Saturday, 17 March 2012

Visionary Soap Company review

I love discovering new products and companies online, especially when they have a local link, whether that be to my native Sussex or the North of France. Well, Visionary Soap Company instantly got a huge tick in the "local" box because, not only are they based in my hometown of Hastings, but they actually work from the very same industrial estate where I did my first summer job at a cash & carry ! Talk about a small world!

But that's not the only good thing they have going for them. They promote themselves as THE Fair Trade Soap Company, and proudly explain that they ethically source their raw materials, using olive oil from the Palestinian Fair Trade Producers Company, shea butter from the Akoma Cooperative Multipurpose Society in Ghana, coconut oil and botanicals from Fair Trade Alliance Kerala in India, cocoa butter from CONOCADO in the Dominican Republic, botanicals from Small Organic Farmer Association in Sri Lanka, sesame seed oil from Del Campo in Nicaragua and rooibos from Citrusdal Bergendal in South Africa. Love it already !

They kindly sent me through a selection of their products to try out. As their principal product line (judging by their name at least) is soap, I decided to start off with those. Reading about them online, I learnt that the organic soaps are made using the traditional cold-process method and that they contain 60% Fairtrade certified ingredients when the minimum requirement for certification is 2%.

 I chose the box containing the Lemongrass Soap and mmmmmm, as soon as I slipped the chunky, natural looking bar out of the box, I could smell the delicious zesty lemon fragrance of the lemongrass. I like the slightly irregualr, imperfect look of the bar which makes it look really artisanal and homemade rather than mass produced and impersonal. It creates a very slight lather which leaves your hands delicately fragranced.

The three other soaps - Geranium Rose, Lavender and Cinnamon Orange Clove - are smaller versions of the big bar, with the same handcut and handmade appearance and lovely ingredients. You can even see bits of petal in them. The fragrances are all lovely - I even like the lavender and geranium ones which are usually fragrances that I don't like, because they are natural and delicate, not overpowering and brash. The only problem is, because they are open, with just a sleeve of paper around them, the fragrances seem less potent than the Lemongrass one which comes in a box and have a tendency to blend together, which is a shame. These mini bars are perfect for taking on holiday, as guest bathroom toiletries or even as wedding favours. You can buy gift boxes containing a selection of eight mini bars which would make a perfect present for all occasions, from mother's day to Christmas and birthdays.

But they don't only make soap. We also received one of their strange-looking (it reminded us of a piece of leftover uncooked pastry !) but absolutely deliciously-fragranced Lemongrass Bath Melts. The bath melt is a mixture of fairtrade certified shea butter from Ghana, sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), citric acid, organic lemongrass flakes and organic lemongrass essential oil. When you throw the bath melt in the bath, the shea butter melts and disperses in the water, along with the essential oils, leaving it beautifully fragranced. It can make the bath a bit slippery though so be careful when you get out. It leaves your skin moisturised but a bit greasy and I also had to rinse my hair with the shower attachment after shampooing it so that it didn't feel greasy. The bath melts are soft and crumbly so you can break a piece off and use it over two or three baths. Sophie crushed it into a million pieces by accident so we put the whole thing in at the same time, which maybe explains why it felt too greasy.

The final product that we tried was the Lemon Lip Balm. Made with sunflower oil, fairtrade certified olive oil from Palestine, Fairtrade certified shea butter from Ghana, candelilla wax, vitamin E (as a natural preservative) and lemon essential oil, it smells and tastes lovely and citrussy. It leaves lips feeling soothed and hydrated, if a little greasy, and is great if your lips are a bit chapped or sore. You have the choice of four flavours - lemon, orange, grapefruit or peppermint - but if it's too hard to choose just one, there is also a Lipbalm Gift Trio.

Visionary Soap Company have a huge amount of plus points going for them - the cruelty-free ethics, the organic credentials, the fairtrade commitment, the natural ingredients and the fabulous fragrances. Their products are available through various distributors- Essential Trading Cooperative, Suma Wholefoods, Rainbow Wholefoods, Highland Wholefoods and The Fairtraders Cooperative - as well as of Ethical Superstore, Traidcraft, Oxfam GB, Oxfam Ireland and Amnesty International. 

You can also follow them on Facebook at and twitter @visionarysoap.

star rating : 4.5/5

RRP : lipbalm £3.45 for 5ml, Lemongrass Soap £3.69, Bath Melt £9.95 for 6

for more information :

Other reviews you may be interested in :

Shea Mooti Ethical Skincare for Mama and Baby review
Calorie-free bathroom treats for Easter from Lush
Sigg UK Eco-friendly Bottles review


  1. I won a box from them of various soaps and agree it is fantastic my partner loves the cinnamon one as she says it is also a great exfoliator whatever that is ?? lol @jamesdpaton

  2. I collect soaps so these really appeal to me, they sound lovely!

  3. I had seen them on twitter and wondered what their products were like @jessws2011

  4. Great review thank you! I love those natural soaps. My parents brought me back some natural soap from Greece last year - made of honey and oatmeal - and the smell was gorgeous (I love honey)The oatmeal left my skin feeling so smooth too!

  5. I was lucky enough to win a box of their soaps from The Ecologist magazine. Mine all came individually boxed so I didn't have the blending together problem. My favourite is the Cinnamon Orange Clove.

  6. I've been wanting to try their products but I didn't know they had bath melts in their range which I love so going to buy these asap

  7. I've been wanting to try their products but I didn't know they had bath melts in their range which I love so going to buy these asap

  8. I may have to treat myself to the lemongrass soap, I love lemongrass in any form, incense, essential oil or the plant to cook with, it's a wonderful scent!