Beauty Trends

The revival of solid cleansers and why you need one in your life

Hands up who else has been personally victimised (ie. dried out) by old school solid bar cleansers and soaps? I’m guessing that’s 99% of readers. I too used to squirm at the idea of washing my face and body with a solid bar of soap however in more recent years there has been a resurgence of solid bar cleansers and soaps with very good reason.

By 2050, there will be more pounds of plastic in the ocean than fish. That’s right, read that again and let it sink in – excuse the pun. What’s worse is the beauty industry has a huge role in that fact. With the industry reportedly creating a humongous 120 billion units of packaging every year and 91% of it isn’t even getting recycled. what’s more, 70% of plastic waste is estimated to end up in our oceans or in landfill, where it takes well over 400 years to decompose.

In a bid to stand out, brands wrap, ship and display products with unnecessary materials and colours that are almost impossible to recycle however consumers have began to shake up their routines and are adopting greener methods which includes the rise of solid cleansers.

Requiring little else than a box to keep these hard-working formulas hygienic, in pristine condition and house handy how to use instructions as well as ingredients lists, you won’t find any unnecessary and hard-to-recycle pumps or bottles here. Simply place these cleansers under water for a second or two and then get massaging the lovely lather across your skin, body or hair.

Wondering which bar cleanser is best for you and your skin? Read on for our simple and handy guide:

Best for deep cleansing… Ultra-clarifying and intensely purifying, the clay and charcoal cleansing bars lift dirt, excess oil, impurities and blemish-inducing bacteria from your complexion for a balanced and purified complexion. We suggest trying out either Baxter of California’s {Charcoal Clay Deep Cleansing Bar} or Herbivore’s {Bamboo Charcoal Cleansing Bar Soap}.

Best for hair… The perfect solution for those on a mission to cut down on plastic and ‘clean up’ their act, why not try Odacité’s {522M Soap Free Shampoo Bar} or CENTRD.’s {Altered State Solid Shampoo Bar}, these space-saving and eco-friendly formulas still work up to a luxurious lather, leaves your conscience as clean as your hair.

Best for on-the-go… We all know that space in your carry-on toiletries bag is precious to say the least so why not free up some space for more make up and serums by packing Drunk Elephant’s {Baby Bar Travel Duo} which unites both the 3-in-1 cleansing, toning and moisturising {Pekee} and the exfoliating and clarifying {Juju} bars for an effective double cleanse.

Best for body… Replace that old school stripping and drying soap bar in your shower with one of the ultra-luxe alternatives that are beloved for their multi-tasking benefits that are also perfect for traveling and probably last way longer than your usual gel formula too! We’re currently obsessed with Baxter of California’s {Exfoliating Body Bar} and Aesop’s {Body Cleansing Slab}. While Gallinée’s {Intimate Hygiene Perfume-Free Cleansing Bar} is a a gentle, biotic-laced cleanser that helps to respect the vaginal environment.


Emmie Thornhill

Emmie Thornhill

Deputy Content Editor

Emmie is Cult Beauty’s Deputy Content Editor. Her love of skin care began in primary school when she first learned the term “hormonal acne” and has been in a love-hate relationship with tea tree oil ever since. She lives in East London – where you can normally find her baking, tending to her plant jungle or planning her next tattoo or hair cut/colour appointment – and is known to start DMCs with you about your birth chart placements, the importance of wearing SPF every day and the difference between a vagina and vulva.