Huh? Fine soap is like an old toaster? Yep. It’s somewhat like a vintage '70s or ‘80s JCPenney* 4-slot toaster, to be exact. How’s that? Let me explain.
When we first got married, my uncle gave us a 4-slot toaster, as we needed one, and many other things to outfit our “new” house. My uncle has given me a lot of cool old stuff. The latest is a nice-sounding 1970s Fisher quadraphonic receiver, but that’s a story for another time. Though old, the toaster worked perfectly. It looked its age – chrome-plated and boxy, but it was well-manufactured with quality materials.
Fast forward a few years. I came across a new “luxury” toaster. Its smaller size was more suited to our modest kitchen, so I bought it. It had a digital display and a brushed stainless steel case. The rack that holds the bread was not held down by a simple thermal/mechanical mechanism like the old one. This one worked with an electro-magnet… very fancy indeed. Unfortunately, even with its gizmos and polish, the new toaster was not much of a toaster. The springs that move the rack up and down were weak, and beneath the sexy brushed steel exterior, the flimsy sheet metal that supported the internal components was not strong enough to withstand the simple motion of raising and lowering the bread. In short, for all its good looks, it couldn’t perform its most basic function very well – it didn’t make good toast.
On a recent trip, I snagged a fancy-looking “massage bar” (i.e., soap) from the hotel. It had little nubs on it to perform its massage function, a nice (but not overpowering) scent, and little plant bits in it. A few nights ago, I found that I’d used up my oatmeal mint, and decided to try the massage bar. I figured I might as well use it up; no sense in wasting it. Big mistake. Biiiiiiig mistake. I’m really not one to use lotion, but after using that massage bar, I had to take extraordinary measures, slathering lotion all over my arms, legs and back, or I would have itched myself to death. This massage bar, like the fancy toaster, did not perform its basic function well, despite its good looks.
There are a lot of what I call “faux luxury” items out there today. Manufacturers have discovered that we will pay a lot more for flash – flash that does not improve function at all. This is something that's been on our minds as Shannon formulates new products and makes her soaps and other items. Sure, we'd like them to look nice, like the sexy stainless steel toaster or the fancy massage bar, but when push comes to shove, we want them to work well. From personal experience, I can tell you that they do. If you try them, I hope you'll agree.
* JCP sold toasters? They sure did. Some of you may not be aware that back in the day, Penney's was more like Sears.