Meet the Maker...

Hi, I'm Ceri, product formulator, soap maker, flower grower, photo taker and chief tea drinker at Oakwood Soaperie. I love to use what I make, I hope you will too.

Ceri Aitman

North East England, UK

Hi, I'm Ceri, welcome to Oakwood Soaperie

After qualifying with a Foundation Arts Course and a BA(Hons) Degree in Fashion Design from Northumbria University, I was bitten by the highly creative bug. I love to make things, I love to walk in the wilderness, to feel the sun on my face and to come home to my family, furry animals and my veggie garden at the end of the day. I came accross natural product and real soap making and became ever so slightly obsessed with using natural ingredients. Every product I offer is hand made, by me with love. I specialise in luxurious and traditional 'cold process' method soaps and luxurious bathing products, made to my own tried and tested recipies in my rural workshop in the converted stables block within the National Trust's Gibside Estate in the North East of England. I'm delighted to be able to use organically grown flowers and herbs from my botanical plot in their 18th Century walled garden in lots of my products too. 

About Oakwood Soaperie...

Oakwood Soaperie is a small, real soap making company based in the beautiful grounds of Gibside Estate, a landscaped National Trust property just 7 miles outside of Newcastle upon Tyne. The business was founded by me in October 2010. As well as right here on my website, you can also shop online from my Folksy and Etsy stores and at local craft and farmers markets around the North East of England...check  out our EVENTS page for more details or follow my BLOG for the latest goings on at the Soaperie. 

All my products are  fully EU certified and I hold full and specific public and product liability insurance for soaps and cosmetics. All my products have been fully safety assessed by a registered cosmetic chemist and are Trading Standards approved so you can buy with confidence in the knowledge that you are buying a high quality, safe and natural product that conforms to the latest EU regulations. I also make a small range of eco-soy wax candles,, reed diffusers and home fragrancing sprays which due to regulation changes in June 2015, are all CLP labelled in accordance to current EU regulations and hold the required candle and diffuser safety warning lables.

'Oakwood Soaperie' is a member of the 'European Directory of Soap and Cosmetic Makers' and also a member of the 'Guild of Craft Soap & Toiletry Makers' www.gcstm.co.uk.   

Our busy little bees...

My natural, plant based handmade soaps are created using the 'cold process' method. After the 4- 6 weeks they take to cure I end up with an exceptionally mild and gentle, skin lovin' soap. They are then hand trimmed, carefully wrapped and labelled clearly with all ingredients, batch numbers, weights and made on / use by dates in accordance with current labelling guidelines.

Being hand-made, my soaps may vary in texture, colour and appearance between batches, no two will be exactly the same, this I believe is part of the appeal. I take care to picture and describe every item as accurately as possible and pack it with love so it reaches you in perfect condition. 

I use re-cyclable and, or compostable packaging wherever I can and am constantly on the look out for greener alternatives. I always try to re-cycle or re-use the packaging from my deliveries so your order may arrive boxed in a re-used container. This is a good thing, it has not ended up in landfill. 

I never test on animals...my only guinea pigs are human ones.  All my products are suitable for Vegetarian and most of them are also Vegan, the only guinea pigs they are tried and tested on are human ones. 

My products contain NO preservatives, Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLS), Sodium Lauryl Ether Sulfate (SLES), parabens, artificial preservatives,  Mineral oils or Palm oil which makes them suitable for even sensitive skins and the most discerning and green focussed of clientelle.

Our handmade, natural soaps are made with pure Olive oil, Sunflower Oil and Coconut oil along with lashings of skin loving Cocoa Butter, Shea Butter and enriching skin specific treatment oils such as Rosehip, Hemp, jojoba, Ricebran and Avocado oil among others. These are all rich in natural vitamins that are retained in the final bar and are delivered exactly where they are needed...straight to your skin.

We include natural clays and botanicals such as flower petals and buds, dried herbs and seeds, for texture and colour as well as fragrance and appearance. Their superior cleansing and conditioning properties are gentle yet very thorough and will not strip the skin's natural moisture. We also use Organic Goat's milk in some of our recipes as it is so beneficial to dry or troubled skin. Some ingredients e.g. vegetable glycerine and raw honey actually help improve the skin's ability to retain precious moisture and improve the surface texture and appearance 

I use our own fresh Northumbrian Honey and beeswax in a lot of our soaps and balms. This comes straight from my dad's hives situated in the dramatic and wild Northumberland landscape. the Honey is extracted and filtered then is ready either to eat or for inclusion in our natural and pure products. Honey is fantastic in skincare as it is naturally sterile and has natural anti-biotic properties, helping with skin regeneration, scarring and also helps the skin retain moisture. As we make everything from scratch in small quality controlled batches to ensure the finest results possible this allows us to tailor each individual batch or product to a specific skin type giving us flexibility and the possibility to tailor a recipe to a customer’s individual requirements.

Our honey is not pasteurised so therefore It is naturally anti-viral and anti-biotic as it retains all of it's natural goodness. Pure un-pasteurised honey has been used to heal broken or inflamed skin for Centuries and has been renound for its ability to heal wounds since Ancient Egyptian times. It is incredibly gentle on sensitive skin and acts as a natural humectant, drawing moisture from the surrounding atmosphere, straight in to your skin where it delivers moisture to the deep layers and locks it in.