Soap And Other Useable Commodities

Discussion in 'Financial Planning' started by Photon Guy, Jun 21, 2019.

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  1. Photon Guy

    Photon Guy Expert Member
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    I once read that when grocery stores close for the night they lock up their soap. They lock up the entire store of course but the soap gets locked up in its own special cabinet. Why? Because its something that burglars particularly like to go after. Soap is a useable commodity, it comes in standard sizes such as bars, and its easy to fence. So it makes sense its one of the things that burglars would particularly want to make off with as much of it as they can.

    Now I am certainly not encouraging anybody to turn to a life of crime and steal soap from stores but it does make sense to stock up on soap. I myself have a small stash which I plan to make bigger. Soap I consider a good financial investment. In a crisis soap can be used as money.

    I believe if we has a crisis of the magnitude where currency becomes useless the first thing to go would be credit cards, they would not be accepted anywhere. Next to go would be debit cards and personal checks. Finally, physical cash, the green paper printed in the US Mint would be the last thing to go and to not have much use except to make a fire or to stuff a mattress or use as wallpaper, ect.

    At this point there would still be precious metals which would have some value for barter but I think useable commodities might be better. Not just soap but other stuff such as non perishable food, clean water, sugar, honey, and certain medical supplies. Even stuff to provide entertainment that doesn't require electricity, stuff such as books and board games.

    Anyway, I do believe soap will be overlooked. Food and particularly water are much more obvious necessities but cleanliness is also a necessity that is less obvious. So that's why I think having a good supply of soap bars on hand in a crisis is a good idea. Soap is money, especially in a crisis.
     
  2. Brownbear

    Brownbear Expert Member
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    In the wild you can make your own soap. The leaves of a Beech tree (a European variety) is particularly good for this. Grab a handful and crush them, introduce water and they lather up just fine. You can keep yourself perfectly clean and even shave with the resulting soapy mix.
     
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  3. Radar

    Radar Expert Member
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    Really? Lock up soap?
    When did that start? Is that only in your part of the country?
    How do they lock up the soap? Does it have it's own cage?
    Or do they wheel it off to the lockers where they keep the expensive cheese? Of course it may take an extra 30-45 minutes to get it all off the shelves. What about deodorant and shampoo?
    Do the managers wait until all the employees have left the store before locking up the soap and then have to get there first thing in the morning to put it back?
    This is silly. I don't believe soap gets locked up at night. Burglars that are hanging out near campgrounds and national and state parks, MAY BE the ones stealing soap, but overall...how could this be? I've never heard of it.
     
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  4. Photon Guy

    Photon Guy Expert Member
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    https://www.directive21.com/blog/2014/03/surprising-lesson-prepping-learning-soap-thieves/
     
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  5. GrizzlyetteAdams

    GrizzlyetteAdams Crap Creek Survivor
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  6. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    soapwort plant in the UK, the use is in the name.
     
  7. GateCrasher

    GateCrasher Expert Member
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    Inexpensive, used by everyone everyday, helps prevent disease, not overly heavy or bulky, nearly infinite shelf life, can be divided into smaller pieces/quantities for use in trade without loosing any of its value - what's not to love about soap?

    Lots of personal hygiene supplies share these traits and might be in high demand if the SHTF. Toothpaste, mouthwash, floss, shampoo, talc/powder, and razors just to name a few.
     
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  8. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    all of them man made and any supplies one might have will run out over time.
    okay for a short term event but not much good in a long term change of lifestyle event.
    everything man made on a commercial basis is finite and will at some point be non existent.
     
  9. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    I like Zote soap. It is a Mexican soap made from basically natural fats and is a gentle cheap lye soap that is good for all washing purposes. You can even use it for catfish bait.
     
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  10. Morgan101

    Morgan101 Master Survivalist
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    We have a significant stockpile of personal hygiene items. I agree. They will be good barter items when SHTF. Most of these items can be purchased very cheaply, and don't take up much room to store. Consider the appliances as well; toothbrushes, combs, brushes, scissors, almost anything that is in your medicine cabinet or bathroom.

    Toilet paper!! :eek: Except I'm not bartering that. I will have a fifty year supply, and I'm not sharing. Some things are sacred.
     
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  11. Caribou

    Caribou Expert Member
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    I keep motel soap and shampoo. When I get really lucky they have sewing kits.
     
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  12. Photon Guy

    Photon Guy Expert Member
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    You might not be able to get much bartering value on toilet paper in a SHTF event even if you wanted to. Its not hard to find stuff that can substitute as toilet paper such as leaves, ect.

    If there's anything that I would not barter its guns and ammunition. I will not barter stuff that can be used against me.
     
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  13. Morgan101

    Morgan101 Master Survivalist
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    Always. There was a time when I would have guilt pangs about taking it, but came to find out that the cost of each item was built into the cost of the room, so they expected to replace all of the items every day. You don't help yourself to the cleaning lady's cart, but taking what is in the room is acceptable.
     
  14. TMT Tactical

    TMT Tactical The Great Lizard !
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    I live 2 months in a motel, I have a very large collection of soap, shampoo, etc. I will not trade my coffee supply. That maybe the one item I turn raider for (just kidding folks).
     
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  15. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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    your argument of it runs out because its man made doesnt stand...why you ask...because everything runs out...including us...if folks take the stance why stock an item it will run out...then why bother doing anything..i am going to die eventually anyway...and as far as using the natural stuff from the wilds...your argument of it will run out stands for even those items in the wild...why do i say this because theres all kinds of plants in the wild that man use to use regular that are rare and hard to find...those run out as well....people talk about gathering stuff...well i got a friend that does a huge amount of gathering...you wouldnt believe the acres he has to cover to do so.

    you can wash without soap but getting clean of germs in shtf time just might save your life...look at history...dirty squaller brings on diseases.
     
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  16. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    everything will run out...…………POST SHTF, I didn't add that, maybe I should have, I thought it was obvious but maybe not to some people.
     
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  17. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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    right now dial soap is approx 50 cents a bar...go down to the shop and take a $50 bill and bring back 100 bars for shelf...easy peasey.... it doesnt take much to keep lots of cleaning supplies on had..but stuff by the gallon or more if available. i keep lots of dawn ultra on hand..its cheap now and easy...right now you can get large 3quart jugs for $7.50....i keep 5 to 10 on shelf all the time.

    dont forget clorox either.
     
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  18. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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    its is....my point is everything runs out..including the stuff..plants..you talk about to use for soap....stock a little soap will extend those plants....no matter the route we take we will use items up and they will be replenished some how some way or do without....if i was mind set of why bother it will run out...then why even talk prepping...after all its what it is preparing for the future is...some soap on shelf will extend those plants..you could maybe propagate them to expand for your needs..i do this in my own forest now..i propagate all kinds of medicianls because they have been so abused by man they hardly exist in many cases...another reason is age..as we age we will need items closer to home...our ability will diminish as time goes on.
     
  19. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    soap is only a minor requirement, its possible to keep clean without it.
    my point was if someone is going to rely on what they have stored ONLY, then at some point those stores will run out, I don't care how much one stores we cannot store enough to last the rest of our lives, in England the houses are too small to accomplish more than a few years worth. if we are to live any longer than that we have to either find alternatives or learn to live without.
     
  20. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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  21. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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  22. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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    one thing to is to ration your supplies..you cant just go on like you do today....limit amount of bathing to once a week? or whatever depending on circumstances. or maybe for those of us with unlimited water doing a bath without soap during week and using soap on weekend or some such thing? we each will have to decide....if one of us has a sick spouse or god forbid a bed ridden spouse we will go through some type supplies or they wont last long.
     
  23. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    I agree people wont be able to go on post SHTF like they do now, for one thing they wont be able to get replacements so what they have is all there is.
    people are very wasteful but then we live in a throwaway society.
     
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  24. GateCrasher

    GateCrasher Expert Member
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    I'm not so certain how minor of a requirement soap is, especially in more crowded areas or downstream/downriver from population centers. Lack of sanitation (open defecation) and with flies as the vector might spread disease and kill a lot of people in the weeks/months after the SHTF, even to people and homes that do have good sanitation and hygience practices. I'd plan on needing more soap than is usual for developed countries. And having alternatives if you run out is wise, but stock the two years (or more) if you have the space. It's not like soap goes bad, and you'll rotate through it eventually.

    Out of curiosity I checked how much antibacterial hand soap we had and how long it would last. We refill the pump dispensers, so started with how much soap is dispensed in one full pump. Answer, a little less than a teaspoon full.

    25f1df1c592f4c4d71da3f71ccb084a0.jpeg

    Then totaled up the amount of had soap we had in the closet (have a couple more in storage in the attic too).

    25f1df1c592f4c4d71da3f71ccb084a0.jpeg

    490 fluid ounces total, or 2,940 teaspoons. Enough for 500+ days for the wife and I, assuming 3 hand/face washings a day each. I'm fairly comfortable with that amount, and it's not like that's the only type of soap we have stored.
     
  25. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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    @GateCrasher thank you..thank you...i love a number cruncher...i do it often myself.
     
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  26. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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    currently 2 rolls of TP in Caracas cost 20,000 bolivar...thats half a month salary.

    when i see tooth brushes on sale/clearance i stock up...i will use them...eventually.

    i am not into bartering but into having supplies long term for me and others in my tribe.
     
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  27. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    I've got a box full of toothbrushes and enough shampoo to last several years, I don't use soap as such as I have psoriasis I think soap inflames the psoriasis, I have hand sanitiser gel for hand washing. everything is finite though.
     
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  28. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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    do/does a cream help psorasis? do you keep extra..can you make something from wild or garden? does something like olive oil help? educate me on this...
     
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  29. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    Post SHTF I am not going to be in a crowded area or downstream from a population centre.
    some people still haven't got the hang of the mortality rate post collapse have they??:rolleyes:
     
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  30. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    there is no cure for psoriasis, a cream does help with the itching-a bit!
    a wild cream can be made-good job wife is a herbalist!!!
     
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  31. elkhound

    elkhound Expert Member
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    does the hot wax hand dipping thing work..or have you tried it...not sure if it would help just thinking hand repair. i know some folks use it to repair damaged hands.
     
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  32. lonewolf

    lonewolf Moderator Staff Member
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    hot wax?? no thanks.
     
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  33. Photon Guy

    Photon Guy Expert Member
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    The soap bar could become the dollar of TEOTWAWKI.
     
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  34. GateCrasher

    GateCrasher Expert Member
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    To each his own, I like to "what if" different scenarios and plan to prevent problems as much as possible first, but also have the means to deal with them when prevention fails. Using plants high in saponins as a soap replacement is a last resort as example, not the primary plan just because it's renewable or replaceable. Different survival philosophies I suppose. I wish I was comfortable with yours, it sounds much less expensive :)

    Found this interactive map showing waste treatment facilities in the UK.

    http://www.eea.europa.eu/data-and-m...ource=EEA Newsletter&utm_term=Interactive map
     
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  35. NomadWill

    NomadWill Expert Member
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    I know at my local grocery store they've started to lock up the shaving razors and such. Guess they've been having a lot of thefts as of late, and dang are they expensive. $20.00+ for some of the razors. Haven't noticed them locking up the soap.

    I think it'd be really cool to make your own soap.. gonna have to research how to do this!
     
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