FAQs

What makes The Olive Tree soaps different from other handmade soaps?

Our soap uses Olive Oil and is made in Australia with the highest quality ingredients. No animal by-products, animal testing, palm oil, harsh chemicals, EDTA were used in our products. Our soaps are vegan, biodegradable, natural and cruelty free.

Why are your products SLS, SLES, parabens and EDTA free?

These chemicals are widely used in many conventional shampoo and personal care products.

How are your soaps made?

Our soaps are made using only natural plant oils and lye, which is an age old soap making method (i.e. cold process method). The chemical reaction between these two ingredients is known as saponification, which results in soap at the end. The lye is mostly eaten up during the saponification process. We do not use chemicals such as sodium laureth sulfate, artificial frothing agents, palm oil, tallow or lard. Our products do not have artificial fragrances and dyes.

Why are your handmade soaps better than industrial soap?

Handmade cold process soap is better than commercial soap because its glycerine is generally left intact in the soap. Glycerine, a byproduct from saponification is prized for its moisturizing qualities and this precious item is usually extracted from industrial soap to be sold separately.

Can I use your soap if I have sensitive skin?

All our soaps use only natural plant oils which are generally gentler on the skin. We have a soap which has been specifically designed for people with sensitive skin. This sensitive skin soap (Pure Olive) has no fragrance and contains no essential oils.

We recommend that when using our soap for the first time, please test the product on a small part of your skin.

Can your soaps be used on children?

Since our soaps use only natural plant oils which are generally more gentle on the skin, they are suitable for children.

We recommend that when using our soap for the first time, please test the product on a small part of your child’s skin.

Can your soaps be used on the face?

Yes as our soaps are generally gentler on the skin as they are produced from natural plant oils. However, as everyone’s skin type is unique, please test the soap on a small part of your skin.

Does your soap lather well?

Due to the high content of olive oil in our soap, it lathers minimally. Olive oil soap cleans your skin without stripping away the natural oils – reducing the occurrence of dry and flaky skin. Glycerin which is highly moisturising is retained in most natural olive oil soaps.

How long does your soap lasts?

Our soaps generally last for two to six weeks but this of course is dependent on how many people are using, how often they are used and how it is stored.

As for best before dates, please try to use them within the specified time frame, or else the precious oils may go rancid.

How do I prolong the usage of the soap?

The key to prolonging the life span of natural soaps is to make sure they do not sit in water when they are not being used. It is best to rest your soaps on well-drained soap dishes. You may also use a soap bag to scrub your body, rinse and finally hang the bag with the soap in it to dry.

If you see a layer of gel appearing on our soap, please don’t scrub it off. That is the precious glycerin which moisturises your skin, so just continue to use your soap like normal.

How do I store unopened soap bars?

Please keep your unopened bar of soap in a cool, dark and dry place.

What is the gooey transparent layer on your handmade soap?

The gooey transparent layer on your soap is actually the highly prized glycerine which is extremely moisturizing for your skin. Glycerine is the by-product of the soap making process. It is a humectant which helps to moisturize your skin as it draws moisture from the air. In commercial soaps, this glycerine is removed and added to other products like body lotion unlike handmade soaps where this glycerine remains intact.

Our handmade olive oil based soap does have that visible layer of glycerine when it sits in standing water because olive oil by nature is a very soft oil and tends to melt faster. Other hard plant oils like coconut oil and palm oil can be added to olive oil to make the bar soap harder, lather more and last longer.

The key to prolonging the use of olive oil based handmade soaps is to keep it dry between use. 

Why does your soap seem to sweat?

You may find the soap a little wet at times. A quality bar of handmade soap will tend to "sweat" in humid weather due to the high content of natural humectants. A humectant is a substance that absorbs moisture from its surroundings but not from the soap itself. The soap "sweating" does not affect any of the soap's abilities. Soap "sweating" demonstrates that the humectant agents in the soap are just merely doing their job of accumulating moisture from the air, leaving your skin moisturized.

Does your soap contain palm oil?

No, our products are palm oil free. The palm oil industry has caused extensive damage to the environment through large scale forest conversion and loss of critical natural habitat for endangered animals such as orang utans and Sumatran Tigers. It is also the main cause of the health threatening haze which affects Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia due to the excessive slash and burn technique used in Indonesia to clear land for oil palm plantations. As such, we wanted to use alternatives to palm oil.

Why does your soap sting the eyes?

Soap is an alkaline substance and when it enters the eyes, our eyes’ reflex is to tear so the foreign substance can be washed out. Tearing is a natural defense mechanism against foreign materials. No pH balancing biochemical was used to balance the pH level as we believe in keeping the soap as pure and natural as possible. 

Why does my soap seem to differ from the previous soap I purchased from The Olive Tree before?

Since our soap are handmade in small batches and we do not use any preservatives or synthetic fragrances, each soap is unique and may vary slightly in shape, scent and texture. Besides that, the variation could also be due to the different yields harvested from the natural raw ingredients used from different batches. However, this will not affect the efficacy of the soap.  

Why does your soap under the "Soap Specials" bundle look slightly different from your other soaps?

These handmade soaps are either aesthetically different in terms of color, texture or are off cuts. The aesthetic variation of these soaps is mostly due to change in humidity but it does not in any way affect the soap's effectiveness and quality. Although these soaps may look slightly different on the exterior but be rest assured that they are still the same good old soaps packed with the same moisturizing and cleansing properties that we pride ourselves with. 

How do i use your body scrub?

When in the shower or bath, dampen your skin, make sure you are not under running water. Using the wooden spoon, place some scrub on your palm and apply to your skin in a similar motion you would apply moisturiser. Scrub in a circular motion. Leave the scrub on for as long as you can then wash off. The longer you leave the scrub on the better the health benefits. For those with very sensitive skin, you may want to consider not leaving the scrub on too long. Please always do a patch test if you are unsure if you have sensitive skin.  

How often should I use the body scrub?

This will depend on your skin type. If you have sensitive skin we recommend only scrubbing 1-2 times a week. If you suffer from very dry and dull skin we recommend scrubbing at least 3 times a week. For everyone else 2-3 scrubs a week is enough to get rid of the dead skin cells.

How many scrubs do I get out of one jar?

Each jar is 200 grams of lovely body scrub. On average a full body scrub will use around 30-50 grams which gives you around 4-6 scrubs per jar. 

Are your body scrubs safe for sensitive skin?

The ingredients in the scrubs are suitable for all skin types. The main ingredients in the scrubs are a combination of both epsom salt and raw cane sugar. Due to this fact, if you have eczema, dermatitis or psoriasis and you have open wounds the salt will sting when using it. As we have added essential oil to our body scrub for added enrichment, some people may be allergic to the essential oil used. Please keep in mind that our dry body scrubs contain sweet almond oil so please refrain from using these if you have a nut allergy. As such, we always recommend doing a patch test before using our products for the first time.

What is the shelf life of the dry body scrub?

The shelf life of the product is 6 months from production date. Each scrub has been carefully formulated and does not contain any additives or preservatives because our recipe does not contain water. For this reason it is very important that you keep your wet hands and water out of the jar as much as you can. This is the main reason why we have supplied you with the natural bamboo spoon. An opened jar of body scrub, it is advisable to use it by the eighth week from the opening date. If you find that you get a fair bit of water in your scrub, please discard the jar after 2 weeks of opening. Store your scrub in a dry place. Do not store you scrub on the shower floor as you will most likely get water in it.

Why does your shampoo not lather as much?

Our shampoo does not lather as much because it is made from all natural ingredients and we do not use sulphates, a harsh foaming agent which strips the hair and scalp of essential natural oils.

What can I expect when I switch from conventional to natural hair care?

When switching to natural hair care, during the initial stages, your hair may feel stiff, sticky or dry as natural hair care products detox your hair from petrochemical polymer which acts as a coating agent. All these transitional inconveniences will gradually disappear and it can take up to a month for your hair and scalp to adjust to the change. However, once your hair and scalp have adjusted to the natural hair care regime, it is worth it as your hair will regain its natural healthy and beautiful state.

Why does your product smell slightly different from the previous purchase?

Natural ingredients are not standardized and uniformly mass-produced like synthetic ones. As such, the variation in terms of smell is probably due to the seasonal variation of the yield of natural ingredients harvested at different times. Variations in temperature during shipping may alter the texture causing the products to become thicker or thinner as well as affecting colour and scent. However, be rest assured that this does not reduce the effectiveness of our products.

Are your products safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women?

We recommend consulting your general practitioner on the ingredients list of our product prior to use. The natural essential oils we use are of high quality.

What are sea sponges?

Sea sponges are simple multicellular living organisms that grow on the ocean's floor. It is not a coral nor a plant. They have a hard outer shell and a soft porous inside.  

Why are sea sponges more beneficial than synthetic sponges?

Sea sponges are 100% natural and free from harsh chemicals or dyes unlike synthetic sponges which have Triclosan pesticide to combat bacteria and mold. Sea sponge has inherent enzymes to prevent the development of odour. It is softly textured, highly absorbent, creates a rich lather and extremely durable. 

Is harvesting of sea sponges environmentally friendly?

Sea sponges have excellent powers of regeneration making it a renewable natural resource. When sea  sponge is harvested, utmost care is made to ensure that the base (roots) of the sponge remains in tact so that the sponge has the ability to regenerate. Sea sponges have a definitive life span of approximately 10 years. However, through careful and responsible harvesting with minimal disruption to the environment, sea sponges regenerate and have extended life.  

Why do the essential oil prices vary so much?

It takes 20,000 roses to make 10ml bottles Rose Otto Essential Oil, or 60 roses to create a single drop of Rose Otto oil RM 1,000 a bottle. On the other hand, it takes only 30 lemons to make a bottle of Lemon essential oil.

How do I know whether the essential oil is pure?

Pure essential oils will not leave a greasy residue when applied to paper or a cotton pad. If it does, it means that the essential oil has been cut or diluted with something else.

Is tea tree essential oil drying?

A pure tea tree essential oil will not be drying. In fact, it is great for dry to normal skin types. Please dilute it with carrier oils such as olive oil or jojoba oil prior to applying it on the skin. 

Can I order essential oils?

We are unable to ship Lemon, Tea Tree and Sweet Orange essential oils out of Peninsular Malaysia as these are flammable items. However, we are able to ship the rest of the essential oils in our current range (i.e. French Lavender, Lemongrass, Geranium, Peppermint and Ylang-Ylang) out of Peninsular Malaysia as these are not flammable items.  

What are the benefits of carrier oils?

  • Oils lock in moisture and help protect the skin against environmental effects.
  • Oils deliver a potent dose of nutrients. 
    • Because your face is well moisturized, it will stop the overproduction of its own oil, and you will be able to avoid that shiny t-zone look.
    • Oils can be all natural, need no preservatives, and have a shelf life of about two years.
    • Most natural oils are easily absorbed & won’t clog pores.
    • Oils are typically ultra-healing, and great for repairing skin.

    How do I choose a good carrier oil?

    Do not purchase oils extracted with heat or harsh chemicals as these will cause the oils to break down, and diminish their quality. Look for labels that say cold-pressed or CO2 extracted.

    What does extra virgin olive oil mean?

    Extra virgin olive oil is pure without any added chemicals or temperature treatments. It is extracted from fruits of olive trees, which are free from diseases, harvested at the right time and processed immediately. 

    What is your exchange policy?

    Given the nature of our products, we will not be able to accept returns. To provide all our customers with peace of mind, in the event that you are dissatisfied with our products, please do email us at info@theolivetree-organic.com or use the contact form under the “Contact Us” page for an exchange or refund within 14 days upon goods received date. This is because we strongly believe in the quality and integrity of our products and want you to have the same reassurance too.

    Do you ship internationally?

    Yes we do. We ship worldwide. 

    What is your trading currency?

    Our trading currency is Malaysian Ringgit (MYR). Although our website supports the display of other currencies, however at checkout, the transaction will be in MYR (i.e. our trading currency) which is converted at the most current exchange rate. 

    Why am I not able to use my American Express credit card on your website?

    Paypal does not currently accept American Express transactions in Malaysian currency. Please do use Visa or Mastercard instead. Alternatively, you may choose to use bank deposit instead. We apologize for the inconvenience caused.

    Why am I charged USD$ 1 after making an online transaction on your website?

    The USD$ 1 charge is a temporary authorization by PayPal. To verify that your credit card or debit card is in good standing, a temporary USD$ 1 charge might appear in buyer’s transaction history. The charge appears as ‘pending’ and is automatically removed after the full amount of the purchase is processed. If the authorization charge remains on your card after 30 days, we suggest you contact us at info@theolivetree-organic.com or contact the card issuer.