Make “fragrances” with Buff City soap

Lots of scents and colors play with your senses as you enter Buff City Soap, the newest store to open on Main Street Oak Ridge.

But unlike scents simply named Coconut, Vanilla, or Citrus, these scents are more likely to have intriguing names like Good Morning Sunshine, All Hail the Queen, Hey Headache, and — apparently the most popular — Narcissist.

Not that soaps and other products with fancy or amusing names don’t include these simpler named scents, but they are a mixture of these fragrant “notes”.

Alexandra Sharp, general manager of Buff City soap in Oak Ridge, mixes scented laundry detergent at the soap factory inside the store.  Laundry detergent can replace detergent, fabric softener and scent booster, according to District Manager Cindy Strike.

And products issuing these ratings would be safer for you than others you might buy elsewhere. The products are herbal. As explained on the store’s website, “There are absolutely no surfactants, detergents or preservatives in Buff City products. Some naturally found items may contain contaminants from the environment, so an artificial version is used to purity and safety.”

What types of products are offered? Bath bombs, truffles, fizzies, scrubs, soaps, shower oil, laundry detergent, foaming hand soap, whipped body butter, shaving soap, wool dryer balls and Epsom salts to name a few some. There are also products aimed primarily at men such as beard balm and oil.

Customers are discovering laundry soap at Buff City Soap.

Cindy Strike, District Manager, and Jessi Pittenger, Training and Development Manager, talked about the products offered at the store, while Oak Ridge Store General Manager Alexandra Sharp mixed the fragrance into detergent laundry nearby. Cindy worked with the company behind Buff City Soap for about 10 and a half years; Jessy for 11 years.

“It’s super fun,” Jessi said of the job.

Asked how the products are handled by people with allergies or sensitivities, Cindy said people have fewer problems with their products than many others. As for scents, she said local employees can work with customers to add less problematic scents if customers have allergies or sensitivities to scents. You can also buy unscented products.

Local employees are also there to advise customers who might want suggestions or help choose a scent, which are divided into categories: fruity, floral, sweet, herbal, earthy, clean, masculine, and unscented.

The store, located at 740 Main St. West next to the TJ Maxx department store, opened on June 9.

The store’s products are made every day in the store’s soap factory. You can visit the store and purchase products such as laundry detergent, made from just four ingredients, with any scent or blend of scents you like. Cindy pointed out that it replaces your detergent, fabric softener and scent booster.

And while you look around, young customers can stop by and decorate a bath bomb themselves.

Pup Soap could be the "paws" which refreshes your dog.

The Oak Ridge store is open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.

Founded in 2013, the company’s website, buffcitysoap.com, states that the franchise started in 2018 and now has more than 218 stores in 29 states. Nearby there are shops in Powell and Turkey Creek.

Cute names for product names - like this soap - are a Buff City Soap staple.
The Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Buff City Soap.

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