Blood tears & soap bubbles
7th June 2018
Our long-awaited Gallinée Cleansing Bar is finally back, after 4 long months of absence. Adored by the whole world of beauty (Estée Lalonde, Cosmo, Glamour, and others …), it was slow to come back to us. We apologise for this unfortunate stock shortage out which resulted in a waiting list of over 500 people. We also wanted to tell you its story full of pitfalls and adventures, that we overcame for the sole purpose of offering you this revolutionary product, for soothed, radiant, and nourished skin. Here is the fabulous story of the first soap-free soap, but with a patent.
Soap for Dummies
The first soap was born more than 4000 years ago in the Middle East. The Sumerians used it for the purpose of washing the wool. They discovered that a saponification reaction could be obtained by mixing a fatty substance, a strong base (such as caustic soda), and water. If it is initially used only to treat skin diseases, and to clean the laundry, the soap quickly becomes a staple of the daily toilet, thanks to the Romans a few centuries later. Entirely abandoned for shower gels in recent decades, soap knows a recent return to favour, enabled by the craze for natural beauty and craftsmanship.
However, it’s not because its composition is purer and more natural than traditional soap is good for your skin. The soap can indeed damage the acid mantle and the hydrolipidic film guaranteeing the hydration and the suppleness of the skin. In addition to drying and irritating the skin, it is also harmful to the bacteria that live on it, the bad ones but also the good ones! At Gallinée, we like to do things differently. We wanted to develop a soap, without soap. An ultra-soft product that could be used for the body, but so skin-friendly, that it could also be used for the face.
The birth of the Cleansing Bar
As a good chemist and thanks to her expertise of Doctor in Pharmacy, Marie Drago, our founder, created a formula with a pH equal to 5.8 (almost equal to the one of the skin, thus allowing to protect its protective barrier). It is thanks to this that our oh-so-extraordinary bar can even be used for atopy-prone skin! For a normal soap, we generally speak of an “alkaline” pH, much more aggressive and irritating.
The first production attempt was scheduled for October, hurray! To make a Cleansing Bar or any other industrial-scale product, you always have to start with laboratory tests. Once the prototype is validated, production in large quantities can begin. And there, it’s like baking. Producing a perfect Cleansing Bar in the laboratory is like making a single muffin with a perfect recipe in your kitchen. The muffin is crisp and soft inside, it is unmolded without sticking to the edges. However a week later, when you are asked to produce 1000 muffins with the same recipe, you can multiply the quantities per thousand, it does not give at all the same result as for the perfect muffin of the previous week. That is pretty much what happened to our Cleansing Bar.
In our laboratory, it was handsome, it had that elegant, French and cool look. But when the factory wanted to produce enough for our hordes of fans, the dough turned into a giant chewing gum. Impossible to get out of the mould! If the traditional soap tends to be irritating, its alkaline pH makes it possible to obtain a much stiffer paste, very easy to leave the mould. The perfect pH for your skin of our cleansing bar seemed to compromise the production.
It was then necessary to find a solution. Our soap, even if it is ultra-gentle, it still managed to break the machine … How to make it quickly arrive in your bathroom? At Gallinée, we like to please you, and the waiting list mushrooming day after day, we racked our brains. Finally, our small but effective team, has come to think: “why not propose an “ugly soap”, but that would still be full of the good stuff”? We wondered what was most important to you, between the fact that the product has a particularly neat look, or that it has benefits praised by Cosmo, Estée Lalonde and many others …
Our choice quickly turned to a more artisanal look for this production. Since we were struggling to unmold our Cleansing Bar from the machine, we decided not to use one, which meant, to produce an unmolded soap. The dough was cut into small squares of 100g, for a slightly authentic look. Our bar keeps all its exceptional properties, and you can finally have it in your bathroom. To thank you for your patience, Gallinée has decided to offer the first orders a small handy bag to attach to your shower. It’s very handy to dry your bar once you’ve used it.
This story is just the beginning of the great soap-free soap adventure by Gallinée. We all work very hard to quickly offer other beautiful products. We cannot wait to hear what you think of this one! If you want to try it, shop it now here.
The Gallinée team, Julia, Diego, Catarina, Léa, Esther, Romain et Marie