From recipe design, fragrance blending, design to soap making, cutting, packaging, and sales, we basically handcraft a small amount of soap, which is done by all by myself.
My journey in soap making started when I moved to New Zealand from Japan in 1999. I found soaps and shampoos on the market in New Zealand at the time to be too strong with too much detergent for my skin. One day a friend of mine showed me how to make soap from scratch, I was fascinated by the depth and complication of soapmaking straight away. I tried countless types of oils and natural additives and marvelled at the different outcomes of each combination. I finally settled with the recipe for Marseille soap which I acquired from the internet. This recipe is made up of 72 per cent olive oil, 18 per cent coconut oil and 10 per cent palm oil. I learned the combination of these oils at these specific ratios was suitable for most skin types after receiving feedback from a lot of people. Consequently, this recipe became Chiko soap’s golden ratio, and I gradually started adding “blessings of nature” to this base combination. My trip to Marseille in France in 2019 was such an eye-opener. Although the processes of factory-made soap and handmade soap are completely different, there was so much to learn from the soap masters about the process of soapmaking which has a history of over 1000 years. Chiko soap took a huge new step from this experience.
Chiko soap is committed to using natural ingredients and staying away from chemical additives altogether. My goal is to make soaps that clean dirt and sweat from your body without taking away too much natural oils from your skin while sustaining the self-cleansing power that your skin is already blessed with. I am very particular about what goes into my soaps, I do not use chemicals for the sake of convenience or to reduce costs. My soaps are gentle on humans and pets, and also environmentally friendly. Chiko soaps are Gentle on the body and easy on the planet. now care about sustainable living therefore I started to shift from Palm Oil to Shea Butter. Once you start using my soaps, you will notice the state of your skin more prominently as they contain no unnecessary chemicals. I would like you to listen to your own body and figure out what it needs – why don’t you try adding high-quality oils if you experience dry skin due to the changing of the seasons? Or try washing twice on sweaty summer days?
Unfortunately, I am unable to mass produce my soaps as every process is basically done by myself, from making recipes, manufacturing, cutting, stamping, labelling to selling. However, I’m happy to meet and talk to my soap users directly at the markets, as I have had more opportunities to exhibit and sell my soaps at the markets recently. It gives me a better understanding of what people like and receiving comments from the users face to face is invaluable to me.
Thanks to the feedback I get from my regular customers, I am constantly improving my soaps. I really appreciate your continued support and encouragement. I wouldn’t have been able to come this far without your help. Every comment from you makes me remember that everybody’s skin is different, what’s good for one person may not suit another. I would like to continue my journey of soapmaking keeping that in mind.