Why I Hated Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap in My Hair

Why I Hate Dr. Bronner's Castile Soap in My Hair - CURLYNUGROWTH.com

I first started using Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap, years ago, on my Hubby’s locs and it always left a white residue and build up, lathering was hit or miss, and it just seemed too “liquidity”.  A few months ago, after several recommendations to try it on my locs, I decided to give it another chance. It was then that I learned the main reason why I hated Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap was that I had been using it completely wrong as a shampoo — and here’s why.

Why I Hated Dr.Bronner's Castile Soap In My Hair - CURLYNUGROWTH.com

The Dr.Bronner’s Label Matters

I know many of us only read a label to find out if the ingredients are natural — “Great, I can pronounce most of what’s on here …**Throws in Cart**”  — I’ve been guilty of this more times than not.

What’s different about the Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap is that the label has the ingredients AND instructions, that really matter. I honestly. I never thought to read the instructions because I’d like to think I know how to use shampoo, but here’s the thing, Dr.Bronner’s is a castile soap that can be used as shampoo. **cue fluorescent lightbulb**

Just trying to pour it out of the bottle into my hair was completely wrong! I realized that it wasn’t a shampoo and that I needed to read the directions because it explained the dilution ratios for each of the 18 different ways the Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap could be used.

After using it correctly, my opinion of the Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap changed — I love it! The Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap is truly amazing and probably one of the only bottles of shampoo you’ll ever need to purchase — and it works on the entire family!

I want to share the goodness of the Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap, so this is part 1 of a 3 part series on Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap — including a full product review and how to chose the right “scent” for your hair, AND the secret to a good shampoo using Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap every time!

Next week’s topicThe Pros and Cons of Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap as Shampoo.

In the meantime, let me know if you’ve tried the Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap in your hair and how it has worked for you.

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Jocelyn Reneé

Jocelyn Reneé is a Licensed Cosmetologist, Loctician and Textured Hair Educator. She was born and raised in the Washington DC area and is a graduate of the Aveda Institute Cosmetology Science program. With over 14 years in the Hair Care Industry, from Salon Assistant to Natural Hair Blogger to Professional; Jocelyn is passionate about cultivating healthy hair.

Blog Comments

I’ve been loc’d 13yrs and have always used Dr. Woods Almond Castile soap and LOVE IT!! …I’m very interested to hear of your pros and cons of castile soap.

I’ve never heard of Dr.Wood’s Castile Soap, I’ll have to look into it! Thank you for sharing!

I’ve been using dr. Bronners for over 10 years. On my 1st set locks which I had for 11 years and now on my 2nd set which are 1.5 years old. I use it on my 8 year old son too. I love how I don’t need a lot and find that it spreads very easily through my hair and my son’s. It also leaves it queaky clean after one shampoo–we don’t use lots of products in our hair. I’m currently using the I unscented version and plan to stick with it. I also use dr bronners for the other uses mentioned on the bottle.

I love the squeaky clean feeling too after shampooing with Dr. Bronner’s. Only recently have I discovered the other uses for it as well.

I use Dr. Bronners on my face and hands, but didn’t like it for my locs. Maybe I was using it wrong too! I just ordered some Dr. Woods castile soap, it’ll be interesting to see how it compares.

You’re the second to mention Dr. Woods Castile Soap – I definitely need to look into it! Please come back and share your experience with Dr. Woods after you give it a try, I’m curious too!

Dr. Woods Castile soap come in many scents, as do Dr. Bonners. It was once sold in my local grocery store, and whole foods/co-op stores, but it was scarce and pricey. I love the almond scent, and they have an almond version with shea butter as well. I use it for my hair but also my face at times, and to shave as well. When I was out I did try Dr. Bonners that I found locally in Target, but I did not care for it. I look forward to your Dr. Woods review.


Serena "luvndanaturalme" Morrison

I just started using Dr Bronners Castille Soap on my hair. I have the small 4oz bottle and after reading your blog post I was looking for the instructions on how to use it as a shampoo but its not on there. Probably because I have the tiny bottle and not the larger bottle. I am sure there is only so much they can put on the label for a 4 oz bottle. I guess I will try and google the instructions. I purchased the lavender scent and found mine at The Vitamin Shoppe

Lavender scent is one of my favorites— followed by Peppermint! Yes I believe the smaller bottles don’t list the hair directions, only the bigger bottle. But it says to dilute the shampoo in water, I only have a little bottle now too so I don’t know exactly. Most people say to play around with the ratios until you find what works best for you.

I have never used the soap however I did pick up two small 2oz bottles from Target. Now that I have read your post, I will give it a try and let you know what I think.

Yes! Please let me know how you like it!

[…] If you’ve been following my journey for awhile, you know I’ve mentioned before how much I hated using the Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap as a shampoo—until I realized I wasn’t using it right, and now I can’t get […]

I’ve used Dr. Bronner’s off/on for years… I’ve always loved how clean it gets my hair, even if it was very drying. My first round with it was around the 1-2 year mark of my journey. I was still learning about my hair & sifting through all the loc myths. Anyway, it dried my hair out so badly (I wasn’t conditioning) that you could HEAR my locs brushing against each other (think leaves)… I stopped using it & returned to it a few years later. As long as I follow with a conditioner, my hair is fine.

Favourite scents: almond, lavender.

Yes, following up with a moisture treatment will balance using the Castile soap and/or diluting it before applying it to your hair.

I’have’t use Dr Bronner soap, I will give it a try.Is their a moisture treatment by Dr.Bronner

Dr. Bronner’s does have a Hair Rinse that they recommend after using the Castile Soap, but I personally have never tried it. I like to follow Castile soap with an Herbal or Moisturizing shampoo.

[…] Related Article: Why I Hated Dr.Bronner’s Castile Soap in My Hair […]

I’ve been using the bar version of Dr. Bronners soap (Tea Tree) for the three years I’ve had lots and it’s been the best cleaning solution for my hair. The first time I had locs for 8 years and I used so much product that it was full of buildup.

I’ve never tried the liquid soap version but I highly recommend the bar. And it lasts forever.

I never would have thought to use the Dr. Bronners shampoo bar on my locs. Thanks for sharing that tip!

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