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Body

Liquid vs. Bar in Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap

The liquid came first – Peppermint to be exact. Bar soap meandered in a few decades later. While there are hardliners in both camps, the difference between liquid and bar is mostly a matter of personal preference. However, there are some differences between the two.

Here are the ingredients side by side for the Baby Unscented Pure-Castile Soap. I chose our simplest soap, which lacks any essential oils, so that the differences are easier to see.

Differences Explained

  • Liquid contains more water.
    • Why: There is just enough water in the liquid soaps to keep them liquid. Any less water and the soap begins to solidify. To test this, leave the cap off your bottle for a day, and you’ll notice the soap’s starting to gel. You can reliquify it with a bit of water. (The thickness, or thinness, of the soap is not due to high water content, but to the consistency of the various oils.)
    • Effect on Performance: None
  • Liquid uses potassium hydroxide to saponify oils; bar uses sodium hydroxide.
    • Why: Hardness – sodium hydroxide produces a harder soap than potassium hydroxide. The purpose of these strong alkalis is to blast apart the oil molecules, separating the glycerin from the fatty acids. The fatty acids then reattach to the sodium or potassium ion, leaving the glycerin and water (hydroxide) free-floating. (Just a sidenote – soap cannot be made any other way. None of these alkalis are left in the soap. Check out the link at the bottom about soapmaking.)
    • Effect on Performance: None
  • Bar contains palm oil, in addition to coconut oil.
    • Why: Palm oil hardens more than coconut oil. Coconut oil, even in its solid state, is mushy, and it melts at 76° F.
    • Effect on Performance: Bar soap is slightly more moisturizing. Palm oil contains stearic acid, which some people find to be less drying than the lauric acid found in coconut oils.
  • Bar contains salt (NaCl – sodium chloride or table salt).
    • Why: Also serves as a hardener.
    • Effect on Performance: Bar soap is slightly more moisturizing. Since our bodies are slightly salty, salt water is gentler on our skin than pure water. Salty soap is, too.

Other Differences in Formulation

  • How the Hemp Seed and Jojoba oils are added:
    • In the liquid soaps, the hemp seed and jojoba oils are saponified, i.e. turned into soap, along with the coconut and olive oils. However, in the bar soaps, these two oils are added unaltered after the saponification process. This is called “superfatting” the soaps. A while back my brothers tried superfatting the liquids with the hemp seed and jojoba oils, but found that the oils separated out and floated to the top.
    • Effect on Performance: Bar soaps produce a creamier lather and are slightly more moisturizing.
  • Amount of essential oils:
    • This is only relevant to the scented soaps (everything except the Baby Unscented). The liquid soap have a higher percentage of the essential oils than do the bar soaps. Once again, the issue at stake is hardness. The bar soaps would soften with that high a concentration of the essential oils.
    • Effect on Performance: This is entirely a matter of personal preference. Those who like an intense whiff of scent, and those who are looking for the specific benefits of the particular essential oils, should opt for the liquids. Those who like a little scent, but not too much, the bar soap would be better.

Differences in Usage

For all body applications, they are entirely interchangeable – from washing face, hair, or body, or shaving. For around the house purposes, you would need to take the extra step of dissolving the bar soaps in water before using them in a spray bottle solution, but they are equally effective. Also, the bar soap can be grated to achieve a kind of powdered soap for laundry, although the liquid works just as well.

Volume of Actual Soap

I don’t know how to de-math this, but people who put together their own recipes for cleaners might want to know this. Bar soaps are 5% water; liquids are 61%. The chemistry is a little different for both, but considering that a bar of soap weighs 5 oz, and thus 4.75 oz of it is soap, you would need 12.18 ounces (a little over 1 ½ c.) of liquid soap to equal the soap content of a 5 oz bar. Doing the math the other way, 1 cup of liquid soap equals approximately 2/3 of a bar (or 3.64 oz.) of Dr. B’s bar soap.

Bottom Line

The Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Bar and Pure-Castile Liquid Soaps are interchangeable. However, the bars are slightly more moisturizing. The liquids are slightly more scented.

If you want more info on the process of soapmaking, check out this article, Making the Best Soap. And here’s a video tour of our Liquid Soap Production Factory.

If you have any other questions about what is in the soap and why or where it is sourced and why or anything else, let me know!

Wondering how to use the Pure-Castile Liquid & Bar Soaps for personal care and house care? You may find these blog posts helpful.

Download Now!

Castile Soap Cheat Sheet

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

DOWNLOAD

Download Now!

Bar Soap Cheat Sheet

Bar Soap aficonados, this one's for you!

DOWNLOAD

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Larry says:

Hello,
I’m sorry if you have answered this question, however when I purchase a bottle of Dr. B’s soap, does the bottle come vacuum sealed ? Thank you !

Zen says:

This is great information because I have found so many recipes that call for using Dr. Bronner’s liquid or bar soaps and I want to use it. However I read that potassium hydroxide can cause organ toxicity. But I read above that it is not left in the soap after the saponification process. But does that mean that our bodies don’t absorb it at all? I just want to get a good understanding so I can make a healthy decision. I have recently been dealing with hypothyroidism and don’t want to increase my symptoms further because the hormones play a huge role. Thanks for your reply and for writing this article, this is extremely helpful!

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Darby – I missed out on cloth diapering when my kiddos were little. However, at the recommendation of friends, I have to agree with what you’ve heard. Castile soap is not as clean rinsing as it needs to be for cloth diapers. A better option is Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds, which is a mild, non-toxic detergent. This works really well on cloth diapers and is very clean rinsing. I think you’ll be very happy with that.

All the best,
Lisa

Darby says:

Thank you so much for the product suggestion! :^)

Darby says:

I’m cloth diapering my one month old daughter. I’ve been using a homemade laundry detergent for over a year now that uses your lovely liquid Castile soap as an ingredient. We have been very pleased with the laundry results, but I’ve recently read some comments online stating that using a detergent containing liquid castile soap isn’t good for my cloth diapers (it might build up on the surface and cause repelling issues).

Please clear this issue up for me once and for all: is liquid castile soap safe for cloth diapers? I don’t like the store-bought detergent recommended to me by cloth diapering friends that I’ve used a few times while I search for an answer.

Thanks so much!

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Diana – I’m totally with you there! Between the pump and the bar, the Shikakai pump soaps would be more moisturizing than the bar. They just feel different, so I think you need to try it out. It comes down to a lot of personal preference.

Hi Pam – I’ve got more coffee today, so if you want to send the prices you’re finding on the bars and liquids, I can dollar cost average it for you!

Hi Myra – With the non-foaming pumps, it’s actually the soap itself solidifying in the pump apparatus that is clogging it. We 100% encourage people not to use the soaps in there because on the way to clogging the pump fully, the soap often makes a partial clog and causes the solution to shoot out sideways or up into the user’s face. Did you find the spray bottle clogged even at a dilution of 1/4 c. soap in 1 quart water? It’s probably the same thing – the soap drying in the sprayer.

All the best,
Lisa

Myra says:

Spray bottles and non-foaming pumps in my experience get clogged from the glycerin in the liquid soap even though I diluted it…so it was not successful to use.

Pam says:

Hi Lisa,

Thank you so much for your reply and for figuring out the math on that one! So, I would definitely need a bit more of the liquid to equal the cleaning power of the grated bar soap. Now to decide which is more economical!

Diana says:

Lisa,
Thanks for the link for the post about the comparison between the Castile and Shikakai (pump) soaps. I am trying to determine which would be a better all over body soap in the shower between the bar and the pump. I would like to see a comparison of these two soaps. I guess since I will soon have one of each item, I can do my own comparison but I would love you to weigh in on the pros and cons of the pump vs bar. BTW – I am getting my box today from Dr. Bronners and I feel like a kid on Christmas. I have my spray bottles and pumps ready;)
Diana

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Jin – The amount of water required to use the bar soaps works to dilute it as well. That is why we don’t emphasize diluting the bar as much. If you’re experiencing dryness, the Lavender Coconut lotion, http://www.drbronner.com/DBMS/ORGANICLOTION/SD0304.html, is a super light moisturizer that I use from time to time when my skin feels tight.

Hi Jinny – I was so curious about this idea that I tried it out. I found that the bar soap does not melt at any sort of household temperature. This makes sense since we put several things into the bars to make them harden (palm oil and salt) so that they don’t dissolve at the first touch of water in your shower. However, I think you might have better results if you combine the liquid castile soap with the cocoa butter. The effect on shelf life shouldn’t be of too much concern since you’ll probably use up your creation within a couple months. The shelf life would still be much longer. As far as the effect of the soap on your hair, as with all hair products, your hair demands to be pH balanced, so if you use the soap, which is alkaline on your hair, you need an acidic rinse. Some people use apple cider vinegar with good results. Dr. Bronner’s developed a Citrus Hair Rinse, http://www.drbronner.com/DBMS/ORGANICHAIRCARE/SD0701.html, that works really well. I also wrote about my experiences making the switch here: http://lisa.drbronner.com/?p=256.

Hi Alexander and Stephanie – You are not alone in liking these new scents. They are very nice. Once we iron out details such as a big enough supply of materials, we’ll see about expansion!

Hi Pam – I’m drinking an extra cup of coffee to tackle this one! Whoever said we wouldn’t need that high school algebra? Bar soaps are 5% water; liquids are 61% water. The chemistry is a little different for both, but considering that a bar soap is 5 oz, and thus 4.75 oz of non-water soap, you would need 12.18 ounces of liquid soap to equal the non-water content of a 5 oz bar. But you only wanted 1 Tbsp. of the bar soap, which would equal in soap content roughly 2.5 Tbsp. of liquid soap.

The tocopherols are from certified non-GMO sunflower oils.

Hi Diana – Welcome to Dr. Bronner’s! Great questions! Check out this post comparing the castile soaps to the pump soaps: http://lisa.drbronner.com/?p=1561. Let me know if that didn’t cover it. The soaps are already disinfectants. We do have Tea Tree varieties in both our castile and pump soaps, but feel free to add more if you would like to your foaming dispensers. Our soaps also have naturally occurring glycerin. It is a natural byproduct from the soap making reaction. It can be siphoned off and sold separately, but we choose to leave it in there because it makes our soaps extra creamy and moisturizing. Using your reverse osmosis water for the pumps would be a better option. It’s not required, so if someone else reading this does not have an RO system, don’t worry about it. However, you would have far fewer minerals in the water that would react with the soap, causing it to become cloudy and leave behind scale.

Let me know if you come across other questions!

All the best,
Lisa

Diana says:

Hi Lisa,
I have recently decided to purchase a large assortment of Dr. Bronners products due to the fact that I was unable to find unscented hand soap. However, I still have a few questions regarding product differences. This was a great post regarding the difference between bar and liquid soaps, however, I would like to see a 3rd option: the pump soap.

It would be great to see a side by side comparison of all three.

Also, here are some questions remaining: I have heard that tea tree oil acts as an antibacterial; do you recommend adding it to the foaming soap dispensers? I have also heard that glycerin produces a better hand soap: do you recommend adding it to the foaming soap dispensers?

I use an RO system for drinking water only; the rest of the house water is very hard with a high pH. In this case, do you recommend mixing the soap with RO water for the soap dispensers?

Pam says:

Lisa, re your comment on February 25, 2014 to Pinar and Myra – you mentioned that your tocopherols are derived from sunflower oil. Is your sunflower oil organic? I ask this because almost all sunflower oil that is not organic is now GMO. Thanks.

Pam says:

I have a recipe for laundry soap for front load washers that calls for 1 tablespoon of washing soda, 1 tablespoon of borax and 1 tablespoon of GRATED Dr Bronner’s Bar Soap. Do you know how much Dr Bronner’s I would need if I used the liquid instead of the grated bar soap? Thanks so much!

Stephanie says:

I second the comment about the Japan-only scents. My husband loves the Sandalwood Jasmine and I love the Cherry Blossom. They are hands-down our favorite scents. Really looking forward to the day you make them available for purchase in the U.S.!

Alexander says:

Just giving you guys a heads up. I have been using Dr. Bronners for a long time and when the Sandalwood Jasmine came out here I decided to give it a try. It is by far my favorite scent. I am an American livin here in Japan and I have to buy the soap off base at a store call Tokyu Hands. I usually buy it on Amazon.com, but I pay a higher price at Tokyu Hands just to get the Sandalwood scent.
Alex

Jinny says:

“Hi Jinny – This is an intriguing idea! I think you would have the best results if you added a little bit of water as well to the bar. Otherwise you might scorch the bar as you heated it. Perhaps 1/4 c. for a whole bar, but increase the water if necessary. Then, go ahead and add the cocoa butter while the mixture is still in the double boiler. Let me know how it goes!”

Hi Lisa!
I was wondering if I could melt the cocoa butter first and melt the dr. bronner’s bar in it. I would think the water would make the product have a shorter shelf life and possibly get moldy… Also, I was wondering why my hair feels kind of gritty/squeaky clean when I use the bar soap as shampoo. Thanks!

Jin says:

Hi!

I was wondering why one needs to dilute the liquid soap to use as detergent and other household cleaning supplies, whereas the bar soap does not need to be diluted. This makes me wonder, do I have to dilute this solution even more to be used as beauty products? If so, is it okay to use the bar soap directly on my hair and face? I’ve been using it for my face and body directly, and my face does seem to feel dry… Thanks!

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Monte – Absolutely! Our soaps have been certified for use with grey water systems. Way to go on the water conservation!

Hi Pinar & Myra – Yes, tocopherols are used as a preservative, and they are a form of vitamin E. Tocopherols can be derived from natural sources or produced synthetically. The synthetic ones carry a contamination risk of hydroquinone. However, naturally derived ones (ours are from sunflower oil) do not carry this risk. I hope that helps clear up any concern. Please let me know.

All the best,
Lisa

pinar says:

Hi Lisa,

I bought baby mild pure castile soap (liquid) and then I searched internet about this item and I noticed this item has including carcinogenic stuff which is tocopherol. I saw this information http://www.ewg.gov . I am really confused. Please could you give information about this. Thanks a lot.

Pinar

monte morton says:

Dear Ms. Bronner: My wife and I use and enjoy Dr. Bronner’s 5 oz. bar’s of lavender pure-castile soap.

With the water shortage in California, we are wondering whether we could save the bath water for watering the plants. Do you know whether soapy bath water would harm the plants or be o.k.? Thank you.

Monte & Carol Morton
e-mail: monto@sbcglobal.net
310-325-3900

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Jinny – This is an intriguing idea! I think you would have the best results if you added a little bit of water as well to the bar. Otherwise you might scorch the bar as you heated it. Perhaps 1/4 c. for a whole bar, but increase the water if necessary. Then, go ahead and add the cocoa butter while the mixture is still in the double boiler. Let me know how it goes!

Hi Joan – The bar soap is slightly more moisturizing than the liquid, so if you’re already using the bar, that is probably the best bet. It is a very gentle soap, but it is always possible that someone is sensitive to an ingredient in it. If you want to try stopping the soap, and keeping the rest of her hygiene and diet routine the same, you should be able to tell if it is the soap. This time of year, it is also a possibility that her skin is extra dry and causing redness.

Hi Becky – The sodium chloride that is used in the bar soaps is not iodized. It is pure NaCl.

All the best,
Lisa

Becky says:

Hi Lisa,

Thanks so much for this information. I have a sensitivity to iodine. Is the salt used in the bar product iodized or non-iodized. Thanks.

Joan says:

I started using baby mild soap for my 4 year old daughter, I’ve noticed she started getting rash on her scalp and a little on her body…I’m wondering if the liquid soap will be more gentle on her?

Jinny says:

Hi Lisa!

Your website is so addicting. I’ve been reading it for the past few days, and I’ve learned so much!
I was wondering if I can melt the soap bars over simmering water (like melting chocolate for fondue) and if I can treat this bar of soap like a soap base. I want to use this for my hair and would like to put cocoa butter in it somehow so that my frizzy hair would be tamed. Is this method possible? Thanks a bunch!

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Olivia – Sprouts should definitely take it back if you have concerns. If you did grab the number, let me know what it is. We’ve been putting a seal on the bottles for a while now.

all the best,
Lisa

Olivia Reed says:

Thank you for your quick reply, Lisa. It is quite watery and the smell isn’t very strong, so I suspect it may have been tampered with. Why, I can’t imagine. I was surprised when I bought it to see that it wasn’t safety-sealed in any way. Is that always the case? I think I’ll take this back to Spouts and talk with them about it. Tomorrow I’ll send you the number on the bottle (if there is one!).

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Darci – Since the ingredients in the Sal Suds are derived from coconut, occasionally parts of the coconut coir gets into the finished product, despite our filtering. This does not affect the ability of the Sal Suds. Also, if the Sal Suds gets cold (below 60-ish F), it becomes milky white. This also doesn’t harm the ability of the product, and if you’d like, you can put it in a sink of warm water to clarify it. If you still have concerns, please send me a picture of the bottle and clump – lisa@drbronner.com

Hi Sonora – The amount of bar soap that will come off the bar and on to your body during a shower is well diluted by the water of the shower. You are not going to end up using too concentrated of an amount there.

Hi Olivia – Reading your description of the soap that you have, I am wondering at its age and history. The peppermint castile really should have a “knock your socks off” pepperminty smell, but this can fade if the soap is particularly old (over 3 years) or if it has been kept in a very hot or bright area. The soap is not particularly thick, but neither is it watery, so I’m also wondering if it has somehow been diluted without your knowing about it. (I realize that sounds like a conspiracy theory, but who knows?) How does it lather? If your bottle has a number printed on it (not on the label but on the bottle itself), I can tell you how old the soap is. If there is no number, we’re looking at a bottle that’s at least 10 years old.

All the best,
Lisa

Olivia Reed says:

I’ve been using the peppermint liquid soap for body wash/shampoo. It’s very watery and the odor is not very strong. Isn’t it supposed to be thicker/stronger scented? I can’t understand why anyone would need to water it down for any reason–it’s already totally diluted.

An aside: Please don’t kill ants. I always fed ants in my kitchen window every year from April till November. I put water and honey at the source of their entry, and they never bothered me. For years I did that until my neighbors poisoned the entire colony. They died so slowly. I wept when the last few ants that were still coming to eat were so weak and trying to comfort each other by touching their antennae. Eventually they disappeared forever. We have very few bees, ladybugs or butterflies anymore. So please don’t kill insects! 🙁

Sonora says:

it’s suggested to dilute the liquid soap for a body wash/shampoo, how does that relate to the bar soap?

Darci says:

I have a bottle of Salsuds which has developed a blob/clump float on the bottom and slight discoloration near the bottom. What could have caused this and should I just toss the bottle?.

I use the regular liquid soaps for cleaning and hand soap, and to wash our dog. And we use the bar soaps In the bath.

For some reason I use a few squirts of Salsuds, a fe w squirts of the liquid soap and a touch of vinegar I. A spray bottle of water to clean just about everything in my house. Perhaps the Salsuds is not necessary?

Thanks! I can’t live without dr. Bronners soaps!

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Jane – This bottle is a bit old. It was bottled on March 9, 2011. The soap has a three year shelf life, so you have a little over four months. After this point, the scent from the essential oils will diminish although the soap will still be an effective cleaner. You may want to take it back to the store, though. They should probably check their inventory.

All the best,
Lisa

Jane says:

I saw this lot no 1068R1631 on the bottle of Rose liquid soap that I bought from my local store. The sales girl told me there’s no expiration date. Is this true? I emailed your company for an answer about a week ago but to date there’s no reply. Hope to her from you soon. Thank you.

Lisa Bronner says:

I am so sorry for my delay in responding here!

Mel – We used to source the tocopherols from both soy and sunflower oils, but now it is just from sunflower oil. I apologize for that confusion.

Anh Le – There is a lot code printed on the bottle somewhere – not on the label. The first four numbers are a Julian date, where the first number is the year and the next three are the day of the year out of 365, so 3001 would be January 1, 2013. If you want to share the lot code, I can decipher it for you.

Cindy – The Shikakai pump soaps also contain sugar (a natural humectant, drawing moisture into the skin, which is why we see sugar scrubs and such in stores) as well as white grape juice for the same reason. The Shikakai soaps are great for the body from head to toe but would not be good for house cleaning. They are much more moisturizing for the body, but much less versatile for everything else.

Sarah and Laura – We frequently use Japan as a test market due to its size yet very controlled distribution. The Sandalwood Jasmine is one that is there now, and depending on how it does, we’ll be expanding the distribution.

Priya – I am looking into the process for the vitamin e and I will get back to you.

Karen – Dr. Bronner’s is all I use to clean my house. Once you decide on the scents you’d like, definitely buy them in the larger bottles to make the sprays and such. Since you use so little per spray bottle (1 Tbsp. of Sal Suds) that gallon will last you a long time, even with cleaning a lot of houses. Being able to advertise that you are a non-toxic housecleaner, as well as demonstrating that you have a good amount of knowledge in the subject, will certainly be a benefit to your business. Good luck! Let me know if you come across any questions.

All the best,
Lisa

Karen says:

Lisa, I’ve watched Dr. Bronner’s movie and have used the products with wonderful results. Honestly it’s miraculous with what it did to my face: it cleared up my actinic keratosis blemishes!!!! If only the medical community would get on the band wagon, hey? I’ve spent about $14,000 with surgeries and “burning” sessions over the years and I truly didn’t expect this with a soap.

I’m a house cleaner by trade and would like some guidance on the chance that using Dr. Bronner’s for my business? I am purchasing 4oz bottles of each type this week and also some of the Sal Suds and experimenting.

I love your Youtube videos and thank you for sharing your knowledge.

Laura Johnston says:

Lisa, how can I buy one of the liquid soups from Japan? The sandalwood and jasmine I got as a gift is fantastic. Cant find it anywhere.

Priya says:

I’m just wondering, how do you obtain the vitamin e from the sunflower oils? Is it something that’s done in a lab or something that can be done at home?

Sarah A says:

Just wanted to say that I love the Japan-only scents. I just discovered the Sandalwood and Jasmine today, and it’s lovely. I really hope this one will come to the States, along with the Cherry Blossom (I’m going to be moving back stateside in the fall, and I’m really going to miss it). I’ve been using Dr. Bronner’s off and on since I was a kiddo, so this soap is really close to my heart.

Cindy says:

Urgh, I forgot another question I meant to ask in the previous post too!

I often use Dr Bronner’s “dry clean” method of bathing when I don’t feel like a full shower (i.e. no clothes, locked bathroom and a wring cloth with a full sink – sorry for the imagery!) and I’m guessing that having the residue of the liquid soap is ok on the body? We don’t need to separately rinse it off since it has no sulphates and other chemical nasties that dry the skin?

Many thanks! Cindy (again!)

Cindy says:

Dear Lisa, my question is in relation to the difference between the liquid soaps and the pump hand and body soaps.

Apart from the shikakai in the pump soaps, is that the only difference really? I am guessing the pump soaps are designed to dry the hands and body less, due to that shikakai? Otherwise I take it this would not necessarily be a good substitute to use as an all round soap like the classic liquid soaps for all purpose cleaning and hair etc…

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!
Cindy

Anh Le says:

Hi Lisa,
I juat got my baby mild únscented liquid soap, but could not find expiry date on the package. Can you tell me where it is normally on bottle?
Thanks

Mel says:

Hi Lisa,

With regards to the question asked about if the tocopherol (vitamin E) in your products containing soy.. I saw an e-mail stating that your vitamin E is derived from soy and sunflower oils so I am confused. I have a bad soy allergy so I’d like to double check before using the soap, does the liquid soaps contain soy? Is the Vitamin E derived from soy?

Thank you!

Mel

P.S. This is the e-mail:

Hi there,

Thanks for writing. All our products are gluten free. We use natural tocopherols (vitamin E), derived from soy and sunflower oils, as a preservative in our personal care products.

Please let me know if I can be of further help.

Take care,

Erin Trudeau
Customer Service Manager
Dr. Bronner�s Magic Soaps

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Diane – I do not have an HE machine, so I can only advise you based on hearsay. The recommendation is to use half the amount you would use in a top-loader. Regarding borax and super washing soda, these are both very intense cleaning agents. Borax is also toxic to the skin and if inhaled. Although they are biodegradable and sustainable, there are still very strong. I would not recommend using them for every wash.

All the best,
Lisa

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi David – I’m sorry to hear of the dryness. There can be so many factors such as our own age, changes to the water (flouride? chlorine?), weather changes… I wouldn’t recommend trying to add anything to the soaps. It wouldn’t combine well. They do have glycerin in them already naturally from the soapmaking process. You may need occasionally to do a follow up moisturizing with lotion or coconut oil. You may find that you only need to do this once a week or so. Or maybe more at first to catch up to accumalted dryness, but then it would be back to once a week.

When I lived in a more extreme climate than southern California (although we do have four seasons), I switched to bar soaps only during the winter. I did notice a difference.

Hope that helps!
Lisa

Diane Cockerham says:

I just stumbled upon your website in my search to find a laundry soap recipe using Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap. I have it in both the bar and liquid form…but wanted to use the liquid in my recipe. Thank you so much for your thorough explanation of the equivalency of the liquid to the bar. I’m very excited about getting started with using my recipe. Do you have any experience or knowledge about the use of these recipes with high efficiency washing machines? Using such ingredients as….Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap, 20 Mule Team Borax, & Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda?
Thank you so much for your time,
Diane Cockerham

David B says:

Hello Lisa,

I have a question about using your liquid Soaps. I have been using them (a mixture of several flavors) for a couple of years now, and for some reason, my skin is getting very dry. So dry I have had to temporarily switch to the “1/4 moisturizing” soap. I did see where you said that your bar soaps could work better for me, but I do love the liquids. Also, I buy them by the gallon, so I’ve got quite a bit. My question is… is there something that I could add to the liquid soap to make it less drying, like glycerin, lecithin, or other oils?
I thought I would ask you before I started experimenting and making a mess.
Thanks for your reply and your great products

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Stephanie – I love the idea of dark purple! I’ll have to campaign for that one. The very next post will have a peek into growing up Bronner, so to speak.

All the best,
Lisa

Stephanie says:

Thanks so much for the short history of the soap scents, Lisa! I thought it was interesting and would love a longer blog post on it with some more info from your family. I would also love it if the Cherry Blossom and Green Tea scents were made available in the U.S. (and the Sandalwood Jasmine, too!). I guess the only label hue missing is dark purple. (Perhaps “Spiced Plum” or “Fig” would round out the collection instead? I would certainly buy it!).

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Lindsey – The stated shelf life is 3 years for both liquid and bar, but I have heard many a time of people with older bottles that were still fabulous. If it looks and smells good, it hasn’t gone bad.

All the best,
Lisa

lindsey says:

Hi Lisa! What is the normal shelf life for the liquid and the bar soap? Thanks so much!

Lisa Bronner says:

Hi Kirsten – The unscented Baby Mild would probably be the best liquid for healing the skin. It doesn’t have any essential oils, and has a higher ratio of olive oil, which is more nourishing.

Hi Cristina – Both the liquid and the bar soap have the retained glycerin. We don’t pull it out of either. (For non-soapies out there – glycerin is a natural by product of soap making. An oil molecule has three fatty acids attached to a glcyerin molecule. During soapmaking, the fatty acids are split off of the glycerin and combine with sodium or potassium hydroxide, and the glycerin is left free-floating.)

Hi Sharon – The lightly printed code indicates it was bottled in 2006, on January 13. If it smells fine and works well, go with it.

Hi Kacen and Kathy – This doesn’t work perfectly because the bar soap is formulated to be hard, with the palm oil and the salt, so they don’t translate to a liquid form. If you’re using the soap in a recipe, substituting bar for liquid, or liquifying the bar and then adding it will probably work, but if you’re just trying to turn the bar into a liquid, it will be difficult. You can add more water for immediate use.

If anyone else has made this work, please share your experience!

All the best,
Lisa

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Lisa Bronner

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