About the Little Soap Company | Our Mission In Providing Cruelty Free Natural Soap

Little Soap Company Ltd. is proud to be a cruelty free company. All our cosmetic products under our own brand are certified as not tested on animals under the Cruelty Free International Leaping Bunny programme, the international gold standard for products that are free from animal testing. We adhere to a fixed cut-off date policy and proactively monitor our suppliers to ensure that our products continue to adhere to the Leaping Bunny criteria. Our supplier monitoring system is also open to independent audit. We want to ensure our customers receive and benefit from, genuine cruelty free, 100% natural soap. For more information about the Leaping Bunny and Cruelty Free International, please visit http://www.crueltyfreeinternational.org/

Little Soap Company was conceived several years ago by Emma Heathcote-James. Starting life as an insatiable one-woman band, Little Soap Company has been passionate about reducing the amount of chemicals and synthetics people unwittingly rub into their skin since day one. We were on a mission to create genuine cruelty free, natural soap.

Baffled as to why you couldn’t pick up a bar or bottle of pure organic natural soap amid the weekly supermarket shop – Emma wants to impact the cosmetics industry similar to the way Jamie Oliver has impacted the food industry; Emma wants to get the world back to basics, creating the purest organic cruelty free soap she believes possible, and making it accessible to everyone. Soap that would be perfect for dry, and sensitive skin.

From hand-making soap on the Aga and selling in subzero temperatures at farmers markets, the business has grown from producing 350 handmade artisan bars a day to runs now in the tens of thousands natural and organic soap bars for the Everyday range on the machines – producing the first organic, cruelty free soap bar to hit supermarket shelves. Launching on a small scale in Waitrose in 2010, then regionally in Tesco’s in 2012, nationally in Waitrose 2013 (best beauty launch and fastest-selling bar soap) followed by Booths in the North. The range then rolled out into other major national supermarkets including Sainsburys and Boots the Chemist in 2014.

Emma Heathcote-James talks about her journey upscaling Little Soap Company from a tiny handmade, kitchen table business to lining the supermarket shelves….


It was at this stage Emma moved off the kitchen table and into the buildings in Broadway. With a small team now around her, Emma was able to concentrate on new product development and a year later, in November 2015, an exclusive and exciting range of natural soap lines in Lavender & Rose Geranium were launched in Waitrose, bringing new organic bar soaps, Liquid Handwash, Foaming Bodywash, and Bubble Bath to the market.

Amid all this Little Soap School operates from the Little Workshop on set dates and Emma and the team continue to make and sell the original cruelty free natural soap artisan handmade range which underpins the roots of the company.

Emma’s first after school and Saturday job was aged 14 at Lloyds Chemist as a pharmacists assistant. However, she far preferred polishing the make up counter and playing with the skincare products. She worked there until Uni where she naturally moved into ad hoc day work with some of the global cosmetic brands such as Guerlain, Rimmel and Calvin Klein as a ‘spray girl’ and doing make up demos in the likes of House of Fraser and Boots whilst studying at The University of Birmingham from 18-24 which certainly sowed even more seeds. A quick diversion ensued, with Doctoral research in Theology, 4 best selling non-fiction books (two making the top 20 lists), and working as a researcher in broadcast TV and radio. Fed up of the long commutes and nights away from her beloved Cotswold cottage, she craved working closer to home in the countryside. One New Year’s Eve she made the snap decision to only take contracts within an hour’s commute and by mid-January was at the helm of the newly created Gloucestershire Media Group, based back then at Cheltenham Film Studios, overseeing training for the creative industries in the area. Emma also consulted in the area of Knowledge Exchange/Public Engagement at the University of Gloucestershire, SWScreen and The South West Design Forum. Working hands on in the creative industries, Emma missed having the time to be creative herself and longed for a hobby…

So in 2008, often working a 100 hour week, burnt out and desperate to find a hobby to get her off the laptop, she went to a village fete and bought a handmade bar of cruelty free natural soap, as her Grandmother’s stash was fast dwindling. She was astonished to find you couldn’t buy anything like it amid the weekly shop. The rest, as they say, is history…