Our Story

How It All Began

Watching a child with eczema suffer is gut-wrenching: The pain of not knowing how to help; the agony of watching them scratch until they bleed. Flaming red, oozing patches of awfulness that keep reappearing and “flaming up” no matter what you do or what you try to avoid.  

As Dwight and I watched our son struggle with his eczema, we started searching high and low for answers. We scratched our heads and asked all the hard questions over and over again, wishing that hope would appear miraculously and this nightmare would go away.  

Learning the Hard Way

We tried cleanses and antibiotics.

We tried clorox baths, peroxide, iodine, rubbing alcohol. All the sterilizing products.

We tried oatmeal baths which were a mess and offered minimal relief.

We went to dermatologists and were offered expensive creams to help mitigate the “reaction.”

We tried lotions and creams that burned and seemed to further irritate his skin!

We were told that “Best case scenario, he would just have to grow out of it.” The process was constant and endless.

Asking a New Question

Without anything working to relieve his agony, Dwight started researching for himself. Our eyes were opened to a question we hadn’t asked before: “What are we putting on his skin?”

We noticed that the soap, shampoo, and bubble baths we were using had ingredient lists a mile long, full of synthetic fragrances, dyes, GMO ingredients, and an array of other ingredients that shocked us. One particular well-known family-brand children’s shampoo even had an ingredient linked to cancers!

The more labels we read, the more we felt like lab rats who were slowly being poisoned.

The lotions we used were full of alcohols — no wonder they burned!

The soaps had dyes and detergents — no wonder they dried out his skin!

The shampoos were artificially bubbling with sodium lauryl sulfate and had parabens and phthalates in them.

Our deodorants had aluminum and dyes.

Our shaving creams had chemicals galore.

Everything we were using was laced with toxins!

Searching for Alternatives

I began looking for natural alternatives in the health food aisles of the grocery stores and was thoroughly overwhelmed.

Where were the truly pure products?

There were a few “natural” products back then, but still, the ingredient lists looked so similar to what we were using already. I couldn’t believe it! There were some with maybe a few “buzzword” natural ingredients (like aloe and shea butter), but they still seemed to have a lot of strange ingredients, most of which were toxic.

The marketing was deceiving, as “natural”-looking labels lured me into thinking I’d found something wholesome, only to discover the same junk over and over again as I read label after label.

Making a Way

With nothing helping, Dwight’s research led us back to our very own farm, to the very liquid gold we drank daily as a family: goat milk.

We learned that fresh, raw goat milk was rich in nutrients and had amazing enzymes that worked to break down bonds between dead skin cells. Dwight learned that goat milk made into soap might soothe the skin. It was worth a shot!

Keeping the ingredients simple and pure, he brought in some nutrient-rich oils and along with our goat milk, handcrafted his own bar of soap.

Each day, our son soaked in a bath of this pure, nutrient-rich soap, and before we knew it, his pain and itching were completely gone! We were so encouraged, not only by the results, but by the pure goodness of the soap, that we made more soap and shared it with family, friends, bank tellers, grocery clerks, business associates… Anyone who was interested.

The Word Quickly Spread

The word spread and people started asking for more and more soap. We made a simple green logo, bought some stickers and craft paper, and made our first bars to sell. Our small family farm business began and we began selling the soap at farmers markets and craft shows up and down the west coast for a few years. We hoped to make a good side-income to help support the farm life.

Wherever we went, we always had travel soaps to share. The kids joined us at shows and learned to smile and interact with adults as they shared our story and products.

Lotion and milk baths joined the soaps as we worked to provide truly natural products for our skincare needs. It was such a blessing to know with confidence that what we were putting on our skin (and our children’s skin!) was not only non-toxic, but good for them, too!

bars of bend soap with suds

A Change for the Better

It was after one show in particular that things really changed.

On day two of a 2-day show in the bay area of California, a woman approached Dwight at his booth. After purchasing the soap the day before, she had exuberantly returned the next day to share her results. She had been so greatly impacted with just one use and was blown away.

But it was more than her enthusiasm that changed things that day. It was her admonition. She challenged Dwight that day to make his product available to everyone. She had lived with eczema for 15 years and in just one day, her life was changed for the better. Everyone needed this product!

A Bigger Vision

Dwight knew he couldn’t just offer our products at shows. His vision for the small family business would need to grow and he was willing to give it all. He would need to grow as a person and build a team around him to carry out this great mission.

We were fortunate to buy the 40-acre farm where we had been living, and began to turn the indoor arena into a warehouse. We’ve had some amazing help over the years as people have come alongside to support this mission and grow the company year after year.

We sacrificed so much those first several years to help grow and get these products out there. But our customers are worth it! And we’d do it all over again just to know that there are pure and natural products that we can all use that aren’t harming us.

A New Chapter - Moved to Tennessee??

When the city of Bend tore down our shipping building to make way for a new thoroughfare we had to move. Read more about this on our Blog.

Read the Blog
Pouring goat milk over two stacked bars of goat milk soap

Our Commitment to Integrity

Our goat milk soap formula has not changed over the years, as its all-natural goodness is far too precious. Even as we’ve grown, we’ve chosen to not compromise on the quality of the ingredients, knowing that what goes on your skin is too great of importance to be careless.

To those who give our products a try, we hope you enjoy them. It’s our mission to make these products available to all. We want you to truly be able to LOVE your skin… One bar at a time!

Welcome to the Bend Soap Co. family!

The Word Quickly Spread

The word spread and people started asking for more and more soap. We made a simple green logo, bought some stickers and craft paper, and made our first bars to sell. Our small family farm business began and we began selling the soap at farmers markets and craft shows up and down the west coast for a few years. We hoped to make a good side-income to help support the farm life.

Wherever we went, we always had travel soaps to share. The kids joined us at shows and learned to smile and interact with adults as they shared our story and products.

Lotion and milk baths joined the soaps as we worked to provide truly natural products for our skincare needs. It was such a blessing to know with confidence that what we were putting on our skin (and our children’s skin!) was not only non-toxic, but good for them, too!