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Soap From a Greek Village to Scarsdale Village

SCARSDALE, N.Y. - Marie Labropoulos picks up a hunk of Herbal Olive soap from the top of a soap log in her Scarsdale store, Kalliste Soap Shop, and gently touches it to her nose, closing her eyes and smelling it.

"This is the one my grandmother used to make," said Labropoulos.

Labropoulos, an engineer and Irvington resident, used to visit her grandmother in Greece every summer from Brooklyn. It was there that Labropoulos learned how to make soap from her grandmother, a designated soap-maker in her village near Athens.

"This [soap making] is something Greeks have done for many generations and it gets passed down," said Labropoulos.

It was not until Labropoulos struggled to find bath and body products that did not irritate her sensitive skin that she decided to become a soap-maker herself.

"I am not a good candidate for conventional soaps," said Labropoulos. "So, I went back to the stuff I used when I was young."

Labropoulos began making natural, vegan and organic products for herself and her friends.

"At one point I had too much. So I started a website," said Labropoulos.

The website was a success and after two years Labropoulos decided to leave her engineering job of 10 years and open-up shop.

Kalliste Soap Shop, located on the corner of Freightway and Garth Road in Scarsdale, is decorated with wheels and logs of soap of various textures, scents and oil-bases. Soap in shapes of bundt cakes, cupcakes, popsicle sticks or made-to-order designs are also available. Labropoulos also makes homemade face scrub, skin lotion, moisturizing cream and herbal teas.

Although Labropoulos' grandmother is not alive to see her granddaughter become a "designated soap-maker" in Scarsdale, Labropolous believes should would have been pleased.

Have you been to the shop? What is product do you recommend? Please share below.

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