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25 Castile Soap Uses That Will Benefit Your Body And Home

Uses For Castile Soap include everything from cleaning floors to dusting to cleaning your skin.

Due to its usefulness and versatility, coming up with a comprehensive list of Castile soap uses could take a lifetime! From head-to-toe body care to everyday cleaning, laundry, and pet care, Castile soap is the ultimate do-it-all soap for your home and body, and we’ll be exploring some of the best ways to use it throughout this post.

But first, a quick review: What is Castile soap, how does it differ from other soaps, and why is it such a popular product?

Castile soap is made from vegetable fats and has a ton of uses.

What Is Castile Soap?

All soaps are made from fat, but whereas most soaps are made with animal fats, Castile soap is made with vegetable oils. This unique soap originated in the Castile region of Spain (hence the name, which is sometimes misspelled “Castille”) where it was made using locally-produced olive oil. Some manufacturers still make Castile soap with olive oil today, while others use coconut, hemp, avocado, almond, walnut, and other vegetable oils.

Regardless of its base, Castile soap is typically concentrated, biodegradable, and cleans gently, yet effectively. It can be used in a dizzying number of different ways — not least as a great all-purpose cleaner! Below, you can read about some of my favorite uses for Castile soap and learn more about its various benefits!

25 Uses For Castile Soap For Your Body, Home & More

Use Castile soap to make a 4-ingredient natural body wash.

1. Natural Body Wash

Castile soap makes a great body wash, both on its own or as an ingredient in a 4-ingredient natural body wash. Moisturizing honey and skin-nourishing oils are the perfect additions to Castile soap’s cleansing properties, and the finished product doesn’t contain harsh detergents or synthetic ingredients.

2. Gentle All-Purpose Cleaner

You can use Castile soap to make a gentle all-purpose cleaning spray that’s perfect for cleaning everyday messes. Just add 1/4 cup of the soap to 1 quart of warm water, then stir and pour the solution into a spray bottle.

Add a few drops of lemon oil or tea tree oil to your spray for an antibacterial boost (or use Dr. Bronner’s Tea Tree Castile Liquid Soap, which already has tea tree oil in its formula!)

I use Castile soap to make my handy reusable wipes.

3. Reusable Cleaning Wipes

Store-bought antibacterial wipes are certainly convenient for wiping down countertops and other surfaces, but they’re also expensive and create unnecessary waste. But you can use Castile soap to make your own kitchen cleaning wipes that are just as convenient and reusable to boot!

4. Fruit & Veggie Wash

Use Castile soap to remove dirt and other impurities from your fresh produce. Fill your sink or a large bowl with water, then add 1/4 teaspoon of Castile soap and swish your produce items around in the water to remove dirt and debris. Rinse the produce under cool running water, pat it dry, and it’ll be clean and ready to eat!

Castile soap is great for foaming dispensers.

5. Foaming Hand Wash

One of my personal favorite ways to use Castile soap is in my favorite natural foaming hand soap recipe. All you need to make it is some Castile soap, a bit of coconut oil, some germ-fighting essential oils, and a foaming hand soap bottle. It’s a great money-saver, and I love that it leaves my hands feeling clean, but not dried out.

6. Deter Ants

To make a spray that will help deter ants, add 1/4 cup of tea tree Castile soap to 1 quart of warm water. (If you can’t find this variety, you can use plain or unscented Castile soap and add 6-8 drops of tea tree essential oil to get the same effect.) Pour the soap solution into a spray bottle, then spritz it over areas where you’ve spotted ants hanging around. (Keep it away from plants though, as it may burn them!)

I’ve got plenty more useful advice on how to get rid of common ants and how to get rid of sugar ants elsewhere on my website!

One great way to use Castile soap is making a soft scrub by adding baking soda.

7. “Soft Scrub” Cleanser

Use Castile soap to make your own homemade “Soft Scrub” style abrasive cleanser, which also contains baking soda to help scrub away tough grime. Perfect for scrubbing out sinks, bathtubs, and more!

8. Baby Soap

Castile soap is very gentle, making it a great option to use on sensitive baby skin! Add 1 ounce of soap to 2 ounces of purified or distilled water, along with 3-5 drops of lavender essential oil, if desired. Use the solution to wash your baby as usual, taking care to keep the soapy water out of their eyes.

Use Castile soap, Neem oil, and water to make an anti-fungal insecticide spray for your garden plants.

9. Oil Soap Garden Spray

For gardeners, insect infestations, fungal infections, and other diseases are very real threats! Luckily, you can use Castile soap and neem oil to make a DIY oil soap garden spray that will act as a natural insecticide and fungicide! My daughter Britta has had luck using this spray in her vegetable garden to protect her squash and zucchini plants from powdery mildew.

10. Shaving Cream

Rub some Castile soap (a little goes a long way!) between your wet hands to create a luscious lather for shaving. The oils in the soap will help the razor glide across your skin to prevent razor burn and nicks. Use it on your face, underarms, legs, or anywhere, really!

Shampoo your dog with Castile soap and it will leave his coat shiny and soft.

11. Dog Shampoo

Because it’s so gentle, Castile soap makes a great dog shampoo too! Just wet your dog’s coat and work a small amount of soap into it until you achieve a good lather. Continue shampooing, then rinse well — once their coat dries, it will be clean, shiny, and fresh!

12. Dishwashing Solution

You can even use Castile soap while hand washing dishes! Fill your sink with 10 parts warm water and 1 part soap, then use the solution to wash and rinse your dishes as usual. To make a dishwashing liquid you can store in a bottle, use 1 1/2 cups of water, 1/2 cup of Castile soap, and 1 tablespoon of washing soda. Put it into a pump bottle or squeeze bottle and mix well.

Use Castile soap to make a honey facial cleanser.

13. Honey Facial Cleanser

Castile soap is a star ingredient in one of my favorite DIY beauty concoctions: a homemade honey facial cleanser. Honey acts as a humectant, helping to attract and retain moisture in your skin, and offers a dose of skin-nourishing antioxidants as well! Best of all, this cleanser washes away dirt and impurities without stripping away natural oils.

14. Window Cleaner

If your windows could use a good cleaning, Castile soap can help power through the grime. Add 1 tablespoon of soap to 1 quart of water, then pour the mixture into a spray bottle. Spray liberally onto your windows, then scrub with a sponge or scouring pad. Rinse with club soda or a mixture of 1 part water and 1 part vinegar for clean, shiny windows.

Use Castile soap to clean your toilet bowl -- just a few drops is all it takes.

15. Toilet Touch-Ups

Castile soap can help you keep your toilet clean and fresh between more thorough cleanings. Just put a few drops of soap into your toilet, give it a quick swish with your toilet brush, then flush.

16. Foot Scrub

Get silky smooth, sandal-ready feet with a quick and easy scrub! Combine 1 cup of sugar, 1 tablespoon of Castile soap, 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, and 4 drops of peppermint essential oil, then use it to scrub away dry skin for softer feet!

Use Castile soap in the washing machine to banish dust mites from bedding.

17. Banish Dust Mites From Bedding

To kill and eliminate dust mites from your bedding, add 1/3 cup of Castile soap to your washing machine along with your bedding, then add 1/2 cup of vinegar into the fabric softener cup or dispenser. (Have an HE washer? Use 2-3 tablespoons of soap and 1/4 cup of vinegar instead.) Wash the bedding with hot water, then dry it with your dryer’s hottest setting.

18. Clear Sinus Congestion

Castile soap with added essential oils can help clear sinus congestion. Just fill a large bowl with hot water and add a squeeze of peppermint soap or eucalyptus soap, then lean over the bowl and drape a towel over your head to trap the steam. Breathe deeply, and your airways will feel clearer in no time.

Adding Castile soap to your mop water leaves your floors gleaming.

19. Mopping Solution

Make a simple and effective mopping solution by adding 1/2 cup of Castile soap to 3 gallons of hot water. Dip a mop into the solution and mop your way to clean, shiny floors!

20. Makeup Brush Cleaner

Castile soap also makes a gentle cleaning solution for makeup brushes. Once a month, squirt a small amount of soap into a bowl, then fill the rest of the bowl with warm water. Swish your brushes around in the soapy water, then rinse them with cool water until it runs clear. Allow the brushes to dry completely before using them again.

Use Castile soap to make a gentle feminine cleanser.

21. Gentle Feminine Cleanser

Castile soap, along with other natural ingredients like coconut oil and witch hazel, can make a natural intimate cleaner that’s both gentle and refreshing.

22. Makeup Remover

Make a simple makeup remover solution by combining equal amounts of Castile soap, witch hazel, and the carrier oil of your choice. Apply the mixture to a soft cloth or cotton pad and use it to gently remove your eye makeup.

My homemade citrus degreaser recipe uses Castile soap to cut through all kinds of grease and grime.

23. Homemade Citrus Degreaser

Combine lemon essential oil with a bit of baking soda and Castile soap, and you’ve got the best homemade degreaser spray around! Greasy kitchen messes won’t know what hit them.

24. Laundry Soap

To a gallon of water, add 1 cup of liquid Castile soap, 3/4 cup of baking soda, and 1/4 cup of sea salt or epsom salt and mix well. Use about 1/4 cup of this homemade laundry soap per load, or 2 tablespoons per load in HE machines. This gentle and effective formula is ideal for washing clothes for babies or people with sensitive skin or allergies.

My favorite all-purpose cleaning spray uses Castile soap and borax.

25. All-Purpose Cleaner (Option #2)

Looking for an all-purpose cleaning solution with a bit more oomph? Combine Castile soap with powerhouse cleaners like washing soda and borax to make my favorite DIY all-purpose spray cleaner. It’s a versatile stain fighter and cleaner that can handle just about any task, from sticky countertops to grimy appliances.

A box of pure castile soap on a counter, known for its versatile uses.

BONUS: Turn A Bar Of Castile Soap Into Liquid Castile Soap

Bars of Castile soap are often cheaper than the liquid variety, so you can save money by turning those bars into liquid soap at home! Just chop a bar of soap into tiny pieces, then place them in a pint jar and fill it with boiling water. Let it sit for around 20 minutes, then stir well until the melted soap and water have combined completely. How easy is that?

What are your favorite Castile soap uses?

Jill Nystul Photo

Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.
I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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MORE IDEAS FROM

Bright Ideas

  • It’s been a few years since I read the Dr. Bronner’s label but I believe there are cautions against using this soap in laundry and dishwashing machines because of a waxy buildup left behind.

  • I’ve tried using the liquid soap in pump bottles but found (as it warns on the bottle) that this doesn’t work as it clogs the pump for some reason. But the last tip I have tried, successfully…I grated up a bar of Castile soap and dissolved it in a gallon of water on the stove. After filling up all of my pump bottles (mason jars with metal screw-on pump lids from Milkweed Farms) I stored the rest in an empty milk jug, and used it as laundry detergent for my delicates. My clothes probably didn’t need the moisturizer or the peppermint scent, but this did the job while I searched for a homemade delicate detergent as I already make my own regular detergent. After reading this, the liquid version just might do the job!

  • I use for shampooing my hair. It is much better at cleaning all the product in my hair than store bought expensive shampoo and my hair feels softer.

  • In addition to all these ideas one of the best things I use Castile soap for is to make homemade poo-pourri. 2 tsp rubbing alcohol, 1 tsp Castile soap and 30 drops essential oils. Add that to a 4 oz. spray bottle.

  • Castile soap could degrease a car engine. Please don’t use it on your baby or pet. Try using on your body and hair if you want to understand this clearly.

    • Any soap will degrease a car engine. Some better than others. Castile soap is gentle. The grease from an engine is more of a problem in staining clothes. It doesn’t make your skin feel dry and tight after use as some soap will. You may be thinking of lye soap.

  • It also works as a carpet cleaner (if used judiciously – it can get foamy), and the whole house smells yummy if you use the peppermint scent. Also, in these uncertain times, the Tea Tee oil soap is an added bonus for body wash, and especially for foaming hand soap…

  • Thanks to the key in on use of Vegetable Oil. Many of us are trying to stay away from Palm Oil and with a quick look, many castile soaps have Palm Oil as an ingredient. Not all castile soaps are created equal if you’re trying to avoid Palm Oil. Its best to check the ingredients. Dr Bonner’s uses Palm Oil. However, Cove and Natural Organics do not. People don’t use palm oil due to allergies and rain forest destruction.

  • Does anyone have an idea on how to treat facial acne? We have twins (girl & boy) that are going through puberty. We are currently using witch hazel and it works ok on healing, but they are still getting breakouts. Thanks!

    • Jillee, thank you for responding to my post. I am going to try the cleansing pads but use witchhazel instead of alcohol. Both of my twins have sensitive skin due to my DNA. :)
      This is the 1st time we have corresponded but I have been following you for a couple of years. You and your team are amazing. I can’t believe some of the stuff you all come up with.
      Thanks you for replying to my post.

      • Thank you so much Laura!! And witch hazel is a great replacement for the alcohol :-)

    • I used to wash my hair with baking soda and water, and I read at one point that this can help with acne as it removes oil from the scalp that might flow down onto the face. It’s not a good idea to use this for every wash as it will eventually weaken the hair (hair is acidic, baking soda is alkaline) but doing this every so often could help.

    • Tea tree oil is fantastic for clearing breakouts. As soon as you feel one coming on, dab some tea tree on. My kids would do this before bed and when they woke up the pimple was gone!

    • They should carry that in your local stores. The drug stores, Target, Wal-Mart, etc., should all carry some type of castile soap.

    • Hi Marlene. Sorry I just read your comments now, but you can get Dr. Bronner’s 18-In-1 Pure-Castile Liquid Soap Eucalyptus at a store called Healthy Planet. Their website shows about 9 varieties of Castile liquid soap. They have one location in Ajax where I live but they also have one in Pickering and many other locations throughout Toronto, Mississauga. They also have free delivery on orders over $59.00. I view Jillee’s postings daily for tips on everything from skin care to cleaning tips. I am 74 yrs. young so I am always looking for skin care tips for preventing wrinkles on my face and dry skin areas and anything else that will help with my health etc. One thing I have always noticed is that on Jillee’s site, suggestions are made about certain products but we do not have them in Canada anywhere until a couple of months ago I went into a Healthy Planet store and they have absolutely everything anyone needs for products that are normally found in the States and/or mentioned in Jillee’s postings. I personally have found her postings to be life-saving on many issues, but now I can follow-up with being able to buy any products suggested on Jillee’s postings and I feel so happy about being able to do that.

    • Love Castile soap. Use it all the time in my home. This page gave me even more uses for it.

      Sue, when I was a nurse, back in the day a long time ago, we also used to make the warm soapy enema with Castile soap. Made a mild solution with a few oz added to the bag or into the pan/bowl if giving a bulb syringe enema.

      That was long time ago.

      Bless all

  • Great ideas. I have used it before for the feminine body wash. But, it was kind of pricey with the high priced witch hazel. I’ve thought about using it for the foaming hand soap. I have to refill about once a week. My only issue isn’t really with the coconut oil. It’s just the cheapest place to get it – is Walmart which we don’t go to very often. I will show the ant spray to my mom. I think that might keep her happy.

  • My dogs tend to have dry skin and itch. I switched to Castile soap and the itching stopped. I love Dr. Bonner’s peppermint Castile soap for me and the dogs. It is easy to find at Target and I have also seen it at the grocery stores.

  • Hi Jillee, I noticed a picture of a dog the other day on your blog post. Do you have a collie or a miniature collie? Is that your dog? That was a beautiful dog! We’ve had miniature collies for years that we’ve raised to sell.

  • I like using castile soap and just recently found its cousin – Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds Biodegradable Cleaner. It arrived yesterday from Amazon and I had to try it immediately. This is an all purpose cleaner, not intended for everyday body washing per the label. I used the recommended 2 Tbsp. in my top loader for a full load of laundry and everything came out clean, soft (vinegar rinse used) and with no fragrance. I actually found a laundry recipe but didn’t have any washing soda yet. Here’s the recipe I used last night after my washing soda arrived.
    Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda – 2/3 Cup
    Sal’s Suds – 1/2 Cup
    Water – 4 Cups, divided
    Bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Pour washing soda into a large glass bowl, then slowly stir in 2 cups of boiling water until soda is COMPLETELY DISSOLVED. Stir in 1/2 cup of Sal’s Suds until well combined. Then slowly stir in remaining 2 cups of boiling water. Cool to room temperature, store in a glass container. Use 1/4 cup per load (1/8 cup for HE). Shake before use. Recommended to use white vinegar in rinse dispenser.
    Since all my laundry was done, I went over to my son’s to borrow his sweaty, grimy yard work clothes to try this out on and it all came out soft and clean. I probably get way too excited about home made cleaning products, but this is such a winner that I’m giving away all my regular liquid detergent in lieu of something biodegradable, safe for my washer and gentle on my skin.
    Thanks for all your posts. I look forward to receiving them every day.

    • I am a HUGE fan of Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds and Castile Soap, but ESPECIALLY the Sal Suds. I tell everybody about it. I mix up a big bottle of half Sal Suds, half water and keep it handy. Then I use the diluted mixture in a spray bottle as a great laundry pre-spot. In a squirt bottle in the kitchen, it is a great veggie wash. I use it to wash floors, and when washing clothes. It is excellent at gently and thoroughly hand-washing lingerie.

      • Hi Diane.. I think most people are concerned that plastics can leach into your solution, but PETE bottles should be okay, especially in bathrooms, or with children (or clumsy me) around.

  • When I was very young I remember my Mother using the bar castile soap with a wash board to clean particularly soiled items….probably mud and dirt from my clothing. It is good as stated to use in the garden for soft bodied pests. The recipe would be start with 2 tablespoons of castile soap to a gallon of water add to a spray bottle and then work up to 4 tablespoons per gallon as needed. You always want to start with a smaller amount first to see how the plants handle the introduction.

  • As with so many of your other posts, I love this one! I have the lavender castile soap (liquid form), and a few things occurred to me as I read this post. Since this is gentle enough to use as baby wash, I was wondering if it could be used as an incontinence cleanser. Second, could the foot scrub be modified with different essential oils to use as a hand scrub? I have neuropathy in my hands and feet, so when they’re tingling or burning, I like to use peppermint products. Got any suggestions for a peppermint foot cream? Third, when I made the foaming hand soap, I found that my hands were just as dry, if not more so, after I used the homemade foaming soap. I could have done something entirely wrong, or my extremely difficult-to-treat dry/sensitive skin could have reacted to any number of things. Do you have additional hand soap recipes? What about making a combination soap and scrub? Last, and aren’t you glad?, with the sinus congestion tip, since I have lavender castile soap, I was wondering if spearmint essential oil could be used as a sub. Thanks for all of your totally awesome ideas! You make learning about DIY’s fun, easy, and just plain fascinating!

    • Hi Bethany! First, yes castile soap is gentle enough to use on any body parts – even the delicate ones. Second, yes, you can use any oils you’d like to in the hand scrub. And third, I’d suggest adding some carrier oil to your foaming soaps – it provides a lot of moisture!
      Here’s a foaming hand soap recipe: https://jillee.co/2Lq87Xw
      And a soapy hand scrub recipe: https://jillee.co/2LpXofL
      Lastly, mint-y oils can be a little intense on the skin. If you do want to use spearmint oil, just be sure to use only a drop or two. :-)

  • I have been using castile soap for about two years now, mostly for bathing and cleansing my face. Recently I decided to try it on my hair a couple times a month. It makes my curling hair softer and more managable.
    Love all the recipes included in this post. I intend to use them all.

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