WWI and the difference between soap and detergent

world war one soap adThey tell you to wash your hands with soap if they're dirty? You'd be surprised what constitutes 'soap' and what alternative health products hide behind related words to make you think it is - and it's all thanks to war.

WW1 resulted in the commercialisation of soap and the invention of detergent. With cleaning agents needed for the many injuries, and the scarcity of resources for production, resulted in Germany creating a petroleum byproduct, chemical substitute known todays as detergent.

Known to few, detergents by law are not allowed to be called soaps due to their synthetic compounds, making it the only difference between natural soap and detergent ‘soap’. Cunningly, to get around this soap making companies use the term ‘body bar’ to add chemicals and still be perceived as soap - chances are soaps in stores labeled ‘body bars’ are NOT soap at all!

Soap was not an overnight sensation, nor was it perfected by one society. Rather it was a combination of time, knowledge and demand that has resulted in the bar that resides above your vanity today. It is important to know what is in the health products you use, because you deserve the best.