By Lorayne Mitchelle –
Silicone molds, essential oils, oxide colorants, micas and pigments lurk in every spare corner of the room. Transfer pipettes, digital thermometers, clays, and seeds befriend them.
Other companions include a heat gun, crinkle cutter, loaf cutter, and beveller. The list concludes with 20-pound blocks of soap base in three classifications: goat’s milk, clear glycerin and ultra clear.
The question is… what storm blew through this home? How and why is it being transformed from something ordinary and orderly into a business born from passion and focus based on the saving operations of Operation Underground Railroad?
The mother of this industrious family, Tracey Carsner, explains how it all began…
I always thought soap making would be fun to try. I knew nothing about it other than what I’d seen at boutiques and farmers’ markets. I bought a beginner kit at a craft store and read the directions repeatedly before starting. Well, my soaps turned out pretty ugly, but I was patient and kept practicing. Then my mom sent me a sample of a watermelon-inspired soap. I was determined to branch out from the kit directions and do my own thing. It turned out fabulous and I was hooked!
Days and weeks after reading many blogs and pinning hundreds of pictures, my collection grew. I began giving my creations as gifts. Along with the stunned realization that I made something that was cool, my friends encouraged me to make them available for purchase. Having been in business before, I knew what an undertaking that path could be. I shied away from the idea, just enjoying the compliments and the process of designing the next soap.
At this point, Tracey’s two teenage boys, Gabe and Adam, jumped into this project.
The boys were giving me design advice and mentioning to their friends that I was making these cool soaps. They even showed the products off to their friends when they came over. Gabe and Adam used the bars and gave feedback on fragrance blends and lather consistency. It has been pretty hilarious to see that they have opinions on something that I would normally consider amore feminine interest. I’m especially grateful for their input on the masculine bars I make. I know what women like for men, but it’s not always what men would choose for themselves.
With these two talented cheerleaders in her corner, Tracey thought bringing these products to market might be a little easier. But it still wasn’t enough to push her into the business venture. What tipped the scales was deciding to benefit Operation Underground Railroad.
Tracey explains, “I love this organization and all it stands for. O.U.R. Founder Tim Ballard and his helpers and volunteers are performing an act that the mainstream population cannot carry out. Most of us can only contribute with finances or volunteer our time. This venture allows our family to do both!”
Saving Soap is now an official creative soap shop, donating 40% of their profits directly to Operation Underground Railroad. They especially hope fans will “like” and “share” Saving Soap’s social media sites so that they can continue to stay busy manufacturing unusual products and contributing profits to O.U.R.
Tracey is direct about her supporting staff when she states, “Without Gabe and Adam, I would definitely not be doing this. I design and make the soap, handle purchasing, and the business office.”
Photography and graphic design responsibilities fall to 17-year-old Gabe. “My passion for photography and design are now combined with supporting the cause of O.U.R. Anything I can do to help them succeed with their goals makes me feel like I can make a difference. Sex trafficking is an unspeakable evil. I’m also learning the complexities of business processes and all the individual details it involves.” Gabe adds, “Buying our soap is a win-win situation. We provide beautiful, unique gift products and contribute 40% to O.U.R. for their rescue missions.”
Fifteen-year-old Adam is the social media manager, fragrance/design consultant, and order fulfillment director. He admits, “My favorite part of the business is being creative and developing new products. There is a never-ending assortment of molds and scents to experiment with. I also love knowing I’m helping such a worthwhile cause.”
Saving Soap has definitely mushroomed into a family affair. They are focused on creating beautiful soaps and rescuing children. What could be better?
We invite you to visit them at: