Soap Shaker History
This is not a new invention, Soap Shakers were common place and in everyday use from around the 1920’s but then they lost favour to the convenience of a plastic bottle and liquid detergent.
What is this metal thing for?
I bet some of you would never have seen one before. In fact I asked a couple of my younger friends what they thought this metal thing was for and the answers ranged from ‘mini chip fryer?’ to ‘basket to steam veges?”.
Invention of the Soap Shaker
Well it turns out our ancestors were on to something.
This simple yet ingenious contraption holds your favourite kitchen soap, just swish vigorously in hot water and your soap bar will mix thoroughly.
“A soap shaker is a box entirely made from wire metal mesh with a handle. The box may be opened so as to be able to place in this box a piece or pieces of bar soap. These may be pieces that have become too small to be used as hand soap.
The box may now be securely closed. Held by its handle the box may be vigorously shaken in a water filled bucket or other container. The shaking will move the water through the box. The result is that the water will become soapy, rich with suds to be used for all kinds of cleaning purposes. This way even small pieces of bar soap could be re-used and are not wasted.
The use of a soap shaker was common early to mid 20th century. The invention and sale of powdered or liquid soap diminished its use.”
More Visual History and Links
Visit some of our links for a visual history of Soap Shakers around the world.
Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences
Has an interesting antique Soap Shaker example which is quite a different shape
Sydney Living Museums
Has another example of a Soap Shaker
Buy a modern Soap Shaker for your home
You can get the modern version from our online shop – just $38 plus courier.