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Soap sold as a decoration - needs safety assessments?

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  • Soap sold as a decoration - needs safety assessments?

    Dear all,

    I have seen around that some CP or MP soapmakers are trying to avoid the need for safety assessments and therefore sell their soaps under the umbrella of a decoration - saying that soap is used for decorative purposes and should be used only on your own risk.

    I know that this is probably not the best marketing strategy, but if you are selling to your friends or colleagues, who already tried your soaps, they know that you do this just to overcome the law...

    I kind of doubt this practice complies with law, however. I know for example, that there were several cases where EU regulations forbade to produce soaps that look like food (it can smell like food though).

    Therefore, producing soap that look like soap... for me it means it must have safety assessments and no claims of using just for decorative purposes apply.

    Or do they? Any knowledge about this?

    Thanks for any info,

    Evik
    Long live your bar of soap!
    Evik
    My blog: http://curious-soapmaker.com

  • #2
    The law is clear, soap must be assessed. calling it a statute does not change its soapyness. Just like calling a doll an ornament does not stop it having to comply with toy safety.
    Amateur lawyers who think they are clever will find that such arguments don't go far in court where EU regulations have wide interpretation

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    • #3
      I don't have any knowledge about soap being specifically for decorative purposes, BUT....I don't see how it could possibly work. It's soap. And it would be put out for decorative purposes...where? near a sink? I'd bet someone will actually use it...so....I just don't see how anyone could get around the fact that it is still a soap. Now, putting out ceramic soap or carved wood soap bars...that I can see being called decorative. But never a real bar of soap.

      But I mean...decorative soap...is someone going to put out a sign by their basket of decorative soap saying DO NOT USE? However, my mother in law had, many years ago, a dish of pretty little soap shells and starfish someone had given her...and she made it clear that NO ONE was to use it. It was purely for decoration. But it was real soap. Funny thing was, she never put out soap we actually could use...

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      • #4
        Of course it won't work, it's silly, but someone thinks that they are being every so clever and getting around the rules

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        • #5
          I have to admit...once...I used her shell soap. After I washed my hands, I patted it dry with the hand towel and put it under the other little soaps, and felt so smug. (You were not supposed to touch anything in her house...fun to visit, especially with the kids....)

          Okay, even though it's a bit farfetched for an illustration...if it's real soap, someone is going to use it!!

          However, I had no way of knowing what the ingredients were, or who made it..it was not wrapped, just out in a pretty dish on the bathroom counter.

          Bottom line, IMHO, is that if you're making it for a gift for a dear friend or family members, I see no problem with it being a hobby soap. But I don't know what the EU specifications are for those who don't sell it.

          Selling it?? Best keep yer nose clean then!

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          • #6
            Over the years I've been given various soaps that were far too pretty to actually use. I remember when we were in our early teens there was a bit of a trend among our friends for giving each other nice smelling shaped soaps (fruits and animals spring to mind) that we used to just display or collect - and once they'd got a bit bashed they'd end up in drawers to keep our clothes smelling nice.
            Visit Natty Netty for a huge selection of Iris Folding supplies

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            • #7
              I totally agree with you - if I have made an impression that I would like to sell a soap just as a decoration - I really wouldn't!

              I just get this question sometimes and I do not know what to answer apart of what I think, but thinking and knowing something are often two different things... :-/
              Long live your bar of soap!
              Evik
              My blog: http://curious-soapmaker.com

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              • #8
                Oh I hope I didn't imply I thought you were thinking of doing this - many apologies! I never thought it for a minute!

                I was just getting in to the idea of it.

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                • #9
                  Ah, cosmic grammie, really no need to apologize, I just wanted to make it clear in general ... Also, I am planning to start a very small business, so am trying to find arguments - somewhere it was discussed - to other people that do not have them...
                  Long live your bar of soap!
                  Evik
                  My blog: http://curious-soapmaker.com

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                  • #10
                    Good, I feel better! I find your site very interesting and wish you great success with your new enterprise! I'm sure it will be successful, as all your things are wonderful!

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                    • #11
                      Thank you cosmic grammie, you are too kind. I will do my best, but I feel it will be very difficult, as I do plan to have it rather as a hobby income ...
                      Long live your bar of soap!
                      Evik
                      My blog: http://curious-soapmaker.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by nattynetty View Post
                        Over the years I've been given various soaps that were far too pretty to actually use. I remember when we were in our early teens there was a bit of a trend among our friends for giving each other nice smelling shaped soaps (fruits and animals spring to mind) that we used to just display or collect - and once they'd got a bit bashed they'd end up in drawers to keep our clothes smelling nice.
                        That's a really good idea, to put soaps in your drawers to keep your clothes smelling nice.

                        On topic: I've seen people across facebook doing this, selling soaps for decorative purposes. But tbh i think this is just a way of getting out of paying for safety assessment/ insurance, etc... And mostly the 'hobby' people who don't actually do it as a full blown business so think they can get away with it.

                        Like for example the wide fashion that was, to make beaded dummies. A lot of people were stating they were novelty and not to be used. If used, was at parents discretion. But come on, we all know they were intended to be used. Anyway was a relief to see trading standards act on this.

                        Although soap making it is a great hobby, i understand most of you ladies do it as your actual job. I think selling soaps for decorative purposes would most definitely need to go through the same procedures as if were to be used. To be fair, who can say a customer wont at some point use it. Better to keep yourself right and get safety assessments done, etc...

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                        • #13
                          Calling something a hobby and a decoration does not allow you to circumvent the law. Still taxable and still needs safety assessment.

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