Handmade Savon d’Alep (Aleppo Olive Soap)


Can you believe it that this soap is made from a 2,000 year old soap recipe that goes back to Hammurabi’s  ancient Babylon? It is the first hard soap and the great, grandfather of all soap bars in history! This is the original castile soap…Savon de Marseille is just a mere baby compared to the Savon d’Alep and is actually a 15th century copycat of the latter.

Savon d’Alep is also known as the Aleppo Soap, Hammam Soap and Ghar Soap. Made in UNESCO world heritage city of Aleppo, this olive oil hammam soap is still hand made in the traditional way, exclusively from home-grown olive oil, laurel berries oil, and sodium hydroxide ( extracted from sea salt ). It contains no animal fat, colors, perfume,  chemical or synthetic derivative. If there’s one product that has gone through the test of time with flying colors, then this soap is the winner.

The Aleppo hammam soap is ‘cooked’ to more than a 200 degree Celsius in a cauldron. The base ingredient would be olive oil and soda ash obtained from a desert plant called the salsola kali. After saponification took place, that is when the olive oil separated into glycerine and sodium salt, bay laurel oil is added. Further saponification will take place, later the caustic soda solution is drained off from the cauldron and the soap mixture is rinsed off any alkalinity with fresh water. The soap is spread out to solidify before being cut by hand, by traditional methods, into rectangular bars and individually stamped and left to cure or dried for at least 9 months.  The longer the soap is cured, the harder the soap will be and the milder and gentler the soap is. This soap age like fine wine. Some people in Aleppo actually bragged around about 20-30 years old soaps kept in the attic.

This soap is mild, nourishing and moisturizing. It won’t dry your skin out and excellent to be used from head-to-toe. Do you know that this soap bar actually floats in your bath due to its density? When cut into two, you can see the beige outer rind with a lovely leafy green on the inside

The Savon d’Alep offered at GreenVanillaStore contains 92% Pure Olive Oil.  This is a really traditional Aleppo Soap handmade by the Zanabili family of Aleppo, Syria. They have been making this soap using the traditional methods for almost 2 centuries! Sales support the survival of traditional businesses in UNESCO World Heritage Site of Aleppo’s Old City. The making of this soap is totally environmental friendly and involves no animal testing. This 230g soap bar with luxurious, creamy lather can last you for up to a month!

How to Use the Savon d’Alep

1. This soap can be used from head-to-toe, from moisturizing facial cleansing to conditioning hair shampooing. Excellent when used with a loofah or exfoliating fibre mitt.

2. Makes a great shaving soap.

3. Adds body and volume to hair when used as shampoo. On dyed hair, it actually helps prolong the color.

4. When used as a hammam-style massage soap , it has a smooth, deep and warming effect that leaves your skin feeling deeply-cleansed and refreshed.

5. Use a a deep cleansing face masque. Wet face, lather the soap and massage the lather to your face, leave about 2-3 minutes. Wipe off with warm wet towel.

6. Gentle enough for baby (avoid eye areas), and those with sensitive and troubled skin.

7. Use the soap instead of your usual detergent for fine laundry and baby clothings.

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3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Marie Paige said,


    I am looking for a retailer in Canada, Ontario especially, who sells the savon d’Alep. Can I buy it from you? If not, is there a Canadian or US company on the web that carries it. Your help would be much appreciated.


    Marie Paige

  2. 2

    blogresipi said,

    Hi, very nice article about aleppo soap. Came across this lovely soap while watching a travel documentary about Syria.

    What is the price of aleppo soap in Malaysia ya?


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