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One bar of soap for all purposes. One soap to rule them all.
This is why we crafted this guide for you, as our ultimate effort to honor the king of all purpose cleanser. With the sole goal of helping you find the best bar soap for men who appreciate a good traditional way to getting rid of dirt.
But before we dive deep into the details of each product, we’ll take a look at some facts about bar soaps and how they lost the race against body washes and generally, liquid soap. Next, we’ll discuss the criteria in selecting one depending on the use and type of your skin. Finally, we’ll present you the list of the 15 top bar soaps for guys and get a clearer idea on what’s best for you.
One last thing before we continue. We sorted five great bar soaps for men that we consider to be the best among the reviewed. Hopefully this will help you on your quest to finding the perfect bar soap.
The 5 Best Bar Soaps For Men
Bar soap and its history
The first evidence of the invention of soap dates back to 1500s BC.
In fact, the Ebers papyrus reveals that ancient Egyptians produced a soap-like substance by mixing animal and vegetable oils with alkaline salts. They used this mixture to treat sores, skin diseases, and for washing too. Today we have our fragranced hard soaps which have helped us stay clean throughout the years.
The modern day soap was brought to light by the Arabs who were the first to use the sodium lye NaOH formula which is still being used till date. They produced soaps from vegetable oil and olive oil.
Traditionally, soaps were always perfumed and colored. They made both liquid and hard soaps.
Historically, soaps have been used to treat skin disorders and flesh wounds. Even the Babylonians have been credited with advancements in the formula. They were the first ones to discover that combining animal fats with wood ash produced a substance capable of easier cleaning.
Till date the actual recipe for making soaps hasn’t changed much.
Modern-day soap is also produced through the saponification – the chemical process of combining sodium hydroxide with animal or vegetable oils. After the formation of the soap it is further purified and then cast into pellets. These pellets are then packaged and sold wholesale. These bars are later processed to make the soaps we find in our superstores.
Types of bar soaps for men
It is used as a cleaning tool or surfactant as it clasps onto the impurities and dirt on our skin and is then easy to be washed away with water. Basically what soap does is that it makes rigid particles soluble and easy to rinse away.
Soaps are produced in different categories, hand wash, face wash, and body soaps.
Bar soaps which are produced for the face have a milder effect due to the sensitivity of the facial skin.
Those that are made for body washes are more rigid and stronger in order to clean rigorously and wash out the old skin cells.
Special soaps used in hand wash have anti-bacterial properties as we draw bacteria mostly through our hands.
All these soaps are necessary and everyone should have them lying around with the toiletries. But if you want to pick the perfect bar soap for your skin-type, it’s important to understand how these soaps are manufactured and what goes into them.
Hand Wash Bar Soaps
As mentioned earlier, bar soaps made for washing hands have special antibacterial properties.
A special chemical known as triclosan is what makes all the difference here.
Triclosan is known to be one of the most antibacterial and antifungal chemicals. It is used in a variety of products and – despite a lot of criticism – continues to be a widely used ingredient in our common household products such as toothpastes, soaps, shampoo, deodorants and mouthwash.
Recommendation – Cetaphil Antibacterial Cleansing Bar
Face Wash Bar Soaps
You should know by now that facial skin is more sensitive than other parts of your body. This is why it is necessary that the bar soap you use for cleaning it needs to be mild.
Soaps made from pure olive oil are called Castile or Marseille soap. This type of soap is known to be extra mild and does a thorough cleanse of the skin cells.
Facial skin compared to the rest has lesser layers of skin cells and is thus very easily irritated. When choosing bar soap for face wash, make sure that they aren’t very colorful because in most cases, the colors are chemicals which can add to skin irritation.
Also, when selecting soap the fragrance should be mild as the fragrance too can be harmful and irritant.
Recommendation – Hudson Made Worker’s Soap
Body Wash Bar Soaps
Soaps made for daily showers are called Body Wash Bar Soaps.
These soaps are also produced in a way to suit and comply with the rigid cleansing necessary on the surface of the body’s skin cells.
Sand is sometimes added to produce a scrubbing soap. These scrubbing agents serve to remove old or dead skin cells from the body after cleaning. This process is better known as exfoliation, other similar materials are used to make soaps.
As it is always preferred that our products be natural there are bar soaps for men made from oatmeal, sea salt, brown sugar and peach pits which are natural abrasives.
It is important to understand that the layers of dead skin on our body are formed easily due to the thickness of the skin on our body. Thus the soaps which should be used in that area have to be abrasive and good at exfoliation.
Instead of choosing a good-looking and good-smelling soap which might have chemicals which make your skin dry and do less work try finding a soap that moisturizes and conditions your skin.
Recommendation – Jack Black Turbo Body Bar Scrubbing Soap
Type of Skin – Dry Skin
When facing issues with dry skin the best solution is to exfoliate the skin.
Exfoliation removes the dead skin cells and creates space for new breathable skin which in turn moisturizes the skin. It also makes the new skin softer and less irritated.
Products that include ingredients like petrolatum i.e. Vaseline are also good at moisturizing skin.
Other ingredients such as aloe vera, vitamin E and sweet almond oil are also good moisturizers.
Bar soap is preferred for tackling dry skin as the fragrances and dyes are in liquid soaps do more damage than good for dry skin.
Soaps that have glycerin also are good moisturizers as glycerin attracts the moisture from the air to the skin.
Types of Skin – Oily Skin
Oily skin is the outcome of excessive secretions of sebum.
It tends to draw more dirt and dust than dry skin and is prone to blackheads and acne. Oily skin is aggravated by skin drying and alcohol based products.
Harsh soaps and body washes also have a damaging effect on oily skin. When facing oily skin what is needed is a soap which can balance the skin oil instead of drying it out completely.
Ingredients to avoid while selecting soap for oily skin are mineral oil and petroleum based ingredients because they block pores and attract acne.
Types of Skin – Acne
It is necessary to look for a non-abrasive and alcohol-free soap when dealing with acne.
Ingredients like salicylic acid, sodium sulfacetamide and benzoyl peroxide help clear up the skin while cleaning it.
Salicylic acid helps to clear the blocked pores and reduces irritation.
Benzoyl peroxide kills bacteria and exfoliates the skin and sodium sulfacetamide stops the growth of bacteria. To maintain the moisture and balance of oils in your skin look for products including mineral oil and glycerin.
The Best Bar Soaps For Men
Baxter of California has some excellent men’s grooming products. I particularly like their lip balm for men which is an excellent choice.
This 7 ounce bar of soap is a bit pricey, but the luxury ingredients make it worth the price.
It’s got this great hydrating mix that includes jojoba oil and crushed olive seeds. This combination of offers a muted earthiness or a moss-like aroma which is really appealing. And by the way, in case you don’t know it already, jojoba is one of the most premium ingredients that are also found only in the best beard oils.
This top-notch bar soap also lathers up really nicely and gives you a nice wash. Did I mention that it’s for body washing?
This is a rough soap that offers some tough love for your skin and cleans it up nicely due to its exfoliating properties.
Now, this scrubbing soap goes deep into the skin pores. It’s also got something called ‘lava rock’ which I think gives it the exfoliating scrub effect.
Ginkgo biloba and blue lotus add to the list of intense natural ingredients that make this bar of soap worth the price.
I’m not the biggest fan of the fragrance here and I really think the soap could be better without it. But again this is purely subjective and some people will like the fragrance.
Everyone will appreciate the fine balance between lather and exfoliation this soap provides. Expect a soft and effective cleanse.
All in all, this is definitely one of the best bar soaps for men who are looking to replace their liquid body wash. It cleans effectively and it energizes your body.
Here’s is Shea Moisture with a creamy soap that makes your skin softer and radiant.
It is designed to remove impurities from the skin and repair/ rejuvenate dry skin.
This soap leaves you with baby soft skin and feels clean without drying the skin.
Although it’s not the cheapest bar soap for guys, the fact that we’re talking about an all natural soap at this price makes it a fairly attractive purchase overall.
Cetaphil antibacterial cleansing bar is effective in cleaning and killing bacteria.
Its main ingredient is triclosan which, as mentioned earlier, is an antibacterial in itself and is very effective in doing so.
The best part about this soap is that it isn’t comedogenic, which means that it does not block skin pores and allow them to breathe and feel fresh.
Due to its antibacterial action, this is one of the best bar soaps for men who want clean hands without drying them out. In fact, due to its moisturising properties, this bar soap is perfect for dry or even sensitive skin.
As I mentioned earlier, when using soap for face wash it is better to avoid fragrances and dyes as they can irritate the skin.
Based on Colloidal Oatmeal, known for skin moisturizing and protection, this Aveeno fragrance free bar soap is the best way to go when dealing with acne, dry or oily skin.
The particular bar soap is excellent for oily skin as it cleanses it deeply without being too harsh that could lead to irritation.
The verdict: It’s a very good bar soap for men for washing both face and body. Price wise, it’s also fairly decent compared to other bar soaps reviewed on this guide.
Borghese offers a mud soap here which is really effective. It looks and smells really earthy, which means it is natural.
The best way to describe this soap is that it’s a compact mud mask. It sticks to the skin and cleans it deeply when you use it.
You can use it for both face and body, although I think that it’s more suitable for the body for daily use.
Your skin feels renewed after you rinse it off. It’s got a nice scent, but it may be too “earthy” for some people.
Lastly, even though the price is a bit high, this bar soap will last for a while. I’m not sure if you can tell by the picture but it’s a fairly large soap that you might even have trouble holding it in one hand.
As far as value goes, I think this is a top-notch bar soap for men and you will appreciate both the performance. I also love the fact that it will last long before you even consider buying a new one.
Here’s a bar soap I’ve never used before. It’s got a unique combination of bamboo and sandalwood that really works, but I guess some men might find it off putting.
You can find the same soap in many other different scents but I think the bamboo in the mix seems more appealing to me.
For the price I think this is a great bar of soap. By no means this is cheap. However, it’s natural and the fragrance will also spread through your bathroom after a few washes.
The best thing about it is how it cleans up pores and makes your skin brighter without being too harsh. A mild and effective soap that in my opinion is more suitable as body wash due to its strong -yet pleasant, scent.
Scrubs with a natural citrus boost are some of my favorites.
I really like the Everyman Jack line of products for its consistent quality at good prices. I’ve also tried their great body wash for men in the past and I was very happy with the awesome price for its quality.
When it comes to this 7 ounce bar, it’s priced almost as much as a Dove bar soap. It lathers up nicely and gives you a nice body wash.
Citrus is a traditional cleaning agent and I’m glad they added it to this soap. It’s got a decent odor that’s not overpowering and the soap doesn’t take too long to lather up which is another plus.
Overall, highly recommended and it’s one of the best body wash bar soap for guys at this price point.
Another product from Baxter of California and this time, a very noticeable bar of soap.
Not only does it say it has lime in the mix, but it actually has a bright green patch of lime right in the center of the bar.
In addition, it’s got pomegranate and vitamins added in for extra measure.
This bar soap is once again not the cheapest one you can find out there but it’s a really effective cleanser. The added vitamins are more than just a marketing tool, they actually work.
Does it worth it? I’m not sure.
I wouldn’t call the price to value for this body wash bar soap ideal . It might be worth trying it out once and see if it does the trick.
Duke Cannon says this bar of soap “smells like productivity,” which is more than just a creative marketing strategy, it’s true.
The particular bar of soap has an intense peppermint fragrance that seriously wakes you up in the morning.
I really recommend this for any man who struggles to get out of bed in the morning and takes a cold shower before hitting the road. Unfortunately, you still need an alarm clock.
The most noticeable feature is the tingling feeling it leaves behind after you’ve used it for the first time.
It’s more suitable to be used as hand and body wash. It gives you the feeling of a deep cleanse with a cooling effect.
Price wise it’s fairly decent, considering that you’re getting a brick of soap -10 oz.
A serious looking bar of soap – Hudson’s has an artisanal soap for men here.
If you’ve never used artisanal soap before, this might be the perfect introduction. This bar has natural pumice stone for exfoliating, coconut oil and jojoba oil. Add in a little shea butter and you have the perfect soap for a hardworking man.
The trick to this soap is the pumice they’ve built into the mixture.
The pumice stone like effect breaks down the top layer of your skin and exposes the cleaner sublayer beneath. That’s what gets rid of blackheads, acne, and debris.
The skin gets a nice shine after using the soap. All in all, this bar soap is an excellent buy and definitely among the best bar soaps for men you can find online.
I’m one of those men who enjoy the old-school Old Spice products. And this bar soap isn’t any different.
The Swagger scented red zone bar of soap is excellent for men who like the typical fragrance and long-lasting freshness.
At this price level, you can’t go wrong with this and it’s more suited for washing your body. That being said, it’s one of the best value for money bar soaps.
If you’ve never tried an Old Spice product before, check out the deodorant and see how it smells. The fragrances of both products are pretty similar and the soap is made of some great materials that promise a deep cleanse.
This soap removes excessive oil and moisturizes the skin at the same time.
It has lemon flower extracts which fight oily skin and control sebum secretion on the face without making the skin dry.
The glycerin in this soap helps maintain the skin moisturized. This soap also prevents blackheads and acne while being gentle to the skin.
Yellow Bird is perhaps the most organic and medically applicable bar soap on this list.
It doesn’t have an overpowering fragrance, but you’ll certainly notice the combination of tea tree and peppermint in the bar.
It’s the perfect bar soap for men who want to tackle serious skin issues like fungal infections, ringworm, jock itch, athlete’s foot, and acne.
All that at a price that it’s a steal in my opinion. Go for it if you like the scent. Otherwise, check out their other available aromas like their Activated Charcoal which looks like …. Charcoal.
Musgo Real looks like a very interesting bar of soap. I’ve used their excellent pre shave oil in the past and I’ve got only good experiences from this brand.
It’s made in Portugal and is full of all these traditional ingredients you’d find in a uniquely European bar of soap.
Creamy coconut and Mandarin orange is included and the price is nearly as much as the other premium bar soaps on this list. A really good product for men who appreciate premium quality products.
The soap resembles a lot of orange-based exfoliating creams. It’s not rough but it will break down dead skin cells if you use it properly.
One thing that you might find challenging it the fact that the soap also takes longer than expected to lather up. But again, that’s not such as big deal.
Overall, it’s one of the most premium body washes here and needless to say, one of the top bar soaps for men.
Old Man Murray’s got a completely natural soap here. It’s packed with a thick coconut base that makes it lather up really nicely.
All handmade and USDA approved, the soap promises no parabens, petroleum jelly, or artificial fragrances.
Lavender is a universally liked fragrance and this soap has an overpowering amount of it. I like Old Man Murray’s products mainly because they deliver on their promise of quality. This soap, for example, can leave you with a long-lasting sense of freshness.
The particular bar soap is perfect for any use.
You can use it as face wash or even as body wash. It cleans up so nicely that the skin remains soft and smooth for most of the day.
This is a really gentle soap from a brand that I really like. I’ve previously used almost all of their shaving products. Not all the scents though. I also have a L’Occitane/Plisson shaving brush which is considered on of the best shaving brushes with synthetic bristles.
This soap bar is filled with shea butter and a vegetable oil base. The really effective ingredient here is the shea butter. It nourishes the skin and makes it soft and supple.
Butter nourishment is a long-term effect that really refreshes you after a shower. Also, the soap is noticeable harder than others on the market without affecting its lathering.
You can tell the materials used are top-notch because the soap doesn’t melt away if you leave it in the water for a few minutes. It’s rock solid and really effective throughout.
I like when manufacturers meld a scrub and a body wash together. This is what you get with the bar soap from Molton Brown.
It’s a great combination of an effective skin exfoliating soap that also has a generous mix of natural cleansing ingredients.
I think this is a little overpriced but the bar is thicker than you’d expect and the pepper particles really add a lot to the experience of using it.
The scrubbing effect works well and helps clear up your skin.
This is the kind of soap you need after a long day’s work. The pepper, which is visible in the soap, is a great addition in my opinion.
The mentha really is as refreshing as it sounds.
The peppermint oil and crushed walnuts shells are a natural blend that really work well together.
The manufacturers haven’t held back on the strong, tingling fragrance of fresh mentha here. It will make you sneeze if you hold it too close when it’s dry. But the mentha works well with all skin types and offers a very refreshing shower experience.
The Body Shop is another brand that requires no introductions. I doubt that there’s anyone who doesn’t know it.
When it comes to this soap, it’s fairly gentle to the skin and the most noteworthy characteristic is the exotic scent of coconut. It smells a bit sweet and not all men would appreciate it.
Personally, I love the smell of coconut and I wouldn’t call the scent of this soap overpowering.
If you’re wondering how to use it, it’s more like a body wash bar soap rather than face wash. It gently cleans your skin with a vegetable-based, preservative free moisturizing formula. It also contains palm oil and glycerin to soften the skin.
This soap would be one of the most popular and trusted face+body wash soaps out there.
This classic brand of bar soaps has always been one of the most creamiest and soft soaps. This soap is almost perfect as a face wash, it helps you moisturize your skin and leave it creamy and soft.
It thoroughly cleans the depths of the skin leaving it looking bright and moisturized.
The formula used in this soap was specially designed to moisturize and deep clean the skin.
Although it doesn’t contain the most natural ingredients, i’ts a product with which you need not worry about dry and tight skin.
What’s better than the above it’s the price which makes this bar soap a no brainer. It’s not the best bar soap for men to buy but it’s certainly one that you should try out at least once.
This is perhaps among the most well-priced bar soaps on the list.
It’s more of an exfoliating scrub than a bar soap, but the milled oats formula is the real key here.
The soap offers one of the most invigorating and natural bathing experiences you can expect.
When you think about the price remember to weigh it against the size of the bar. Each bar is bigger than average and will last a long time.
The soap lathers up well when you’re using it but won’t melt into a puddle if you leave it soaked in water for a few hours. Those raw ingredients and the size really make this a great buy.
This bar soap has a mixture of avocado and olive oil which cleans your skin deeply without drying you out.
Neutrogena is a brand known to be widely accepted by dermatologists because of its great ingredients and excellent performance. I particularly like their hands creams which I used for years.
The soap doesn’t contain any harsh chemical sulfates, parabens, petrochemicals, dyes or phthalates. All in all, a great product at a price that you’ll love.
Last bar soap of the list comes from Dial.
For all day freshness use Dial antibacterial bar soap, this soap is best used as a hand wash due to its antibacterial features.
When compared to other antibacterial soaps this one turns out to be a cheaper option with similar results.
It does not leave your skin dry and thoroughly cleans out the bacteria and dirt on your hands.
It’s not the most premium option here but definitely one to consider based on performance and price.