A while ago, I wondered if Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap was all that it was reported to be. From travel websites to camping websites, it is spoken of in the hushed tones reserved for holy relics. I wanted to see how it stacked up as a travel product, and how it worked with my finicky hair and skin.
My hair is super fine and super straight. We are talking so straight and flat that when I have tried to get perms in the past, they fell out by the end of the day. It used to be that my usual hairstyle was waist length hair, twisted into a knot on the top of my head, easy and it doesn’t matter how thin it is. (But people were always amazed when I took my hair down because it looks like it would be shoulder length when it is in a bun.)
My skin is red head fair (though my hair hasn’t been red since I was a baby), sensitive and freckled. For some reason, my body has decided that my 30’s would be the perfect time to have major acne breakouts, instead of my teens.
I got a 2 oz. bottle of lavender to take on our trip to San Antonio in June, to see how I liked using just it in a hotel room. I also wanted to see how much I used. As you can see, using nothing but this soap for my hair, my body, and some light laundry duty for five days (showering everyday) I used about half the bottle. I enjoyed the very herby scent of the lavender, but it may not be for everyone – this is not sweet, but a true lavender smell. San Antonio has hard water, similar to Houston; so the soap took some coaxing to lather up nicely, but it washed away very quickly and cleanly. As suggested by several websites, I also used a conditioner to keep my hair my from getting completely dried out.
I also got an 8 oz. bottle of the peppermint scent, to use at home in a controlled environment. I have to admit, I was curious about the peppermint zing I read about, too. Well, yeah, it zings, allright! Once you figure out how to lather up correctly, the longer you let the peppermint soap sit on your body, the more it feels cool and tingly. Especially anywhere you might have a cut or scratch.
I did not try it out as toothpaste. I just couldn’t bring myself to put soap in my mouth.
My son also used the peppermint, and loves it – but he has a serious thing for peppermint in all forms.
So, my reactions?
- Out of the bottle, in the shower, the scents are kind of intense, but they quickly fade as the soap gets washed down the drain.
- I’m not sure I would recommend these as shampoo for people with already dry hair – they seriously strip all the oils off your hair! And if you have normal hair, I definitely agree with using a conditioner every time.
- But, that being said, it was amazing for my hair! My hair dried very quickly without a blowdryer, and fluffed out as it dried – something which doesn’t normally happen, even with “volumizing” shampoos. I got a pretty style without the need for gel, mousse, or hairspray – which all weigh my hair down and make me sweat when I go outside in the heat and humidity.
- As a soap it worked as well as other soaps (I tend to use handmade goats milk soaps, or Ivory). It didn’t make my skin crawl with dryness like Ivory, but it didn’t moisturize as well as the goats milk soap.
- It didn’t make me break out any worse than I normally do, but I would not recommend using the peppermint for your face. The fumes get very intense, and the peppermint oil in the soap is not fun to have that close to your eye area (I did not get any IN my eyes, but the delicate skin around them sure reacted!). Look into “beezin” for info on why peppermint oil near the eyes is bad.
I am worried about taking it to the desert, though. It worked well in a humid area, and I didn’t notice too much dryness with my skin or hair – but Utah will be a different story. I remember that the way that first rush of desert air feels when you leave the airport – my gills hurt just thinking about it! 🙂
Does anyone have any experience with using Dr. Bronner’s while traveling to the desert? Preferably from a highly humid region. *grins* Thanks!