Castile Soap, sometimes called vegetable soap, is extremely popular within the homemade soap making community. Exactly what is castile soap? Well, that really depends on which definition you decide to adopt. Some consider castile soap to be any soap that is made from olive oil only. When it comes down to it, that is really the true definition. I, however, along with many other soap makers, consider a soap to be castile if it is void of animal fats and contains at least some olive oil along with other vegetable oils. This is a relatively common definition within the homemade soap making community. Pure olive oil soap, or true castile are the terms I use for a soap made 100% from olive oil.
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Why make castile soap? Many homemade natural soap makers won't hesitate to use animal fats in their products. I, however, strongly prefer using and making castile, or vegetable soap, over animal based soaps for a few key reasons:
- I am a striving vegan... enough said.
- Ease of use... You don't have to render vegetable oils like you do with most animal fats like tallow and lard.
- Label appeal... many consumers like their homemade soaps to be made out of 100% vegetable oils. Some people will even stay far away from your product if they see that you use animal animal fats in your production.
Please don't get me wrong. Some soap makers and consumers love soaps made with animal fats. That's ok. As the saying goes,"to each his own"!