By Julia Howard
Skin plays a vital role in ensuring good health. This simple fact motivated Bob and Barbara Palulis to begin making natural soaps and skin care products for themselves and now for others through their business, Pure-N-Simple Soap.
“I made the choice to be more conscientious of my diet and with all of my skin care products,” said Barbara Palulis.
Added Bob Palulis: “We are healthier because of these choices.”
Pure-N-Simple Soap is one of the Saratoga Farmers’ Market newer vendors. The couple makes not only soaps but also shampoo bars, lip balms, lotions, herbal infused oils and salves and a line of laundry and linen products.
Barbara Palulis says, “We like to keep things simple.” They use olive, coconut, and palm oils as the base for their soaps, along with goat milk, essential oils as fragrance, and dried herbs that they often gather themselves for color. Their skin care products are often as simple as olive oil infused with calendula. As she put it, there’s “no need to spend a lot of money on facial moisturizer when calendula infused in olive oil works wonderfully to soothe and balance the skin.”
The couple began making their own skin-care products while studying nutrition. In doing so, they realized that good health was not just about eating the proper foods but also about care of the skin.
“Our skin is the largest organ of our body and is permeable,” said Barbara Palulis. “What goes on the skin absorbs into our body.“
They began making soap in 2008 in their farmhouse kitchen in Salem, NY, and moved eventually into a retail space at 207 Main St., in Salem. They currently sell their products there as well as at the Saratoga and Glens Falls farmers’ markets and some holiday shows. They also serve as suppliers to a handful of retail stores and will take orders via telephone (518-854-3320), e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) and their website, www.purensimplesoap.com. To first-time customers, the Palulis’s recommend their gift pack, which includes a bar of soap, a two-ounce jar of lotion, and a lip balm.
“I really enjoy sharing with these products and what I have learned along the way, said Barbara Palulis. “The more I learn, the more I have the need to share with others.”
The Saratoga Farmers’ Market takes place from 3-6 p.m. Wednesdays and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays at High Rock Park
Calendula Infused Oil
By Pure-N-Simple Soap
At this time of the year calendula is available and it is easy to make an infused oil that can be used as a facial moisturizer. Calendula is known amongst herbalists as “Mother of The Skin” as it offers anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antibacterial and antifungal properties, which make it suitable for just about all skin conditions.
*materials available at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market
• Calendula (may be purchased fresh and dried) *
• Olive oil *
• 8 oz. glass jar
Collect fresh calendula and dry it. Fill a glass jar 3/4 of the way with dried calendula and then fill the jar with olive oil. Stir, making sure all of the flowers are covered with oil. Let this infuse for 4-6 weeks. Strain the oil through a piece of cheesecloth, compost the flowers, and bottle the oil. Use a couple of drops and pat onto the face or wherever needed. A little goes a long way.