How to Make a Castile Soap Household Cleaner Spray (Video)

Making a Castile soap spray for general house cleaning couldn’t be easier.  Please remember to label your spray bottles, so you don’t get them mixed up!  Once you get fully established with homemade cleaners, you’ll have several spray bottle solutions in your cupboard.

All-Purpose Cleaning Spray

In a spray bottle, mix 1/4 c. (60 mL) of your favorite Castile soap and 1 quart (1L) of water. For extra antimicrobial punch, add ¼ tsp. (1.25 mL) tea tree essential oil. Spray surface then wipe with wet cloth.

132 thoughts on “How to Make a Castile Soap Household Cleaner Spray (Video)

  1. Hi! Was wondering if you had advice on making a moth/carpet beetle repellent spray- I’ve never made anything like this! I’m thinking about using lavendar (which is supposed to repel) and cedarwood oil (to repel and kill). I need an emulsifier for these oils & water but don’t want to use alcohol due to the fire hazard (and I want to spray this VERY generously on carpets and generally in the room) Do you think castile soap would be good or can you recommend something else? If so, could you please recommend quantities? Thank you so much

    • Hi Natasha- I’m sorry you’re having to deal with these pesky pests. This is not a problem I’ve faced, but I don’t think you’re going to want a wet application. The residue left behind by the soap will cling to and attract oil and dirt, leaving your carpet very dirty. If it were me, I’d try a dry application. I’ve read that diatomaceous earth (DE) can be effective. Sprinkle on carpets and really brush it in. Allow to sit and vacuum. Washing fabrics, such as curtains and bedding, in Castile soap will also help (see this post: Check with your local pest control company for other methods.

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  3. I made the cleaner and found it was too soapy when cleaning countertops. I had to go back over with a wet cloth to remove the soap.

    • Hi Lisa- I’m sorry that happened to you! Dilute your spray further to cut down on the bubbles (another tip – when making the spray, add the soap into the water and not the other way around). I find a damp microfiber cloth to be great at picking up excess water and soap.

    • Hi Louise- Both the Castile soap and Sal Suds are great for handwashing dishes, but we don’t recommend either for the dishwasher. They bubble up too much and can leak out of the seals. Refer to the Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning ( for suggestions for a safe product for dishwashers.

  4. What can I use to get the mildew stains off my husband’s boat on the seats and interior? I used to clean it with a Mr. Clean magic eraser but it has not been cleaned in 3 years and the cover leaked so can not get all the stains out.

    • Hi Carol- While I find being on a boat quite enjoyable, caring for one is outside my area of expertise. However, I do know that mildew is caused by not-so-lovely little organisms, is notoriously difficult to eradicate, and often stains fabrics. Any substance that would be intense enough to kill mildew and remove stains would adversely impact the seat’s vinyl. Unfortunately, if mildew has gotten into the foam in the cushions, it will reappear, and it may behoove you to replace the cushions. For hard surfaces, try soaking the area with a mixture of vinegar and water then clean with a stiff brush, or scrub off with a baking soda paste. Test in an inconspicuous area first.

  5. Hi Lisa, can you pls give a simple bodywash recipe using your Caste Soap? Does adding tea tree oil to a commercial bodywash make it anti-bacterial?

  6. Hi!
    I am hoping to replace my Febreze Fabric Refresher spray with something more natural. Can your Castile soap be used? Not looking for a stain remover, just a spray for couches, clothing, curtains, etc.. to make them smell nicer.

    • Hi Ali – While I agree our soaps smell great, you wouldn’t want to spray on fabrics without rinsing it off. But I di recommend mixing a few drops of your favorite essential oils into baking soda – a great natural deodorizer on its own – then sprinkle on carpets and fabrics, and vacuum up. For a general room freshener, put a stovetop potpourri on or spritz a bit of our Lavender Hand Sanitizer into the air.

  7. Lisa, something is wrong with this page. The directions above it’s just an empty box. What’s the recipe for the household cleaner please?

  8. Lisa, in the 1970 s, we washed our cats in your peppermint soap. Per label directions and it was safe. Did it for years. But the ingredients have changed a little and it no longer says ok to wash cats and dogs. Why has this happened?

    • Hi Joyce – Wow! Thanks for being a long-time Dr. Bronner’s user. The ingredients in our Castile soap haven’t changed tremendously. The change in recommendation for cats is due to our greater understanding of the impact of essential oils on them. Newer research has indicated they can be unsafe for their systems. We do recommend the Unscented Castile Soap for cats. The Castile with essential oils is still fine for dogs.

  9. I’m just about to buy my first bottle of Dr Bronners Liquid Castile soap was planning on buying unscented & adding my own essential oils depending on the use. I see warnings about cats in the comments – I shouldn’t add essential oils into ‘mixtures’ used where the cats might walk. Should I presume the scented varieties of Dr Bronners should also not be used around the cats? (I have 2 and they go all over the place despite my best efforts to train them to stay on the floor!). I’d not thought of this. I plan on getting a big bottle and using for multiple purposes.

    • Hi Sharon – You can go ahead and get that big bottle. As long as you’re diluting the Castile soap with water in a spray bottle – and your cats are keeping their tongues to themselves and not licking things – the risk is very minimal. The essential oils in our products are only 2% and you’ll be heavily diluting it and then wiping it off. Also, if you’re adding your own essential oils, we recommend no more than 15-20 drops per 32 ounces.

  10. Hi Lisa, wondering if I can spray this solution on a clean, cotton washcloth, then let it dry, and then place it in between linens in my linen closet to repel bugs. I live in a hot, dry climate, so bugs aren’t a huge issue. But I sometimes find moths and carpet beetles…both very destructive! All the winter linens just got washed and put away, and I want to make sure they’re not eaten by the time I retrieve them for winter use. I was thinking both peppermint and lavender. Thank you, and use so many of your tips!

    • Hi Jenny – There wouldn’t be much if any benefit for the soap to be on the cloth. Because Peppermint and Lavender do have some deterring ability, use pure essential oils instead. Let me know how it goes! Those little bugs can get expensive!

  11. Lisa, Can this combination be used for other purposes? I used 16 oz water, 1/4 cup your peppermint soap, and 8 drops of lemon essential oil. I would love it if it also doubled as a surface cleaner or something else.

    • Hi Christine – Yes, this could be used all over the house. Your blend has twice the amount of soap that I usually put in mine, but go with what works for your situation. I’d use this on counters, tables, walls, cooktops, sinks, tubs…

  12. I thought that essential oils would un-saponify the Dr Bronner’s and you would be left with a cheesy, gloppy like consistency. Is that ONLY if there is too much oil and soap ? Does the 20-30 drop plus quarter cup soap plus all the water not have that result? I am guessing not but wanted to see where that tipping point is. I use the Dr Bronner liquid tea tree and eucalyptus for everything even washing my hair and showering. Dishes, laundry, etc…..

    • Hi Dani – I’m glad you’re enjoying the soaps! Tea Tree and Eucalyptus are awesome. It’s vinegar – or other acids – that unsaponifies the soap. Essential oils do not react with the soap.

  13. Will the 1/4 cup to quart be okay for cleaning painted walls? I’m using the hemp tea tree

    • Hi Tracey – Yes, it is safe for granite. With stone, the concern is not to use acidic solutions. This is alkaline.

  14. I’ve read that if water is used you need to either use a perservative(Optiphen Plus) or keep the cleaner in the refrigerator, what are your thoughts?

    • Hi Tammy – Any time you are diluting the soap, you are shortening the shelf life. Considering that the shelf life is at least three years, you have a lot of leeway here, but it’s not indefinite. If you don’t use this spray up in a month, you might need to remake it. If it smells off, then dump it, and make a smaller batch next time, or ramp up your cleaning.

  15. If I wanted to make a fruit and vegetable wash in a spray bottle what ratio should I use? Should it just be soap and water only?

    • Hi Jenna – For a fruit and veggie spray, you can use a less concentrated solution than the housecleaning spray. Try 1 or 2 Tbsp. per quart of water. You don’t need to add anything else.

  16. Can I use the Citrus or Tea Tree for an all purpose cleaner and mix that with water? or can I only use the Sal Suds for an All purpose cleaner?

    • Hi Sandy – The Castile makes a great All Purpose Cleaner as well. You need a little more than for the Sal Suds: 1/4 c. of soap to 1 qt. of water.

  17. Hi Lisa,

    We have a wooden kitchen bench top.

    Can I still use your all purpose spray receipe from your cheating sheet for this? That is ¼ c. soap in a quart of water in a spray bottle.
    Or do you have other receipes for this ?

    Thank you for your help!

    • Hi Yoshiko – Yes, the All Purpose Spray would clean that well.

    • Hi Dianna – If you wipe with a damp cloth, then no. The water and fibers of the cloth will pick it up.

  18. Hello! Can I use this solution ratio as a hardwood floor cleaner with my spray-dispensing mop?

    • Hi Sota – I would definitely give it a try. You probably don’t need this much soap though. Maybe start with just 2 Tbsp. in a quart of water. Increase it if you need to, but what you don’t want to end up with is bubbles on your floor.

  19. Hi

    I’m looking forward to making this but as April mentioned, I will be avoiding essential oils as I’m also a cat owner. I am going to make the unscented version. Can you tell me if there is any particular shelf life on this? Does it keep well if I make up a large batch?

    • Hi Deborah – Leaving out the essential oils is perfectly fine. While I’ve never had this tested professionally, by experience I can say that this solution is good for a couple months at least.

    • Hello,
      I just read an article from a small pet veterinarian and she claims that the internet is loaded with scary articles regarding this issue with essential oils around pets. She says they are ridiculous. She’s never ever seen a pet get sick or even worse, die from essential oils. Never apply directly to a pet (same as our skin) and just be careful letting it become airborne as it will fall onto there fur and they will lick it off while they are cleaning themselves. Be sure that kitty has the ability to roam to another room in case they don’t like the smell. I use a diffuser with patchouli oil daily and my kitties are extremely healthy and happy. Hope this brings comfort to you and your kitty or kitties.

    • Hi Rhonda – To fill a 1 qt. spray bottle, it ends up being 3 3/4 c. water and 1/4 c. soap, but you can increase or decrease the concentration as you like.

  20. I am wanting to make this but am looking to get in the habit of not using certain scents that could be harmful to cats. Despite how much I love the smell of peppermint, tea tree oil, and lavender, I have to steer clear for the most part. Is it okay to use the unscented and not add oil?

    • Hi April – Yes, the unscented Baby Mild will work great without any essential oil. The concern for cats is ingesting certain essential oils. So on any surface they are prone to lick (including themselves), you should avoid essential oils. Sounds like you know all that!

  21. This may be a silly question but is it ok to use a lemon essential oil? I know tea tree is mentioned. I was wanting to use the lemon oil with the unscented baby soap. Thanks!

    • Hi Cheryl – Yes! Lemon essential oil would be great!

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