Beer soap, it turns out, is a thing.

It has been for the past couple of years, but only among smaller soap manufacturers, according to Eileen Curtis of Hollis Center, who owns the soap company Sunflower Hill and believes the popularity of craft beer is fueling the trend.

Studies have shown that beer is high in antioxidants and has moisturizing properties. Beauty industry giants have, of course, already discovered this, and are using it in products such as aftershave cream and shampoo. So why not soap? When Curtis decided to try adding beer to her soap, she contacted David Geary, the founder of Geary’s brewery, to see if he wanted to partner on the project. The two worked together years ago at a medical supply house. He said yes, and the result is Geary’s Pale Ale soap in bar and liquid forms.

Curtis uses the wort – the unfermented liquid extracted during the mashing process – in her soap because if she used the fermented beer, she’d need a liquor license. She estimates that the wort makes up about a third of the bottle of liquid soap; the bar soap contains a lot less to ensure it hardens correctly. The soap doesn’t smell like beer, so you don’t have to worry about getting in trouble at work for coming in stinking like a brewery. The unscented beer soap, Curtis says, has an “earthy hops fragrance.” She also makes one scented with vanilla verbena. “It’s a unisex kind of fragrance,” she said.

The liquid soap comes in an 8.5-ounce bottle and sells for $9.95. The bar soap costs $6.95. It’s available on the Sunflower Hill website and at retailers around the state, including Sherman’s book stores in Portland, Freeport, Boothbay Harbor and Bar Harbor; Geary’s tasting room in Portland; Pineland Center in New Gloucester; Beachology in Old Orchard Beach; Lupine Fiber Arts in Bangor; Life is Good in Bar Harbor; and Mills and Company in Windham.