Our First Ever Keiki DIY Tour at North Shore Soap Factory

February 07, 2017

Our First Ever Keiki DIY Tour at North Shore Soap Factory


We schedule Behind-The-Scenes tours everyday. Taking visitors around the soap making room and into the lab to show how our Hawaiian Bath & Body® natural soaps and skincare is made, is a great way to share our passion for what we do. On the Guided Tour you visit with our soap maker inside his domain, “The Soap Room,” as he explains all about our organic ingredients, the purpose for each ingredient and the science to art balance of soap making. Then you go into our Lab where our complete natural skincare line is handcrafted by our Production Team. Pouring, labeling, heating, wrapping, you get to experience our full functioning Soap Factory. It’s a great tour for the whole family! The children often have the best and most thought provoking questions. You can book your Behind-the-Scenes tour here.

This past December I received a text from a public school teacher friend, “I have 8 First and Second grade students, can we come next week to make something?” It was during our busiest time of the year, North Shore Soap Factory had never done a Behind-the-Scenes Hands-On DIY Tour like this before, and ... 1st graders?!?! To say a comprehensive, engaging soap making tour for primary school children would be a, “challenge,” was an understatement. How could I say anything but YES!

For hygienic and sanitary purposes, our skincare lab is clean, clean, clean. Did I mention clean?! We all wear gloves and hairnets, long pants and closed shoes and though it’s not required, some of our production team wear aprons too. The lab team trains in and follows Best Practices for Manufacturing and are mindful of how to manage the occasional sniffly nose, the scratching of the hair, the itching of the ear and how to cover sneezes and coughs. Six and seven year olds, not so much.


My Production Manager and I brainstormed on how to do a Hands-On tour with 8 kids. Kids that have short attention spans, have to be told a few (hundred) times and love to touch everything regardless of what they had for lunch, with or without wipes! And true to island style keiki, they’d be wearing shorts and slippers. It actually didn’t take long to work out a fun, easy and short DIY craft tour for them that included Hawaiian fragrances and natural colorants. We even snuck in a little math! I was excited and hopeful that this would be a success for all of us! I explained everything to Ms Kimi so she would have the kids prepared. She was so happy and excited and reassured me that the kids are really well behaved. Really, they are! Really!! She said it a few times. I guess I had failed at not sounding too concerned.

That morning came and the sweetest faces were in our lobby, and at the helm were Ms Kimi and her aide, Ms Marielyn. The kids were ready with closed shoes, open ears and lots of great questions! They giggled as they put on hairnets, aprons and gloves like mini mad scientists. During North Shore Soap Factory’s first ever DIY Hands-On tour, these excited keiki learned that glycerin is a byproduct of soap making and not a true soap, the difference between fragrances and essential oils, that they had to wait patiently for the mixture to come to temperature and that WOW the math they new sure came in handy! But I think the most important aspect for them was that, “I’m gonna give these to my Mom!!”


Each child got a portion of melted glycerin to color with a natural oxide and the teachers helped scent each child’s mixture. Their little faces lit up and their eyes widened as they smelled the beautiful floral scents and swirled the gorgeous colors. Then they carefully poured it into their chosen molds of seashells, Lego® men, Lego® blocks, flowers and ducks. It was such a fun and easy Melt-and-Pour project for them, with lots of hands on learning, team building, sharing and caring. I was so proud of their focus and mindfulness. They all became professional soap makers that morning! Everyone went home with a little goodie bag of glycerin soaps they made themselves to give as gifts to their family. And with it, a sense of pride and accomplishment and a continued love of learning. Mahalo Ms Kimi and Ms Marielyn for keeping the excitement of hands-on and place based learning within the reach of your lucky students.

hawaiian bath body blog

I love kids, and I love sharing what we do here with their creative and open minds. Within the rigors of teaching the public school curriculum and making sure the schools’ test scores make grade, creativity and wonder are often lost to both teachers and students. Gone are the days of art, music and drama, replaced by taking long tests, teaching how to test and tests to test tests. So when I get an opportunity to help a teacher who thinks out of the box for her students, I jump at the chance. With hairnets, gloves, aprons and a few extra wipes!!

Aloha and a hui hou!

        hawaiian bath and body blog


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Jump to ingredient list:
Essential Oils | Specialty Oils & Butters

Always test for skin sensitivity prior to widespread use and use on the feet when possible. Excessive use of any oil can lead to skin sensitization. Keep out of eyes, ears, or nose. Not all oils are created equal, so test brands carefully, and never use an oil in a way not recommended by its maker.



Bergamot BF (bergaptene free):
Known to promote healthy skin with its cleansing and rejuvenating properties. It’s used in aromatherapy for its calming effect.

Cinnamon Leaf (organic):
Widely used for digestive support, we use cinnamon essential oil for its antibacterial properties. When applied to skin, it helps circulation and soothes sore muscles and joints.

Aromatherapy benefits of this oil include calming and soothing effects in massage. It is known to help skin recover and promotes clear, healthy skin.

Not just any insect repellant!! Used in our soaps, citronella essential oil has known antiseptic, antibacterial and fungicidal skincare properties.

Clary Sage:
We use Clary sage in many of our products because of its known antiseptic, antibacterial, antifungal, antimicrobial, disinfectant, and astringent skincare properties. Health benefits of this oil include uses for digestive and respiratory discomforts.

Clove Bud:
A rich and spicy scent, Clove bud oil is unique and powerful when used in aromatherapy for its stress reliever and mind stimulant. Combine this with its known antiseptic and soothing properties, it makes for a great soap.

Corn Mint:
Indigenous to Asia, Cornmint is often confused with peppermint because they have similar uses. We use it in our Sage Mint soap for its antimicrobial and antiseptic skincare properties.

One of our favorite essential oils, we use it in many products. Eucalyptus essential oils is known to reduce stress hormones, boost your immune system and is a natural antibacterial.

Geranium Rose:
This essential oil promotes healthy, clear skin by helping to repair and rejuvenate skin cells. Its well-known aromatherapy benefits for emotional support include stress reduction.

The benefits for this oil are primarily the same as using fresh ginger root for digestion and other internal discomforts. Its spicy woody scent is very distinguishable. Its known skincare properties include being an antiseptic, analgesic and anti-inflammatory.

Most commonly known for its calming benefits, lavender essential oil is also known as an antiseptic, bacteria inhibitor and skin regulator promoting skin health. Its known antiseptic and antifungal properties are used in helping to ease symptoms of acne and psoriasis.

Aromatic and full of antioxidants uplifting lemon essential oil is a natural antibacterial making it an uplifting essential oil used to help symptoms of acne and eczema.

Blended in our Ginger Lemongrass soap, Lemongrass is a known antibacterial, anti-fungal and antimicrobial. Its astringent and antiseptic properties help tone and sterilize your skin.

Full of antioxidants, this refreshing and uplifting citrus oil has disinfectant and antibiotic skincare benefits.

Palmarosa essential oil is a known antiseptic, bactericide and cytophylactic which promotes cell growth.

The many health benefits of Patchouli essential oil include being an antidepressant, an antiseptic, an astringent and a fungicide. These many properties make Patchouli oil a multifaceted skin care oil that promotes a smooth and glowing complexion.

Held as one of the oldest essential oil, Peppermint oils has gone through rigorous testing for health benefits. For the skin, this oil has a cooling effect because it contains menthol. It also has antiseptic and regenerative properties.

Pink Grapefruit:
This essential oil has a light and uplifting aroma used to enhance and uplift the spirit. It has cleansing and astringent and revitalizing properties.

This essential oil is a baker’s friend for good reason, it’s known for helping digestion and relieving gas. Its health properties include aromatherapy benefits like reducing stress and anxiety and for relaxing. And it’s a known antiseptic.

A many splendored thing! Sandalwood essential oil is known for its many health benefits because of its antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, astringent and disinfectant properties.

Spearmint essential oil has been used in aromatherapy to help uplift your mood with its refreshing aroma. It’s a known antibacterial and antimicrobial widely used in toothpaste and mouthwash to protect from infection.

Sweet Orange:
This refreshing essential oil is used in aromatherapy to create a happy, relaxed mood. Health benefits due to its known properties include providing relief from inflammation, helps alleviate depression, inhibits microbial growth and helps symptoms of acne.

Rosemary is full of Vitamins A, C and Folate and is rich in antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Widely used to freshen breath and beneficial in reducing stress with documented studies on its use as a cognitive stimulant.

From Brasil, this essential oil is known for many uses including headache and toothache relief, widely used as an antidepressant, an antiseptic and an insect repellent.

Tea Tree:
Native to Australia, Tea Tree essential oil is widely used worldwide because of its many powerful properties. Since ancient times, Australians have been using Tea Tree oil as an antibacterial, antimicrobial, antifungal, antiviral and as an antiseptic.



Avocado Oil & Butter:
Avocado butter and oil are loaded with Vitamins C, A and E, potassium and lecithin, all known skin enhancing nutrients and easily absorbed through your skin to promote new and healthy skin growth.

Cocoa Butter & Oil:
Cocoa butter is full of Vitamins B1, B2, B3 and C as well as beneficial fatty acids that neutralize free radicals in your skin. The antioxidants create a protective barrier against damaging environmental pollutants while keeping your skin deeply moisturized.

Coconut Oil:
The health benefits of Coconut oil are many. Applied or eaten, it helps maintain healthy skin, hair and digestion. It is full of lauric acid that destroys harmful viruses and bacteria. It also has caprylic acid that has antifungal properties.

Jojoba Oil:
Jojoba oil is known primarily for its hair care benefits. Its anti-inflammatory and anti bacterial properties help keep your scalp clean and healthy, and it is naturally pH balanced.

Kukui Nut Oil (Kukui nut tree is Hawai`i’s State Tree!):
Kukui nuts and its oil have been used by Polynesians for centuries! They used it for skin and hair care. Rich in Vitamins A, C and E, antioxidents that help prevent free radical cell damage. Kukui oil also has high concentrations of linoleic and linolenic acids, both very similar to your own sebum making it easily absorbed into your skin to help sooth symptoms of dry skin, sunburn, and eczema.

Macadamia Nut Oil:
Beneficial for your body, both inside and out. Internally Macadamia oil helps to lower “bad” cholesterol and raise “good” cholesterol. Its skincare benefits due to macadamia oil being high in oleic and palmitoleic fatty acids help soothe and moisturize inflamed and dry skin.

Mango Butter:
A bite of mango is heaven on earth! Used for skincare, it leaves your skin feeling heavenly! This tropical butter is high in oleic and stearic fatty acids that help moisturize and repair damaged skin. It is rich in Vitamins C and A, helping to promote your skin’s natural collagen production.

Palm Oil (we use certified sustainable palm oil):
Palm oil is high in Vitamin E, an antioxidant historically used for helping skin ailments. Its reddish color comes from its prime compound, beta-carotene.

Olive Oil:
Olive oil is primarily oleic acid, a fatty acid that helps olive oil penetrate your skin easily, nourishing the skin with all its antioxidants. Anti-inflammatory phenols and antimicrobial properties add to the health benefits of this oil.

Rice Bran Oil:
Rice bran oil is rich in Vitamin E, an antioxidant known for neutralizing free radicals in your body. Tocopherols are directly connected to skin health helping cellular regeneration.

Sweet Almond Oil:
Sweet almond oil has a light texture that easily penetrates your skin to soften and moisturize. It is full of monounsaturated fats that hydrate the skin leaving cell membranes healthy. It is rich in antioxidants like Vitamin A and E, and magnesium.