Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Secretion soap

It can and will be done
  (+3, -4)
(+3, -4)
  [vote for,

Soap is easy to make. Just work out how much a mole of the relevant oil is, match it with caustic soda, dissolve in distilled water and mix in with the lipid and you have soap.

Given this, we are greasy people. We secrete sebum onto our hair and through sebaceous glands. Wouldn't it be neat if we could wash ourselves with our own grease?

So it's a very simple idea: save up lots of your hair and skin grease in a container, maybe by rinsing hair and skin in plain water and boiling it away for a bit, then add the relevant quantity of lye and you have soap made from sebum.

I actually think this would be quite a good soap.

nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

Humanolin It_27s_20Not_20Lano...It_27s_20Humanolin!
A man-made moisturizer to go with your Secretion Soap... [robinism, Oct 23 2010]


       Words fail me.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       words fail
po, Sep 16 2010

       Why not combine the process of making the soap with the process of using it?   

       In other words, rub lye into your skin until you feel clean.   

       What could possibly go wrong?
Wrongfellow, Sep 16 2010

       agh! I'm trying to eat my lunch here!
hippo, Sep 16 2010

       I did consider rubbing sodium hydroxide into my skin but i think it might have a couple of side effects. Incidentally, i absolutely plan to do this, and i'll post photos.   

       [Bigsleep], the grease is emulsified rather than gone and i think could be centrifuged, boiled off to leave a sludgy layer or something before adding lye, but i meant rinsing. Rinse hair and skin in water, then wash in different water.
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       So much no.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       No, i was actually thinking margarine because of the physiological secretion of trans fatty acids in sebum.   

       You have a small group of people who never wash and you use them to provide soap for some of the group of people who do. Money for the depressed and homeless.   

       Seriously though, think about it. Contains natural skin oils, hypoallergenic, what's not to like?
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       WTF is the idea? Let's pretend 1580 is a relevant fucking year and let's yearn for old bad ideas as if they are Good and fuck. fuck fuck..... fuck FUCK [marked-for-deletion].
daseva, Sep 16 2010

       Fair enough but i'm still going to do it, i still think it's a good idea and i'm completely serious about the central idea.   

       And the idea is to use sebum as the oil for soap. It's very clear and can be and will be baked in a few weeks' time, in this very building, and i can post photos as evidence.
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       Some ancient cultures would wash by bathing in olive oil and then scraping it off again with a scrapy thing. And I had a hamam once which is a similar sort of process, only conducted in a steam-room and with a scrubby thing first to rub off all your skin, followed by a scrapy thing to get the oily stuff (and bits of skin) off.   

       The problem I (and I suspect, others) have with the idea is the notion of 'cleanliness' and its notional incompatability with the long-term storage of bodily secretions.   

       Also, how are you supposed to collect all these secretions if you keep washing them off with soap? (Soap made from your bodily secretions that you are no-longer able to collect because you're washing them off with soap, which therefore can't exist, leaving you able to collect them again, allowing you to wash, making you unable to make any more soap...) - it's just not sustainable - *UNLESS* you designate one member of the family as a sebum source and forbid them to wash, serving as a sustainable sebum source so that the rest of the family may enjoy the cleansing fruits of their sweat, and other oily secretions. [oh, you mentioned that option already!]   

       But, much of this idea has been covered in that most millenial of millenial angst, ennui driven books/films; 'Fight Club' - was it not? Except that they used human body fats stolen from the bins at the back of lyposuction clinics.
zen_tom, Sep 16 2010

       No, it's not like 'Fight Club' because the fat in adipose tissue is of an entirely different character. Its fatty acids are saturated and not twisted, and i feel sure it's higher in water and other things than sebum is. Fat is very different than sebum, in fact all biological lipids i know of are.   

       You don't wash them off with soap, that's not the idea. If it were, it could still be extracted. The idea is to rinse them off with water, free from soap. You could still do it with soap if you weighed the soapy water before and after use, then evaporated off the water.   

       The presence of salt in the sebum is a possible problem. Sweat is no good for this purpose.   

       It could possibly store quite well because of its composition. It contains alpha globulins and the fatty acids are themselves bactericidal. Refrigeration might be helpful.
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       //what's not to like?//   

       Well, when you put it *that* way...[-]
Boomershine, Sep 16 2010

       Everything we drink, eat and breathe has at some point gone through an icky phase. Why is this different? If you're in a room with strangers, chances are you're breathing in droplets of mucus from each others' lungs. Why isn't that a problem and this is?
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       Hands up anyone who thinks that breathing in droplets of mucus from other people's lungs is not a problem...
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       I have a cold right now, so i'm typing with my nose.
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       "Secretion Soap - now available from all good grosseries."
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       [No hands up] I keep trying to see this is as an HB joke. THEN I kind of like it...a little.   

       Using Secretion Soap, for me, is too much like ...breathing in droplets of mucus from each others' lungs....on purpose.
Boomershine, Sep 16 2010

       Suppose the stuff were to be synthesised in a factory from paraffin and saponified there, but chemically identical. Would that make it more appealing? Why?
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       You are about to reveal something about paraffin that I don't think I want to know, aren't you?
Boomershine, Sep 16 2010

       // Would that make it more appealing? Why?//   

       Ick factor. Simple.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       //Incidentally, i absolutely plan to do this, and i'll post photos// [m-f-t]
pocmloc, Sep 16 2010

       [daseva]O_o Do you need someone to talk to?
Voice, Sep 16 2010

       // "Secretion Soap - now available from all good grosseries." //   


       Even the Ferengi wouldn't do this .... EEEeeeeEEEEEwwwww ...
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       Speaking of gross and ick factors, there was some item a long time ago about a class of students in Japan (maybe China).   

       As a class science project, they had all excercised vigorously wearing plastic bags, and collected their sweat. From this, they had produced salt, which their headmaster proudly sprinkled on his food.   

       Gross. Ick. See?
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       That has to be Japan, they're all VERY weird ...
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       I sometimes wonder if i might be Japanese.
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       I sometimes wonder if I might be Archdiocese
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       // i might be Japanese //   

       Check for these telltale signs:   

       1. A barely containable lust to slaughter endangered species.   

       2. A total inability to say "sorry" to people you've treated badly.   

       3. A tendency to re-write history to make out that you actually did nothing wrong, ever.   

       4. A craving for a lifestyle which involves combining the creation of superb paintings, poetry, caligraphy and ceramics with slicing people's heads off with extremely sharp curved single-edged swords.   

       // I might be Archdiocese //   

       Check for an Archdeacon ("The Crook at the head of a Bishop's Staff")
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       the latest in our Soylent product line...
FlyingToaster, Sep 16 2010

       Maybe i'm Archimandrite instead then.
nineteenthly, Sep 16 2010

       Aren't those the sort of curled-up squid thingies with a shell that mostly went extinct in your planet's Carboniferous era ?
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       No, you're thinking of investment bankers.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       Oh, right.   

       What's the curled-up squid thingie with a shell, then ?
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       Investment bankers, weren't you listening?
pocmloc, Sep 16 2010

       To be fair, I type quietly.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       So what's an Archimandrite ?
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       It's a deposit consisting of a mixture of soap scum, hair and limescale which forms on the edge of a bathtub.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       We're sorry we asked, now.   

       These investment-banker curled-up-squid-thingies with-a-shell, are they worth much ? We have load of them ...
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       // I type quietly.//   

       No you don't. I can hear you typing annos on at least two other ideas right now.
Boomershine, Sep 16 2010

       [placeholder for witty riposte]
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2010

       //It's a deposit consisting of a mixture of soap scum, hair and limescale which forms on the edge of a bathtub.   

       Oh THAT'S an Archimandrite! Would it be possible,do you think, to run some through a distillery/centrifuge thingy and extract some sebum from it to make Secretion Soap?
Boomershine, Sep 16 2010

       Only if you has a particularly sick, evil, amoral, sociopathic personality ... Oh sorry, it's you, [Boom]. In which case, yes.
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       Sorry. I went into autopilot-reverse-engineering mode, there, for a moment. I'm trying to quit.
Boomershine, Sep 16 2010

       Give it up, it's not worth it.
8th of 7, Sep 16 2010

       Do you feel under-appreciated, [nineteenthly]? Misunderstood? Vilified? (I'm not going to say anything to change that; I was just being a curious sociopath pretending to empathize) But, about your idea: I would bun if I got to pick the famous Hollywood Starlet whose lipids I would then share in the shower. To boil this anno down a little further, I would only go for it if it's not my own, uh, "product." Angelina? Paris? (...might get a little buzz off that one...) Mariah?
Grogster, Sep 16 2010

       I would even try it on flapjacks.
Grogster, Sep 17 2010

       Glycerol is an ingredient in some flapjacks so you could have celebrity liposuction byproduct flapjacks if you wanted.   

       // Do you feel under-appreciated, [nineteenthly]? Misunderstood? Vilified? //   

       Is that an advertising pitch? No i don't, it's partly a sort of experiment.
nineteenthly, Sep 17 2010

       Since <20's would be the highest producers I'm sure we can shoehorn "smells like teen spirit" in there somewhere.
FlyingToaster, Sep 17 2010

       Well indeed. Replacement for paper rounds.
nineteenthly, Sep 17 2010

       Excellent! I'll have a short stack with Lindsay Lohan byproduct! (Now I KNOW I'm gonna need a taxi and a Rehab Center...) [+]
Grogster, Sep 17 2010

       How about salvaging the idea as a product name? "Secretion Removal Soap", from the makers of "Fecal Residue Paper" and "Puss Bandages". Ask about our full line of baby and feminine hygene products.
doctorremulac3, Sep 17 2010

       You could extract the fibre from faeces and make it into toilet paper.
nineteenthly, Sep 17 2010

       //You could extract the fibre from faeces and make it into toilet paper.//   

       I wondered how long it would take someone to get around to this. But, I didn't think it would be you [19thly]. Very resilient of you...or maybe relentless is a better word.
Boomershine, Sep 17 2010

       This whole idea could be improved vastly by deleting it.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 17 2010

       But if i did that you'd miss out on the photos. Also, given a suspension of the yuck response, i honestly believe it's a good idea. We make this stuff for free, we don't have to go out of our way to obtain it, and if we made it into soap it'd be rich in "natural" oils and probably hypoallergenic compared to, for example, almond oil soap. Also, since it's trans, the soap it made would be quite firm and durable. I know it sounds very much like a troll idea, but i really do think it'd work well. If you don't like the source, have it synthesised from something else. But we do yucky things all day long without thinking about them, and just learn to tune them out.
nineteenthly, Sep 17 2010

       With this I could cope.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 17 2010

       They're going to turn up in the Other Place even if i do delete it.
nineteenthly, Sep 17 2010


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