Just a few short years ago, no-one knew much about the benefits or uses of castile soap. Soap bars struggled to claim column inches in the beauty press and mentions on social media. - Even if the soap was lovingly handmade, and crafted by traditional cold process 'castile' methods.
But in the past couple of years, soap bars made their comeback, as your beauty cupboard’s most versatile product. From eyebrows to sleep woes, a great bar of organic soap can transform the regime of even the most sensitive skin! Here we list 8 castile soap uses that might really surprise you!
1. To ease restless leg syndrome:
RLS (restless leg syndrome) is a condition that causes a maddening need to move the legs and sometimes arms of the sufferer. It impacts sleep heavily and can make life an absolute misery.
It might sound crazy but there is huge anecdotal evidence that an unwrapped bar of soap placed in the bed can ease symptoms, with 42% of twitter responders in the US confirming it had worked for them.
Across the pond it's so popular that Dr Oz devoted an entire segment to testing the theory and he had to confirm that for no obvious reason, it just works.
It can’t be any soap though. Commercial brands like Dove didn’t cut the mustard. Castile soaps that had a high content of natural oils worked best. Lavender soap came out as the most beneficial fragrance, entirely unsurprisingly as the relaxing properties of lavender are renowned.
How to use it: All you do is place an unwrapped bar in your bed next to your feet and do some deep breathing.
2. Use castile soap to give you perfect brows:
‘Soap Brows’ have been a major internet trend this year. They’re the defined, held in place brows, highly popular with Instagram influencers and makeup mavens alike.
Because of the proximity to the eyes, a lightly scented or fragrance-free soap is your best option, and a moisturising formulation, rich in olive oil, offers protection and definition.
How to use it: Just get your spooly brush or a soft, clean old toothbrush and brush the soap into the brows, brushing up instead of out for the defined look.
3. Soap as an insect repellent:
Bugs hate soapy skin. Seriously, hate it. If you run out of your usual brand of mosquito repellent, just spritz your skin with soapy water. If you have one with citrus smells (particularly lemongrass) that is your best option, but Tea Tree soaps come a very close second.
If you do happen to get bitten, many people say that it works brilliantly to ease the pain.
4. Use soap to freshen up smelly shoes:
You know when you’ve worn your trainers, and they start to smell and even though you love them, you seriously consider burning them to get the odour out of your house? Or when your kids' football boots start to aromatise the car?
Cold process soap can help you fix that!
All you need to do is wrap your castile soap in some grease proof paper, pop it into the shoes overnight and the next day the offensive odour should be gone. If it still hovers, just rub it over the insoles and the inside of the tongue and that will kill it right off.
5. To stop glasses steaming when you’re wearing a mask:
One of most novel castile soap uses: All glasses wearers know the pain in winter (and summer with masks on) of breathing out and fogging up your lenses. It’s especially unfunny when you’re driving or at night.
So, you’ll be thrilled to know that soap can help you stop the smear. Just wipe a tiny bit of a castile soap onto your glasses then buff off with a lint-free cloth and they’ll be protected for a couple of days.
6. As a deodorant when you’re caught short:
Another use for castile soap is when you've run out of deodorant or have forgotten to put it on. That sinking feeling when hot days, sports classes and running for the bus can all lead to feeling less than fresh.
How to use it: Clean off the old smell with soap and water (the smell is just bacteria and believe it or not, it’s meant to help you attract a mate!) pat the area dry, then rub the soap into the armpit. Voila. Hours of freshness. Our Tea Tree and Green Clay soap is a perfect choice for this. N.B. This is a temporary hack as soap typically has a higher pH than your armpit - we’d normally recommend a good natural deodorant that is pH balanced to the skin.
7. To keep your nails clean:
Dirty nails are so annoying - and embarrassing too - but we don’t all want to polish them constantly, and in some professions like nursing, it’s just not possible.
Run your nails across a bar of soap when you’re doing grubby tasks to prevent soil and grease getting trapped and when you’re finished just use a nail brush to brush them out.
8. To freshen your clothes:
The days of drawer liners are over, but it is lovely to open your clothing draws to get a fresh whiff.
Unwrap a bar of freshly fragranced soap with essential oils for a lasting, but gentle aroma that doesn’t leave skin irritated with fragrance residues from conditioners.
More questions about soap? Ask our skincare experts now, or share your brilliant soap hacks on social media with the hashtag #soapskills to win a free bar!