When Varsha E K learnt to make soap in school, little did she know it would become a source of income for herself and her family in the future.
When Varsha E K learnt to make soap in school, little did she know it would become a source of income for herself and her family in the future. Varsha’s ‘Divine’ soaps are currently the most sought-after in her college and around her residence.
While arranging her home-made soaps for a photograph for City Express, this demure and humble second year BCom student from Providence Women’s College says, “I learnt to make soap in a camp when I was in standard VII. All of us who attended the camp were given a soap-making kit. But I made soap with that kit only once. I began where I left off just a year ago after joining college.”
Her soaps were initially named after her, as suggested by her teacher for an exhibition in college. Later, her mother suggested the name ‘Divine.’
What makes her soap unique is that no fats are used for the production, except pure coconut oil. “I use filtered coconut oil, along with caustic soda, stone powder, colour and fragrance. Other than the oil, everything else will be available with the soap-making kit.”
Varsha explains, “I buy soap-making kits from Cherooty Road or from Kerala Shastra Sahitya Parishad. We get a mould along with the kit. Around 20 soaps can be made with one kit.”
‘Divine’ soaps currently come in five scents - lime, white plumeria (chembakam), jasmine, Pears scent and sandal. They are priced at `20. “I plan to experiment on more scents. Currently I am making one with Life Bouy soap scent. The rates change with the change in price of coconut oil. Initially the rates were just `15,”says Varsha.Varsha stays near NIT, around the premises of the Areekulangara temple, with her father who is a construction worker, mother, who is a home-maker, and a sister who is currently pursuing plus one.
She makes a sale of at least 50 soaps in her neighbourhood in a month. “Some of my neighbours buy them in lots. Those who are allergic to other soaps prefer using ‘Divine’ soap since it has filtered coconut oil. My friends in college also buy them every time I bring them to campus,” says a proud Varsha.
Varsha’s teacher and assistant professor with the Commerce Department at Providence Women’s College, Professor Annie Antony says, “Varsha’s soaps have a huge demand within the campus. Even we teachers buy them. In fact sometimes we have to order for the soap and wait for two-three days to get them.”
Varsha’s talents do not stop with soap-making. She is also into jewellery-making and tailoring. “I started making jewellery even before I ventured into soap-making,” she says with a smile.
She attributes her success to her family, friends and teachers and hopes to take huge strides in the field of soap-making in the future.