My guest today is Cynthia A. Young Jennings, owner of Sweet Harvest Farms in Tampa, Florida. She runs a thriving cottage industry that makes soaps for women, men, and dogs. C.J. has formulated a soap recipe all her own that consists of natural, soothing and luxurious organic ingredients to make a soap that “not only leaves you squeaky clean but also give s you soft, supple and silky skin.” I can vouch for this. I bought a big bar of her soap at a holiday crafts fair and had to have her on the show. C.J. has been an artist longer than she can remember. Painting on anything that “didn’t move”, including old cupboard doors, chairs and even her father’s old Army boots, made her offerings a bit eclectic. Even during her 20 years in the medical field CJ always had her hand in creating. Years later, opening her store in Destin, Fl. , she decided to offer a little bit of everything from antiques to handmade primitive dolls. Included in this eclectic mix was Potpourri and Handmade Soap. Always being a perfectionist and wanting to give her customers only the best, she found the Soap and Potpourri not up to her standards. Many Soaps that are sold as “homemade” are actually produced in huge warehouses? These “soap blocks” are shipped in large quantities which others re-melt, mix with scent, color, blend them with synthetic Glycerin, and call them “Glycerin Soaps”. Many contain chemicals, preservatives, Parabens and Petroleum by-products that are eventually absorbed into your bloodstream through your skin not to mention the damage they create to the environment when washed down the drain or thrown out into the garbage. True Soaps don’t melt, become slimy, or leave a greasy residue on your skin or shower—AND true soaps must have a cure date on their label. Sweet Harvest Farms products do not contain Parabens, Sodium Lauryl Sulfates, Phosphates, Harsh Chemicals, Mineral Oils or Petroleum products of any kind. C.J.’s experience in the medical field has given her the ability to formulate her own patented recipes for her handmade soap, lip balm, she butter bars, roll on perfume, tooth powder and more. There are very few true Soap makers left that stay true to the old fashion method of Soap making used hundreds of years ago. Vitamins A-E, Organic and All Natural Shea Butter, Flaxseed Oil, Olive Oil, Castor Oil, Jojoba Oil, Palm Oil (sustainable), Coconut Oil and others. are what customers say make this Soap nurturing and hydrating. www.sweetharvestfarms.com
TOXIC FREE TALK RADIO
A Unique Handmade Body Soap
Host: Debra Lynn Dadd
Guest: Cynthia A. Young Jennings
Date of Broadcast: January 07, 2015
DEBRA: Hi, I’m Debra Lynn Dadd and this is Toxic Free Talk Radio where we talk about how to thrive in a toxic world and live toxic-free. It’s Wednesday, January 7th 2015. I got that right. Do you find that it’s difficult the first few days of the year that it’s not 2014 anymore and that you have to remember this new number, 2015? I seem to actually be getting better doing that as the years go by. It’s lovely to be starting a new year.
Today, we’re going to be talking about soap. Soap is a lovely thing. I love buying handmade soap. And I’ve been using handmade soap for years. There’s a big difference between soap and detergent and how it interacts with your skin and gets it clean. But even amongst handmade soaps, there is a huge difference in how soap is made.
I trust my guest that I have today because one of the things that I love to do is go around to farmer’s markets and fresh markets and crop fairs and any place where people are making things by hand. As I’ve been doing that, I keep seeing this same woman over and over. I see her and her soaps over and over and I keep thinking what great soaps these look like over and over. I have even taken her card and listed her on my website, given her a link on Debra’s List at DebrasList.com and then finally, I bought a bar of soap.
Just over Christmas time, I went to a holiday fair and I saw her soap and I learned some new things. She had a beautiful display. And from her display, I learned some things about her soap that I never knew about soap. And so I bought the soap and it’s very different from any other soap that I’ve purchased before or used on my skin.
She says that it’s – I’m going to tell you the quote – she says that her soap “not only leaves you squeaky clean, but also gives you soft, supple and silky skin.” And that’s exactly right. I can vouch for that. It’s a heavy bar of soap. It doesn’t just melt away.
So we’re going to learn about the differences between soaps, what’s toxic. You might have that’s toxic in your soap and what truly old-fashioned soap is. We’re going to learn all about that today.
My guest is Cynthia A. Young Jennings. She’s the owner of Sweet Harvest Farms in Tampa, Florida.
Hi, Cynthia. We’re going to call you CJ because you like to be called CJ.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: That’s fine. If you say, “Hey, you,” that’ll work.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: And let me apologize. First of all, I leave close to an air base and they’re doing training. So every once in a while, you might hear jets in the background.
DEBRA: Totally fine! Thanks for telling us what that sound is in case we hear it. So Cynthia, how did you get to be a soap maker?
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Well, gosh! I had owned a store before. And it was wholesaling what I thought was ‘true soap’, but it was leaving me itchy and dry like most products that you buy in the market commercially. Since I have a medical background and I did work in a dermatology office for the doctors therein, I’m a sponge. I learn and read everything. I wanted to be a surgeon at one time, but that’s another story. That’s why I stayed in the medical field so long.
So I decided to start doing research. And I wanted everything I do, I do with passion and with a vengeance. So I actually researched soap making for actually two years before I actually took the plunge because I wanted to make sure that what I created was going to be the best thing on the market.
Of course, my family and I are the guinea pigs. So after a couple of trials, because I was developing my own recipes (so these recipes aren’t found anywhere, but on my head), I tried a couple of recipes and gave them to my family and friends and they’re like, “Well, yeah, this is great, but this or whatever.” And finally, the third try, I came with what I think is a totally different bar of soap than you will find anywhere else.
DEBRA: It’s totally a different bar of soap than I have ever seen.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Well, it’s my own recipe. I put in there what I think your skin needs or actually know what your skin needs to thrive. I have always put 100% of my ingredients on my back label, which my mother is like, “Why? People will know what you’re using” and I said, “Yes, but they won’t know my recipe.” There’s a big difference.
DEBRA: That’s right, there is.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: it is a big difference. I mean, you could lay out everything for someone to make pancakes, but if they don’t know the recipe, they don’t know how much of everything to put in.
And actually, starting this year, the FDA is actually starting to clamp down on people and fine them if they don’t have 100% of their ingredients on the back of the bar and they are also finding people that claim to have soap when it’s truly not soap and only a beauty bar.
Dove, last year, actually knew this was coming and jumped on the bandwagon to avoid the fine. And so when you go on the store now and look at the Dove packaging, it now says ‘beauty bar’.
DEBRA: Well, before we hear more about your soap that is so fabulous, I’d like you to tell us more about what you’ve learned about soap and additives that are in it and things like that, so that people can understand what the issues are about why they should use your soap and not another soap. So just tell us more about this whole thing of soap versus beauty bar, so that people can understand more about the labeling of soap. What is soap?
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Well, what it turns out, there are several manufacturers all over the country and overseas that do make soap. But what happens is they replace all the good stuff with synthetic lathering agents and harsh chemicals. That is what makes the bar of soap lather.
Now, if you have a good recipe and have the right combination of oils in a bar of soap, you don’t need lathering agents because the combination of oils can make a beautiful lather on its own.
And then what they do is they also siphon out the glycerine, which is a very hot commodity. This is what your skin need. But they siphon it out to sell it to high-end cosmetic companies. And then they’ll replace it because now the softening agent has been removed.
So then they’ll replace it with mineral oil, which comes from biodiesel fuel. They’ll also put in lanolin, which comes from the sheet wool. And by the way, we have been led to believe for many, many years that lanolin is actually good for you. It is not. Your skin wants moisture constantly. And what lanolin does is it actually puts a film over your skin so that moisture cannot penetrate it. If you stop and think about it, lanolin comes from sheet wool. When you see it rain on a sheet, what does the water do?
DEBRA: It runs off.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: it rolls off, exactly. And that is because it puts that film. It’s a natural protective film for the sheet obviously, but we, as humans, we need the moisture.
Then they put it lauryl sulfate for preservatives and chemicals. Your skin is the largest organ in your body and it absorbs everything you put on it, whether it’s make-up, deodorant or whatever. So of course, all these that you’re putting not only into your body, but you’re washing down the brain – not your brain, the drain – which actually, I shouldn’t laugh because all these chemicals are actually stored in body fat and in your brain.
DEBRA: Yes, they are stored in your brain.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Yes, everything. I mean, I could really go off on that one, but that’s for another interview. So everything that goes down the drain, it’s also not good for the environment.
DEBRA: Yes, yes. You’re exactly right.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: It’s really scary. We’re so used to just believing what’s told to us. We really need to become a nation of label-readers. I know when I started really concentrating on labels, my husband and I went to a grocery store and we spent probably four hours – we didn’t buy a thing, but spent four hours going up and down the aisle just reading labels and what is in the products that we use for our skin, our hair, what we eat. It’s really scary.
DEBRA: We need to go to break, but when we come back, I want to hear more about labels. You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is CJ – well, I guess I’ll say Cynthia A. Young Jennings also known as CJ, owner of Sweet Harvest Farms in Tampa, Florida. Her website is SweetHarvestFarms.com. She makes incredible soap, which we’re going to continue to talk about after the break.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Cynthia A. Young Jennings, owner of Sweet Harvest Farms, that’s at SweetHarvestFarms.com and she makes incredible soap, which we’re going to hear about very soon in the show.
But first, I want to ask Cynthia. You had mentioned before about the FDA and labeling and beauty bars versus soap. So what is the difference between if somebody sees the word ‘beauty bar’ on a bar of what they think is soap and real soap.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Beauty bars have usually had all the good ingredients siphoned out of it. That’s what we were just talking about.
DEBRA: So is there a legal definition of what the word ‘soap’ is? I know that in the government, in foods, there is standardization of like mayonnaise, for example. It can’t be called mayonnaise unless it has certain ingredients in it. So is it the same thing with soap?
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Yes, almost, yes. The FDA has books that are probably about five inches thick that are a very dry read.
DEBRA: Yes, I’ve read some of them.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Unfortunately. They’re quite specific as to what is termed as soap or a beauty bar. There are very few true soap makers left, by the way, in the United States. Out of all the millions of people, there’s only about 65 true soap makers left.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: So a lot of the things that you see at shows, markets, et ceter is either a beauty bar or a melt n’ pour product. The melt n’ pour is actually what I consider in my opinion one of the worst. That is the product you can actually go into Michael’s craft store and in children’s crafts and see a big block of white that you can take home that you melt, put a little color, a little glycerin in and pour it back out in a mold, cut it up and call it homemade soap, which a lot of people do.
Unfortunately, the glycerin that most people use comes from biodiesel fuel. That is a different type of glycerin. That is not the soap glycerin that you need for your skin. And there is no scent, there’s no color, there’s no [inaudible 00:16:14]. It’s really scary.
And I’m not sure how the FDA thinks that they’re going to crack down on everybody because to be quite honest, they can’t even get a handle on our food supply. So I think it’s a scare tactic I think because back in the ‘90s, melt and pour became very popular. It’s the clear stuff that you can see little bits and pieces in. It melts very quickly and it leaves slime all over your skin in the shower.
So everyone started jumping on the bandwagon and started doing melt n’ pour beauty bars and calling it handmade soap. I think since it’s become inundated, everywhere you go, to see someone set up with homemade soap. I think that’s why the FDA finally is clamping down or trying to clamp down.
DEBRA: Yeah. One of the things that has been such a difficult thing, but not just in soap, but in all kinds of products is that there’s a term like ‘soap’ and yet that can mean so many different things.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: I’m not sure if you realize this, but the FDA does not even recognize the word ‘natural’ when you’re talking about…
DEBRA: I know that. We’ve talked about that before, yeah.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: It’s like people use the word ‘vintage’ to describe clothing and furniture when ‘vintage’ is really a term used for wine. So it’s all relative I guess.
DEBRA: It would be nice if there were some standardized words that we could just say this word and know what it means and not have there be so much…
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Exactly! Oh, totally. I agree.
DEBRA: And even within the naming of chemicals, that’s where it gets really confusing because you can call something like glycerin (you just said glycerin) and glycerin can either be the natural glycerin that is the result of soap making or it can be, as you said, glycerin made from petrochemicals, from diesel fuel and it’s completely synthetic and has nothing to do with soap at all, yet all it says on the label is glycerin. And that’s something I’ve been writing about for years and years and years.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Exactly! Yeah, it’s really – [sigh], I guess people are going to use what they want to use to their benefit or not their benefit. And that’s what’s scary because you really can’t – you’re right, there’s no standardized wording that can really describe what you’re using.
DEBRA: And I think that people look at soap and say, “Oh, this looks so pretty with all that little stuff in it or it’s all these colors that are swirled together or it has a pretty fragrance or whatever. But then there’s this whole other issue of, “Is this soap actually functioning well to help your skin? Are there any toxic chemicals in it?” And it’s not just about how pretty it is.
That’s what we’re going to talk about when we come back from the break, which is coming up in about a minute or so. So let’s see what can we talk about in a minute.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Well, let me tell you what happened. When I finally started making soap, my daughter knew that I was starting to make soap. She called me one day and said, “Mom, you got to do something for Charlie. She’s scratching until she bleeds.” So my No More Eczema soap is actually the first soap that I ever made. And to this day, it’s probably one of my bestsellers.
DEBRA: So what about it makes people not have eczema?
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Just my recipe. It’s just my recipe. I don’t claim it cures eczema. That would put me in a whole different category with the FDA. I don’t claim anything, but I can say that it does help. It contains no scent, it contains no color. I crush up and grade organic field cut oatmeal or oats – that’s not oatmeal, but the oats – and that is placed aside for a little bit of exfoliation, a little bit of a calming effect. Everything I put in my soap, there’s a reason for it.
DEBRA: Yes, yes. And I’ve been looking at your ingredients list and these soaps don’t contain any parabens, sodium, lauryl sulfate, phosphates, harsh chemicals, mineral oils or petroleum products of any kind. I think you really bend over backwards to use this many organic ingredients as possible.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Oh! Oh, certainly. And even the palm that I use is sustainable. It’s expensive to buy organic and sustainable, but I wouldn’t use anything else.
DEBRA: Okay, we need to go to break now. When we come back, we’ll talk more about CJ’s soap and how real soap gets made. You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Cynthia Young Jennings of Sweet Harvest Farms. She’s in Tampa, Florida and I found her at multiple craft stores and farmer’s markets and things. You can go to her website at SweetHarvestFarms.com to learn more about her soaps and makes a purchase and enjoy her creativeness in putting together her website. It’s got a lot of lovely things on it. We’ll be right back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Cynthia A. Young Jennings. She’s the owner of Sweet Harvest Farms in Tampa, Florida. Her website is SweetHarvestFarms.com.
So Cynthia, CJ, you’ve got this great page on your website that I’ve read about five times now. When you go to her website, the first on the left side, it says ‘Shop’ and right away, the first thing you see is Handmade Soap 101. I’m looking at the Handmade Soap 101 page.
So the first thing – and this is the thing that actually, what I’m about to say is the thing that made me finally buy a bar of soap. It was because it says right on this page, “You cannot wrap true soap in cellophane or put them in a box. True soap needs air to continue to cure and every soap needs to be marked with a cure date on the back label.” That is the first time I have ever seen that.
And then when I was at Cynthia’s booth at the fair, I looked on the labels and they all had dates. Some of them were very fresh and you had to wait in order to use them until they got to their cure date. Tell us about curing soap. I just got this whole idea of it being like this thing that needs to breathe. It just changed my whole idea of soap. So tell us about this.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Well, the cold process method of soap, that process is called saponification. The saponification is the combination of the lye water, which sounds scary, but it’s not because once it’s mixed with the oil, it’s already eradicated.
That’s another thing that’s very important. You cannot have true soap without lye. You have to use lye in order to make soap. I actually use food-grade lye, the same type of lye that’s made to make pretzels. So it’s extra safe.
Well, that saponification process is very much like fermentation with wine. You wouldn’t drink the grape juice and the sugar as wine until it was completely fermented. And it’s the same thing with soap. It takes about 45 weeks from the day I make it for it to be totally soap. The lye and the oils are still doing their thing. And as it cures, it actually gets harder and harder because the moisture that’s in the soap starts to evaporate.
Let’s say that it says the cure date is the 22nd of January, so that is the day that you can start using it. If you let that bar set for about another month, instead of lasting six to eight weeks, which my soap do, it might last you about 12 and that’s because it becomes harder.
DEBRA: Wow! I will tell you this is a really hard – you know this, but listeners, this is a really hard bar of soap. It is not soft. It is hard and it is heavy every time I pick it up. It is not a frothy bar, it’s dense.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Right!
DEBRA: It’s like eating gelato instead of ice cream.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: That’s a good description. Although if you’ve been to my bar, it wouldn’t hurt you. It would just foam with the mouth a little bit.
DEBRA: I love that!
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Yes. And a lot of people, it’s really funny because I explain to the parents if the children are with them, let your children use this soap and they’re like, “Oh, it will melt” and I’m like, “No. You could have this in the shower in the water and heat it directly, it’s not going to melt like your beauty bars. It’s not going to melt like your melt n’ pour products. This is a true bar of soap that will last and last.”
I mean, I had people come up and say, “I have a little bitty piece” and they’re showing me their fingers really close. “I have a little bitty piece of soap and it still works.” So that’s the true difference. If it doesn’t leave a slim on the tub, it’s certainly not going to leave it on your skin.
DEBRA: No, it doesn’t leave any slime. And I think I paid $7 for this big bar. Isn’t that how much it costs, $7 or something.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Yes. And believe me, in all the years (I’ve been doing this now for 12 years), in all those years, I’ve only had one other true soap maker come up to me and introduce themselves and they said, “How are you making any money? You’re giving this away?”
DEBRA: Yeah, I was really surprised because I had bought a lot of handmade soap over the years, probably some of the stuff that really isn’t soap. It melts within like a month. If I can get it to last for a month, I’m lucky. And they charge $4 or $5 or $6 for that. I’m looking at this bar of soap and I think it’s going to last me – I mean, I’m just one person taking one shower a day. I think it’s going to last me three or four or five months anyway.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Yes, I have a lot of people that – unfortunately, my husband and I use the same soap. So it will last probably about six to eight weeks. But it’s really funny because we’ll be using a bar of soap and I’m like, “Okay, I want to go on to the next scent” and it’s like it’s still lasting and lasting and lasting.
DEBRA: Yeah, it does.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: But also, a lot of people have misconception because you want to use this soap on your face. People look at me like I’m nuts because of course, they would use this stuff that they get commercially because it does nothing but draw your skin. But you want to use this.
I have a lot of customers that tell me they see reduced fine lines around their eyes just using my soap. I can’t claim that because I would get in trouble. But I can tell you what my customers say. I do have a press and a testimonial page on my website that you can read and actually see the videos of my customers, a testing.
I am 60. That was a really hard age for me, by the way. I cried for days. But a lot of people – in fact, everyone I meet, when I tell them I’m 60, they actually ask for my license because I truly look probably about 45. That is because I use this soap on my face.
DEBRA: I’ve been using it on my face. Actually, I’ve never been one for going through all those beauty products that you’re supposed to use on your face. I’ve just never done that. I’ve always used soap. And I have very few wrinkles for my age. It actually feels really good to use your soap on my face because it does get clean, but it doesn’t feel dried out at all.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Right!
DEBRA: And I’m just very happy with it. I’m very happy with it.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: And every bar of soap, like I was saying, there’s a reason behind it. So I had all these people ask me, “Well, do you have soap for this? Do you do a soap for that?” And so I actually now have a dog soap for Phyto and people swear by it. I have a soap that I make for acne.
And one thing about that is there is what’s called salicylic acid that is what is used in a lot of acne remedies and prescriptions. I use all-natural – now, here we go with that word ‘natural’ because that’s what people want to hear. But it is! Salicylic acid actually comes from the willow tree. And what I do is I brew a tea of willow bark and put it into the soap to combat the acne and blemishes while still leaving your skin soft.
DEBRA: Well, of course, that’s the natural way to do it. We need to go to break, but we’ll be right back. My guest today is Cynthia A. Jennings – I think I left out one of your names here, Cynthia A. Young Jennings, owner of Sweet Harvest Farms. I was looking at your website instead of looking at my page about you. Cynthia A. Young Jennings, owner of Sweet Harvest Farms. Her website is SweetHarvestFarms.com. And we’ll be right back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Cynthia A. Young Jennings of Sweet Harvest Farms in Tampa, Florida. Her website is SweetHarvestFarms.com.
There’s a couple of things I want to make sure that we get in here before the end of the show, which is coming up very soon. You have here on this page ‘Homemade Soap 101’, it says “there are very few true soap makers left that stay true to the old-fashion method of soap making that is used literally thousands of years ago.” Tell us about the excavations in ancient Babylon.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Well, they have found, they’ve uncovered cylinders with inscriptions for soap making around 2800 B.C. and later records from Egypt as well and describing how the oils were combined with alkaline salts to make soap. A lot of the way that they found this was after they slaughtered a sheep or whatever to eat, of course, the oils from the body would then leech across the fire, which of course produces ash, then it hardened. I’m like, “How did people figure out that they can use them to wash themselves?” I don’t know.
DEBRA: I don’t know! Maybe somebody just picked up the hardened fat out of the fire.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: I think someone probably did. It may be have rained or got wet and then it lathered up and they’re like, “Hmmm…” I have that question about a lot of things, how people figure out things.
So it’s the combination of oils. Lye actually comes from ash. And so it’s the combination of that that makes true soap. Like I said earlier, you cannot have true soap without lye.
DEBRA: And before they started manufacturing lye that you could buy in a package, people made their soap by combining fat particularly from animals because it’s so easy to get…
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Right, and the ash.
DEBRA: …and the ash from their fires, their fireplaces.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Exactly!
DEBRA: That’s how like colonial times, for example, people made soap.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Right! And it was back then it was called ‘lye soap’.
DEBRA: Yeah, it’s quite an ancient and natural thing and just something that our bodies have evolved with over time.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: It is.
DEBRA: So I love soap. I just love soap. Anyway, the other thing I wanted to make sure we mention is that about people with allergies because I know that a lot of my listeners are sensitive to certain things. So would you tell us about allergies?
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Well, let me explain something. A lot of people that come up to me and say, “Oh, you know, I can’t use because it smells or whatever and I’m allergic to scent.” I’m like, “No.” More than likely, you’re not allergic to the scent. You’re allergic to the chemicals that are put into the scent.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: And so a lot of people will use my soap and they’re shocked because they’ve never been able to use anything like this on their skin before because they were allergic or they would break out or they would itch or whatever. And they don’t find that with my soap.
Now, I will tell you, I did give a bar of my soap to one of the vendors that sold flowers across from me one day. The next week, I saw him and I said, “So how did it work?” and he goes, “It was amazing!” He said, “But I broke out.” I was like, “What?” It’s like, “No way it was my soap.” He goes, “Yeah, it was your soap.”
Well, I come to find out, you can be allergic to nuts. There is a rare condition where you can be so ultra-sensitive that a lot of these people don’t live past the age of 30. That’s how sensitive they are because almost everything has some kind of nut oil in it. It turned out that because I use shea butter in my soap and shea butter comes from the shea nut.
So he was one of the few. So now, on my bar on the back, it says, ‘Shea butter’ and in parenthesis, it says ‘shea nut’ because a lot of people don’t realize that the ‘shea butter’ comes from the ‘shea nut’. But I have people like my son-in-law who is extremely allergic to peanuts and such and he can use my soap no problem. So I have a lot of people that use allergies to nuts that use my soap without a problem in the world because of the shea butter, but it’s just that one in all the thousands of people that I sold to that had that ultra, ultra sensitivity.
And to this day, I’m still not really sure that it was my soap. He could’ve eaten something at dinner that had traces because you can have my new traces of nut oil and other oil, but you have to be really, really careful.
So there really isn’t an allergy or sensitivity to the scent that is in the soap. Like I said, I had people that had been using my soap for years and they can’t even use the soap the doctor prescribe them from the pharmacy, but they can use my soap. That makes me feel really good.
Whenever I get really tired (because it is a very laborious process and I’ve been doing this every day for 12 years), when I get tired, my husband sits me down at my computer and he pulls up the testimonial page. He goes, “If you want to know why you do this, read what your customers have to say.” When a simple bar of soap can make such a difference in someone’s life, I can’t describe to you the feeling that gives me and the joy.
DEBRA: Hmmm… I can imagine. So the point I wanted to make here is that it says here (I want to get the right one), “If you find that any of the ingredients used in our products may cause you irritation due to allergies, it’s always possible for us to produce a soap that does not contain any specific oil. Just email your request and we can make you a soap that is just as moisturizing and luxurious to suit your needs.”
And so I just want to make sure that people who are having difficulty finding a soap that they can use because of allergies that they can come to you and you’ll work with them to get them a wonderful bar of soap, something that they can use. I think that’s really important.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: And what I do too, because like I said, 99.9999% of the time, people that feel that they are sensitive a bath and body product, most of the time, it’s the chemicals and preservatives in the product that they’re having a reaction to and not any of the really good stuff that you’ll find in my soap. So what I’ll do is I’ll actually send a sample if they do have allergies of any sort. I have yet to have anyone come back.
I mean, usually, when I send a sample to someone that says, “Well, I want to try it.” Within probably two weeks, they’re ordering seven bars. That tells me that it worked just fine.
DEBRA: Well, I would order seven bars, but I think it would last me seven years.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: And just to put a bug in your ears too, I had finally – now, I’ve been doing this, my family and I had been using this for years. But finally, after the FDA did come out a couple of months back and say that yes, toothpaste is actually dangerous for you, I am now going to be offering my all-natural tooth powder.
DEBRA: I saw that on your card, but I don’t see it on your website because I want some.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Yes. Finally, I did the first – well, I call it ‘test marketing’ at High Park Market on Sunday and it was a hit, which I was very pleased to see because a lot of people, they really don’t pay attention to the news and stuff like that. It was out there for a very short time. It was out for maybe two or three days and then it was gone. A lot of people did hear about it and they’re like, “Yeah, we heard. We can’t believe it! Flouride is awful for you. There’s no benefit whatsoever.”
All you have to do is turn your toothpaste over, look at the ingredients, google each ingredient and read what it says about the ingredients.
DEBRA: Yeah. We’ve talked about toothpaste before on this show and I’ve been writing about it for years.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Oh, good.
DEBRA: So I’m very excited to see what you’ve come up with since I love your stuff so much.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Well, it should be on the website by next week.
DEBRA: Okay, good because I just ran out of my tooth powders.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Oh, no!
DEBRA: I was wondering what to try next. So we only have about a minute left. Is there anything you’d like to say that you haven’t said?
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: I would just encourage people to read, read, read. Don’t just go to one source, go to many. I would not put anything, ingest anything or put anything on my skin if I did not know what the ingredients were. What I tell everybody is if you can’t pronounce it, don’t use it because a lot of the…
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: I mean, it just makes sense. You were granted this amazing, beautiful life and this amazing functioning body that’s a miracle in itself, take care of it. And take care of the earth that we live in. We keep taking and we keep forgetting to put back and that’s important.
DEBRA: Yes, it is. I totally agree with that too. So let me give your website again. It’s SweetHarvestFarms.com. When you go there, listeners, she’s got so many different kinds of soaps – handmade soaps, specialty soaps, seasonal soap, shea butter bars, African black soap, pine tar soap, cedar soap dishes that are beautiful made out of untreated white cedar and she’s got men’s shaving soap. Do you also sell all the little brushes and everything that goes with it?
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Yes, I do. they’re actual badger brushes that I sold that you can buy either with the men’s shaving kit or without.
DEBRA: And we’ve got to go. Thank you so much for being with us.
CYNTHIA A. YOUNG JENNINGS: Thank you.
DEBRA: I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. This is Toxic Free Talk Radio. You can go to ToxicFreeTalkRadio.com to find out more. Have a great day. Be well!