Thursday, 16 August 2012

Soapsmith - bathroom goods from London

Our town couldn't be much more in the limelight right now. First the Queen, now the sports thing - we're in the international public eye like never before. A great time to be launching a London-themed range of bathroom products, right?

That's what Soapsmith have done, but their London-themed soaps, bath stuff and body care range are anything but a gimmicky tie-in. Think gorgeous quality artisan-type products with well-composed, complex scents. The fragrances are all named after parts of town, from the soothing Lavender Hill to the zingy Limehouse. My favourite is Brick Lane, which taps up the East End's Bengali heritage to create a sumptuous blend of spices and wood notes.

The soaps are old-school - big chunky blocks of glyceriney goodness that are embossed with the brand's trademark "S". Really satisfying to use - much more tactile and enjoyable than a pump bottle of liquid soap.

The bath salts feature a little scoop to prevent you getting carried away and dumping the whole lot in the tub. I tried this in Lavender Hill - it's a soft, gentle powdery lavender, and makes the water very soft. I didn't really appreciate the lavender "bits" in it though, as they got everywhere and reminded me worrying of drowned spiders.

I also tried the body butter in Camden Town. This scent smells quite unusual - somewhere between a sugary, minty stick of rock and the Soap & Glory "pink" smell. The website says it's "coconut, bergamot and a hint of musk". The texture of this is divine. It behaves a lot like coconut oil - it's solid at room temperature but on contact with the skin it melts down into a light and very emollient balm texture.

The packaging is clean, clear and very tasteful, with uncluttered text and a clear colour theme for each scent. The quality is as good as it needs to be - solid and utilitarian. It's quite gender-neutral too - you could definitely give the soaps as a gift to a friend of either sex.

Soaps are £7.95 each for 150g and you can buy them from Roullier White, where you'll get free samples if you buy two or more.
The full range is available to browse at, where there's a full offline stockist list.

*Disclosure - PR samples

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