Fax – pink, yellow, and green

“Office Soap”

I bought this Fax soap hoping to get “3-for-one”—that is, three mysterious, not-specified-on-the-packaging scents. There is no indication, neither from the packaging, nor from the smell, that there is any difference between the pink, yellow, and green soap, except for the color. The colors of pink, yellow, and green remind me of copy paper—those three, innocuous, boring colors that are the most common colors of paper in the common office, used most often as a divider between white pages—most often for clarity, not inspiration. I didn't expect much from this soap, seeing how inexpensive it was, but the name is funny, recalling the glory days of the office FAX machine. Also, being three of them, it reminded me of times when there are three flavors. Not Neapolitan, though, since the colors don't match. What I thought of was the three Christmas candles from childhood we would bring down from the attic each season, which had enchanting scents. They were candles poured into brandy snifters and then painted outside with rough, sparkling, colors to match the candle wax: there was green, red, and yellow—if I'm remembering correctly. The green was lime, and the yellow lemon. I can't remember what the red was, because I don't think strawberry, though maybe, because it wasn't cherry, I don't think. Perhaps some unspecified red, Christmas scent. Anyway, the soap bars all smell the same, and like soap, and so the association with these candles is immediately lost.

The bars of soap are small ovals with a few ridges, kind of rough and dusty, and it says “Evyap” on one side and “Fax” on the other. Evyap has a website, easily found, with text in English, and the first thing it says is: “As time flows by like a river, happy memories remain with EVYAP!” It appears to be a beauty care product company based in Turkey, started as a soap company in 1927 and now one of the 100 largest Turkish industrial corporations (with production facilities in Turkey, Malaysia, and Egypt), they make a full line of beauty products that includes Duru and Arko. The website says that Fax soap has been around for 37 years, in liquid and bar form, and it shows several flavors of bar soap including jasmine, chamomile, and strawberry. The soap I bought came in a plastic bag, five bars of different colors (pink, yellow, green) and at $2 for the bag is among the cheapest soap I've ever seen. The bag also says “Fresh” in larger letters, and “beauty soap with cream” in small letters. As far as I can tell, though, all three of the colors smell exactly the same, which is a kind of generic, slightly unpleasant soap smell. More than anything else it reminds me of a bar of soap that's sitting in a ceramic soap dish in the downstairs, half-bath of an elderly relative, that likely only ever gets used when guests are over and seems to have been sitting there for several decades.

Soap Review No. 28