How Waterfall Glen Soap began
Partnering with local businesses
In May of 2021, we were invited to introduce our Company to the Illinois Manufacturers Association of Southern Illinois. There we met with Tom Welge, President of St. Nicholas Brewery in DuQuoin, IL. Tom was very interested in our soap products and presented us with an unusual request: Can we make soap from their beer? “OF COURSE,” we said. And then set out to learn the ropes of beer soap production. Needless to say, it was a fun journey.
Beer soap has been around for centuries.
Beer soap has been around for centuries – almost as long as beer and soap. Beer adds some pretty cool attributes to soap and creates a very unusual and rich skin-conditioning lather. Beer soap is great for sensitive skin due to the moisturizing quality of antioxidants and vitamins. Amino acids from the hops in the beer can help soothe irritation and help maintain the pH balance of the skin, while polyphenols can help with redness.
As any beer lover knows, beer is brewed from grain and hops. Hops are flowering plant that provides beer its characteristic bitterness and aroma. What beer lovers may not know is that hops were used for medicinal purposes long before they were ever used to make beer.
The Hops Beer Bar Soap
Hops contain bitter acids, known as alpha-acids, beta-acids, and iso-alpha-acids which have been shown in studies to reduce inflammation. That’s why hops have long been used as a remedy for ear infections. Thanks to these anti-inflammatory properties of hops, beer soap may help soothe inflamed, itchy skin.
The bitter compounds in hops are not just good for inflammation. They are also naturally good at stopping bacterial growth. Yeast in beer has also been found to produce antimicrobial substances that could stop the growth of harmful bacteria. Limiting bacterial growth on the skin can reduce acne and breakouts.
So, we created a hoppy bonanza beer soap with the IPA Peloton beer from St. Nicholas Brewery. Tom added their logo (Krampus pedaling a bicycle with little kid arms sticking out from a basket on the back of Krampus). They also created the soap name: Krampus Wash with the tag line: Guaranteed to turn you from Naughty to Nice. We just had to sell it. And that we did!
We promoted it on every social media platform available. For Youtube, we created a short video illustrating our partnership with St. Nicholas Brewery: https://youtu.be/RLwXMndzkJs. We added the bar soap to our farmers market lineup and included it on our Amazon and Etsy stores and website. The resulting sales were incredible, and Krampus Wash is quickly becoming our #2 best seller.
The lather is so rich and unique that we created Krampus In a Can Shaving Kit with a 3.3oz. round bar soap and shaving brush.
“On a recent 2-hour drive beer run for production, I had a rather interesting experience. I brought with me an empty 5-gallon plastic bucket with a snap on lid. St. Nick’s filled the bucket and secured the lid. I placed the bucket on the front passenger seat, buckled up its seat belt and started my return trip. It was late in the evening on my way back and the car was dark.
After about 20 minutes of driving, I heard several loud POP! SNAP! sounds from my beer bucket passenger. When I turned on the cabin lights, the plastic bucket had morphed into an egg-shaped beer bomb ready to blow at any minute. The thought of pulling over and releasing some of the CO2 crossed my mind many times on the way back. I also wondered how the local police would handle this if I had a beer explosion in my car.
Needless to say, I made it back with not a drop spilled or blasted all over my car. My adventures continue as a soap maker.”
— Doug, the Soap Guy