Florida Soap Law
Updated: Aug 15, 2018
Florida Soap Law
Living in Florida has it's up and downs. (Mostly ups). Selling homemade soap in Florida is one of the downsides, especially when dealing with state laws. If you have made it over to the store side of this website/ blog you will notice under all our soaps we have an informational section concerning the “Florida Law". In that section we explain that we are only allowed to tell you that our soap "cleanses or cleans”, which is does very well. We also add various ingredients to our soap that have the potential to add benefit to that soap. However, we cannot express that claim of benefit because that would then make our homemade soap a "cosmetic" or even a "drug" by law. Makers of cosmetics and drugs, according to Florida laws, must abide by an excessive amount of rules and regulations. For us, to do that would wind up increasing our cost to make each bar of soap and as a result, increase the cost of that soap to the consumer. Instead, we have decided to keep costs low and let you, the consumer, take the step of investigating ingredients or giving our soap an inexpensive test run to see how different ingredients and soaps work for you! That way we can keep the cost of a bar of soap much lower than the normal going rate of $8 - $10 per bar.
Not being able to inform you of what effect each ingredient might have for you is really frustrating for us. We get asked questions all the time. "What soap can I use for acne?" "What does goat milk soap do?" "Pine Tar? What does that do?" We then have to explain the Florida law to them. Most people understand, but some people just do not understand and we lose a sale. Honestly we would love to tell you all about our soap but the law makes it so we can not.
Here is a link to the Florida Statue - look at section 12
(12) “Cosmetic” means an article, with the exception of soap, that is:
(a) Intended to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled, or sprayed on; introduced into; or otherwise applied to the human body or any part thereof for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance; or
(b) Intended for use as a component of any such article.
“with the exception of soap” that is in line 12 we look to the FDA Definition of soap because that is what the State of Florida is using for what a soap is.
To meet the definition of soap in the FDA’s regulations, a product has to meet the following three conditions:
1. What it’s made of: To be regulated as “soap,” the product must be composed mainly of the “alkali salts of fatty acids,” that is, the material you get when you combine fats or oils with an alkali, such as lye.
2. What ingredients cause its cleaning action: To be regulated as “soap,” those “alkali salts of fatty acids” must be the only material that results in the product’s cleaning action. If the product contains synthetic detergents, it’s a cosmetic, not a soap. You still can use the word “soap” on the label.
3. How it's intended to be used: To be regulated as soap, it must be labeled and marketed only for use as soap. If it is intended for purposes such as moisturizing the skin, making the user smell nice, or deodorizing the user’s body, it’s a cosmetic. Or, if the product is intended to treat or prevent disease, such as by killing germs, or treating skin conditions, such as acne or eczema, it’s a drug. You still can use the word “soap” on the label.
Our soap meets the FDA definition of soap.