Green soap. For most people, a lot of childhood nostalgia springs to mind if they hear this name. That ever-constant scent in your mom’s toiletries. Or that smell that kicked in after your dad wiped his entire car with the soap.
Green soap has remained to be a very effective cleaning solution and disinfectant for many homes.
It has also grown to become the go-to option for most tattoo artists all over the world.
It’s also proven to be a great remedy for cuts, sterilizing tools carrying blood, and an awesome moisturizer.
In most cases, green oil is usually sold in its concentrated form. Therefore, you’d have to dilute it first before applying it.
So, what is green soap? What is it made of? What are its uses? What are its benefits? Are there any side effects? And what other alternatives can you consider?
Let’s find out all this below!
What is green soap?
Green soap is a wonderful solution that cuts across the uses of sterilizing, cleaning, and disinfecting wounds.
Most of them are plant-based and only made up of pure vegetable oils and glycerin as the main ingredients.
Now, despite its name, green soap is not necessarily green. It has a yellow tint instead that comes from the vegetable oils and glycerin it’s made of.
Green soap is also water-soluble and environment-friendly (hence the name).
It has become a people’s favorite in tattoo shops for use on the skin before and after inking.
It is a fantastic sanitizer and works well with most skin types.
Benefits of green soap
Green soap has a ton of benefits for many everyday users.
a. Soothes and moisturizes the skin
Green soap sets an industry standard with its anti-drying, anti-irritating blend. The vegetable oils found in the soap keep the skin moisturized and reduce the chances of getting irritation.
This is definitely better than the regular anti-bacterial soaps that you may use. Most anti-bacterial soaps strip your skin of all essential oils, leaving it dry, itchy, and subject to irritation.
That’s part of the reason why green soap is a tattoo artist’s best friend!
b. Great for cleaning surfaces and sterilizing equipment
Mixing green soap in your routine clean-up leaves your house’s surfaces much cleaner. What’s even better is that it’s water-soluble, hence, you don’t have to worry about things getting sticky afterward.
You also can use it to sterilize cutting equipment like needles, razor blades, scalpels, and many others. It works great to remove blood, stains, and other debris with so much ease and efficiency.
Green soap is also a preferred solution for many vets and human surgeons.
c. Safe on the environment
If you’re concerned about it spilling on the environment around you, then you can be at ease.
Green soap poses no immediate harm to the environment owing to its organic ingredients. The contents are bio-degradable and have no toxin properties in their makeup.
d. Friendly on sensitive skin
Green soap’s composition is natural and very mild. This makes it a great option for people with sensitive skin or other skin conditions.
You can use it as a hand and body wash. It also makes a wonderful hand sanitizer.
What is green soap made of?
Now, you’ll find out that green soap comes made from various ingredients. Of course, this depends on the manufacturer or the designated use of the soap.
Even so, most of the ones available still have glycerin and vegetable oil as the main ingredients.
Glycerin is a known natural moisturizer. It prevents skin irritations like itchiness, dryness, roughness, and scaling.
On the other end, other mixes include a blend of coconut oil in addition to the vegetable oil. There are also some containing lavender oil and ethyl alcohol.
It’s probably best that you consult with your tattoo artist if have any allergies to lavender or coconut oil. This will help to avoid a disaster further along during your healing process.
Where is green soap used?
These are some of the numerous uses of green soap:
- Used for cleaning and disinfecting the skin before and after a tattoo job. Infections can cause swelling, redness, severe pain, and raised, uneven bumps on your skin.
- Its soothing components make it a great skin healing agent.
- It’s also used to wipe away extra ink during the procedure. The natural oils prevent excessive loss of color, leaving you with much bolder lines and highlights.
- Used to sterilize piercing equipment from blood and ink.
- It’s also great for soaking equipment to remove dried stains and debris as it is not corrosive.
How to use in tattooing
If you are an upcoming tattoo artist (or have not sued green soap before), I know you’d like to know how to use it in your processes.
But before I let the cat out of the bag, let me just put it out there that there are several, different ways that you can use this soap. It all depends on the occasion and the amount of work that needs doing.
The steps highlighted below are purely for tattooing.
To go about it:
- Spray the skin with some green soap diluted in water. Use a spray bottle for this application as it reduces the chances of you contacting the skin. Less contact also reduces the chances of an infection.
- Wipe the soap off. You can use a clean, disposable cloth or a paper towel for this job. This is to prepare the skin for the next step which is shaving.
- Shave the spot to prevent ingrown hairs from forming. You might need to wipe the spot again if the need arises.
- Spray the green soap once more after shaving to remove any traces of hair or dirt. Re-spraying also moisturizes the skin to prepare it for the needle.
- Use the green soap solution sparingly to wipe during the inking session. It helps to clean and cool the skin when the work in progress is a long one.
- Sanitize the skin using the same solution again when finished. This helps in getting rid of any traces of blood or ink still on the skin.
- Cover the freshly-tattooed skin. This final step prevents dirt from getting on the still-fresh wound and the risk of infection.
Precautions of using green soap
Are there any side effects when using green soap?
Yes, there are…
Well, not overly alarming. But still…
Some known side effects include:
- Skin irritation. This happens when you have extra-sensitive skin that’s also allergic to any ingredient found in the green soap. (It mostly happens with solutions that have other additives like perfumes and dyes)
- Cross-contamination. There might be an accidental spread of blood-carried diseases like Hepatitis C through tattoo processes. That is why I insist that you have to keep your green soap’s spray nozzle away from skin contact.
- Eye irritation. Like most products, you risk an irritation to your sight in case the green soap spills on your eye’s membranes.
There are other alternatives that you can consider. Although, you’ll have to compromise on some qualities only found in green soaps.
Some of them are:
- Neem or hemp oil
Neem and hemp oil also offer the same benefit of moisturizing your skin as Green Soap. The only downfall is that they are pretty more costly than what you’ll spend on green soap.
Another compromise is that most come with added scents and dyes that can irritate sensitive skin.
- Hydrogen peroxide or alcohol
Hydrogen peroxide also provides a good cleaning and sterilizing solution for cuts and wounds.
The only difference is that it leaves the skin dry and therefore prone to breakage and irritation.
The same thing also applies to alcohol cleaners.
Green soap performs exceptionally as a multipurpose cleaning agent. You can use it to sterilize tattoo equipment, sanitize your skin, or disinfect household surfaces at a go.
Ensure that you check the ingredients in a product before you buy one to prevent irritations on your skin.
Also, consult with your tattoo artist to recommend the best green soap product to use.
Have you used green soap for any occasion before? How were the results compared to the other anti-bacterial soaps you have used in the past?