Frequently Asked Questions about Green Mountain Soap:

I. Bar & Liquid Soap 

II. Shaving Soap

III. General  


I. Bar & Liquid Soap: 

Q: Lye? In my Soap? That stuff is sold as drain opener!

III. General: 

Q: How long have you been making soap?

Q: I see you have an online store. Can I buy Green Mountain Soap locally? I shop at a local store and it would be very convenient if they carried your product line. How can I put you in touch with them? 

Q: Have you custom-formulated a soap for some clients?

Q: Do you have vegetarian/cruelty-free soaps? 

Q; Do you use sustainably-sourced oils and fats in your products?

Q: Is your packaging recyclable?  


I. Bar & Liquid Soap:

Lye? In my Soap? That stuff is sold as drain opener!

A: All true soap is by legal definition "lye soap" (an alkali salt of fatty acids). Once we make soap from it, there's no lye present anymore; it's all combined with oils and converted to soap, glycerin, and water.  Further, we test every batch for excess caustic in our chemistry lab.

Is this soap like my great-grandmother made in the backyard?

A: Just barely. Both soaps are made from oils and caustic, but grandma couldn't really control the quality of her ingredients or monitor the process like we can.

Yeah, grandma's soap didn't stop at the kind of burned. 

A: Right.  Ours is made using high precision processes and tolerances, with more than a few safeguards and tests.  Excess lye can cause a burning sensation and serious skin irritation. 

Soap dries my skin. Why should I use your soap?

A: Some soaps dry people's skin because all the glycerin has been removed from it for resale to the cosmetics industry. We don't remove the glycerin so our soap is very moisturizing to your skin.

I have hard water. How does the soap perform in hard water?

A: Surprisingly well. It's still soap, so you may see soap curd in very hard water; but unlike some soaps, it lathers well in hard water.

Is Green Mountain Soap gluten free?

A: Yes. We don't use wheat or related products to make our soap.

What's the difference between a "detergent" and soap?

A: Detergents use petroleum-based oils and do not contain any naturally-occurring glycerin. Detergents don't react with hard water minerals (i.e. they can't make "soap scum") but can be very drying to skin.

Is "body wash" a soap or a detergent?

A: It's a detergent. If it doesn’t meet the legal definition of soap (an alkali salt of fatty acids), it may be labeled as a body wash, deodorant bar, beauty bar, or some similar marketing term.

Your liquid soap kind of "clots" in the dispenser, and body wash doesn't.  

A: True, but you can clean the dispenser easily and pronounce all of our ingredients.

Is your bath soap both unscented and fragrance free?

A: Our unscented soaps are nothing but soap, water, and glycerin. They are very popular with people who have allergies or multiple chemical sensitivities. We do sell scented soaps. The shaving soaps are scented with essential oils. We use fragrance oil for the scented bath soaps, but we manufacture the unscented soap in a separate building from the scented soap.

My skin is really sensitive. Will your soap irritate it?

A: Almost certainly not. We get letters (actual paper letters and cards) and emails from people telling us they can use our soap even though other soaps or cleansing products they have tried do irritate their skin or aggravate sensitivities to fragrances.

People send nice letters to a manufacturing corporation?

A: Some of our individual customers send us Christmas cards! We are proud of the personal relationships we have developed with folks.

Is your soap "tear-free" (suitable for infants)?

A: No. If any of our soaps get in someone's eye, it will hurt. The soap is gentle on all types of skin (including our adorable grandchildren), but it isn't tear free.

II. Shaving Soap: 


My skin is okay, but shaving just tears up my face. Help!

A: GMSC's CEO has skin like iron (he's rumored to have shaved with metal siding and cold water), but our son doesn't. He discovered traditional shaving in 2007 and hasn't looked back. It's a closer, gentler shave, it's better for your skin, it's more sustainable than using cartridges and canned foam or gel, and it's seriously cheaper than cartridges. If you're feeling gutsy, shave with a straight razor. You'll have an amazingly smooth face once you learn how.

Why is your shave soap shaped like a deflated baseball?

A: That shape fulfills two criteria; first, that it fit in any size shave mug, large or small, and second, our puck is a generous weight (121 grams), and a wide puck would have been very big---necessitating larger packaging and higher shipping costs.

Is your shave soap milled? Triple milled?

A. Our shave soap is triple milled. Sometimes more if the situation requires it, but never less than three times.

Is triple milling shaving soap time-consuming and expensive?

A: Ugh. Yes. Especially if you leave the glycerin in your shave soap.

Doesn't milling soap remove its glycerin content?

A: No. That's a misconception. Milling soap is much easier with a "dry" soap, one without water or glycerin, but milling soap doesn't affect the glycerin content.

Is your shave soap vegetarian?

A: No, our shave soap contains tallow. We are working on a vegetarian shave cream, but the shave soap took three years of R&D. The shave cream may take a while, as we want to guarantee the same shave experience.

I like the shave soap, but I prefer a shave stick for face lathering and travel. Will you make one, please?

A: GMS shave soap does perform well when face lathering. Some informal testing reveals that a shave stick is indeed possible for us to manufacture. Packaging and additional infrastructure will be required, however. Shave sticks will not be available for a while yet.

Are your soap scents essential oils or fragrance oils?

A: The shave pucks use essential oils. The scented bath soaps use fragrance oils. All scented soaps are made in a separate building with a separate air handling system from the unscented and liquid soaps.

III. General 

How long have you been making soap?

A: Since the mid-1970s. GMSC incorporated in 1992.

I see you have an online store. Can I buy Green Mountain Soap locally? I shop at a local store and it would be very convenient if they carried your product line. How can I put you in touch with them?

A: Thanks for thinking of us! Please contact us via email or call (256) 650-0059 during business hours, Central US Time.

Have you custom-formulated a soap for some clients?

A: We have developed a few custom soaps for people in unusual medical circumstances. We actually developed the Castile (100% olive oil) liquid soap for people who are allergic to coconut oil and then added it to our regular line of products because it is so mild.

Do you have vegetarian/cruelty-free soaps?

A: Yes. Our all-vegetable and bayberry soaps are made from only vegetable components, as are our liquid soaps.

Do you use sustainably-sourced oils and fats in your products?

A: We are aware of the concerns surrounding sourcing of palm oil and coconut oil. We purchase vegetable oils from sustainably-managed plantations. For example, our palm oil comes only from producers who are members of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil

Is your packaging recyclable?

A: Both the bar/shaving soap packaging and the liquid soap bottles are recyclable any place you can recycle cardboard and milk jugs.



The shipping cart calculates the box size needed based on total volume of the order.  We will refund the difference in shipping cost if it is more economical to split a large order into multiple boxes.  Call 256-650-0059 if you have any questions.  Orders from outside the USA should contact [email protected] for a quotation.