*This post contains affilate links
At the end of a long day, there’s nothing better than a nice, hot shower.
That is, until you realize, what you’re washing your body with…Most big name beauty brands sell chemically-laden body washes you wouldn’t use on your dog, if you knew what was really in them.
Think: sodium laureth sulfate, ammonium chloride, cocamide MEA, fragrance, aphanizomenon flos-aquae extract, PPG-9, Blue 1, propylene glycol, methylchloroisothiazolinone…
Wait a second, are we taking a shower or a chemistry class?
We don’t know about you but we’d rather not let our skin soak up these sci-fi synthetics.
Fortunately for peace of mind and a truly clean shower, there are several natural and organic body wash options available. Here’s a splash of some of our faves.
Dr. Bronner’s is the global go-to with their fair trade and organic body wash (which doubles as shampoo, dish soap, laundry detergent, etc.). For that outdoor shower feeling, grab a bottle of Bathing Culture’s organic body wash. And Etee will keep your bathroom zero waste with their plastic-free organic body wash bar.
So, grab your natural loofah, brush up on your knowledge of our beauty criteria, and let’s get scrubbin’!
Inspired by mother nature herself, Bathing Culture’s certified organic body wash will transport you to Northern California’s Redwood canopies. Since it comes in a TSA-approved travel-sized aluminum bottle, go ahead and literally transport yourself there with this in tow.
The concentrated Mind and Body Wash formula is not just great for travel but designed to minimize packaging. These bottles can be refilled at one of BC’s retail partners OR with a purchase of one of their gallon refills.
No crazy, hard to pronounce ingredients here. Just 100% plant-based, vegan, and cruelty free goodness that’s fully biodegradable. Here is the entire list of its “skin superheroes”: organic coconut, olive oil, and sunflower oils, soybean glycerin, aloe vera, shea butter, guar bean, and citric acid.
The truly organic body wash is then scented with essential oils (no fragrance).
Pssst, it can even be used as shampoo, yet another reason this soap is perfect for travel lovers.
Bathing Culture wants to shift the culture of… well, bathing. It’s a necessity, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be celebrated. After all, “bathing is a radical act”.
One of our favorite zero-waste skin care brands, they create more than just body wash. They have a great moisturizing face and body oil, a mineral bath blend, and more—all of which is almost 100% certified organic. They also try to source ingredients locally from fellow California vendors.
The #NoNewPlastic bottles are made from what ends up in California’s recycling bins—which saves on tons of landfill space.
Bathing Culture is carbon neutral, too.
*Note: Not all Dr. Bronner’s soaps are thoughtfully packaged by zero waste bars are an option.
Dr. Bronner’s All-One formulation is the do-it-all soap wash, from shampoo to perhaps the best organic body wash available on the market. This one’s for all you bathroom minimalists.
Best of all, it’s made of ingredients that are good for humans and our planet. Fair trade organic coconut, palm, and olive oils promote smooth skin while plant-extracted scents like hemp rose and hemp almond will make a steamy shower extra relaxing.
The same ingredients and scents are available in bar form, making this a zero waste body wash solution. If you do opt for the plastic bottle liquids, try to make it last. These soaps are concentrated so a little goes a long way. You might even be able to get bulk refills at your local Whole Foods (or similar organic stores).
They also have unscented organic body wash for sensitive skin and babies, which has double the olive oil and Organic Sugar Soaps that use fair trade, organic sugar along with organic white grape juice to nourish and hydrate skin.
Everything is certified vegan, cruelty free, and non-GMO.
For anything that needs cleaning, seek medical attention—from Dr. Bronner, that is. The company literally does it all. From toothpaste to laundry detergent, there’s practically nothing a bottle (or bar) of Dr. Bronner’s can’t fix.
Not only is Dr. Bronner’s effective, but they’re pretty darn ethical, too.
The Certified B-Corp does all the usual stuff: ethically sourced fair trade and organic ingredients, post-consumer recycled packaging, and a range of impressive charitable endeavors. But they take it a step further.
They’re an amazing place to work (did someone say profit sharing and free health care?!), a pioneering brand behind regenerative organic agriculture, and well on their way to being zero-waste.
Even their palm oil is worth mentioning, as it comes from small organic and fair trade farmlands in Ghana—and is mostly produced by women entrepreneurs.
If Ethique set the bar high for some of the best natural organic body wash bars, Etee is keeping up.
Their organic coconut oil body wash bars are just as great, available in delectable scents like Lemon Honey, Minty Fresh, Lavender Fields, Nudiepants (unscented), and Blazin’ Spice (spicy cinnamon and sweet orange).
All the soap bars are handmade in Canada using the traditional cold press method. The ingredients aren’t just non-toxic and natural but 85-95% certified organic.
Don’t forget the natural loofah soap pouch for all that foamy goodness!
Etee is plastic-free to the T(ee). Everything they sell is sans plastic—right down to the cellulose packing tape. Goodbye Amazon; hello sustainable alternative.
After a kayaking trip gone wrong (long story, read it here), the company started out with a solution for finding something plastic-free to preserve food (AKA beeswax wraps).
Now they make several different products—everything from compostable scrubbers (to pair with those zero waste cleaning supplies) to chewable tooth tabs.
That’s just the beginning of their sustainable efforts.
Their Candian factory runs entirely off renewable energy and their plastic-free products have eliminated more than 100 million pieces of single-use plastic.
Available in two scents: Rosemary, Mint, + Vanilla and Citrus Lavender, the organic moisturizing body wash from Plaine Products uses the healing properties of nature and stays away from parabens and sulfates.
In fact, the biodegradable ingredients have been carefully chosen to avoid anything that’s deemed toxic or unsafe by the Environmental Working Group.
The organic body wash is also 100% vegan, cruelty-free, palm oil-free, and safe for babies (no tears).
Here’s the best part: these liquid body washes are 100% zero waste. By packaging their products in aluminum bottles, Plaine ensures they can be recycled without fear of downgrading in quality and provides an easily refillable bottle. So easy, in fact, that they offer a refill program.
Just take out the pump you receive in your first order, send back the empty bottle in a custom fit plastic-free return box (100% recycled, of course), and put your old pump into the new bottle. Helloooo, circular economy!
Plaine Products lays down the problem in plain english: plastic is destroying our planet.
The two sisters behind the brand, Lindsey and Alison Delaplaine, were confronted with all of the plastic in their bathroom and decided right then and there to do something different.
Not only do they make plastic-free body care products, but they also use eco-friendly, natural, and chemical-free ingredients, too. They believe in their products so much that both sisters personally test all of them before making them publicly available.
Plaine Products is also a member of 1% for the Planet, manufactures in the USA, and is transparent about their sustainability efforts. No wonder they’re a Certified B-Corp.
Conscious Skincare creates an effective organic mens body wash, although with the scent from bergamot, cinnamon, and frankincense essential oils, ladies won’t want to be left out.
They also have sweet orange and frangipani, grapefruit, lemon, and cedarwood, and amyris, vetiver, and frankincense.
If you don’t want to smell like anything at all, see their unscented natural body wash.
We can’t help you decide on a scent, but we can let you know all natural body wash from CS starts with organic and natural castile soap, which is combined with organic glycerin (to soften skin) and a variety of nourishing plant and herb oils. For scent, they use essential oils rather than synthetic parfums.
They also have a specific category of natural body washes for oily skin.
They’re all cruelty-free and vegan.
Most of their packaging comes in plastic bottles (a few in glass). While they are fully recyclable, it’s not the most eco friendly.
UK-based Conscious Skincare was founded by Rebecca, a sufferer of chronic dry skin who couldn’t find help in conventional products. She actually found most of them were presenting skin problems of their own in her friends and family.
So, she created her own range of award-winning organic skincare products (like body wash, moisturizer, and shampoo). All are free from palm oil, parabens, phthalates, and SLS.
With a clear conscience all around, responsible packaging is also important so while they aren’t perfect yet, some products do some in glass bottles with refills available.
We’ve already talked about how Ethique can sustainably take care of our hair, and they can do the same for our bodies with some of the best natural body wash bars.
Lime & Ginger. Sweet Orange & Vanilla. Matcha, Lime & Lemongrass. Lavender & Peppermint. These all sound good enough to eat, don’t they?
But they’re not candy or tea or the trendy latte of the day. They’re Ethique’s various scents for their zero waste body wash bars. Since they’re made with natural and organic ingredients, they almost are good enough to eat (full disclaimer: wouldn’t recommend it).
They’re cruelty-free and vegan and made with sustainably-sourced, biodegradable, naturally-derived, and palm oil free ingredients.
They also have some special options for equally special skin, like their lime and ginger organic exfoliating body wash…for when you need a little extra scrubbing power sans plastic microbeads, of course.
If you can’t decide on just one (who could blame you) try their sample box to avoid getting stuck with a scent you’re not in love with for a long time. Take it from us who use and swear by Ethique bars…they last a long time.
Ethique was born in New Zealand, but now has a US branch to minimize shipping impact and spread the bar love the world over.
Bars are their pièce de résistance and, because of them, they’ve prevented more than 9 million plastic bottles from being manufactured.
They’re definitely one of our favorite plastic-free Certified B-Corps, especially because they’re a climate neutral company that donates 20%(!) of their profits to charity and plants a tree for every order made online.
*Note: Many of the soaps are vegan but some contain honey. We have attempted to confirm policies with this brand.
100% Pure continually impresses us with their range of sustainable skin care and makeup products. They’ve also got what we need to wash all that away.
They’ve got a zillion (okay, 15) different options of some of the best all natural body wash in the form of shower gel and bar soap. Here’s a snapshot:
The blood orange shower gel is natural, vegan, cruelty free, and made in the USA. It’s sulfate-free and is great as a natural moisturizing body wash.
Then there’s the French lavender shower gel, which is also made with natural ingredients. This one does contain honey.
For soft, supple skin, there’s a vegan-friendly mango butter bar soap, which includes ingredients like avocado butter, rosehip seed oil, and mango extract.
As for palm oil, 100% Pure is not a palm oil-free brand. They use Cetearyl Alcohol (a common palm oil derivative) in certain products, though we didn’t find it in their body washes. We’ll be reaching out to confirm.
Your order of all natural organic body wash will come shipped in recyclable materials with compostable packing peanuts that are made out of cornstarch. The packaging, however, is a little less than clean. The shower gels come in plastic tubes which we encourage you to recycle when finished (or just go with the zero waste bars).
100% Pure is the body care baby of three founders who strive to create healthy products that embody their desire to live with kindness, compassion, and empathy.
They do this through the use of ethically sourced natural ingredients that are cruelty free.
In fact, kindness toward animals is a pillar of 100% Pure, which is why they donate a bowl of vegan dog food to a Chinese dog shelter for every purchase.
Why vegan dog food?
Because it supports the health of a dog without destroying our planet. Every bowl of vegan dog food saves 2,000 gallons of water.
Available: 100% Pure
*Note: We are confirming policies with this brand. They appear to be vegan, but don’t explicitly mention it.
The highly sought-after “smooth as a baby’s bottom” skin is possible for everyone with the organic baby body wash from Baeo.
It’s been designed for babies and kiddos, but is great for all skin types! It’s particularly great for sensitive skin though, having been tested by dermatologists for all sorts of allergens.
Made from certified organic ingredients like chamomile, calendula flower extract, and aloe vera, the body wash + shampoo combination (and we do love combos) is one of the best organic body wash for dry skin out there. It gently removes dirt, while retaining the skin’s natural oils and moisture barrier.
The fresh geranium and lemon scent makes for a great way to start the day (without having to worry about endocrine disrupting compounds, formaldehyde-releasing ingredients, fragrances, phthalates, parabens, or sulfates..).
We did notice this soap contains Glyceryl Oleate which can be derived from animals or plants and they specify theirs is plant derived. That said, plant-based Glyceryl Oleate is often derived from palm oil, so we will be reaching out for more info.
The ingredient list doesn’t appear to have any animal byproducts, but they also make no mention of being vegan, so we’ll also check on that.
Lastly, this soap isn’t just easy on the skin but easy on the planet with recyclable aluminum bottle packaging. Just be sure to recycle the pump through Terracycle because they don’t seem to offer the option to reorder a bottle without one.
Baeo stands for Bare Essential Organics, and that’s exactly what they use in their products.
Designed to be safe on even the most sensitive skin, Baeo products are made with organic plant-based ingredients that are sustainably and ethically sourced.
Leaping Bunny cruelty-free, your precious bundles aren’t the only harmless creatures they’re protecting.
As a mom-owned company, Baeo partners with other ethically-aligned companies. Some products are made through specific partnerships to provide jobs for women in need. They also donate 1% of annual sales to Baby2Baby, a non-profit that supports low-income children with clothing, diapers, and other necessities.
Butter Me Up Organics can butter us up any day with their organic body wash.
What better way to cleanse our pores from the likes of their zero waste sunscreen with these delectable soaps.
For liquids, they’ve got a tear-free gentle Lavender Organic Baby Wash made with non-toxic and organic ingredients. Adults should try the pH balancing, organic yoni wash.
They also have a range of all natural body wash in bar form. We like the Love Soap (which fittingly comes in the shape of a heart), Harmony Soap (lavender, patchouli, and vanilla, yes please!), and the Jasmine, Atlas Cedar, & Pine soap.
These are all made with mostly-organic and mostly-vegan ingredients. Some bars contain beeswax or organic milk.
Butter Me Up Organics’ advice to not put anything on our body that we wouldn’t put in it, is pretty sage.
Fortunately, this “modern day apothecary” provides us with all we need for sustainable and natural body care. Their products are so natural they’re edible (though they might not be so tasty…). They’re also cruelty-free and palm oil-free.
And they do it all with a zero-waste mentality which means plastic-free shipping and compostable or reusable / recyclable packaging. Everything, down to the labels printed on recycled paper with eco-friendly soy-based inks, is carefully considered. Even their mailing packaging is upcycled where possible.
When it comes to sustainable beauty, we like to tick the following boxes:
- Natural & organic ingredients
- Vegan (or at least ethically-sourced animal products like honey and beeswax)
- Ethical sourcing and supply chain transparency
- Palm oil free
- Thoughtful packaging (recyclable, at the very least)
This is a long laundry list, but it is our bodies we’re talking about. They deserve the best.
While not every brand is able to meet every single one of these criteria, we’re happy to see that many are able to meet most of them—and for this article, natural and organic ingredients was our principal focus.
Our skin is a vital organ. It stands between us and the rest of the world, it keeps us hydrated, wards away microbes, and, well, holds us all together.
Why would we jeopardize it by washing it in a bath of toxic chemicals?
We wouldn’t if given the choice. After all, we are taking a shower and not a chemistry class remember. And fortunately it’s no skin off our backs thanks to these organic and natural body wash options that are doing their bit to protect us and the planet.
Now, we’d love to know if there are any more. What’s your go-to natural body wash for those shower singing performances? Let us know in the comments below.