Saturday, February 18, 2006

Debra's Rhapsody

Debra's Rhapsody is quite possibly one of my favorite places to find beautifully made body soap.

I first experienced this company's wares some four years ago (or so) when I received a box of mixed company products for review. One soap stood out from all the rest ~ On a Whim. There was just something more about that particular soap. It was crunchy, literally, but soft at the same time. I remember feeling amazed that so much went into that little bar of soap, yet it still held a lightness and gentleness that most 'packed' bars do not.

Normally when using loaded soaps, those soaps which contain lightly crushed herbs, powdered nut meats and spices, there's a certain amount of scratch involved. There is a heaviness to the bar, as well. As if you're holding something more substantial than a bar of handmade soap, something more solid and, well, masculine.

On a Whim wasn't like that at all. It was delicate. Feminine. Soft on the skin. I remember using that particular bar sparingly, wanting to get as much out of it as possible, and removing it from the bath between showers so no one else would use it up. And the scent was delicate as well. Citrus~y and sweet. I loved it.

So when the opportunity arose to try a few more of Debra's Rhapsody's fine handmade soaps, I jumped. This time 'round I got Lemongrass Vanilla and Ethereal.

Ethereal is gently scented with pink grapefruit & lavender, and other essential oils, which are not named. Bits of rosemary spice are sprinkled throughout, giving the bar a greenish, speckled appearance. The soap base itself is made with rice bran, shea butter, coconut oil, olive oil and palm kernel oil. I especially love the effect rice bran has in soap. Very moisturizing. Again, even with the addition of raw spice, the soap is soft and gentle on the skin.

Lemongrass Vanilla is a slap-you-in-the-face-and-wake-up! kind of soap. This was my favorite of the two. I loved the balance of scent between the lemongrass and vanilla. The soap bar itself was equally lovely. More rice bran, shea butter, coconut and palm kernel oils. It was the scent, however, that had me reaching for this bar over and over again. There was also a bit of exfoliating power in the bar with the inclusion of lemon peel powder. The overall effect was, in a word, awakening.

Debra's Rhapsody soaps are treasures. Delicate, beautifully crafted, delicately scented, wrapped in handmade paper (in the tradition of Anastasia Crabtree) ~ absolute treasures.

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