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++Will make you bath++ Mysore Sandal
Jul 22, 2010 11:53 AM 39462 Views
(Updated Jul 22, 2010 04:39 PM)


Mysore is a city which remind me of the grandiose of a golden era, visual grandeur of forts, pipedreams of rulers ; In short, a city where you see the peaceful co-existence of multitude of culture and reminiscence of a rich heritage. No wonder, the brand value of city is something which instills the “trust factor” on consumers mind. Mysore Pak to Mysore Sandal ensures a slice of the unique offering of the city! My love affair with Mysore Sandal started since time immemorial (read as childhood).

Initially it was Pears but those days when I was not much bothered about the constituents of the soap, quality etc., the only significant factor that was appealing to me was aroma! Pears was looking great and served the purpose of cooling glass also at times. Again, I found it a bit difficult to hold. It is idiotic reason to switch over to another brand but again the aroma of Mysore Sandal mesmerized me stick on with it for long. To be very precise, last 22 years on a regular basis! During abroad assignments also, something which I used to pack in bulk was nothing but a big pack of Mysore Sandal soap. Here goes a brief account of my camaraderie with this trusted lieutenant during last two decades.

Toilet Soap

Chemically speaking, toilet soap is a chemical product which takes birth out of the love affair between fat and sodium hydroxide. Well, the origin can be traced back to 600 BC by Romans. The history is definitely not appealing as they made the ancestor of soap from goat tallow and ash. But with break through development in organic chemistry, detergents were invented and subsequently the toilet soap as we know was also evolved. Irrespective of the tailor made differential processes of manufacturing of soap by different companies, the basic process remains the same.

In the saponifacation process, animal fat is mixed with coconut oil and sodium hydroxide / potassium hydroxide with suitable thermal controls. Followed by removal of glycerin and further purification in acidic medium and this is followed by finishing by adding preservatives and perfume. In short, glycerin is a bye product during the manufacturing and not the “exclusive property” as advertised by Pears.

Legacy of Mysore Sandal

Anything offered from Government is viewed with suspicion. The first question would be – “Quality”. But here we have an exception. I mean a pleasant exception. The flagship product form Karnataka Soaps and Detergents Ltd. won the trust of consumers since 1916. Mysore Kingdom can always boast of having the ownership of rich reserve of Sandalwood and they used to export it across the globe. But again, during first world war, when there was a glut in the market, they have decided to diversify the possibilities of the oldest form of perfume invented by man. Those were days when management gurus might not have coined terms like amalgamation, merger and acquisition etc. But, oil factories, soap factories and sandalwood owners were all brought together to form a factory from where a soap with aroma of sandalwood was manufactured. An amazing case study for young management graduates!

Unique Offerings

Medicinal Value Sandal is considered to be one of the best product which will protect skin from rashes and some other minor ailments along with cleansing and protecting from heat. Mysore Sandal might be the only soap where in 100 percent pure sandalwood oil in the manufacture of soap.

Aroma The fresh aroma of sandalwood is being ensured by the judicious use of other preservatives and chemicals. The aroma distinguish the product from the rest of the soaps available in the market

Packaging Might be the company is having a strong faith in their brand. At least during last 22 years, I have not seen the logo and packet undergoing even a minor change. What is the need if your product offers the quality without any flaws? This is a brilliant initiative which gives a subtle message to consumers “We really do not need to show off any kind of peripheral change”

Chemical balancing Well, I am not so obsessed with the kind of chemicals they use as long as it does not trouble my system. But of late only I came to know that they add skin conditioners and moisturizers in the soap which is a value add offer. I wonder, why don’t they blow their trumpet at times.

Variety It is my personal wish to stick on the traditional Mysore Sandal 75g packet which costs Rs.23/-. But how could a company that registered such a big success story can remain quiet by not diversifying their products? Here is an account of some other products which I have experienced in person.

Wave Rose Soap This is quite a different kind of product where in they replaced sandalwood oil with rose perfume. Once in a while, you may try out this for an alternate experience. But again, with in a few days I switched back to the good old Mysore Sandal

Mysore Herbal Care Might be an attempt to come up with alternative for Medemix or Chandrika. It is having the smell of basil leaves and all. But again, unless you have a need to look out of a toilet soap of this genre, not recommended.

Wave Herbal Hand Wash Totally recommended and I wish they are available in retail market across the nation. It will leave your hand with a pleasant aroma but not too intense.

Apart from the above, they have talcum powder, carbolic soap, incense sticks, detergents and last but not the least – Sandalwood oil also.

Also, as an organization they might not required the need to aggressively market their products. But again, in the era of competition, they hired the services of M S Dhoni as brand ambassador before a couple of years. Yes, the company strategy is changing but I sincerely wish that they retain the good old product as it is.

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Mysore Sandal Soap