Beyond being cleansing agents, deodorizing soaps — which come in both bar and liquid forms — help prevent odor-causing bacteria through the use of anti-bacterial ingredients. Finding the best deodorant soap for you will depend on your skin type and scent preference. More on how to find your ideal match, just ahead.
First, let's talk about the key ingredient: the anti-bacterial agent. Antibacterial agents will vary from product to product, and while surfactants like benzalkonium chloride are proven to be effective in the category, there are also a host of powerful natural botanicals that provide similar benefits. The most common among them is tea tree oil, which is a popular go-to for treating acne and breakouts but also has been shown to eliminate bacteria at bath time as well. Tea tree is often paired with eucalyptus, another antiseptic oil that's equally aromatic and can make for an invigorating shower experience.
And despite what you may have heard, no matter what kind of body soap you choose, it shouldn't leave you feeling literally "squeaky" clean. That's why the best body soaps, whether deodorizing or otherwise, tend to contain moisturizing ingredients, like shea butter, coconut oil, or jojoba oil, to avoid drying your skin out.
Scroll on to shop five of the best deodorizing soaps, all conveniently available on Amazon.
1. A Classic Antibacterial Bar Soap With More Than 15,000 Positive Amazon Reviews
A drugstore classic that's earned a 4.8-star overall rating after more than 18,000 Amazon shoppers weighed in, this Dial antibacterial soap is formulated with benzalkonium chloride, a type of salt that can help reduce body odors. Sold in a pack of eight, it produces a rich, creamy lather and has a pleasant scent that Amazon reviewers call "light and clean," rather than heavily perfumed. Several people also pointed out that the soap doesn't leave behind a film or exacerbate dry skin. If the "Gold" scent isn't your thing, you can also pick it up in White, Mountain Fresh, or Lavender.
One fan's take: "I was having some hormonal body odor issues. I read a google review about how this soap helps. IT DOES. I'm never using another bar soap except this one. It's gentle enough to use on my children as well. The smell is mild and fresh."
2. A Refreshing Liquid Body Wash Made With Tea Tree Oil & Peppermint
This Remedy Soap body wash has earned more than 10,000 five-star ratings from Amazon shoppers thus far. Its star ingredients are tea tree oil, peppermint oil, and aloe, which work together to eliminate bacteria, nourish dry skin, and leave behind a fresh scent. It also contains eucalyptus, as well as jojoba, coconut, and olive oils for added moisture. It's free of parabens, preservatives, sulfates, silicone, synthetic fragrances, and dyes, so it shouldn't irritate sensitive skin. And, if you're more of a traditionalist, you'll love that the Remedy Soap also comes in a bar form.
One fan's take: "I’ve struggled with underarm odor from excessive sweating for years and nothing I have ever done has helped. It didn’t matter if I showered twice a day, how much or what kind of deodorant I used, nothing worked. This stuff takes care of it!! I use it as a full body soap now and it makes me feel extra clean... I use about a nickel size on my loofah and I have plenty of soap for my whole body. Will definitely be buying more!"
3. A Moisturizing Deodorant Soap Made With Activated Charcoal
Like the body wash above, this is another highly rated deodorant soap that uses tea tree oil to nip bacteria in the bud, only it also incorporates activated charcoal to give your skin a deep, thorough clean. Rounding out the sulfate-, paraben-, and alcohol-free formula is shea butter for its moisturizing benefits. The "Rise" scent is a warm mix of cedar and vanilla, but you can also pick it up in "Victory," which is infused with eucalyptus, or try the citrusy "Compete."
One fan's take: "I usually don't like using bar soap because it leaves a weird soapy film, but this one doesn't leave any residue on my skin. I work at a gym so I worry that I smell like sweat from being around it all day, but people have told me that I smell nice even after an 8 hour shift, so I know that the fragrance sticks around."
4. A 100% Natural Bar Soap That's Designed For Athletes
This Solpri bar soap was designed for athletes to help combat common conditions like athlete's foot and ringworm, but it's also, as one fan mentioned, "a game-changer for body odor." Besides tea tree oil, the 100% natural, handmade soap also features lemongrass for additional antimicrobial and antifungal benefits. Sunflower, safflower, and coconut oils will help leave your skin feeling moisturized and soft, while other essential oils in the blend, like lime, orange, and eucalyptus, give it a delicious aroma.
One fan's take: "After struggling with body odor under my armpits for years I was fed up. I was constantly spending my day in the shower trying everything under the sun to get the smell to go away. After ONE use of the Solpri bar it was gone. I have used this soap twice a day for 15 days and I do not even need deodorant anymore."
5. A 3-Step System That Targets Underarms
Even if you're using the best deodorant soap, you still might want additional support, which is why this three-step system from Duradry is worth giving a try. Primarily intended for armpits, the brand advises that for best results, you should use the cream at night, the deodorant in the morning, and the body wash every time you shower. The products should last you about eight weeks with daily use. Both the nighttime tube and deodorant stick are antiperspirants that use aluminum chloride as their main sweat-fighting ingredient. The body wash, on the other hand, washes away impurities and bacteria, while infusing skin with moisture courtesy of bergamot, aloe, mint, and other botanical extracts.
One fan's take: "I started using this combination of products a week ago and it has changed my life! I don't need to shower twice a day anymore... Wetness has definitely been decreased, body odor is minimal and this is the first wash I've found where I don't still smell after showering. I will repurchase this until the end of time! I swear by these products."
Li, W. R., Li, H. L., Shi, Q. S., Sun, T. L., Xie, X. B., Song, B., & Huang, X. M. (2016). The dynamics and mechanism of the antimicrobial activity of tea tree oil against bacteria and fungi. Applied microbiology and biotechnology, 100(20), 8865–8875. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00253-016-7692-4
Bachir, R. G., & Benali, M. (2012). Antibacterial activity of the essential oils from the leaves of Eucalyptus globulus against Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus. Asian Pacific journal of tropical biomedicine, 2(9), 739–742. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2221-1691(12)60220-2