This is something that everyone uses at least once every day! But about a hundred years ago soap was so expensive that only very rich people could afford it. Soap is made from different fats and oils. We import these oils from other countries, as we need coconut and olive oils and whale fats, as well as some other animal fats. These oils and fats are all heated up together, with caustic soda, which is an alkaline solution. Heating these ingredients produces glycerin, which is used for other purpose, so this is separated from the soap mixture.
The soap, which by now has formed a curd, is boiled again, to remove all traces of salt. After this, it is given its perfume and coloring. Left to cool in long bars, it’s then cut up and wrapped for us to buy. Soap is really a ‘dirt loosener’. It dissolves in water, so the soap in the water thousand the speaks of dirt on our hands, and loosens them from the skin. Then, as we move our hands in the water, the specks float away with the water, leaving our hands clean and fresh!