Bar Soap vs. Body Wash – Should You Go Soap-Free?

We’re debating the differences between bar soap and body wash and sharing the best toxic-free products.

woman in shower with bar of soap

What’s your version of clean? 🚿

We’re discussing the difference between bar soap vs. body wash and which are the best toxic-free brands to use! Or should you go soap-free?

Have you caught our new clean natural products series yet? After sharing the best natural skin care products, it led our team to a debate about what we use when we shower. Here’s everything we know about bar soap vs. body wash and whether you may want to consider going soap-free…

Is bar soap better than body wash?

stack of white bars of soap

While the general purpose of bar soap and body wash are essentially the same, there are some major differences between the two that make bar soap a better choice for your body and the environment.

For starters, no liquid soap can safely be made without preservatives since it contains water. To keep mold, yeast, and bacteria from growing, preservatives are necessary to extend the shelf life of body washes and liquid soaps. Depending on the preservatives, they can lead to skin issues and other major health concerns including cancer.

Bar soaps don’t require the use of preservatives so there are much safer options on the market. It also lasts about 2-3x longer than liquid soaps since bar soaps are more concentrated than liquids. With cleaner ingredients, this also means bar soaps are more eco-friendly and leave little to no trace depending on where you’re buying your bars. Bar soaps are also more travel-friendly and can offer more botanicals and healing benefits for your skin depending on the brand.

Check out what our team had to say about bar soap vs. body wash:

graphic of hip2save team poll bar soap vs body wash

The majority of our team uses both bar soap and body wash and the least amount of team members solely use bar soap. Are the majority of us washing wrong? 😳

The good news is that there’s really no right or wrong way of washing… as long as you’re following proper body hygiene. 😉 However, it’s important to point out that not all bar soaps are treated the same.

Here are just a few of the chemicals commonly found in traditional soaps you may want to skip:

  • 🛑 Borates A chemical compound with various names including sodium borate (borax), boric acid, sodium perborate, and perboric acid, & more. Known to cause birth defects and negatively affect reproductive organs. 
  • 🛑 FormaldehydeA known carcinogen that can irritate eyes, nose, and throat and is linked to cancers. 
  • 🛑 PhosphatesLinked to cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis
  • 🛑 Phthalates Can impact your natural hormones and lead to lower fertility, development issues, and a higher risk of cancer.
  • 🛑 Synthetic Fragrances, “Parfum”, or “Fragrance” – May cause headaches, breathing difficulties, cardiovascular and neurological problems, mucosal irritation, and contact dermatitis. Higher risk of cancer.
  • 🛑 Triclosan An antibacterial and antifungal substance known to disrupt endocrine systems and reproductive hormones. 

hands holding yellow brown and white bars of soap

Is there such a thing as a soap-free body wash?

You may have heard of “soap-free” before. Essentially, both soap-free cleaners and soap are intended to clean debris off your skin. However, regular soap also strips your skin of much more than what’s required. So using a soap-free cleanser can be especially ideal for those with sensitive skin and it may be an option you never thought of using!

Soap-free cleansers are made of plant-based ingredients (and/or synthetic surfactants) depending on the brand, but organic is definitely more ideal. Unlike traditional soaps, “soap-free” cleansers don’t contain fats and alkaline ingredients which can lead to dry skin and disrupt your body’s natural pH balance. A “soap-free” option will provide more natural humectants which will help with a healthier skin pH balance and naturally hydrated skin. Remember, “soap-free” doesn’t mean “chemical-free” so be sure to check the labels before buying.

The biggest takeaway here? Fewer suds can equal a better skin barrier if you’re using the right product.

Below are our top 3 toxic-free bar soap, liquid soap, & soap-free cleanser recommendations if you’re looking to make a cleaner switch:

Graphic of the best bar soap, body wash and soap, free cleanser

dr bronner's castile bar soaps in rainbow order

Shopping from a local soap maker who offers bar soap with very minimal ingredients could be your best choice, but if you need something more readily accessible, we love this soap bar made by Dr. Bronner’s. It’s toxic-free and doesn’t contain synthetic preservatives, thickeners, or foaming agents like liquid soaps. It will also leave the smallest footprint and our top choice is 100% biodegradable making it a great eco-conscious choice too.

This bar of soap also boasts many certifications including being Certified Organic, EWG Verified, and Certified Fair Trade. Dr. Bronner’s bar soaps also come in many different aromas including unscented. It’s gentle for all skin types and moisturizing making it a great choice for shaving as well. Overall, Dr. Bronner’s offers a great bar of soap for every age and skin type.

all one naked bar of soap on white towel

Here are the top 5 reasons we love this bar soap:

  1. ✅ 100% Certified Organic Ingredients (EWG Verified)
  2. ✅ 100% Biodegradable & Plastic-Free
  3. ✅ Hydrating
  4. ✅ No synthetic preservatives, thickeners, or foaming agents
  5. ✅ Multiple certifications including USDA-Certified Organic and Leaping Bunny Certified

hand holding a bottle of dr bronners castile soap

Dr. Bronner’s is not only a great option for body wash, but it even has an endless list of uses around your house making it super versatile! This soap is 2–3x more concentrated than most conventional products, so you can dilute it to stretch your dollar even more. This product is 100% biodegradable and thoughtfully packaged in 100% post-consumer recycled plastic (or you can grab their new refill cartons with 82% less plastic).

Dr. Bronner’s scented soaps are made with certified organic, fair-trade oils and ingredients and developed using sustainable harvesting. Each product has numerous certifications, including Non-GMO Project Verified, USDA Certified Organic, and Certified Vegan. So even though, this body wash does have preservatives, rest assured, they’re safe for your body.

hand holding a bottle of dr bronners castile soap

Here are the top 5 reasons we love this body wash:

  1. ✅ 100% Biodegradable
  2. ✅ Extremely gentle and versatile for many purposes (18-in-1 uses)
  3. ✅ Thoughtful production & packaging
  4. ✅ Can replace essentially all other household soaps
  5. ✅ Countless certifications

primally pure plumping so free bar with beige background

This plumping bar is as pure as they get and doesn’t compromise your skin’s natural barrier like harsh soaps can do. With this Primally Pure bar, you can count on healthy skin and a balanced microbiome. It’s formulated with naturally antimicrobial and healing ingredients that support cellular renewal and refine skin texture.

Primally Pure Plumping Bars are formulated with just 7 organic ingredients that are 100% biodegradable and are sustainably and responsibly sourced. We love that their products are handmade in the USA (Southern California) and use nature’s most precious elements and nothing more. Truly, if you want the most beneficial “soap” for your skin, we couldn’t love this brand more!

While pricey, Primally Pure also offers a dreamy collection of soap-free body washes – all formulated with the same good intentions.

Hands holding a brown colored soap free cleansing bar

Here are the top 5 reasons we love this soap-free cleaner:

  1. ✅ Naturally antibacterial & naturally softens skin
  2. ✅ Organic & 100% biodegradable ingredients
  3. ✅ Doesn’t compromise your skin’s natural barrier
  4. ✅ Sustainably & responsibly sourced
  5. ✅ Handmade in the USA

Psst… Did you know we’re hosting a giveaway at the end of our Clean Living series? Enter below:

Hip2Save Clean Living Swaps Giveaway

Giveaway Form Troubleshooting Tips:

  • If you’re already subscribed to the newsletter or texts, be sure to still click through on each prompt in order to get credit for the entries.
  • Experiencing form issues? We’ve found the giveaway form works best in Chrome from a web browser, so we recommend opening the form within a web browser (or copy/paste this link rather than staying within an app like Facebook or Instagram, or trying a different browser if issues persist.
    • If cookies are disabled, you can click through the button to enter the giveaway in a new tab.
  • Having form login or Gleam account issues? Open the post in an Incognito or private browsing window and re-login.
  • Not sure if your entry has been submitted? The entry options will convert to a green check ✅ once that method has been credited. You can refresh the page if it’s feeling “stuck”, or wait for a confirmation email to come through with all your current entries.
  • On Firefox? You will need to have Tracking allowed in order to have certain forms and logins to work. You can adjust these settings through the Protections icon in the address bar.

Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button