Our Honeymoon Beginnings
Hello, I’m Sally and I founded Natural Spa Supplies Ltd 15 years ago after washing my hair and skin with Rhassoul Clay while on honeymoon in Morocco. My hair and sensitive skin were instantly transformed and I knew that I would be a life long convert. I returned to the UK expecting to be able to buy this clay – but I just couldn’t find anywhere. I felt compelled to source it and to start an online eco business so that consumers everywhere could use it too.
Having a background in archaeology and anthropology, it set me asking, ‘What did people use in the past for washing the hair and skin, brushing the teeth and for household cleaning?’
Traditional Products Made with the Free Energy of Nature
The original washing and cleaning products have left no traces for archaeologists, but with in depth research, I began to compile a range of traditional, natural and above all sustainable products. I sourced Rhassoul Clay, Pumice Stones (I still have my original one!) and Alum Crystal for use as a deodorant. All of these are made by volcanoes, using the free energy of nature. Plants in their season provide us with supplies of Argan Oil from tree seeds, Moroccan Henna and Rose Water.
I should also give credit to my husband, Scott, who despite being an architect, has knapped many tonnes of alum from huge blocks down into sensible sizes suited for use as deodorant. He has supported me and the company every step of the way.
Since our beginning, we have expanded our range to include Olive Tree Stick and Miswak Root Toothbrushes, whose usage goes back into prehistory; organic Soapnuts from trees – an amazing natural detergent used for laundry, washing up and surface cleaning – all without rubber gloves; and a full Organic range of Floral Waters including alcohol-free Witch Hazel with very wild characteristics quite unlike the Witch Hazel which has been preserved with ethanol on the high street.
In addition our company has some unique products such as our True Blue Indigo which we have pioneered for use as a natural laundry whitener. The Indigo could be used as a blue hair rinse or for dyeing textiles. Our company ethos is to support small artisanal producers and traditional methods. In order to increase the indigo’s purity, we have it fermented on goat and camel urine, as opposed to using caustic chemicals. That way, it is skin friendly and suitable for continuous contact. By the way, the finished product has virtually zero aroma!
We always look to find the most efficient way to use these natural resources. Right from the beginning I tested low usage quantities for the Rhassoul Clay, so rather than using 500g of rhassoul to wash the hair, we found that just a few teaspoons of clay powder was plenty and by using low quantities 500g of clay can last for 12 weeks. While consumers all over the country were boiling their soapnuts to make a liquid detergent we realised the soapnuts would release their saponins in warm water just given a little time. We have saved many consumers from steaming up their kitchens, burning pans and having to keep an eye on a bubbling pot of soap. Plus heat actually destroys saponins! If you are in a hurry, just shake the soapnuts in a jar of water and you have an instant cleaning or washing up liquid!
The Simplest Possible Formulations
While virtually all our products are in the raw and straight from nature form, we did formulate an Argan Lip Balm, using three ingredients which protects the different skin layers using Argan Oil, Gum Acaia and Beeswax – but we never add anything else – no stabilizers, preservatives or fragrances. Later on we created our British Hemp Oil Soap which has hundreds of uses involving Washing, Shaving and Cleaning difficult surfaces. On testing, we found that the soap was highly antimicrobial making it ideal for important hygiene tasks. By keeping our products as basic as possible, they suit every skin type and especially sensitive or trouble-prone skins.
Multi-Purpose, No Fancy Packaging, Fully Eco Postal Packaging
All of the products are multi-purpose, for example, our tree sticks replace toothpaste, toothbrushes and can even be used to make mouthwash. Most of our products can be used by all the members of the family, for example, one block of alum deodorant which has no fragrance can serve everyone who uses that bathroom. It certainly keeps shopping simple and cupboards uncluttered.
I’m very proud that right from the outset I had come across sturdy British made envelopes which were padded with paper waste and we have only ever used glass bottles. Apart from a few of the bought in products, we are and always will be a plastic-free business. Over the years we have won a National Eco Award and been finalists in numerous other awards. What is more important is that we have helped guide thousands of consumers into eco living with our small range of dynamic products.
Quality over Luxury
Our priorities are on sourcing quality products and not on projecting a luxury image. Where at all possible we source from organic sources, but the really get the best resources we often choose to work with very small producers. For example the producers of our True Blue Indigo have a small production capacity. It is a very specialised product and they have trouble meeting even our demands, so it is not in their interest to get an organic label, the same with our Morocaan Henna producers. We and our customers know it is the best on the market.
We do not market a ‘luxury’ image and leave this type of marketing to the big brands, but 99% of the time when you telephone us, you will get straight through to an expert who cares and we can help you with your query immediately.
We Give Our Customers Autonomy
By selling our products in the raw state, customers are free to adaapt them as they wish as to use them as ingredients if they do fancy a change. We sell the Rhassoul Clay as a powder which can be hydrated with water, floral water, fruit juice, herbal teas, seaweed liquid. The clay will also accept oils and essential oils, so you are free to follow your own recipes. Likewise some customers buy the alum in a milled or granulated form which they adapt with floral waters to make a spray on deodorant of aftershave. There a lots of suggestions in our product pages.
Great Value Eco Products
Many people think that going green is expensive, but at Natural Spa Supplies our products are great value. Our customers typically spend 10p doing a load of laundry with Soapnuts; 20p per shower / hair wash with Rhassoul Clay and using alum deodorant, about 3p per day! You can even use our products if you are on a budget.
Plus half of our online UK customers get FREE second or even first class postage after their order reaches either £35.00 or £50 (so do club together with friends and family!)
By having a few products which do so many things, you can play your part to mitigate climate change and plastic pollution.
We are here to help you!