Originally created as The Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild, the association was formed in 1998 when a small group
of enterprising soapmakers who were looking for a way to connect, network and jointly promote the handcrafted soap industry met at the
Woodspirits Farm in Ohio. The first annual conference was held in Brainerd, Minnesota the following year.
Since its formation, the association has steadily grown in terms of both numbers of members and outreach into the
community and now has over 3,600 members located in nearly every US state and territory, and many other countries.
While many handcrafted soapmakers make, in addition to soap, handcrafted cosmetics including lotions, creams, salt or sugar
scrubs, bath fizzies, perfumes and other similar products, membership in the association was initially restricted to those who made
handcrafted soap or provided products or services for soapmakers. In February, 2013, the membership voted to expand the scope
of the association to include those who make only handcrafted cosmetics, but not handcrafted soap, and to change the name of
the association to The Handcrafted Soap and Cosmetic Guild.
The HSCG is registered as a non-profit 501(c)(6) trade association serving the industry
of handcrafted soap and cosmetics which includes those individuals who make handcrafted soap and cosmetics, the vendors
and suppliers who serve them, the private label companies that sell handcrafted soap under their own label but do not manufacture it
and the general public as consumers of handcrafted soap and cosmetic products.
Membership is open to those who make any
type of handcrafted soap or cosmetics, the vendors who provide products
and/or services to them and businesses which private label handcrafted soap and/or cosmetics.
To serve these different participants in the industry, the HSCG offers several different types of membership:
Benefactor levels are also offered to members who wish to provide a higher level of support to the association.
Away from marketing hype and advertising slogans, consumers can
discover factual information
about handcrafted soap and cosmetics. How is soap made?
What ingredients are used?
The Soap Gallery and the
Cosmetic Gallery show examples of
beautiful, artisnal products. Finally, the Store Locator
and Handcrafted Soap and Cosmetic Directory
provide ways to locate handcrafted soap or cosmetics available to purchase.
The HSCG works to provide important information to everyone in the handcrafted soap and cosmetic
industry through the HSCG website, Local Chapters, and on social media, especially our
In addition, any person may Register on the site
to receive any of our eNewsletters.
Education and training for all members of the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry is of major
importance to the HSCG. Soap and cosmetic making classes are
listed on the HSCG website. The Annual Conference is open to both members and non-members
and provides 3 days of classes and sessions at all levels on many subjects of interest. The How-To Library
offers year-round access to articles and videos on a variety of topics and is adding new subject matter regularly.
For members, the HSCG offers a Certification Program with four levels (Basic, Advanced, Expert and Master)
along three tracks (Cold/Hot Process Soapmaking, Melt & Pour Soapmaking and Cosmetic Making).
New legislation at both the Federal and State levels is a major concern for the handcrafted soap and cosmetic
industry. The HSCG has been involved with Legislative Advocacy
for over 10 years, representing the industry in many meetings each year with Members of Congress and others in Washington DC.
The many activities of the HSCG are funded by membership dues and donations. The operations of the association are overseen by an
elected Board of Directors who serve in a volunteer capacity
and manage in accordance with the Corporate
Bylaws. The HSCG has four full-time staff and one part-time staff who take care of the day-to-day activities of the association.
The HSCG maintains an Administrative Office in Saratoga Springs, NY, but most of the business and
communications of the organization are carried out through this website which includes a Members Only section.
You may contact us by phone, fax or email.
The HSCG is based in the United States and uses English as our primary language. At present we do not have the resources
to offer our services in other languages. If you need to access our website in another language, we recommend using the
Google translator, which can be accessed in the Chrome browser by right-clicking the web page and selecting the option to
translate the page.
All members agree to abide by a Code of Ethics.
Members, vendors, suppliers and consumers may
file a complaint with the Ethics Committee if they feel a member has violated the HSCG Code of Ethics.
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