Dilutions Cheat Sheet for Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap

Dilute! Dilute! OK!* But how much? Here is a quick reference. None of this is a hard and fast rule. If your stuff is really dirty or your water is really hard, then you may want to use more than the recommended amount. However, this should get you started. You’ll notice that for some applications, I recommend pre-diluting the Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap – combining the soap with water in a container. For other applications, the soap is diluted by the water present in the situation. It’s a matter of personal preference. Keep in mind that if you predilute, you are also diluting the preservative (tocopherols – vitamin E), so the shelf life drops. Use within a couple weeks. And yes, there are 18 uses here.

* Long time Dr. Bronner’s users will remember this expression from the old labels.

Click here to download the Castile Soap Dilution Cheat Sheet.

Body Uses:

Face: 2-3 drops on wet hands, applied to wet face.

Body: One small squirt on a wet washcloth, applied to a wet body.

Makeup Removal: Wet face and lather several drops of soap into hands. Massage into skin. Rinse.

Hair: A couple drops for close-cropped hair or up to ½ Tbsp. (7.5 mL) for long hair, either worked directly into very wet hair or pre-diluted in a cup of water. Follow with Dr. Bronner’s Citrus Organic Hair Rinse or diluted apple cider vinegar.

Bath: Completely depends upon water amount, but approximately 2 Tbsp. (30 mL) soap in an average sized tub. (Doesn’t bubble, but still cleans.)

Shaving: Face – 10 drops; Underarms – 3 drops; Legs – ½ tsp (2.5 mL); Work to a lather in wet hands, apply to area.

Teeth: 1 drop on a toothbrush. (Yes, it tastes like soap.)

Foot Bath: ½ Tbsp. (7.5 mL) in a small tub of hot water.

Clearing Congestion: 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) Peppermint or Eucalyptus Castile soap in a bowl of steamy hot water. Breathe in mist with a towel draped over the head.

Household Uses:

Dishes (Handwashing): Pre-dilute 1:10 with water. Squirt on a scrub brush.

Laundry: 1/3-1/2 c. (80-120 mL) soap for a large load in a regular washer. Add 1 c. (240 mL) vinegar to the rinse cycle. Optional: For whitening/deoderizing, add 1/2 c. (120 mL) baking soda to wash cycle. Halve these amounts for HE washers.

Handwashing Delicates: 1 capful soap in about 1 gallon (4 L) cold water. Swish gently. Let soak 10 minutes. Swish again. Rinse with clean water. Gently press out excess water with a towel. Hang or lay clothing flat to dry.

Mopping (Wood, Laminate & Stone Flooring): ½ c. (120 mL) of soap in 3 gallons (12 L) of hot water. Dunk mop (microfiber, preferably) and wring thoroughly. On wood and laminate, avoid excess water and mop up wet areas.

All-Purpose Cleaning Spray: ¼ c. (60 mL) soap in a quart (1 L) of water in a spray bottle. Optional: For extra microbial punch, add ¼ tsp. (1.25 mL) tea tree essential oil.

Windows: 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) soap in a quart of water in a spray bottle. Spray and squeegee. Follow up with pure club soda, or half vinegar/ half water and squeegee.

Toilet: Predilute 1:4 with water in a squirt bottle. Add ¼ tsp. (1.25 mL) tea tree oil. For best results, empty toilet. Squirt bowl thoroughly, sprinkle baking soda on the brush, scrub bowl, let sit 10 minutes, turn water on, flush.

Other Uses:

Fruit & Veggie Wash: 1 dash (approx. ¼ tsp.) in a bowl of water. Dunk produce and swish. Then rinse in clear water.

Dog Washing: Wet dog thoroughly. Massage in enough soap to create a good lather. Really massage it in down to the skin. Your dog will thank you for it. (Amount varies based on size, hair type, and overall dirtiness.) Rinse thoroughly.

Cleaning Makeup Brushes: Wet the make-up brushes in water. Add 1-2 drops soap to the bristles. Massage in gently for 10+ seconds, then rinse. Repeat as needed until water runs clear.

Plant Spray for Bugs: 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) in a quart (1 L) of water. Optional: Add ½ tsp. (1.25 mL) cayenne pepper or cinnamon. Spray plants twice daily in the cool of the day until infestation clears.

Ant Spray (Not on Plants): ¼ c. (60 mL) Tea Tree Castile Soap in a quart (1 L) of water. (This concentration will burn plants.)

I’ve tried to keep this short and sweet. If you have any questions, please ask away!

Download a one-page copy of this Castile Soap Dilution Cheat Sheet.

1,571 thoughts on “Dilutions Cheat Sheet for Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap

  1. Hi- my liquid castile soap hardens over time (around the top level of the soap) and the container gets clogged. What is the best way to re-liquify the soap? I have searched online and can’t find an answer. Warm it up or add an ingredient? Thanks!

    • Hi Kristen- The same thing happens to my bottles, especially because I often forget to close them all the way. With the soap left around the cap hole and the top level of the liquid, the water content is evaporating. Because the soap is so concentrated, with just enough water to keep it liquid, as soon as the water content starts to evaporate, the soap starts to solidify. You can add a little bit of water back into the bottle and let it sit for a bit. You can soak the cap in a cup of water, too.

  2. Hi! Can I use this soap to make a homemade lash cleanser ? For eyelash extensions…

    • Hi Ashley- As there are many different types of lashes using different materials, we recommend checking with manufacturer for cleaning guidelines.

  3. Hi, this is to make shampoo.. Can i add coconut milk to castile soap ? if do so, will the soap will be too diluted?

  4. What is a good recipe for a body wash that isn’t too runny using Dr. Bronner? Looking for a similar thickness/ consistency similar to Caress body wash.

    • Hi Paige- We haven’t found anything that we recommend using to thicken the Castile soap. Using it in a foaming pump dispenser with 1 part soap to 3 parts water (adjust this dilution as you like) will functionally “thicken” the soap with water and air. Or, try the Organic Sugar Soap. With organic sugar and Shikakai powder, it is naturally thicker than the Castile Soap.

    • I tried castile soap in a foaming pump using the dilution (1 part and 3 parts) but didn’t work for me. I now have been using the sugar pump soap and it’s my favourite now.

    • Here is my go to shower soap.
      2/3 c Castile soap
      1/4 c raw honey
      2 t jojoba, sweet almond, grape seed, sesame or olive oil
      1 t Vit E oil
      50-60 drops essential oil – I use lavender
      Shake well & shake ea time you use it.

      Additional Wrinkle reducing face cream
      1/4 c Shea butter (preferably raw, organic, unrefined)
      1/4 c organic coconut oil
      8-10 drops frankincense essential oil
      5-7 drops Lavender essential oil
      Using double boiler melt Shea butter & coconut oil until liquid.
      Let cool 30 min.
      Drop in essential oils. Wait for it to partially solidify – I put in freezer about 20 min.
      Then whip with hand mixer until butter like consistency
      Love this stuff. I’m over 60 & get compliments about my complexion all the time. Worth a try.

  5. Can you make disinfectant wipes with the 18 in 1 hemp peppermint pure castile soap if so how. Thanks

    • Hi Laurie- You can make a housecleaning wipe with Castile Soap. Here’s a how-to to make those: https://www.lisabronner.com/giy-housecleaning-wipes-with-dr-bronners/. Dr. Bronner’s Castile soaps and Sal Suds are effective cleaners, but not EPA-registered chemical surface disinfectants. Detergents and soaps, including our Pure-Castile Soap and Sal Suds, work effectively by attaching to dirt, germs, and grime and rinsing them away, leaving clean surfaces behind. Dr. Bronner’s soap products are effective cleaners but are not disinfectants because they do not contain a pesticide and do not kill, but instead remove germs, dirt and grime from surfaces.

  6. How do you advise that we use Castile soap to clean the house surfaces from Covid-19?
    I keep hearing soap is the best product, but am unsure of the method. Thank you.

    • Hi Ines- Soaps like our Castile Soap work effectively by attaching to dirt, germs, and grime and rinsing them away, leaving clean surfaces behind. Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soaps can be made into a household cleaning spray by combining ¼ c. of the Castile in 1 qt. of water in a spray bottle, with an optional 20 drops of Tea Tree essential oil. Research shows that soap needs 20 seconds to effectively latch onto dirt and germs. (That’s why the CDC’s recommendation to wash hands for 20 seconds is so important!) So spray, allow to sit for 20 seconds, and wipe off with a damp cloth. I like the grabbiness of microfiber, but any cloth will do.

  7. Bought the castile soap to use as a hand soap refill for hand washing in bathroom. How much should I put In the hand soap dispenser before adding water. The hand soap dispenser holds 7.5fl oz.

    • Hi Caitlin- We don’t recommend using our soaps in a regular pump dispenser. Even diluted, the soap tends to clog and squirt out in unexpected directions. It works fabulously in foaming pump dispenser though. Dilute the soap at a ratio of 1 part soap to 3 parts water. This seems to work great and doesn’t create issues with clogging that using undiluted soap would.

    • I’ve used Dr Bronners in the foaming hand soap dispensers for years. Add a small amt to empty foaming dispensers and then slowly add water to fill. Makes a wonderful foaming hand soap. I like the original Peppermint scent the best. Love the soap. Have been using it for over 40 years

    • Anyone know if it’s ok to add a small amount of oil (almond oil?) to moisturize- or would it clog the pump?

    • Hi JoJo- I don’t recommend doing this. Soap’s nature is to grab oil. If you add oil to the soap dilution, it’ll tie up the soap and not be as effective for handwashing.

    • I got a three pack of clear foaming hand soap dispensers on Amazon for like 6 dollars about a year ago and I haven’t bought hand soap since. I use Castile soap for handsoap, body soap, all purpose cleaner, plant care and toilet cleaner. I add a quarter cup to soap to dispenser and fill rest of way with water for my 7.5 ounce dispenser. It lathers well and gets hands clean gently. I tried doing the whole 3 to 1 thing and I didn’t find it effective here and had family complaints about it not working. I’ve been using it like that with quarter cup Castile soap for almost a year now with positive results. Also my foam dispenser never clogs up but I preventively clean my dispense anyways as I refill but if you get a clog hot water will clear it typically. I thought I’d add that about amount of soap I use per container. Have a good day

  8. I have really hard water. What else can I use for shampoos, lotions, etc.?

    • Hi Debbie- Are you looking alternatives to the Castile Soap because of your hard water? I have methods for cleaning soap scum in my blog post Scum Scum, Go Away post (https://www.lisabronner.com/scum-scum-go-away/). And Sal Suds, our biodegradable household cleaner, doesn’t interact with minerals in hard water the way Castile Soap does. It is excellent at household cleaning, laundry and such. It is not a body care product though. The Environmental Working Group (EWG.org) has a database of body care products ranked by ingredients, environmental impact and such. It’s a helpful resource for researching new products.

  9. We didn’t need to stock up on cleansers for the covid pandemic because we use Dr. Bronners for everything. Thanks y’all. ❤️ Stay well.

    • Glad to hear you’re well supplied, Amber! As you know, keep washing frequently touched surfaces/handles and wash your hands!

  10. Which of the Castile soaps is best for dandruff? And what is the dilution ratio?

    Thanks Ron

    • Hi Ron- It’s worth considering whether you have dandruff or if it is actually dry scalp. Many times the two are lumped together, but they are actually somewhat different, and need to be treated differently. How can you tell? Flakes from dry scalp are usually white in color, and people with dry scalp will often have dry skin on other parts of their body as well (and the condition is made worse by dry or cold conditions). Dandruff is a symptom of oily skin: the scalp produces too much oil, and dead skin cells form oily clumps, which is seen as dandruff. These clumps are often larger than the flakes produced by dry scalp, have an “oily” consistency, and can be yellowish in color. People with dandruff often suffer from oily skin on other parts of their body, including eyebrows, eyelids, ears, and nose.
      Unfortunately, many people with dandruff have a tough time finding natural remedies, but it is worth trying a “drying” regimen. Our soaps are naturally drying, so that could work. Work about 1/2 Tbsp liquid Castile soap into wet hair, using more or less depending on hair length and thickness. With any of our soaps, follow-up with an acidic rinse of either our Organic Citrus Hair Rinse or a dilution of water and apple cider vinegar (50/50 is a good ratio to start with).
      If the issue worsens in winter, you likely have dry scalp, in which case a moisturizing regimen is needed. The Organic Shaving Soap is our most moisturizing soap for hair and scalp. I don’t pre-mix with anything.
      I also recommend the “Definitive Guide to Washing Your Hair with Dr. Bronner’s” for excellent tips and trouble-shooting. https://www.drbronner.com/all-one-blog/2017/03/definitive-guide-washing-hair-dr-bronners/

    • That’s for this question all this time I thought I had dandruff but I have dry scalp…and dry skin. If you have dandruff maybe tey tea tree

  11. II mixed my own foaming hand wash as noted on your site but wanted to know if the solution work in a traditional soap dispenser that is not a foam dispenser?

    • Hi Terri- No, it doesn’t. In a regular dispenser the soap can clog and squirt out unexpectedly in various directions, even if diluted.

  12. Hi, I’d like to make hand sanitizer with Bronner product. What would you recommend and ratio to dilute in a small travel spray? Thank you.

    • Hi Beth- Soap is only effective if it is washed off. Soap works by bonding with dirt and germs, but unless it is rinsed away with water or a damp cloth, it just sits there. So a spray-on hand sanitizer made with our soaps would not be effective. Research consistently shows that frequent and thorough handwashing with soap and water is the best option to protect against germs. If that is unavailable, using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol is the second best when #1 is not available. Dr. Bronner’s makes a hand sanitizer, but it’s in such demand that it’s temporarily out of stock in our webstore. Check back soon or look for it in a natural food store in your area or online.

  13. Can children (10 years old) use the tea tree castile soap for shower and face? Is it suitable for their skin?

    • Hi Cheryl- Yes, it is one of our more moderate soaps. As always, keep out of eyes.

  14. Can I use the tea tree oil one on my face? Has a warning on it to keep away from eyes but bought it to treat blepheritis?

    • Hi there- The Castile soap is safe to use on face (and hands, body and hair too). Follow the advice of your doctor for a specific treatment.

    • Hi Jen- The issue with well water is that it can have a high mineral content. Minerals react with Castile soap and make it cloudy, although it is still effective. Some people prefer to use distilled water for a clearer solution.

  15. Hi!

    My house has hard water. I’m wondering if using Castile soap for mopping with leave a residue then. I’ve had issues but I’m not sure it’s the Castile soap. I have the gallon size container and I’d like to be able to use it, but with my hard water I’m not sure what I could use it for. Can you help steer me in the right direction? A water softener is out of the question.

    Thanks!

    • Hi Christy- The Castile Soap has lots of excellent uses, even with hard water. It’s fine in the laundry with a vinegar rinse, for any personal care use, in a foaming pump dispenser for hands (use 1 part soap to 3 parts water), cleaning makeup brushes, as a fruit & veggie wash, and making the GIY Soft Scrub (find that here on my blog: https://www.lisabronner.com/giy-soft-scrub-with-dr-bronners/).

  16. I’ve been using Dr Bronners since the early 70’s!! May be one if the reasons at 66 yrs of age people think I’m in my 40’s-50’s! Thank you for your awesome products!!

    • You are very welcome! However, I should be the one thanking you for being such a long-time supporter. So.. thank YOU!

  17. I LOVE LOVE LOVE DR BRONNERS! I used to bathe my kids in it 30 years ago…now my daughter bathes my granddaughter with it. The lavender is great for my dogs….has a real calming effect which is definitely needed during bath time.t
    I have ants on my indoor plants. Please tell me what dilution you would recommend for a spray and which soap might be best. Specifically, they are dieffenbachia plants. Thank you for any information you can share. And for a wonderful product

    • Hi Cara- Thanks for the love! Yes, the recommended dilution of 1 Tbsp. in 1 quart of water should do the trick. Wipe plant periodically with a damp cloth to remove any soap residue.

  18. Even though I know Castile soap has been around a long time I’m kind a new to it. I have been looking for ways to replace all of the toxic chemicals in my house. I finally found that this soap does it all. On my bathroom tub I use a half a cup of baking soda 2 tablespoons of Castile soap and whatever essential oil that strikes my mood at the moment. Wow! What a shine. Thank you for this wonderful product.

  19. Can you clean your washing machine with it. I cant find a product that really cleans my washing machine. It has a funky smell that passes on to my clothes.

    • Hi Jacquelyn- Often when this happens, there is somewhere in the washing machine that stays wet and collects mold. Start by cleaning the lint trap, which collects hair and other fun odds and ends. Wiping down the seal after use and leaving the door ajar when not in use help greatly. Also, run a cycle with vinegar in the soap dispenser periodically. Some machines have a cleaning setting for this. If yours doesn’t, run the smallest load on hot water. Finally, vinegar is a great natural fabric softener and using 1 cup (1/2 cup for HE machines) in your fabric softener compartment with each load leaves your machine and laundry clean-smelling.

    • Hi Greg- For a large or particularly grimy load, I use 2-3 Tbsp. of Sal Suds. For a smaller or lighter load, use 1-1.5 Tbsp. If you have an HE machine, cut these amounts by half.

    • Hi Stephanie- Unfortunately, I don’t have a recommendation for the dishwasher. Our soaps are just too bubbly for them. The Environmental Working Group (ewg.org) is a good place to search though. They rate products by ingredients, environmental impact and such.

  20. Hi there!

    I’m looking to use an infant highchair/tables cleaning spray when we are out.

    May I know if there’s any recipe for it? Or how many part of water to 1 part of Dr Bronner’s baby unscented?

    Thank you! 😊

    • Hi Jiat- The Peppermint or Lavender Hand Sanitizer spray works great for that – and your little one’s hands too. It’s made with just four ingredients: Organic Fair Trade Ethyl Alcohol (for disinfecting), water, organic glycerin, and organic essential oil for scent. It’s available in many natural foods and retail stores and on our website (https://shop.drbronner.com/organic-hand-sanitizer). If you’d like to stick with the All-Purpose Spray, use 1/4 cup Unscented Castile Soap in a quart of water. Scale the solution down for a more portable-sized spray bottle. Spray and wipe with a damp cloth to remove soap and germs.

  21. How do you use this soap for regular hand soap? Straight in the bottle? Does it have to be in the foam pump bottle? Thanks!

    • Hi Trista- 2-3 drops straight from the bottle into hands will do it. We don’t recommend a non-foaming pump dispenser, as the soap can clog and squirt out in unexpected directions, even if diluted. If you do go the route of a foaming pump dispenser, use a ratio of 1 part soap to 3 parts water.

  22. Great tips! I had no idea this one product had so many uses; can’t wait to try them all (well, except for the tooth brushing ;)) Regarding its use for hand-washing delicates: What is the pH level? I have a pair of silk pillowcases which, according to the manufacturer, are to be washed using a pH-neutral detergent and would like to use Dr. Bronner’s 18-in-one Pure Castile Soap if possible. Thanks!

  23. I like to premix the soap with distilled water for showering. I mix 8oz of water to 8oz of soap. Am I doing this wrong? I don’t mind that its cold or anything cause of premixing I just like the convenience of having it ready for showering time.

    • Hi Kendra- Not at all! Go for it! I’m glad you’ve found something you like.

  24. As per someone’s recommendation somewhere, I have been making foaming hand wash with a 1:10 ratio and it seems to work great (have been doing it this way for years, using the peppermint Bronners). However, you recommend 1:3 and now I’m wondering if it hasn’t been totally effective all this time. Your thoughts?

    • Hi Ann- All of my dilutions are a starting place. Tailor them to your needs. If the dilution has been working for you, it’s probably fine. Go with that.

  25. I was thinking of making a cat urine odor room spray. I have carpet that seems to absorb the odors of the litter box over time. I was going to base it off of the cleaning solution (I have the lavender solution) and add a little bit vinegar. Do you have any suggestions for a mixture?

    • Hi Julia- Your best bet is to clean your carpet regularly. In between, sprinkle it with baking soda – a natural deodorizer – brush it in, then vacuum up. Soap sprayed and left on carpets will attract dirt and grime, so avoid that. Also mixing Castile soap with vinegar will cause it to unsaponify. Here’s my post on using Sal Suds on carpets: https://www.lisabronner.com/cleaning-carpets-with-sal-suds/.

    • Hi Kathy- You certainly can dilute (or pre-dilute) our Castile soap when using it as a body wash. However, I’ve found that the water present in the situation does the diluting for me. I also find that prediluted soaps are, well, cold. I use a wet wash cloth and put a small squirt on it and wash away.

    • Hi Betty- The Unscented Castile, or any of the milder scents such as Almond or Lavender, are great for kids. If they’re taking a bath, I just squirt some (probably about a capful) into the bath water and let them soak in that. When my kids were babies, I used a couple drops on a washcloth because I felt I could control where the soap went more easily. You can read more of my thoughts in my post here: https://www.lisabronner.com/using-castile-baby-mild-soap-on-babies/. Keep in mind, no true soaps are tear-free, so keep soap out of the eyes. For hands, a foaming pump dispenser of 1 part soap to 3 parts water works great.

  26. Is it possible to get these recipes but using the bar soap and not only the liquid soap?

    Thanks!

  27. I was hoping to see how much soap to use for an enema as the doctor recommended it.

    • Hi Becky- While the soap is safe to use on all external areas, we recommend caution using it internally as an enema. If you do so, be sure to rinse very thoroughly as leftover soap can be irritating. Check with your doctor for a recommendation.

    • I tried to dilute the liquid soap according to your instructions but still hard to make it pump out after a while so I’ve been using the sugar pump soap. What did I do wrong? 1part soap and 3 parts water.

    • Hi Janice- Are you using a foaming pump dispenser? In a non-foaming pump dispenser the soap can clog and squirt out in unexpected directions, even if diluted.

    • This has happened to me before. I have had to either add more soap or add more water. Try adding more soap first.

    • Hi Janice- You can certainly fiddle with the dilution. I notice that the aerating or foaming chamber sometimes fills with water and doesn’t work. Opening up the pump apparatus, making sure all is clear, and letting it dry out fixes that.

    • At our Preschool we mix 1 part soap to 4 parts water for hand washing of teachers and the children. But you can mix it to your liking. At home I do 1 part Bronner’s to 5 parts water because there I like it a bit less foamy. But at the preschool the kids need a lot of foam to clean their hands. Childcare is messy business.

  28. How does this work really? How does it clean my hair and the toilet effectively?
    Can it be used on babies? Thanks.

    • Hi Liliana- Dirt and grime are the same, regardless of the surface they are on. Castile soap is formulated for skin and is very gentle. Because is it so simple, it can clean just about any other surface as well. The Unscented Castile soap is excellent for babies for it’s gentleness and because it doesn’t contain the essential oils that our scented soaps have. I wrote a post on just that, https://www.lisabronner.com/using-castile-baby-mild-soap-on-babies/

  29. What does pre dilute 1:10 mean for dishes?

    Dishes (handwashing): Pre-dilute 1:10 with water. Squirt on a scrub brush and scrub dishes.

    • Hi Ana- “1:10” means 1 part soap to 10 parts water. The amount depends on the size bottle you’re trying to fill, but an example is 1/4 c. soap to 2 1/2 cups of water.

    • Hello!
      I would like to make my own foaming hand soap and am planning to do so using a 1:3 ratio of Dr Bronner’s to water. Does the water have to be distilled? Would it be acceptable to use boiled water (that has cooled down) instead?
      Thanks!!

    • Hi Kim- Some people choose to use distilled water for a clearer solution. Castile Soap reacts with the minerals in hard water making for a slightly cloudy, although still effective, solution.

    • Before I started using distilled water in the foaming soap dispenser, my soap would get a rancid odor before it ran out. No problem since I switched to distilled several years ago.

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