Naturally.... Dr Bronner’s soap can clean nearly anything

I decided to test it out to see if Dr Bronner’s is as good at producing a multipurpose product as it is at cramming a ridiculous amount of tiny text onto its bottles.

As for cleaning things that aren’t, well, you, it works a treat.

As for cleaning things that aren’t, well, you, it works a treat.

 

DRBRONNERS_18-IN-1_CASTILLE-LIQUID-SOAP-PEPPERMINT-237ML_WEBD r Bronner’s is something of a cult favourite among health- and eco- conscious consumers. The brand makes pretty much everything when it comes to personal care: toothpaste, shaving gel, lip and body balms, hand sanitiser, hair rinse and even coconut oil. But it’s best known for its colourful range of 18-in-1 Pure-Castile Soaps, and the eccentric, text-heavy labels that wrap each bottle.

This liquid soap can be used to wash your face, body, hands and hair, to bath, shave, brush your teeth, rinse fruit, clean dishes, do laundry, wash windows, mop floors, scrub toilets, control dust mites, kill ants and aphids (garden pests), aromatherapy and even wash your dog. The company website (www.drbronner.com) provides diluting instructions for each.

I’ve been a fan of this soap for years, but I’ve by no means taken advantage of its versatility. I decided to test it out to see if Dr Bronner’s is as good at producing a multipurpose product as it is at cramming a ridiculous amount of tiny text onto its bottles.

Dr Bronner’s was founded in 1948 by Emanual Heilbronner, a third-generation master soapmaker from Germany. According to the company, Emanual’s Zionist ideals and desire to modernise the family business lead to clashes with his father and encouraged him to emigrate to the United States in 1929. His parents stayed and were later killed in the Holocaust.

In the States, Emanual worked for various American soap manufacturers, dropped “Heil” from his surname with the rise of Hitler in Germany and eventually founded Dr Bronner’s as we know it today.

He saw his soap-making business as an opportunity to communicate his vision for humanity, his “All-One!” philosophy of peace and unity for the human race here on “Spaceship Earth”. He began printing the words of prophets, spiritual leaders and poets as well as his own onto the labels of each soap he sold.

Needless to say, he found enthusiastic consumers in the free spirits of the late 1960s and ’70s, and, despite becoming more mainstream in recent years, the California-based brand maintains its reputation as a counterculture staple. Emanual’s grandson David Bronner is now the company’s CEO (that’s ‘Cosmic Engagement Officer’).

The company is committed to fairly traded and environmentally sound ingredients. Its 18-in-1 Pure-Castile Soaps (starting at € 3.35 from health stores and pharmacies) are concentrated, biodegradable and contain 100 per cent organic coconut, olive, hemp and jojoba oils.

So how effective are they at cleaning everything from your face to your clothes?

Just a few drops of the stuff lathers up nicely and makes a great body, hand and shaving soap. There are plenty of scents to choose from – woodsy, citrus, floral, fresh – and they’re strong, but not too strong. For the shower, I particularly like the lavender and tingly peppermint.

Now, I don’t like what it does to my hair; it leaves an oily residue that makes it look greasy. I’m also not keen to use it for my face; I simply prefer a rich cream cleanser.

And unless you’re out of toothpaste and it’s an emergency, I wouldn’t be eager to brush my teeth with it; it tastes like soap, shocking, and it lingers, even the peppermint.

As for cleaning things that aren’t, well, you, it works a treat. It leaves glass squeaky clean and isn’t harsh on your hands. I have no complaints in terms of toilets, floors and countertops. It’s no stain remover, but it washes clothes just fine.

The fruit was also a success: clean but no soapy taste. And it’s also great for make-up brushes!

I couldn’t find any dust mites to control or ants/aphids to kill. And I didn’t go around asking neighbours if I could wash their dogs.

But I’d say Dr Bronner’s Pure-Castile Soap is a multipurpose staple for both kitchen and bathroom.

 

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