Best Soap Bars For Dry Skin (Top 7 Choices + 12 Alternatives)
Finding the best soap bars for dry skin can be very challenging if you don’t know what to look for when shopping for them. It’s always nice to have a soap that’s especially formulated for your skin type because they specifically address problems that are unique to your skin.
We have compiled reviews of some of the best soap bars for dry skin on the market right now to help you find the right soap. We also have a brief buying guide that has all you need to know about shopping for the right soap bar for dry skin.
Having dry skin is an absolute nightmare. Not only does your skin tend to crack and get flaky, it also becomes prone to a myriad of other skin problems, such as acne, whiteheads, blackheads, irritation, and a whole lot more.
A lot of people will recommend that you buy creams and serums for moisturizing or hydrating your skin, but have you ever thought about going the basic route first? Before your face even gets a whiff of those expensive creams, it touches water and soap first during your shower. Why not attack the problem from there?
Although soap bars that are especially formulated for dry skin are generally more pricey than generic supermarket soaps, they are still a lot cheaper than creams, lotions, serums, and other things you may be thinking about putting on your face. And when you do find the best soap bar for dry skin, you also cut your makeup routine short because you get to hydrate your skin while cleansing it!
1. Dove Beauty Bar, Sensitive Skin
We have selected the Dove Beauty Bar as the best soap bar for dry skin because of its moisturizing cream formula. It has worked for millions of people around the world despite being so mild. We recommend this as your starter skin care product, especially if you have very sensitive skin. It is also hypoallergenic and is even recommended by dermatologists and pediatricians for babies and children.
2. Dove Men+Care Body and Face Bar Deep Clean
We are adding this men’s soap from Dove because men’s skin deserve some loving too! Men are free to use our skin care products, but they will benefit more if they use a product that’s especially formulated for their skin type, which is exactly what this product is. It has the same formula for women, but has added ingredients and technologies that produce good results on men’s skin.
3. Wonderfully Natural Organic African Black Soap
You may find this one-pound block of African black soap highly beneficial if you have numerous skin issues aside from dryness. It is filled with many natural oils, all of which have unique benefits of their own. Like the top 2 products on this list, this one is also hypoallergenic and should not trigger horrible breakouts like other soaps do.
Top 3 Choices - Comparison Table
Dove Beauty Bar, Sensitive Skin
Dove Men+Care Body and Face Bar Deep Clean
Wonderfully Natural Organic African Black Soap
African black soap, natural oils
Obviously, you should buy these recommended products if you have dry skin. What’s more important at this point is for you to determine whether your core skin problem really is dryness and not another skin ailment.
Dryness is very common and is caused by insufficient water content in the epidermis, which is the most superficial layer of the skin. Both genders are affected by this, and you become more prone to it the older you get.
Symptoms include tightness, itching, fine flakes, and dry patches. If you notice these symptoms often, it may be time to invest in a soap that is specifically formulated for dry skin. You want to do this now instead of waiting for your dry skin to lead to other conditions.
Most beauty products targeted to relieve skin dryness contains different oils. When used correctly, these oils should help you keep your skin smooth, radiant, and moisturized. What are the most common oils used for dry skin nowadays? Here are some of them.
Centuries of using coconut oil as part of skin care regimes has more than proved the power of this oil. It is very effective at moisturizing any skin type because of its high fatty acid content. Skin care experts recommend that you go for virgin coconut oil or VCO to make sure you’re maximizing its moisturizing power. But then again, you can always just use it raw, like they do in many countries.
High linoleic acid and omega-6 fatty acid contents are the key contents of safflower oil. These substances help your skin create ceramides, those lipids that improve water retention.
Technically, jojoba (ho-HO-ba) oil is a wax. It is usually recommended as a generic treatment for people with dry skin because it contains a large amount of vitamins B and E, and minerals like zinc and copper, which all strengthen your skin. The great thing about it, though, is that unlike other skin hydrating substances, jojoba oil is easily absorbed by the skin because its chemical structure is highly similar to that of the natural oils in our skin.
This oil has lots of vitamin E and fatty acids. However, most of that tends to get lost during certain kinds of processing, which is why skin care professionals suggest extra virgin olive oil or EVOO.
You will benefit from lavender oil mostly indirectly. It is more of an antiseptic and a disinfectant than a moisturizer per se. They will still benefit you, though. Everyone needs irritation-free skin. What you may like more about lavender oil is that it helps your skin absorb active ingredients in skin products well.
1. Dove Beauty Bar Sensitive Skin
Dove stormed the world of skin care products a while back with its “¼ moisturizing cream” formula. It’s soap that’s not soap. If you have mild to moderate skin dryness or if your baby has it, you may want to try this soap. It’s worked for so many people that it sounds like a good product to try if you’re new to skin care products for dry skin. More importantly, it is unscented (this particular variant, that is) and hypoallergenic, which is great if you have overly sensitive skin.
Features & Benefits
This Dove soap bar is unscented and hypoallergenic, which is why it is recommended by doctors and pediatricians alike. If you have sensitive skin, this should be the first product you try because it’s so mild, and then move up in terms of strength and concentration in case it does not work for you. If you have a child, you can also use this as their daily bath soap because it is specifically formulated for very sensitive skin.
¼ Moisturizing Cream
This soap bar is mainly made of its signature ¼ moisturizing cream formula and mild cleansers. These are the same ingredients that have been working for many people for the longest time. They keep your skin soft, smooth, moisturized, and radiant. Unlike ordinary soap, Dove does not dry the skin. This is a big deal, especially if you are more of a shower gel kind of person.
One of the ingredients in Dove’s soap bar is stearic acid, which is a saturated fatty acid. It is incredibly good for the skin because it keeps the skin soft and helps your skin hold onto its water content.
2. Dove Men+Care Body and Face Bar Deep Clean
We are including this soap from Dove because clean and clear skin should not just be for women. Men’s skin is inherently different from ours, and Dove takes that into account with this soap. It has the standard signature ¼ moisturizing cream formula, but it comes in a patented design and a unique technology made just for men. Plus, there are also micrograins in it. Together, these additional ingredients match the relatively thicker and dirtier skin of men.
Features & Benefits
Your dry skin is problematic enough, so you really don’t want to make it worse. The hypoallergenic formula in Dove soaps like this one apparently works because it is recommended by so many doctors. If you have particular problems about clogged pores, this may also be good news because it’s non-comedogenic.
One of the things that keep this Dove soap for men non-drying is its unique technology, which enables the soap to lather and rinse fast. That means it doesn’t stay too long on your face, thereby reducing the risk of drying.
Dove put purifying micrograins in this soap for exfoliation. This is great for removing dead skin cells and lots of dirt and grime. Despite having this special add-on, the soap remains mild enough for daily use. This may work for you if your skin tends to get too dry because of microscrubs.
3. Dr. Squatch Deep Sea Goat's Milk Bar Soap
This goat’s milk soap is also specially formulated for men, which explains its slightly earthy scent. This is a cold-processed soap in which the key ingredient is goat milk, which is a great moisturizer. This is a good option for you if you want clean, clear, and soft skin without the accompanying smell of flowers that come with many soap bars on the market. You will also like this if you are a fan of plant oils, because those are what this soap uses in place of the harmful synthetic ingredients found in many other soaps.
Features & Benefits
The reason some dermatologists advise against the use of soap bars for your face is that the pH level of soaps generally do not match that of our skin. The pH of goat’s milk is very close to ours, though, so you may want to switch to this soap and see if it works out. Goat’s milk also contains alpha-hydroxyl acids, which are good at moisturizing the skin.
The good thing about cold-processed soap is that the vitamins, minerals, and properties of the ingredients do not get destroyed during soap production. There is no use in spending more over a supposedly moisturizing soap if all the good stuff has been stripped away during manufacture.
Aside from goat’s milk, this product contains the saponified oils of non-GMO soy, hemp, coconut, and olive, as well as shea butter, lye, and oatmeal. These ingredients create an all-around nourishing effect.
4. Wonderfully Natural Organic African Black Soap
There are so many ingredients in this organic African black soap from Wonderfully Natural. For that reason, this soap gets recommended not only for dry skin but also for various other skin ailments, like acne, irritation, and more. Its ingredients include unrefined shea butter, organic palm oil, organic coconut oil, organic cocoa oil, and more. This is a great option for you if you are looking for a soap that does a bit of everything: moisture, antibacterial, protection, and restoration.
Features & Benefits
Hypoallergenic skin care products are always your safest bet, especially if you’re not quite used to using facial care products yet. The best case scenario you’re looking at if you do end up using something you’re allergic to is a mild rash. However, it can get really serious, and the effects are sometimes irreversible.
Unrefined Shea Butter
What you may like about unrefined shea butter is that it lets you fully take advantage of the moisturizing properties of shea butter, which tend to get stripped away when the oil is processed the usual way.
African Black Soap
If you want thorough cleansing while avoiding potentially harmful substances, you may want to try African black soap. It is great at helping your skin retain moisture and comes with a lot of other benefits. These things are part of why this soap is a good starter option for you.
5. Cetaphil Gentle Cleansing Bar
This soap bar from Cetaphil is definitely your soap if you are extremely sensitive and/or simply scared of harsh chemicals. This is hypoallergenic and gentle enough to be used on babies. You can use it for the entire body (which is great, because it’s very expensive!). Also, it does not have any soap ingredients, detergents, and fragrance. You can’t possibly be any milder or safer than that.
Features & Benefits
This antibacterial and antifungal agent is widely used in skin care products because of its capability to protect the skin. Having dry skin, you definitely want to up your skin’s defenses because bacteria tends to attack through tiny cracks caused by dryness.
This saturated fatty acid will not only moisturize your skin for the day but also help it retain its water content. This is especially great if you are looking for a facial skin care product that does not only produce temporary results but also benefits you in the long run.
6. Lavender Goat's Milk Soap Bar with Oats
You may like this cute soap bar from The Yellow Bird if you are looking for an all-around soap bar because it doesn’t only take care of dryness. On the label itself, it highlights goat’s milk, oatmeal, and lavender. Goat’s milk is great for moisture, oatmeal is a good natural exfoliant, and lavender is widely used in skin care products because of its antiseptic properties. This is a great option even if your skin dryness is starting to lead to other ailments. Finally, these soaps are produced in small batches through cold-processing so you can be sure that the minerals in it are all intact.
Features & Benefits
The main benefit of goat’s milk is hydration, thanks to its alpha-hydroxyls. A lot of manufacturers are now looking into using this ingredient because of its naturally pH-balanced nature. You may use this if your dermatologist has advised that the dryness of your skin is caused by pH imbalance.
As you use the product, you will notice fine oatmeal bits on the surface. They are there to exfoliate dirt, grime, and dead skin cells gently. Other products have synthetically produced scrubs and beads, but you may have to stay away from those because they may only make your problem worse.
The oil of lavender is known for its antiseptic properties. Many products have this property too but tend to use harsh ingredients. You can opt for lavender oil instead for a natural alternative.
Working hand-in-hand with goat’s milk, the shea butter in this soap bar works to soften your skin. It is mild but strong enough to be used for conditions that result from dryness, including eczema and psoriasis.
7. Carolina Soap Works Goat's Milk Soap
Also using goat’s milk as its main ingredient, this soap bar from Carolina Soap Works is also ideal for you if you are particular about pH levels. An added benefit of goat milk is that it is rich in protein, glycerin, and vitamin A. Glycerin is something that’s commonly found in beauty products. Protein and vitamin A, meanwhile, help keep the skin healthy and are great at repairing skin cells, which is key to fighting the signs of aging. We are quite impressed at how confident the company is about the quality of their product. They offer a full refund without taking back the purchased soap if you don’t like their product.
Features & Benefits
Your skin may improve with goat milk, which is high in vitamins, minerals, and other substances that laboratories try so hard to create for their beauty products. The most notable contents of goat milk are vitamin A and protein.
Naturally Occurring Glycerin
Glycerin does not directly hydrate your skin. Instead, it makes your skin attract moisture. This is why you always find it in the ingredient list of many beauty products. In the case of the goat milk soap from Carolina Soap Works, the source of glycerin is the goat milk itself.
The oils that work with the goat milk to nourish your skin are olive oil, coconut oil, castor oil, tallow, and various essential oils, all of which provide unique benefits for the skin. Although the main function of the soap is to moisturize, these other ingredients give additional benefits, such as antibacterial properties.
If our recommendations don’t cut it for you for any reason, take a quick look at these alternatives below.
1. Aveeno Moisturizing Bar for Dry Skin
Aveeno is an established name in the world of beauty products, and that adds to the appeal of this product. Other things we love about it is that it is fragrance-free and has natural colloidal oatmeal, which is great at exfoliating your skin without damaging it or stripping away its natural oils. It is also highly recommended by dermatologists for dry skin. This can be your go-to soap if you are looking for a reliable brand.
2. Southern Natural Goat Milk Soap Rosemary Mint
Skin dryness tends to cause other problems. If your skin condition has reached a point where there are more serious issues than just dryness, you may want to try this product instead. Aside from skin dryness, the manufacturer says that this product can help alleviate the symptoms of psoriasis, eczema, rosacea, and other ailments.
3. Dead Sea Handmade Soap Bar with Coconut Oil
Not a lot of beauty products contain Dead Sea mud mainly because of the difficulty of sourcing the material and processing it. This is also why products with this substance tend to be a little expensive. It’s all worth it, though. The mud from the Dead Sea is rich in minerals that hydrate, clean, and nourish the skin. You may want to try this if you feel like spoiling your skin.
4. Splendor Santa Barbara Moisturizing Pure Coconut Oil Soap
You may want to try this coconut oil soap if you want an all-around anti-aging soap. Coconut oil addresses many skin issues, such as dryness, bacteria, roughness, and more. All in all, the result is clean and hydrated skin, which translates to many other benefits of its own. Its ingredients include organic calendula, organic chamomile, colloidal oats, cocoa butter, and aloe juice.
5. Oilatum Soap Bar for Dry Skin
The main ingredient in this soap bar from Oilatum is liquid paraffin BP, which is quite common in many other skin care products. This oil is believed to help the skin retain moisture. There is a lot of confusion surrounding liquid paraffin because a lot of people confuse it with its non-medical counterpart. As mentioned, this is already used by other beauty products, but we rarely see this in specially formulated soaps. We think you can go ahead and try this if you feel like experimenting.
6. Cetaphil Men Daily Clean Bars
Other soap bars for dry skin tend to try to do so much with one little bar. This soap bar from Cetaphil does the opposite. Its main focus is to moisturize, and judging from the positive feedback from many of those who have used it, it looks like it is quite good at doing what it promises. Cetaphil did away with things that tend to dry the skin out, such as soap ingredients and hard-to-rinse lather.
7. Southern Natural Essential Oil Blend Handmade Goat Milk Soap Bar
Another goat milk soap bar is here, and it’s got an impressive 4.9-star rating on Amazon. Aside from goat milk, it has olive oil, which is soothing and moisturizing; coconut oil, which does a bit of everything and makes a hard, long-lasting soap bar; lemongrass essential oil, a natural insect repellant; lavender essential oil, which is relaxing, calming, and an antiseptic; and more. Why not try it and see what all the hype is about?
8. Incredible by Nature African Black Soap
African black soap was a well-hidden skin secret, but now it’s in an increasing number of skin care products, particularly the best soap bars for dry skin. It also has unrefined shea butter, which reinforces its moisturizing properties. The good thing about it is that it is hypoallergenic and can be used even on babies. It is also vegan friendly and not tested on animals, which for us are a big plus.
9. The Yellow Bird All-Natural Charcoal Face Soap
We love activated charcoal because of its cleansing power. It does clean the pores deeply and thoroughly. However, it appears The Yellow Bird chose to maximize cleansing and moisturizing instead of compromising both by combining them into one product. The product you will see through that link is a set. There is a charcoal soap and an accompanying face oil serum. Sure, a 2-in-1 product always sounds better than a set of products, but if the results are better when the products are separated, we guess we can’t complain at all.
10. Eau Thermale Avène Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Bar
Coming in a very sophisticated packaging, the Eau Thermale Avène Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Bar is also a great option if you are particular about pH levels. This soap bar is designed for dry and very dry skin because of its special formula, which does not strip the layer of natural oil on the skin. Its key ingredient is what the manufacturer calls the Avène thermal spring water, which soothes and strengthens skin.
11. sammysoap All Natural Soap Bar
The name of this product can’t possibly be any more blunt. This soap bar from sammysoap is free from any synthetic ingredient and any type of fragrance, which means you will definitely love this if you are into all-natural skin care and/or are sensitive to scents. In place of the loads of artificial agents in other soaps, this soap bar uses therapeutic-grade essential oils and pure natural emollients.
12. Southern Natural Lavender Goat Milk Soap Bar
Finally, goat milk makes it last appearance on this list in the form of this lavender goat milk soap bar from Southern Natural. Aside from goat milk, this product contains natural oils (coconut, olive, palm) and lavender essential oil. This is also great if you have other skin problems associated with skin dryness, such as cracked fingers and eczema.
Alternative Choices Comparison Table
Aveeno Moisturizing Bar for Dry Skin
Southern Natural Goat Milk Soap Rosemary Mint
Dead Sea Handmade Soap Bar with Coconut Oil
Goat’s milk, essential oils
Dead Sea mud, coconut oil
Splendor Santa Barbara Moisturizing Pure Coconut Oil Soap
Oilatum Soap Bar for Dry Skin
Cetaphil Men Daily Clean Bars
Southern Natural Essential Oil Blend Handmade Goat Milk Soap Bar
Incredible by Nature African Black Soap
The Yellow Bird All-Natural Charcoal Face Soap
4 oz (approx.)
Goat’s milk, essential oils
African black soap, unrefined shea butter
Activated charcoal, shea butter, natural oils
Eau Thermale Avène Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Bar
sammysoap All Natural Soap Bar
Southern Natural Lavender Goat Milk Soap Bar
3.2 oz (approx.)
4 oz (approx.)
Proprietary thermal spring water
Therapeutic-grade essential oils
Goat’s milk, natural oils
Before buying multiple creams, lotions, and serums to moisturize your skin, consider changing your soap first. Dove Beauty Bar Sensitive Skin tops the list for us mainly because it is a tested and proven product. Also, it manages to be effective while remaining very mild, which is what dry skin really needs.