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Rebecca's Soapery

I began to make soap for my own use a few years ago.  It took a while to develop just the right formula, scents, and colors.  My family members were my guinea pigs, testing bar after bar for lather, scent and a half-dozen other properties.  Once I got the OK from them, I started selling my soaps at local farmer's markets and swap meets.

I priced my soaps by checking out other homemade soap businesses.  The going rate is about $1.25 per ounce of soap.  My bars are about 4.5 ounces and sell for $6.00 each.  The cost of production varies a bit, depending on the price of the essential oils and other additives I need to use, but it averages about $1.50 per bar, giving me a profit of $4.50 per bar.

I'm still at the "hobby" stage of my little business, but I'm slowly moving into increased volume and putting product on shelves instead of directly selling it myself.  I've recently started an Etsy shop, and a website. I'm finding that on-line sales are weak, probably because the customers can't touch and smell the soaps. In a market setting, the customers can inspect my sample bars, even take a bit into the bathroom to check out the lather.  

Financing is not an issue for me at this point.  I make enough of a profit to purchase any supplies I may need.  I purchased my initial equipment when I first started soap-making, and buy more as I can afford it. I have no desire to expand to the point that my soaps are "factory" products.  I prefer to make small batches of artisinal soaps and sell them at a premium price.  I am more concerned with putting out a high-quality luxury item than selling a lot of lower-quality soap.

A complete listing of my soaps with photos can be found at www.etsy.com/rebeccasfarm, or on my Facebook page of the same name.

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