40% of each bar of soap consists of marula oil, and most of the rest is saponified coconut oil. In other words, it contains enough oil to care for your skin and not just wash it. Swazi Secrets soaps are carefully hand-made using simple but ingenious equipment.
Marula is a medium-sized to large deciduous tree that is widespread in dry, frost-free parts of Africa. In Swaziland, about 2 million marula trees grow, mostly in the low grasslands. A mature marula tree produces about 500 kg (about 1100 pounds) of fruit each year, which drops to the ground while still green around February and March. Animals eat some of the fruit and thus help dispersal of seeds. Much of the fruit is gathered by rural women who strip the pulp to brew a traditional drink, called "buganu". The hard-shelled nuts are then sun-dried for a few weeks and eventually cracked by hand to extract the seeds from which marula oil is pressed. Only about 10% of the seeds go into oil production, leaving plenty of seeds to grow into new trees. Suppliers plant and nurture new trees, including barriers to protect from grazing livestock. Marula trees are protected from felling by traditional laws enforced by local chieftains.