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Origin of Soap

Soap, also known as Savon soap in French, is a product used for antibacterial bathing. The main ingredient of this soap is Sodium or Potassium salt contained in Fatty Acids. Soap / This soap has 3 main forms: bar form (also known as bar soap), powder form or liquid form (solution).

Hard soap (contains sodium): saponification reaction produces sodium salt = fat + alkali
Soft soap (containing potassium): saponification reaction produces potassium= fat + alkali

Cleansing mechanism of soap:

The cleaning process of soap is understood as a chemical process that cleans stains from material surfaces: When dissolving detergent (soap) in water, this solution has a lower surface tension than water. and penetrates deep into the surface to pull out stains. Hydrocarbons in  soap will penetrate deep into the surface- the metal ions move outward pulling the stain out.

Origin of soap

There are many theories surrounding the origin of soap, but the most popular and convincing theory lies in the period 600 BC at the foot of Sapo, ancient Rome.

People accidentally discovered that washing clothes on the Tiber River is cleaner than washing on other rivers. The secret lies in the layer of ash and animal fat from the temples on top of Sapo hill combined with water from the Tiber River to create a foamy detergent that makes clothes cleaner. Perhaps that is why the soap reaction gets its name from that inspiration (Saponification).

  • Soap in English: the Celtic people in England made soap from ash and animal fat => called Saipo.
  • Savon in French

300 years later, Egyptian chemist Zosimos of Panopios synthesized the soap making process to widely popularize it in many different countries. By the 8th century, the Arab intellectual Jabir Ibn Hayyan had summarized the use of soap for bathing.

In the 18th century, the use of soap for bathing became popular. In 1971, Nicolas Leblanc - a French chemist found a way to extract soda from table salt. Also during this time, Louis Paster announced the causes and solutions to reduce the spread of disease by maintaining good personal hygiene.

In the 19th century, soap production was a key economic industry in the United States. American farmers make homemade soap from salvaged wood ash combined with fat after slaughtering pigs. World War I increased the need for soap. But the war also made soap scarce and not produced enough for demand. Also from that scarcity, German chemists created new soaps from synthetic substances from petroleum.

In 1952 - the period after the Japanese war, food poisoning and dysentery increased sharply due to poor sanitary conditions. From there, Mr. Shota Saraya created antibacterial liquid soap.

Source: Internet

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