Three Sisters Apothecary - Meet the Makers

a young woman using a dropper to add essential oil to a dark bottle Two women using a soap cutter

Sonoma County based boutique Soap Cauldron is the home of the Three Sisters Apothecary a line of artisan soaps and skincare handcrafted in small batches in the centuries-old tradition with gourmet oils, butters, essential oils and botanicals. We are also the creators of  Soapy Tails an all-natural line for Canine bath and coat care.

Three Sister’s Apothecary has been creating artisan soap since 1999. Our handcrafted bar soaps are made in the time-honored tradition of the first soap guilds of 7th century Europe.

Who We Are

We are community based, and family owned. We care about transparency and simplicity.

Our products are locally inspired, made naturally and packaged sustainably. 

Sisters Pandora and Emma and her daughter Sabrina are the creative energy behind Three Sisters Apothecary. Together we create all our bath and skin care items in our local soap studio and share our products with our local community of family and friends. We choose to select ingredients directly from nature and transform them into nourishing and gentle products to cleanse and pamper the skin. Try either of our brands Three Sisters Apothecary or Soapy Tails and experience our truly natural products and pamper yourself or the ones you love.

What makes our brand unique

  • We use only natural ingredients which is why we only make anhydrous (oil based) products.
  • Products made without water do not require synthetic preservatives or emulsifiers, as such you won’t find any liquid soaps or body lotions in our line.
  • Our products are made naturally and packaged environmentally with the smallest carbon footprint possible.
a work table with soap and soap cutter with someone handling a soap bar on the right
two women carefully handling uncut soap before using a soap cutter with numerous soaps and products in background

Our Soap Cleans Naturally

a shirtless man in an outdoor shower using soap cauldron bar soap on his arm with soaps and loofahs on a table in the foreground

Soapmaking is the simple combination of an acid (oil) and a base (sodium hydroxide or lye, an alkali) to form a salt (soap). Saponification is the natural chemical reaction of soapmaking. When these two ingredients combine, and friction of stirring is added, all ingredients break down to their molecular forms and recombine to form a soap molecule.  This new molecule is made from the molecules in the broken down fatty acids and base.

Saponification generally takes about 24-48 hours to complete once the sodium hydroxide and oils have been mixed and the raw soap has been poured into the mold. When saponification is complete, the lye and the oils are no longer lye and oils and thus are not present in their original form in the soap, they have come together to form a new molecular entity which is the finished soap.

Soap vs. Oil vs. Water

After the saponification is complete, the resulting soap molecule has a head and a tail. The soap head is hydrophilic (water loving) and the tail is hydrophobic (water repelling) in nature. As water is not able to penetrate grease or dirt. When grease or oil are mixed with soapy water, the soap molecules work as a "bridge" between the dirt and the water. The Soap molecule head is drawn to the water and the tail attaches to the dirt. In this way soap can remove dirt and wash it away.