Tuesday, February 13, 2007

a thing for good soap

I just realized that I have thing for good soap. I realized this just now after I walked into a shop and paid $8 for a bar of everyday soap. And I certainly would have paid a much higher price in the city, to be sure. Nice, French, fragrant, good soap, but everyday, regular-sized soap nonetheless.

I say I realized this just now, but in fact, the realization began last week when I was in the shower. I found myself standing there dripping wet, staring at an empty soap tray and wondering how on earth I forgot to buy more before it ran out. I ALWAYS have a stash of soap somewhere in the loo. But this time, the only stash I could think of was my emergency travel soap—a collection I’d accumulated from stockings, hotels, and Christmas gift bags—soaps which I never thought I’d actually use.

You should never keep soaps that you don’t like in your emergency travel soap stash, because you may end up eventually being forced to use them. In fact, you should only keep very luxurious soaps in your emergency travel soap stash, because when you’re in a bland hotel and feeling homesick, there is nothing like a nice bar of soap to make you feel like a princess (or a prince). Plus, if you run out of soap like I did the other day, you’re probably already feeling traumatized and stressed, and the perfect antidote is finding a gorgeous bar of olive oil-enriched, smells-nice-in-your-skin, and makes-you-feel-oh-so-soft SOAP hidden somewhere amongst the towels.

As it turned out, I ran from my shower and grabbed a bar from my emergency stash blindly. As I started to rub it across my skin, I thought to myself, this is not soap. And in fact, it wasn’t. It was oily. It smelled very nice. But it did not lather. I realized later that it was a luxurious, oil bar that Col picked up for me on a recent trip abroad. It’s meant to renew your skin’s moisture. Luxurious and it smells nice. But it’s not soap.

The second soap I grabbed, I opened quickly while jumping back under the shower. One sniff and I threw that thing half-way across the backroom floor into the bin. Ick. I think it might have been artificial cinnamon scented.

Back to the stash again. Oh god, please don’t make my last option be Col’s slimy old bar of Irish Spring! This black thing looked like soap, but it had sand in it for exfoliation. That hotel soap over there, I thought, might just burn my skin off. Just at that moment, I found a lovely jar of luxurious Figue bath gel. It was luxurious, lathery, clean, and smelled like an aphrodisiac. That did the trick for the dire moment. But it wasn’t soap.

So later that very day I stocked up on good soap. Good soap that’s real, that’s natural, that’s gentle and fragrant. Good soap that makes me feel good. And I’m still stocking. Hence the $8 soap. Am I completely mad?

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