I first learned about the multipurpose magic soap that is Dr. Bronners Castile soap from watching YouTubers talk about what they use to watch their locs. Apparently this liquid soap was lightweight, was effective in cleaning, did not leave build-up in their hair or on their scalps, and left their hair smelling amazing. I took a trip to my local grocery store and smiled when I saw Dr. Bronners in stock on the lower shelves of the natural section.
My smile shrank a little when I saw the price: the 473 ml bottle costs between $20 and $26 CAD and the larger 946 ml bottle sells for $10 to $14 CAD. Though it was more expensive than any soap or shampoo I’d bought before, I wanted to try it. My scalp is very sensitive and I wanted to find a shampoo that would clean without leaving build-up. Also, it was supposed to last for a long time because it was concentrated. Another factor that justified the price was the fact that it was Certified Fair Trade with 70% Fait Trade ingredients, had not been tested on animals, was a non-GMO product. I am always looking for a bargain but a I also wanted to take steps toward supporting principles I believe in like Fair Trade.
I’ve now been using Dr. Bronner’s Castile soap for about four years and have learned that there are many uses for it aside from as a shampoo. Having one soap that can be used in multiple ways means that in the end I save money and get to avoid the many harsh chemicals in other household cleaners. Two wins.
Here are a few different ways that I use Dr. Bronners Soap:
Washing my Face – In a small travel bottle, I dilute Dr. Bronners with water at a ratio of about 1 to 4 (You guys should know that I barely measure anything). I squirt a bit into my hand and rub on my damp face. I then lightly rub my skin with my exfoliating glove until there’s a light lather and then rinse. Super easy and it leaves my skin looking fresh and my pores tight and right.
Washing my Hair- I dilute the soap with water at a ratio of about 1 to 10 or 15. Again, I don’t measure so I just eyeball what looks right for me. An empty Dr. Bronners bottle works well for this but any recycled bottle will do, of course. The solution works beautifully in my locs. I get the clean smell and feeling that the people on YouTube talked about. It’s important to make sure to dilute the soap though! I haven’t experienced this myself but I saw a video where one girl felt that the thinning of her locs was due to using Dr. B’s too much and/or without diluting it.
Washing dishes- When we run out of dish soap, we use Dr. Bs. Honestly, I like the consistency of dishsoap but this is just a preference developed because that is what I am used to. Again, a diluted mixture of Dr. Bs and water washes dishes just as well as any dish soap and leaves them smelling good too. Because this solution is very runny or viscous, you may be tempted to use more, but you don’t have to. I like using this soap for dishes because I have eczema on my hands so I try to avoid chemicals that can irritate my skin.
Cleaning the Bathroom- A few drops in a spray bottle go a long way. I like using about three drops in the toilet along with baking soda for the abrasion needed to scrub. I use the same duo in cleaning the sink. I have read on the bottle you can use it to clean floors as well. Why not?
In all, the items I can skip on buying by using by using a multipurpose soap like Dr Bronners are:
That’s six products right there that I can money on. It also says on the bottle you can use it to do laundry so I may try that soon as well. It’s nice to not have to buy so many different versions of soap, and to just have one badass one.
In addition to saving money, I’m also avoiding harsh chemicals found in other household cleaners and sodium laureth sulfates that in shampoos that dry the heck out of our hair and can be hazardous for our health and the environment.
If anyone’s interested, I found a list of Ingredients of whats in Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap from the Healthy Planet Canada website. They are: Water, Organic Coconut Oil*, Potassium Hydroxide**, Organic Olive Oil*, Mentha Arvensis*, Organic Hemp Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Organic Peppermint Oil*, Citric Acid, Tocopherol.
So, do you use Dr. Bronners? What for? If you’ve ever used it for laundry, please let me know how that worked out for you.