SUSTAINABLE PALM OIL (one of the world¹s most popular vegetable oils) is frequently used in cosmetics, foods and other consumer products. However, its’ so popular, especially sourced frm Indonesia and Malaysia, that the clearance of the forest for palm oil plantations has increased more than six-fold since the mid-1980s, and the demand is still rising.
This Summer of 2007, The Body Shop, recognizing that the demand for palm oil could potentially devastate the world’s ancient rainforest, affect delicate ecosystems, endanger animal species (eg. orangutans, elephants, tigers and rhinoceros), and effect the rights of indegenous populations of human beings, have decided to start using sustainably-sourced palm oil from a plantation in Columbia for all the Body Shop Soaps. As of May 25th, all Almond Soap delivered into The Body Shop business
was manufactured with sustainable palm oil. From the end of July, all Olive
Soap will also contain sustainable palm oil. Over the next six to eight
months The Body Shop will convert the remainder of soap business into
sustainable palm oil. The Body Shop hopes that their decision to use sustainable palm oil will help to improve conditions for workers, preserve communities and protect endangered animals affected by the irresponsible production of palm oil.
So what is the soap actually like? The soap I received from The Body Shop was the Almond Soap. And, it’s quite nice.
The almond-colored, hard-milled soap is smooth except for an embossed “Body Shop” logo. Of course, it contains sustinable palm oil to moisturize your skin, and almond extract (providing essential fatty acids that help to repair the skin’s moisture barrier) and glycerin to improve your skin’s softness and maximize hydration. This soothing, moisturizing and nicely cleansing csoap also has a pleasant, clean and light fragrance that is not the sweet almond I expected. It is less sweet and more spicy, like bitter almond extract. I think men will particularly like it if they are sharing soap in the bathroom, because it won’t make them smell too “nutty” (as in almond, not crazy) and it dissapates quickly, so it won’t overpower their other fragrance choices. I am not sure if I counted correctly, but I think there are 18 different soap choice.
The Almond Soap is available for $3.50 and is available at all Body Shop retail stores (thre are more than 2,000 stores in over 57 countries) and online at www.thebodyshop.com
We will be reviewing more products from The Body Shop in our SEPTEMBER What Works Beauty, Cosmetics & Fashion review column, available on the Advice Sisters Relationships & Advice Website the first week in September. Meanwhile, don’t forget to check out the huge two-page JULY/AUGUST What Works column, featuring sun-safe products for the entire family, and our exclusive buying guide (see the bottom of PAGE TWO).