Dilutions Cheat Sheet for Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Castile Soap

castile soap

Update May 2022 —I’ve added a few uses to both the Sal Suds and Castile Soap Cheat Sheets. Plus: All four Cheat Sheets are now available in Spanish! (See the side bar to download or print.)

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 Liquid 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 preservation system (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.

Body Uses

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

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

Foaming Pump Dispenser: Dilution of one part soap to 3 parts water.

Wipe-Off Castile Body Wash Spray: Use when running water isn’t an option due to illness, large cast or bandage, or when hiking, camping, etc. Combine 1 ½ tsp. (7.5 mL) soap and 1 c. (240 mL) of Castile Soap and 1 c. (240 mL) room temperature water in a spray bottle. Spray body wash lightly on skin, and wipe with a wet (not dripping) cloth. Dry skin.

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 a capful of Dr. Bronner’s Citrus Organic Hair Rinse diluted in one cup (240 mL) of water or dilute apple cider vinegar in half with water.

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.)

Oral Appliances: Removable retainers, nightguards, etc. & dentures: Wet device. Add 1-2 drops of soap to a soft toothbrush. Brush gently, then rinse.

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. Alternatively, add 1-2 Tbsp. (15-30 mL) Castile Soap in a large sink of water. Use a small squirt of soap for one pot, or more if needed. To avoid water spots in hard water conditions, dry dishes by hand.

Laundry: 2–4 Tbsp. (30–60 mL) for HE washers. Add ½ c. (120 mL) vinegar to the rinse cycle. Optional: For whitening/deodorizing, add ¼ c. (60 mL) baking soda to wash cycle. Double these amounts for standard washers.

Handwashing Delicates: 1 capful (1 Tbsp. or 15 mL) Castile 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, Vinyl, Stone & Tile Flooring): 2 ½ Tbsp (38 mL) of soap in 1 gallon (4 L) of hot water. Dunk mop (microfiber, preferably) and wring thoroughly. On wood and laminate, avoid excess water and mop up wet areas.

For smaller areas, add 2 tsp. (10 mL) Castile Soap to a quart (1 L) of water in a squirt bottle.

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. Use on any surface that is safe in contact with water-stone countertops & tile; wood (painted or sealed, not waxed); plastic toys and such; stainless steel; sinks & toilets; and more!

Windows: 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) soap in a quart (1 L) 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. Spray or squirt 2-3 drops of Castile Soap directly on toilet brush. Sprinkle baking soda on the brush, scrub bowl, let sit 10 minutes, turn water on, flush.

Other Uses for Liquid Castile Soap

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. (Amount varies based on size, hair type, and overall dirtiness.) Really massage it in down to the skin. Your dog will thank you for it. 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!

Not sure when to use Sal Suds or when to use Castile Soap? Head over to my blog post, Sal Suds or Castile Soap—Which to Use?

If you’re interested in using the Castile Bar Soap for house cleaning, check out my Bar Soap Dilutions Cheat Sheet.

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Castile Soap Cheat Sheet

Dilute! Dilute! OK! But how much? Print this guide!


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Beth says:

Hi Lisa,

I would like to clean some decent quality, synthetic makeup brushes. I used the Baby Mild castile soap this time, instead of the over-priced, specialized brush cleaner they sold with the brushes. Should I “condition” the brushes with Apple Cider Vinegar when done, like you might when washing your hair? They are synthetic, so perhaps they are not in danger of drying out? Also, would you recommend SalSuds instead? And any particular essential oils that would condition the brushes, but not leave them too soft and floppy for easy makeup application?


Beth says:

Hi Lisa,

I would like to use the baby mild castile soap in a foaming pump dispenser, rather than the Shikakai. It just seems easier and maybe less expensive. I was wondering if I could mix in some jojoba oil or olive oil myself, for the added moisture. Is there any recipe you would suggest?


Cesar Rivas says:

Hello My name is cesar and I had a few questions about the peppermint castile soap.

1-today I purchased the soap to wash my dogs and it smelled much stronger when I opened it, but I might have left the cap open for no longer then 10 mins and it still smells good but not as strong, is that “bad” for the soap or can this effect it? will it gain its strong scent again on its own or what can I do other than buy a new one?

2- I got the soap to try and help with the itches they get from fleas,Once I washed my dogs, and dried them I noticed it didn’t kill all the fleas and they were still itching. They did seem a lot more fresh and the itching/scratching did go down a little but I just wanted to know if this was normal?

3- I wanted to mix grape seed oil and pure aloe vera gel to make a face/body cleanser, I wanted to know how I can store this, like if a plastic spray/storage bottle would be okay and can I keep it in the fridge?

4-How can I use it as an aftershave and a pre shave oil?

Lori says:

Hi, is there anything I can do to reduce the cloudiness in my bathroom spray? Is the soap reacting to borax or baking soda. I have soft water.

Lori says:

Hi, how much would you dilute the soap for a foaming hand soap pump?
Thanx for the awesome products!!

Teresa says:

Hi Lisa
I am nearly 40 now and I have dry/combination skin: a sometimes oily t-bar but dry cheeks. I want to move away from harmful chemicals and wanted to make a nourishing face wash for my maturing skin. I’d like to mix castile soap, aloe vera juice, orange blossom hydrosol and lavender EO and geranium EO. Do you think that will that work? What do you think the shelf-life would be? If I used 125ml aloe vera juice and 125ml orange blossom hydrosol, how much castile soap would you recommend I add?
Thanks very much 🙂

Steve Margano says:

Hello Lisa, in your article you say to use the Castile soap spray within a couple of weeks. However, in one of your comments you state that it will last around 6 months. Can you please clarify how long it is good for? Thanks.

Ruth says:

Thank you for the cheat sheets. I’ve just discovered Dr. Bronner’s products and their many uses. They actually meet my son’s standards. That’s a pretty steep curve.
A couple of questions though. I know it works in the sink to wash dishes, but what about the dishwasher? Is there any product of yours that will? Also, a question about the soaps as a bug spray. I read the suggestions for ants, but is there a way for it to work on fruit flies in the kitchen? Any help is greatly appreciated. My son also wants to know if the solution mentioned for ants that burns plants will work as a weed killer.
Thanks again,

Steve says:

Hello – confused on the shelf life after dilution. In the article you stated “Use within a couple weeks” if diluting, but then you told the person looking to get soap for the school that it would conservatively last 6 months? How did we go from 2 weeks to 6 months shelf life when diluting? Am I missing something? Please explain. Thanks. Margano.

Krista says:

Hi Lisa,
Thanks for the great post! I am excited to start cleaning with the tea tree castile soap! I am wondering if using the all purpose mixture without tea tree oil will disinfect salmonella and e. coli? Would using the tea tree soap with vinegar increase the disinfectant properties? One last question, since the oil in the soap is diluted is it safe to use around a 1 year old with out rinsing the surface afterwards, like for mopping?

Thanks in advanced!

Paola says:

Hi Lisa,
First, thanks for creating this blog and for answering all these questions.I just bought my first peppermint liquid soap, I understand that Dr. Bronner’s Magic soaps offer multiple uses. I am exited to try it. I was just wondering if I could use the peppermint in all those different ways or there are specific ones for the different uses?

Could you please specify which soaps are better for which uses?
Thank you

Ellen says:

Hi! Can I mix olive oil into my hand soap?I know you said adding coconut oil will not be effective… But is this also true for olive oil? I find the soap drying and wanted to find a solution that wouldn’t require another step of applying hand Creme after. Also, my baby has been sick quite frequently. Does your soap sanitize for all germs or do I need to add something to my dilution? Currently I am using a 1:5 dilution with an added 1 tbs of olive oil.

Thank you for your help!

Steve says:

I was wondering about using the liquid castile soap on unglazed tile floors. I think that it would be great, but I’m concerned about any buildup. Would it be best to follow up moping with diluted vinegar rinse to make sure that residue doesn’t occur? If so, what would you suggest for the proportions?


Sarah B says:

Hi Lisa,
I am looking for a natural and safe way to kill the ants in my yard and on my patio as I have a 10 month old and a miniature Schnauzer dog.
I’ve read that I could spray liquid peppermint soap on the hills as a way to get rid of them. Do you know whether or not this true, and most importantly, is this safe for my dog and baby? Thanks.

Christy says:

First of all I am so excited that you reply!!! Most people do don’t even bother replying! I love it!
After learning about EWG, and researching all the products I’ve been using at home and on body, I am mortified!!!!!! I couldn’t believe it! Thankfully we have dr. Bronners as a starting point to going green safely (not all “green” products are safe!)
So! I use it in the shower, I just made my hand soap in a foaming dispenser( love it! Just learned about the tea tree oil for antibacterial) BUT NOW I’m stuck!
My husband is having a hard time transitioning, he thinks I making to big of a deal throwing out our old products! I want to make him a believer!
Please tell me if I use it on kitchen counter tops will it disinfect salmonella and e.coli?! If not what do I need to add ?! AND if used on dishes, is it safe (meaning) if there were to be residue of some sort from solution, is it safe when we eat or drink off of dish later or do we have to absolutely make sure it is all rinsed off. Would love your feed back!!!!!
Love your soap!

Abby says:

I used the castile soap to spot clean my carpet today and it did so well I now have to shampoo the whole thing. Can I use the castile soap in a carpet shampooer and if so any suggestions on the ratio?

Shannon says:

I have read articles that peppermint oil repels bugs, I didn’t put any thought on it that this is true however I love the smell of mint and bought some Dr. Bronner’s castile soap in peppermint months ago and have been mixing it 1 tbsp to a standard size spray bottle which is about a quart with the rest of the bottle water. I have been using this as a all in one cleaner and its been great. But we had a hornets nest starting right outside our front door and I just sprayed it two days ago with this soap mixture. The hornets fell to the ground and died and none have came back to claim that nest. So than thinking this would work great to clean off the crud of our vinyl siding I did so tonight. While I was do this I came across 3 more small hornets nest around windows each time the hornet fell off and died also repelled a spider off the side maybe it even killed that too. I swear I love this stuff and seeing how its cheap, eco friendly and is an all around amazing product.

Kim says:

I just bought the Tea Tree Castile Liquid soap and used it as a shampoo, with apple cider vinegar as a rinse. My hair is great! Lots of curls! But I have a few questions.

1) Do you have any information on how the soap affects psoriasis?

2) I was surprised how runny the soap is. I don’t know why, but I expected it to be thicker. Is it normally quite runny?

Thanks for your very helpful site.


Sondha says:

Hi Lisa,

I’m just trying to green up all my cleaning products, and one thing I just can’t seem to kick is the in-cistern toilet block (I’m pretty sure it’s psychological). Would a chunk of the bar castile soap work in a similar way?


Lisa says:

Hi Lisa! I love using Dr. Bronner’s as a face wash, but when I put it into my pump dispenser on my counter top, it ends up squirting all over the place. I want to be able to use my pretty dispenser rather than having the bottle on the counter. Do I need to dilute it a certain way for it to work in a bathroom pump soap dispenser or do I need a certain type of dispenser?

Thank you!

pallavi says:

Hi Lisa, I’ve recently started using the Baby mild castile soap for laundry in my front loading washing machine. I’m putting around 2 oz for a load along with vinegar in the rinse section of the dispenser. During the wash cycle I don’t see any foam at all, maybe like 15-20 bubbles but not like the foam that commercial laundry liquids produce. I wanted to check with you whether the castile soap is supposed to clean the clothes without foaming much or is it that I’m putting too little soap?
Thanks a lot!

Linda Chavey says:

Will Dr. Bronner’s take the color out of your hair if you use it as a shampoo?

Joi says:

Hi Lisa, I would like to know the dilution ratio for using the Baby Mild soap for bathing an infant.
Thank you,

Krystle says:

To dilute for use as a hand soap would I use the same measurements listed for body care?

Nikki says:

Hi, I am suffering from red acne rosacea with sensitive skin. I have the lavender Castile soap already that I use for cleaning. Would it work for me or do I need the baby soap? I really want my face to look great again. Thank you!

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Vee – There is tons of info on the Dr. Bronner’s website,, as well as here on my blog. Check out the section above on Castile soaps. As far as water quality, do you mean in our soaps, or in general?

All the best,

Ben says:

What suggestions do you have for using Dr. Bronner’s to wash a down comforter in a washing machine? Is it better for the down than “normal” laundry detergent, and how much should I use for a single comforter?


vee says:

Thanks for attending the green fest would like to know if you address your soap and water quality on your website.

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Tina – The castile soaps will only kill bugs when it is wet. If you directly spray a mosquito or flea with a Castile soap spray, then Yes, it will kill them. However, using it as a perimeter spray around your porch will not be a long term help.

Hi Erin – From what I’ve read on plantar warts, the castile soap is probably not going to cure it, but neither will the soap hurt it. Warts are extremely stubborn. The suggested remedies you can find online vary widely, and they all require a lot of time and patience.

Hi Sharon – The vinegar serves as a fabric softener and also catches up any hard water deposits that can occur when the minerals react with our soap. It is not imperative, but you may find it helpful.

All the best,

Sharon says:

Hi Lisa I use the baby mild liquid Castile and just read on your site that it can be used in the laundry at 1/3-1/2 cup but add vinegar to the rince cycle. Is the vinegar nessacary and why?
Love this soap been a user for years it is so versatile and love the low rating on Skin Deeps page:) thanks for a wonderful product!

erin says:

I’m wondering if this soap will help heal a plantar wart on my foot. Im loving using it in the shower for shampoo and body wash, it would be an added bonus if it would help heal my wart.

tina says:

Dear Lisa, does the lavendar shampoo kill fleas and take care of insects around the porch like masquitos and stinging bugs if we spray the porch

Lisa Bronner says:

Great, Sherra! Me, too!

Hi Kate – Yes! Check out these posts about it: and

Hi Lisa – That is an excellent project. As you’ve deduced, Dr. Bronner’s castile is much more concentrated than what you’re school system is currently buying, which means that one gallon of Dr. Bronner’s goes much further than one gallon of conventional. It does not work in traditional pump dispensers, even if diluted. It will eventually clog the pump and shoot soap out at odd angles at the unsuspecting user. However, it works great in foaming pump dispensers. If you dilute it at a ratio of 1 part soap to 5 parts water. We do not do bulk discounts but the best price I’ve seen for gallons is $38.39 at Frontier Natural Product’s wholesale website. You’ll have to set yourself up as a co-op, but with a minimum order of $250, you can get wholesale prices and free shipping. At this price and with the dilution, the school system would actually be spending less money on soap ($730 vs. $950). Also, our soap rinses off much more quickly than conventional antibacterial soap gels, so the students would be using less water and spending less time in the bathrooms. Regarding the diluted preservative, the shelf life of the soap is stated at 3 years, but it doesn’t spoil after that – the essential oil scent just starts to fade. If you diluted it, let’s take it down, conservatively, to 6 months. If the kids aren’t going through a pump-full of soap in 6 months, they aren’t washing their hands enough. Lastly, Dr. Bronner’s soaps are considered disinfectants, which legally means that they kill 99% of bacteria.

OK! I’ve convinced myself, too. Anyone else want to present this to their kids’ schools? Let me know if you need more info to convince the powers that be.

Hi Charles – Great! Let me know if you need any more tips as you discover the many uses of Dr. B’s!

Hi Linda – Yes! Check out our Dr. Bronner’s Australia website for buying options and stockists:

HI Jennie – I would go with the Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds for delicates. It rinses much more easily and works best in all types of water. When you use the Castile soap for laundry, I recommend that you rinse with vinegar, which wouldn’t be the best for delicates. In a sink full of cold water, add a small amount of Sal Suds – maybe ½ tsp. Soak the clothes and swish them around a bit. Let them sit for 10 minutes. Then, Rinse and dry.

All the best,

Jennie says:

Can I use the Castile soap to hand wash delicate clothing (cotton, wool, silk, rayon)? If so, how much would I use and how much water? Thanks!

Charles says:

I just recently was turned on to Dr.Bronner’s Magic Soap. I have to say, I love it. I’m currently on my first bottle and it is the Citrus Orange. It smells so Spring-like. I tried to use Kirk’s Castile soap for bathing and all it did was burn my skin like acid. They claim it’s something to do with my pH level and the pH level of their castile soap. I bought my current bottle of your soap to make homemade baby wipes. I learned many more fantastic uses for from your website. The only other use I’ve used it for so far was hand soap. I used a 7.5oz bottle with a foaming pump attached. I used 1oz of soap and filled the bottle up with distilled water. I’m using the distilled water to sort of keep the soap in my pumps pure. My next project is to make soap pumps from some old Mason jars. But, my inexpensive plastic pumps will work for the time being. I hope the ideas and uses for this wonderful soap never stop.

Lisa says:


I am researching soap to be used in my son’s preschool, and possibly the entire elementary and middle school. Currently a disinfecting soap is being used which is not necessary and possibly dangerous.

It’s been suggested that Dr. Bronner’s might be an appropriately healthy solution. The problem is that Dr. Bronner’s is about $60 per gallon while the current soap is about $10 per gallon, so at 95 gallons per year, the cost of change would be $5000 per year. That won’t be approved.

If we were to dilute in the dispensers, what would the ratio be? I appreciate that you mentioned not to dilute in advance because the preservatives are also diluted and would be less effective, decreasing the shelf life.

Is there some more cost effective way to order in bulk the 95 gallons per year?

Thanks very much.

Kate says:

Hi Lisa, can I use dr b’s as laundry detergent? Do I need to mix it with anything?

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Jo – For hand soap, a couple drops of the castile soap on wet hands works great. If you really like dispensers, use a foaming pump dispenser and a dilution of about 1:5 (you can play around with that). Do not put the soap in a regular dispenser. It will clog and squirt sideways or up. For shampoo, if you wet your hair thoroughly, you can add a squirt of the soap directly on your head, or lather up a bit in your hands if you prefer. The cup is for the Hair Rinse, which is generally required as a conditioner. Dilute 1 or 2 capfuls of the Hair Rinse in a cup of warm water and then pour that over your hair.

Hi E – There are two issues with using the soap as a feminine wash, which may or may not affect you. The first is that the soap has an alkaline pH and if you are trying to get pregnant or are pregnant, changes to the pH can be problematic. Secondly, you’ll want to make sure all the soap is rinsed out. Leftover soap can be very drying and ultimately irritating.

All the best,

abigail says:

Honestly? I’d never use that as a douche. Wrong ph. Apple cider vinegar mixed with water. Google it for directions. Don’t stick bubbles where they don’t belong! Take care. 🙂

E says:

Hi Lisa, I was wondering if I can use Dr. Bronner as a douche or is it irritating in lady parts? lol, specially the baby-mild and the tea tree soap. Thank you!!!

Jo says:

Dear Lisa,
I purchased my very first Dr. Bronner’s product (unscented baby-mild pure-Castile liquid) today. I appreciate this basic dilution list, but I’m still a lost…

First question:
If I want to use it as a hand soap:
do I use as is
should I dilute
If the latter, how large of a batch can I make (referring to your comment that the shelf life decreases when soap is diluted)?
I am hoping to make a 13oz batch that fills a dispenser (in the past, it took a little less than 3 months to go through all the soap in the dispenser)

Second question:
Shampoo-was confused about the use straight from bottle vs the diluting recommendations (and yes I read the shampoo blog but was confused by the having to need a cup of water in the shower)

Thank you for your assistance with the above

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi J – The reason for the dilution is pretty much so that you don’t use more than you need. It’s a concentrated soap. So, if you have a wet washcloth and are going to wipe down a counter, you could just put a couple drops on the washcloth and go to town. The spray bottle mentioned above is another option.

All the best,

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Paige – That dilution recipe I mentioned above in a squirt bottle (not in a spray bottle) could be used by squirting some into each bottle and using your bottle brush, or if you have a bunch of bottles to wash, squirt a long stream of the solution into a sink full of water. Sal Suds is a disinfectant. Tea tree oil just gives an extra powerful boost. I would use the All Purpose Sal Suds spray for the toys: 1 Tbsp. Sal Suds in a quart of water with the tea tree essential oil. There’s a steep learning curve at the beginning, but pretty soon it will all be old hat!

Hi April – Yes, EWG gives our castile soaps a hazard rating of 0 or 1, and I’m not really sure why there’s even that variance. This is a really excellent hazard score, but if you’re concerned about the mention of the “C” word, it comes as you said, from the use of tocopherols, hemp seed oil, and I think the citric acid. Tocopherols are vitamin E and can be derived from a variety of sources. Depending on what this source is, there can be some contamination concerns, specifically if the source is petroleum. Ours is derived from certified non-GMO sunflower oil, so there is not the concern. Citric acid is in the same boat – it can come from a vast array of sources. Ours comes from certified non-GMO sugar beets. The hemp seed oil is given a 2 (which is still a low hazard) because of the use restrictions it has in deference to its psychoactive cousin. The specific concern isn’t even stated on EWG, and that’s really because there isn’t one. EWG’s Cosmetics Safety Database,, is an excellent resource and a great starting place. It tells you where you need to ask further questions. Good work!

Hi Kimberly – The castile soap is a great option for cradle cap. You know those super soft, newborn baby brushes with the clear, soft bristles? I take that and put a couple drops of soap on it and wash my baby’s head with circular motions. It’s gentle but cleansing. The peppermint would probably be a little strong. The lavender would be great, though. Be sure to keep it out of the eyes, though.

Hi Rachel – On cats, use our unscented Baby Mild castile for the exact reason you mention. Essential oils are problems for cats and since they lick their fur so thoroughly, we do not want to risk any oils remaining. The unscented works great, though. (The cat may not agree.)

HI Lauren – The cloudiness is from the soap reacting with the minerals in your water and causing them to precipitate out. They’re not a problem. The smell difference is probably because you’ve diluted the essential oils in the soap, and if you added the tea tree oil, that has an unusual, possibly medicinal smell to it. I haven’t met anyone who uses tea tree because they like the scent. Pretty much people use the tea tree because of the antibacterial/antifungal properties. Shelf life on the Sal Suds spray would be a good long time. I’ve never had a bottle of the solution go bad. Maybe if it was 6 months old, you might want to remake it? But why would it not be used up in that time! 🙂

Uses for a gallon of tea tree – The castile soap in general is primarily a body wash. Tea Tree is most commonly used for a facial wash because it is great at balancing problem skin types. It is also great in a foaming hand pump at a ratio of 1:5 or what works for you. Around the house, it is what I use in my bathrooms (1/4 c. in a quart of water) – spray down the surfaces, then in the sinks and tubs, sprinkle a little baking soda and scrub. Rinse with hot water. It’s also a good ant spray – the castile kills them and the tea tree particularly erases their scent trails so they can’t come back! Let me know if you need more ideas!

Hi Michelle – The recipe looks good! I don’t see any potential problems. Let me know how it goes!

Hi Andrea – Not yet. We’re working on that one.
Hi Jeff – The problem with the pump is not any burning on your skin, but rather, the soap will eventually dry inside the pump and shoot out in an unexpected direction, possibly into your eyes. Since your comment was 5 days ago, I’d be surprised if this hasn’t happened already. We do not recommend putting the castile soaps in a pump for this very reason.

Hi Reese – You can add essential oils to the Shikakai soaps if you’d like. They are already disinfecting, but if you’d like to boost it up, feel free. Tea tree essential is pretty potent, so add more with care. Maybe a quarter teaspoon in the 12 oz. bottle of Shikakai.

All the best,

Reese says:

Dear Lisa,

Is it ok to add essential oils to the shikakai soap? I have the tea tree shikakai soap, and was thinking of adding more tea tree oil… How many drops would you add, to a regular size soap pump?


About Lisa Bronner

My grandfather was Dr. Bronner, my family makes soap, and I share ways to use it plus tips on greener living.

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Castile Soap Cheat Sheet

Dilute! Dilute! OK! But how much? Print this guide!


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Hoja de Dilución

Jabón Puro de Castilla Liquido