The very British and upscale Babington Soap Co. is the result of a mission my husband Tom and I, Matthew, started while spending two weeks in our home in self-isolation. There is never a perfect time to start a business and the middle of a pandemic seemed a crazier time than is typical, but we found our hands felt so dry and uncomfortable from the harsh alcohol in the sanitizers we were using that we had take action. It was great that, in a time of need, so many local and big businesses switched their efforts to producing sanitizer to help control the spread of germs. However, many companies seemed to give no general thought to caring for people’s skin in addition to killing the germs. There was also the downside that most of the new sanitizers had unpleasant smells and were either terribly drying or persistently sticky. Our thoughts turned to making the world safer for people, in the long-term, by producing a sanitizer designed to be a moisturizer first and foremost and an effective hand sanitizer second. We thought that by doing it that way round, we would convince people like us to enjoy using sanitizers and thus use them more frequently, halting the spread of germs in the process.
DEVELOPING AN ANTIBACTERIAL HAND SANITIZER FORMULA
There are just two of us in this venture, and we had zero knowledge of creating products or sourcing bottles, pumps, boxes and ingredients or even selling anything, especially in the middle of a pandemic. So, we found we had a steep learning curve ahead of us. Whilst we describe the business as just us two, we must thank our families who have helped us in so many ways to get to this point.
With some great luck we found an amazing laboratory to create our first excellent formula, and, after some tweaks here and there, we came up with what we now offer you.
In some ways, the hardest decision we had to make was whether the product is a moisturizing hand sanitizer or a sanitizing hand moisturizer! Either way, our product kills 99.9% of bacteria it comes in contact with during official tests.
OUR HAND SANITIZER INGREDIENTS
Repeated use of alcohol on the skin not only pulls moisture out from skin cells but also weakens the protective barrier that keeps moisture within. We are very proud that our 65% alcohol-based sanitizer is 99.9% plant-based and 99.9% natural. We are currently working on an organic version as well as other variations on our original formula, all of which put moisturizing first and foremost.
Our moisturizer, Chitosan (pronounced “kite-o-san”), is what makes our moisturizing sanitizer different from almost all others on the market. Our pharmaceutical grade, plant-based Chitosan works by allowing your skin cells to act as nature intended. After using our sanitizer, the hands are left feeling both soft and silky smooth.
Amongst both cheap and expensive moisturizing sanitizers currently on the market, most are formulated with aloe vera and/or glycerine to combat the harshness of alcohol. Although these ingredients provide some hydration and moisturization, their effects are generally short-term.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ALOE VERA AND CHITOSAN
Aloe vera (the viscous liquid extracted from the aloe barbadensis plant) and
glycerine provide the feeling of moisturized and hydrated hands by pulling water from the deeper layers of the skin or air to the outermost layer of the skin. However, that moisture is not locked in, so whilst the skin may feel and look more supple, these formulas generally only provide a temporary fix to the damage caused by alcohol, as they neither repair the skin’s natural barrier or provide their own.
Chitosan works very differently, and we use it for its longer-term effect. Chitosan provides its own barrier for your skin and so helps maintain moisture.
Chitosan ensures the hands maintain their moisture after sanitizing by locking in the skin cells’ water stores needed for smooth, healthy skin. This natural ingredient mimics the role of sebum in the skin’s natural moisturizing functions by forming an impermeable barrier over skin cells to prevent water loss. Through this process initiated by our moisturizing hand sanitizer formula, your skin cells will continue to operate exactly how nature intended. Also, as a barrier is formed, the formula’s lemongrass oil—which is also an antibacterial agent—remains longer on the hands.