🙂
Valentine's Packaging

M.I.L. Neroli

Milk Paint

Just wanted to do a quick post on a fun little project my friend and I did last weekend. We painted some trays with all-natural, environment friendly Milk Paint.

Milk Paint

You simply mix the paint powder with an equal amount of warm water, and you’re ready to paint! We just did a few brush strokes on the tray to give it that vintage, rustic feel. A little sanding smoothened it and completed the look.

Milk Paint tray 2

Milk Paint Tray 3

Milk Paint Tray 4


Tapeless Wrapping

Dear Maja and Vicki, this one’s for you!

paper wrapping 1

Center the soap on the paper.

paper wrapping 2

Pull ends to overlap.

paper wrapping 3

Turn over soap.

paper wrapping 4

Push in top ends of the paper at the same time (so that soap does not move).

paper wrapping 5

Fold in the sides.

paper wrapping 6

Bring the edge of the soap in line with the edge of the table. Push down the flap so that it is a straight line. (This is an important step if you want clean, crisp corners)

paper wrapping 7

Turn over the soap again and fold in the flaps.

paper wrapping 8

Voila! Soap wrapping without tape.

Christmas Soaps and Packaging

This year just went by in a blur! It’s 20 days to Christmas and I still have soaps curing. I soaped practically everyday from end of September to October, hoping I’d be done with Christmas packing before December.  I got a bit delayed because I needed to make more than I anticipated, and I also didn’t soap for nearly 2 weeks in November.  I should be able to complete though everybody’s orders and my personal gift requirements before Christmas.

I have not officially started selling soap, but hopefully I can do so next year. Right now it’s just my family and friends who are supporting my soapy passion. I am most grateful to them for giving me the opportunity to soap to my heart’s content and to improve my skills.

As early as August, my mother-in-law and sister-in-law placed their order for a combined  total of 250 3-pack soaps, or 750 bars (they just have that many people to give to!)  I was able to complete their orders by mid-November, all boxed-up and sent to Manila in batches.  My husband and a good friend were my soap mules (thank you!!!) since they fly between Manila and Cebu regularly.

Christmas Packaging - Plaid Ribbon

Each pack contains one scrubby, one plain yogurt, and one with design. The soap is wrapped with kraft paper and lined with waxy sandwich paper.

Packaging 2

“Wake Me Up” with coffee and oatmeal

I’ve always disliked using tape in my packaging. Thanks to my sister who found in her drawer a forgotten Burt’s Bees soap from ages ago, I now know how to wrap soaps in the same neat way, sans tape!  The best part is you can open the package to see the soap inside and fold it back to its original state.

Burt's Bees 1 Burt's Bees 2

Packaging 1

Here are variations for single, trio and quartet Christmas soap packaging.   Packaging for a 2-bar set is the same as for the trio.

Christmas Packaging -individual

Christmas Packaging - Plastic w twine

Christmas Packaging-Pack of 3

The wife of my brother has a small business manufacturing light-weight wooden containers/packaging for export to Japan. I asked her to make me trays in the style of crates for my soaps.  The smaller tray is stained brown, hence the darker color, while the 4-bar tray is the natural color of the wood.  I am reserving these for my personal gifts to family and friends. 🙂

Christmas Packaging - Tray of 3

Christmas Packaging-Tray of 4

I’ve made so many different kinds of soaps the past 2 months, I just haven’t had the time to blog about them.  I made 2 Christmas-themed soaps:

1. Peppermint Vanilla Noel – I already made a batch of this last October and loved it so much (click here to see the old version).  I made several more batches but changed the look to a drop swirl design, which I like a lot better.  I left the lower vanilla portion uncolored, leaving the vanillin content to naturally turn the soap tan. The upper red, green and white were scented with peppermint e.o.

Christmas Soap-Peppermint Vanilla

Christmas Soap - soap top

2. Winter Wonderland – This has a strong, deep, and intoxicating scent – woodsy, tart, spicy, and fruity – a little bit masculine but can also appeal to women. I really like the way this smells! I used burgundy and green chrome oxides and intentionally used less color so that it looks muted.

Christmas Soap - Winter Wonderland 2 Christmas Soap - Soap top wonderland

12/8/13  Due to requests, click here for a tutorial on how to wrap soap without tape.

Trying New Packaging

And the quest continues on how to best package the soaps…

package detox

package avocado

package daily soap package group

Gift Set Packaging

I am still trying to find a nice way to package the soaps as a set.  My sister needed a birthday gift for a friend so I quickly put together this set, using a porcelain tray that holds 4 bars perfectly.

Gift Set