Bend Soap Company!

June 28, 2013



Bend, Oregon

Soap may seem like a small thing, but for some it can be a LIFE SAVER.

For Dwight Johnson, founder of Bend Soap Company, making soap is more than a business—it’s a cause.  Dwight is on a mission to improve the lives of people everywhere.

Chance’s Eczema Story:  Necessity is the mother of invention, and Dwight’s foray into all-natural skincare began with a serious problem.  His three-year-old son, Chance, developed eczema, a painful and surprisingly common condition that makes skin dry, red, and itchy.  Eczema can be mild, moderate, or severe.  For Chance, it was so bad that he would scratch his legs until they bled in his attempts to find relief.  Not only that, but the pain was so distracting he couldn’t focus on anything—be it school work or playtime.  Even lotion seemed to burn and irritate, instead of soothe.  Dwight and his wife, Marilee, were to the point of desperation.

A breakthrough - What goes ON your body is just as important as what goes IN.

In typical Dwight fashion, he began to research the eczema issue extensively, looking for a solution.   He discovered a few essential keys to naturally treating eczema.  

1. Avoid toxic soap -- The first alarming discovery he made was that there are so many harsh chemicals found in most soaps.  Whether they are claiming to be “natural,” “organic,” “gentle,” or not, they still seem to include in their ingredients:

  • Dyes
  • Synthetic preservatives
  • Alcohols
  • GMO oils or other substances

Most commercial soaps, including shampoos, body washes, and liquid soaps, contain an alarming number of chemicals and synthetic ingredients which will dry out, irritate, and/or damage human skin.

2. Help the skin -- Secondly, the skin is the body’s largest organ responsible for providing a protective barrier against these chemicals.  Yet, these chemicals were actually getting into the bloodstream, causing unknown damage to the body.  According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control), the average American has over 200 toxins in their blood stream at any given point!  Dwight realized that the toxic soap his family had been using was actually making Chance’s condition worse!  

Goat Milk: a SUPER-FOOD for your skin

In Dwight’s quest, he learned that goat milk had many health benefits for the skin.  Goat’s milk contains numerous enzymes, vitamins and minerals that nourish and restore the cells of your skin to support healthy skin function and fight free radicals—like a “super food” for your skin.

Incidentally, Dwight has had a love for goats from a young age.  Because of the nutritional value in goat’s milk, he has raised goats with his family for years, providing them with the healthy and nutritious benefits of the milk. With his newfound knowledge on the benefits of goat milk for the skin as well, he decided to learn how to make a quality goat milk soap.

Super-Soap is made:  After a ton of investigation and some experimentation, Dwight‘s first batches of soap were made.  The goat milk formed the foundation of the soap and was paired with three other skin “super foods:”

Coconut oil

Olive oil

Palm oil

These oils are noted for their nourishment and benefits.  Dwight wanted to stay as far away from genetically-modified corn oil, soy oil, vegetable oils, and canola oils, that so many other soap-makers seem to be using in their soap.  Yes, the ingredients are more expensive, but Dwight’s philosophy includes a commitment to giving his family the best.

If we won’t put it on our kids, we won’t put it in our soap.” Dwight Johnson, Bend Soap Company

Chance began bathing with the new Johnson Family soap, and to everyone’s surprise his eczema disappeared within a few days!  Now he bathes with the soap regularly and his eczema has yet to return.  Samples from the first batches were given out to friends and family and soon people were asking for more.  They were amazed by how young and alive their skin felt as a result of using the soap.  It also lathered really well and rinsed away clean without the slime so often associated with homemade soaps.  Click here to learn more about what makes Bend Soap Company’s goat milk soap so special.

A Family Venture:  As the demand for the soap increased, Dwight found that he was enjoying working alongside his family in this venture and improving the quality of life for those who suffer from skin conditions such as eczema.  The family business was born and soon adopted the name Bend Soap Company.  

The company’s purpose:  

To provide all-natural, effective skincare products at an affordable price and have a blast doing it!

Bend Soap Company operates out of the Johnson’s 40-acre family farm in beautiful Bend, Oregon.  Dwight and Marilee have 6 boys (ages 9 and under) and a new little girl.  Dwight’s oldest boys help with milking and caring for the small herd of Nubian goats.  The younger ones help by labeling the bars with the Bend Soap Company logo stickers.  Marilee helps a ton with the business, too.  As a former accountant, she helps keep things organized and on track.  

As the business has grown, more help has been needed.  Kara is not technically part of the family, but you’d never guess it because she fits right in.  She handles all of the wholesale accounts and is a customer service phenomenon.  Derrick is Dwight’s brother-in-law and has been brought aboard to help grow and support the business, adding enthusiasm and creativity in all areas!  Marilee’s brother, Ryan, is their go-to sales rep for craft shows both near and far.

Dwight has appreciated his relationship with David Stelzer, owner of Azure Standard, and considers him a great friend and mentor.  The Johnsons have known the Stelzer family for several years and have visited them at their Dufur, Oregon farm on several occasions.  Dwight has also been a longtime friend of Joe Isitt (David Stelzer’s son-in-law) as well, and was a groomsman in Joe and Sarah's wedding last summer.  Bend Soap Company is thankful for their relationships with the Stelzers and the Isitts, and is looking forward to partnering with Azure Standard, as both companies work to invest in the lives and health of others.            




Twitter:  Bend Soap Company

And BE SURE to put some Bend Soap Products in your Azure cart HERE!

Video Links:

Time to Get Excited—Change is Coming


Eczema:  in Chance’s Words: