Battle Of The Bar Soaps

For all your beauty advice…

Not so long ago, I ran out of my L’Occitane soap. I have used L’Occitane for years, and I ran out…so did my supplier! So, why didn’t I just head out and buy more? Easy…when I worked at L’Occitane, I enjoyed my 40% off discount to the fullest and I would stock up. Also, a good friend of mine worked there for a long time and had an abundance to share with me…until I cleaned her out. Now we’re both without, and right now, I just don’t want to spend $6-$10 on one bar of soap. So, it was time to start shopping around and seeing what other brands were out there and how they match up. Over the past few months, I have tried 3 different bar soaps. So, read on about what brands they were, and what I thought of them.

My first stop was Bath & Body Works. Big shocker here, they no longer sell bar soap. What? What kind of bath shop doesn’t sell soap? See ya B&B, I’ll give someone else my dough! On to The Body Shop! Right away, I notice the display of bar soap. Simple and clean, nothing fancy. Funny thing, with as much as I like fancy stuff, I prefer my soap to be pretty basic. The Body Shop bar soap is $4 a bar, but if you buy 3 you get 1 free, so that lowers the price to $3 a bar. These soaps were pretty small, but the sales lady assured me they would last a long time. At the size they are, I wasn’t expecting a miracle, but it took me a full month to get through one bar. They smell nice, but not so strong the scent lingers on you all day. They lather nice, we all know I love some suds! And the price isn’t bad. I’ll shop there again in the future.

Being a big fan of Burt’s Bees, I have never tried their bar soap, so when I came across their display at Target, I decided to grab a bar. I love Shea Butter in just about all of my products, so I picked up the Milk & Shea Butter soap. It’s a good-sized bar of soap, and it retails for $4. Being the deal-sniffer that I am, I had a coupon for $1 off, so that brought it to $3. Not bad. I’m starting to notice that a decent bar of soap is going to be at least $4. The scent of this Milk & Shea Butter soap is very light. As far as clean factor, I will admit I’m a little disappointed. It doesn’t lather all that great, and it doesn’t feel like it’s getting my skin all the way clean. I probably won’t be picking that one up again.

The third contestant in this battle is Caress Velvet Bliss Body Bar. I’ve never used Caress in the past, but I had read in the May issue of Self Magazine that this soap got written up as the best bar soap in their 2010 Healthy Beauty Awards. I couldn’t find this soap individually, I had to buy it in a three pack for about $9, making this product $3 a bar. It smells nice…a little stronger than what I am used to, but the scent doesn’t stay overpowering on your skin. It lathers ok, still not as good as the one from The Body Shop, but I got some good suds! One thing I really didn’t like about this bar of soap? It doesn’t really dry out between showers and just stays moist, so when you go to pick it up, it’s kind of squishy. That’s always kind of grossed me out!

What’s the bottom line in this battle? The Body Shop takes first prize out of these three, with Burt’s Bees coming in second. I honestly don’t know why Caress got a write-up in a magazine. Although this project was fun, I realized that in what I spent on research for this, I should have just gone and gotten my L’Occitane soap. I can’t write in just a few sentences what’s so great about L’Occitane, so I’ll devote an entire post to a review on them, coming soon.

What’s your favorite bar soap? Do you have one you have used for years that you just love? I want to hear about it!

Email me your questions for Q&A Monday at

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