Castile Soap for Healthy Skin and Hair

What Is Castile Soap?

As the name suggests, Castile soap originated in Castile, Spain. “The original Castile soap was made from pure olive oil and sodium carbonate. However, through the years, the formula has evolved to include other plant-based oils and lye,” Green explains. That’s why, nowadays, shoppers can find Castile soaps made with everything from coconut and walnut oils to almond and hemp. Still, olive oil-based Castile soap remains the most popular.

While many soaps are enriched with oils these days, very few use them as their base. In fact, most soaps are made with tallow (a more ambiguous—and more shoppable—name for animal fat). That’s what makes Castile soap so special. Since it doesn’t use animal fat, Murphy-Rose says that Castile soap is an environmentally friendly, biodegradable, vegetable-based alkaline soap.

The Benefits of Castile Soap

  • Gently removes dirt and debris from the skin (as well as other surfaces)
  • Vegan
  • Biodegradable
  • Ethically produced
  • Free of harsh chemicals

In addition to being one of the most eco-friendly soaps that exists, Murphy-Rose says that Castile soap is incredibly hydrating, too. “It both cleanses and moisturizes,” she says, noting that the high glycerin content gives it intense hydration capabilities.

Castile Soap Uses


  • Facial Cleanser

Thanks to Castile soap’s natural cleansing and hydrating properties, Murphy-Rose says that it works well as a universal facial cleanser. While you can use a store-bought Castile soap as is, a variety of DIY formulas exist, too.

  • Makeup Remover

Thanks to its gentle, oil-based nature, Castile soap may work not only as a makeup remover but also for makeup brushes, too. That’s because oils are known for their ability to loosen the grip of stubborn, long-lasting makeup,1 resulting in both a clean complexion and clean bristles.

  • Body Wash

The same way it works well as a facial cleanser, Murphy-Rose and Green both say that Castile soap is a great body cleanser as well. This may be particularly true during the cooler months of the year, when you're looking not only to replenish hydration but help lock it in, too.

  • Shave Oil

Another benefit of Castile soap’s rich oil base, according to both Murphy-Rose and Green, is the fact that it provides the perfect amount of protection and glide for shaving. Simply massage a quarter-sized amount onto the area you want to shave and proceed with the process.

  • Shampoo

Castile soap doesn’t only cleanse the skin, though. Both Green and Murphy-Rose say that it’s suitable as a shampoo, too. So whether you’re looking for a does-it-all product for your next camping trip or simply want to pare down the products in your home, adding a bottle of Castile soap can be extremely worthwhile.


Castille soap is a multifunctional cleanser that has a variety of beauty benefits. Ssuitable as a more sustainable laundry detergent, as well as a household cleaner. In that way, you can think of Castile soap as your one-stop shop for cleaning of all kinds. 

Source: Byrdie