Finding a good soap bar is tricky; one may tout an alluring list of natural ingredients, but that doesn't necessarily mean your skin is going to like it. When it comes to the best natural bar soaps, the secret to selecting the right match is knowing which ingredients will be the most complimentary for your skin type.
If, for example, you have dry skin, you'll find intense hydration in ingredients like shea butter, coconut oil, and olive oil. But if you have acne-prone or oily skin, you may want to opt for a potent detoxifier like activated charcoal, which draws out oil and dirt from pores, helping to reduce break-outs. As for sensitive skin types, anti-inflammatory ingredients like shea butter and aloe vera can keep your complexion feeling calm and nourished.
For my list below, I searched for natural soaps featuring many of these ingredients, reading through the reviews to find the option that works best for each skin type. All of my picks are free of harmful ingredients like artificial fragrances, phthalates, and parabens.
Read on for the best natural soaps, so you can find the one that's right for you. Also, keep in mind that no matter what your skin type is, it's best to test any new products on a small area for a few days before going all-in.
1. The Overall Best
Dr. Bronner's Unscented Pure-Castile Bar Soap (2 Pack)
What's great about it: Suitable for most skin types, this unscented Dr. Bronner's pure-castile bar soap is vegan, certified fair trade, and made with organic oils like coconut, olive, hemp, and jojoba. The combination of these nourishing oils makes for a soap that's moisturizing, anti-inflammatory, and cleansing. Impressively versatile, it can be used on your face, body, and even hair. I've used this one myself and found it to have a nice consistency and lather for a natural soap. I do advise caution in using this on acne-prone skin, as olive oil can have a pore-clogging effect for some people.
What fans say: "We love this soap! Huge suds, so that we don't use as much - one bar lasts us quite a bit longer than a regular bar of soap. No smell is exactly what I need, too, as most kinds of soap either dry out my sinuses or make me feel faint, they smell so strong. Dr. Bronner's is easy on the skin, too, not nearly as drying as other soaps."
2. The Best For Dry Skin
Tom’s of Maine Lavender & Shea Natural Bar Soap (6 Pack)
What's great about it: For skin that's dry, cracked, or otherwise dull, this lavender and shea bar soap from Tom's of Maine can help bring your complexion back to life. It features shea butter and glycerin, two powerful ingredients when it comes to restoring skin's moisture. While it does contain sodium palmate, a cleanser that's derived from palm oil, the company touts it as being Rainforest Alliance Certified. It's also a popular choice on Amazon, with 800 five-star reviews. Many fans noted that they saw a huge transformation in their dry skin after switching to this soap.
What fans say: "This soap resolved my issue of dry skin! I love to take hot baths and I thought the temperature of the water was causing me to have such dry skin. Wrong! Bought a bar of Tom's Sensitive Skin soap locally and that problem was solved! I now have an Amazon subscription to the package with multiple bars - as I never want to be out of my Tom's soap again! Highly recommended!"
3. The Best For Oily And Acne-Prone Skin
The Yellow Bird Activated Charcoal Soap Bar (1 Pack)
What's great about it: For those who experience breakouts or just generally oily skin, The Yellow Bird activated charcoal soap bar is a great choice. A star ingredient in this formula, activated charcoal helps to draw out toxins and impurities from pores. Meanwhile, shea butter adds both a hydrating and anti-inflammatory boost, and lemongrass cleanses without over-drying. With more than 1,000 reviews and a 4.5-star rating on Amazon, dozens of fans have attested to the skin-balancing powers of this healing soap.
What fans say: "I love this soap! Wish I would have found it years ago. I’ve suffered with acne since my teens. I turned 50 this year so it’s been a long time of dealing with break outs. I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to look in the mirror and find zero blemishes on my face for over a week now. Usually I’m lucky if I can get 2-3 days a month with clear skin. My husband even noticed the difference. For reference, I have sensitive fair skin that is oily. This has decreased the oil and isn’t irritating at all."
4. The Best For Sensitive Skin
Aspen Kay Naturals Aloe Vera & Calendula Bar Soap
What's great about it: Made for even the most sensitive and reactive skin, this aspen kay naturals soap bar is made with a gentle formula of organic ingredients that can quickly calm your complexion. Coconut oil offers ample hydration, shea butter and aloe vera provide anti-inflammatory benefits, and vitamin-E-rich sunflower oil helps to heal and soften skin. This one has a 4.5-star rating on Amazon, and plenty of reviews touting how well it works with sensitive, reactive skin. Just note that this is another soap with olive oil, which can cause acne breakouts for some people.
What fans say: "This is my first time using Aspen Kay soap and I love it! The soap lathers well, rinses clean and smells wonderful. My skin felt cleansed without being stripped. I have sensitive skin and experienced no itching or irritation. I also love that the ingredients are natural, organic and cruelty free. Thank you for a wonderful product, I will definitely be trying additional offerings."
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