I Used to Be Anti–Bar Soaps, But This Is What Changed My Mind

Up until a few months ago, I had my shower routine pretty much set since my teenage years to now in my 30s. The products might have changed throughout the years, but it's always been shampoo, conditioner, face wash, body wash, and sometimes a razor and shaving cream. But recently, I made a major change to my routine: I decided to get back on the bar soap train.

I used to think bar soaps were outdated—something my grandma always had in her bathroom, whether it was hand soap or a body bar. I loved lathering up my loofah with body wash; it was a very soothing part of the bathing experience for me. Not to mention all the suds it created really made me think I was getting extra squeaky clean.


(Image credit: @sarahayang)

But when I moved into my new apartment last November and was shopping for toiletries to stock up on, I made a spur-of-the-moment decision to buy a Dove Body Bar instead of my usual Dove Body Wash. I think it was equal parts feeling lazy about buying a loofah and wanting to try something new.

Even though I want to say that my life changed dramatically as a bar soap user, it didn't really. Showering was the same. It was still fun and somewhat therapeutic to lather up the bar in my hands like I used to with my loofah to get my body all suds-ed up. But after a few weeks of use, I did notice some things that made me feel good about my switch. Number one, it felt very low-maintenance, and I didn't have to worry about the bacteria lurking in my loofah because I didn't have one!

And when I did more research into the environmental aspect of the swap, I realized that bar soaps can be eco-friendlier. There's less packaging, its carbon footprint when it comes to transportation is lower because it weighs less and is easier to move, and it takes less energy to produce. Not to mention if chosen carefully, bar soaps have fewer chemicals.

Has all of this intrigued you? Take a look at some of our favorites below.

The Best Bar Soaps for Your Face


(Image credit: @brosiaaa)

Herbivore Botanicals Pink Clay Soap

Cetaphil Gentle Cleansing Bar

Drunk Elephant Pekee Cleansing Bar

Vanicream Cleansing Bar

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cleansing Bar

Erno Laszlo The Famous Black Bar

Clinique Facial Soap

DHC Pure Soap

Osmia Black Clay Facial Soap

Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Botanical Cleansing Bar

Best Bar Soaps for Your Body


(Image credit: @caitlinmiyako)

Dove Beauty Bar

Meant The Every Body Bar

Moroccanoil Body Soap

Tom's of Maine Natural Beauty Bar

Joanna Vargas Cloud Bar

Malin + Goetz

Krigler Soaps

Managing Editor

Sarah is lifestyle writer and editor with over 10 years of experience covering health and wellness, interior design, food, beauty, and tech. Born and raised in Los Angeles, she attended New York University and lived in New York for 12 years before returning to L.A. in 2019.

In addition to her work on THE/THIRTY and Who What Wear, she held editor roles at Apartment Therapy, Real Simple, House Beautiful, Elle Decor, and The Bump (sister site of The Knot).

She has a passion for health and wellness, but she especially loves writing about mental health. Her self-care routine consists of five things: a good workout, “me” time on the regular, an intriguing book/podcast/playlist to unwind after a long day, naps, and decorating her home.