Published on | by redblob8
Soapberry – A Super Natural Soap for Psoriasis [Tree To Tub Review]
Like most flakers out there, I’ve tried my fair share of creams, moisturizers and other gloopy concoctions in a bid to tame my psoriasis. And though I’ve covered myself in every type of goo imaginable, I’d never heard about the soapberry, until now.
I learned about it from Michael Koh, one of the founders of Tree To Tub, an innovative skincare brand that’s bringing soapberry to the world. And of course, once I heard about a berry that grows on trees, lathers up just like soap, and is super gentle to skin, I had to give that bad boy a go.
Soap Used By the Ancients
Long before the arrival of perfectly crafted bars of Dove soap, there was the soapberry, keeping our ancestors’ armpits clean and their skin smooth.
Its traditional use goes back thousands of years in India (as part of Ayurvedic medicine), China and even Japan (where it’s called “enmei-hi”). What’s even cooler is that our brethren used it to treat psoriasis, eczema and dry skin.
The soapberry is the fruit of the Sapindus family of shrubs which grow in Asia, the Americas and on the Pacific islands. They’re not much to look at – small, 1 to 2cm and leathery-skinned – but get them a little wet and that’s when the magic happens: they start to foam up.
Each berry is packed with up to 37% saponin, a natural detergent that makes it soapy. “Detergent” is a bit of a misnomer though, because the soapberry is as far removed from your typical harsh, abrasive detergents as you can get.
Its hypoallergenic, meaning it won’t irritate your skin; has a pH level of 5.5, which fits the pH level of the skin perfectly; and is loaded with vitamins A, E, K and D. Plus, its antimicrobial.
Tree To Tub
A few weeks ago, Michael from Tree To Tub dropped me a line about his range of soapberry products and asked if I wanted to try them out. I’m always down for being a psoriasis guinea pig, so naturally said yes.
Like any 21st century skeptic, I dug into the brand, and found the story behind it really cool. It was crowdfunded on Indiegogo (where it raised over 200% of its goal) and all the soapberries it uses are harvested sustainably from reserves in Taiwan, where Tree To Tub works hand-in-hand with local farmers and communities.
The process goes like this: First, the wild soapberries are picked (without any trees being cut down) and dried under the sun. Next, the seeds are removed and turned into meditation beads. Then the berries go through an eco-friendly extraction process and the extract is sent to San Francisco for packaging and distribution.
I’ve written about soaps quite extensively and what I’ve always emphasized is going for the natural stuff – no parabens, sulfates or artificial perfumes. Needless to say Tree To Tub ticks all these boxes.
How Does The Soapberry Stack Up?
My package (recyclable, of course) soon arrived in Belgrade with four small travel bottles and a big bottle of the facial cleanser. The Tree To Tub products come in two varieties – lavender for winding down at night and peppermint for kick-starting your day. I received the lavender versions.
All in all, I was really impressed with Tree To Tub. I don’t use many products at all but based on this being natural and being formulated with extra ingredients that are great for flakers, I can see myself buying more in the future, especially the cleanser, body wash and lotion.
Special 30% discount!
If you’re as intrigued about the soapberry as I was and want to give it a try, head on over to Tree To Tub, and enter “PSORIASISBLOB” to get a special 30% discount.
I’d love to hear about your experience so don’t forget to leave a comment!