The History & Benefits of Castile Soap

By Qhemet Biologics

Here's a little experiment to try the next time you're browsing the soap aisle at your local store.

Pick up any bar or bottle of popular soap and take a look at the ingredients list. Chances are, it includes at least a dozen or more questionable ingredients.

From harsh cleansers to dyes, most mainstream soaps are full of heavily processed ingredients that make the soap smell nice and lather up like a dream, but that are not so great for your skin.

That is, unless we're talking about castile soap.

Castile soap is a different breed entirely when it comes to soap: it's mild, 100% natural, and doesn't contain artificial dyes or harsh cleansers. It's no wonder it's been around for such a long time and has remained a mainstay of personal care products, despite an ever-growing sea of chemical-laden competitors.

So just what is castile soap and where does it come from? Most importantly, what makes it so great that it's still in use after thousands of years?

The history of castile soap

Castile soap is one of the oldest soap recipes in the world. References to soap making ingredients involving lye and plant oils have been found in ancient Egyptian papyrus remnants. The ancient Syrian city of Aleppo devised its own recipe for castile soap based on laurel oil. Technically, any soap made from vegetable oils instead of animal fat can be considered a castile soap but the origin of the castile nomenclature is in the Castile region of Spain, where under Moorish rule, this unique soap making technique was introduced. In other parts of Europe, soap was traditionally made from ash and beef tallow. Thus, Castile, Spain became one of the leading manufacturers of the olive oil based castile soap that we've come to love and use today.

The benefits of castile soap

Castile soap has enjoyed such a widespread and enduring legacy because it offers an impressive range of benefits. Here are just a few of them.

Castile soap is extremely gentle.

One of the key benefits of castile soap is how gentle it is on the skin while still effectively removing odor and grime. Because it doesn't contain drying agents (like most other soaps do) and is based on healthy plant oils like olive, palm and coconut, castile soap can lather up and clean effectively without stripping the skin of moisture or causing irritation.

Castile soap is biodegradable and non-toxic.

Unlike some soaps on the market, which have ingredients that will take mother nature a very long time to break down, pure castile soaps are 100% biodegradable and non-toxic. They use simple ingredients that are so safe and natural they can even be used to wash fruits and vegetables.

Castile soap is incredibly versatile.

Many homes have dedicated cleaning products for each area of the house: laundry soap for the laundry room, dish soap for the kitchen, and hand and body soap for the bathroom. Castile soap can replace all of these 'specialized' products and can be used for everything from bathing and shaving to dishwashing.

Our So Fresh Natural Soap is a 100% vegan and plant-based castile bar that does not contain artificial fragrances. This rich, cleansing bar is perfect for the entire family; mild enough for sensitive skin and powerful enough to eliminate dirt and odor!