Hog & Tallow is a British artisan soap-making company with a love for sustainable, local and 100% natural ingredients.
Their soaps are made to a traditional method using lard and tallow from their own smallholding and from trusted organic farms, including us here at Coombe Farm Organic. It also makes use of top-quality waste products from nearby microbreweries and dairies, along with foraged botanicals. Using by-products from other producers is a wonderfully simple way of avoiding unneeded waste and it happily avoids the need to use imported materials such as palm oil. As Hog & Tallow is a plastic-free business, paper packaging is carefully recycled and reused. The result of all this work? Beautiful soaps, scented with delicate natural fragrances, which are kind to the environment.
The Hog & Tallow team found that beef suet and pork lard are fantastic moisturizing fats to complement the make-up of the oils in our skin. So they formulated a simple soap made with hard animal fat, West Country rapeseed oil (rich in vitamin E), water (or local waste beer) and lye. Sodium hydroxide, commonly known as lye, is a solution used for washing and is the essential chemical element that transforms fats into soap. The scent comes from pure essential oils; waste dried flowers from a local grower and foraged poppy seeds are also added. One soap even has the unusual element of waste charcoal-grounds from the Devon Charcoal Company. In the interest of keeping things super-sustainable, Hog & Tallow trade lots of soaps in return for these wonderful raw ingredients.
To make soap from animal fat, Hog & Tallow first renders it down to draw out impurities before mixing it with the rapeseed oil, heating it and combining it with the lye and water. The whole mixture is then gently blended until it reaches ‘trace’. This simply means it’s mixed until it emulsifies and thickens. At this stage the gorgeous scents and botanicals are added, the soaps are poured into moulds and vibrant dried flower petals are sprinkled on top.
In our shop here at Coombe Farm Organic, we stock two soaps from Hog & Tallow’s range – Dirty Gurty and Old Spot – both of which come beautifully wrapped in paper. Old Spot is made with tallow from our happy, healthy, grass-fed cows combined with Devon charcoal powder and tea tree oil. It might sound surprising to wash your skin with charcoal, but it has extraordinary benefits and is commonly used in beauty cleansing products to absorb excess oil and draw out toxins. Tea tree oil – as well as smelling tingly and invigorating – is appreciated for its antibacterial and antiseptic properties.
Also made from beef tallow, Dirty Gurty is infused with comfrey and scented with geranium essential oil. Comfrey was traditionally used as a healing oil for sprains and bruises; geranium is known for making skin radiant and promoting a positive mood.
Hog & Tallow also produce a variety of other products such as body balms, and tallow and beeswax candles.
Find out more - hogandtallow.co.uk