The 5 Best Hand Soaps (2022 Review) (2024)

Washing your hands can eliminate the germs that collect on your skin, preventing their spread into your body and onto other surfaces. Hand soaps come in various forms from foaming cleansers to all-natural remedies. To help you select a product that fits your hygienic needs, the This Old House Reviews Team evaluated the best hand soaps on Amazon. Here are our top picks.

Best Lather: Puracy Hand Soap

This 99.95% natural hand soap eliminates germs and invigorates the skin without using triclosan, sulfates, and other harsh chemicals. Its honey-like gel turns into germ-killing suds when you lather for 20 seconds.

Key Features

  • 12-ounce dispensing bottle
  • Lavender and vanilla scent
  • Plant-powered formula

What Customers Are Saying

Customers liked this soap’s pleasant scent. They also said that it worked well on sensitive skin because of its soothing and moisturizing ingredients. However, unhappy customers claimed that the soap was less thick and lather-forming than advertised.

Best Refill: EO Hand Soap

This soap uses gentle amino acid cleansers to clean your hands. Meanwhile, aloe vera, calendula, white tea, and other botanical extracts moisturize your hands, soothing and softening your skin after every wash.

Key Features

  • Two 32-ounce refill bottles
  • French lavender scent
  • Organic formula

What Customers Are Saying

Positive reviews mentioned this soap’s relaxing scent. Customers also liked how little they had to use. However, customers who left negative reviews for this hand soap said that it dried their hands.

Largest Dispensing Bottle: Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Hand Soap

These three large bottles give you weeks of germ-fighting, soothing soap in your bathroom and kitchen. The soap’s thoughtful formula doesn’t contain ethanolamine, parabens, phthalates, or artificial colors that can irritate your skin.

Key Features

  • Three 12.5-ounce dispensing bottles
  • Honeysuckle scent
  • Plant-derived formula

What Customers Are Saying

Customers said that this soap left their hands feeling soft and smooth and smelling pleasant. However, dissatisfied customers had to use several squirts of soap to feel clean, causing it to run out quickly. Other users said that it was difficult to dispense.

Best Citrus Scent: J.R. Watkins Hand Soap

If you like the fresh scent of citrus fruit, this soap is for you. It’s made from plant-based, cruelty-free ingredients that are gentle on your skin but effective at removing dirt, bacteria, and viruses.

Key Features

  • 11-ounce dispensing bottle
  • Lemon scent
  • Organic formula

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon customers praised this soap’s scent, claiming that it smelled like they had just cut into a lemon. The citrus fragrance eliminated and replaced the smell of garlic, fish, and other foods on customers’ hands. However, many users were disappointed by the bottle, which leaked in transit.

Largest Pack: Seventh Generation Hand Soap

This laundry-scented hand soap is an effective way to fight germs without leaving an overbearing scent. It uses a 97% bio-based formula that’s free of dyes, triclosan, chlorine, phthalates, and other ingredients that irritate your skin and are bad for the environment.

Key Features

  • Eight 12-ounce dispensing bottles
  • Free and clean scent
  • Plant-powered formula

What Customers Are Saying

Customers liked the consistency of this soap. They also said that its gentle, light-smelling formula was good for those with sensitive hands and noses. However, some customers had issues with getting the bottle’s pump to work properly.

Buyer’s Guide

Before purchasing hand soap, consider the following factors to determine which product is best for you.


Hand soaps most frequently come in either liquid or foam options. Liquid soaps use water and friction to create lather, while foam soaps have a bottle that mixes air with the soap as it’s dispensed to form a foamy texture. Both types of soaps are effective if they’re used properly, so it’s a matter of personal preference whether you want to spend more time creating foam.


Above all else, soap needs to be effective to be worth purchasing. Your hand soap should eliminate germs when you properly lather and scrub your hands.


Second to killing germs, hand soap should also have a pleasant smell. The scent options for soap are limitless. There are also unscented choices if you don’t want there to be a trace of soap after you clean your hands.


Look for hand soaps that don’t use harsh ingredients, as these can break down your skin’s moisture barrier and result in dry skin. Soaps that have hydrating, chemical-free ingredients are best at cleaning your hands without drying them.

How To Purchase a Soap Dispenser

Soap is a must for any bathroom, but that doesn’t mean you need to keep it in the plastic bottle that it comes in. To add more decoration to your bathroom, you can purchase a separate dispenser and pour your soap into it. Below are some factors to help you find a dispenser that matches your bathroom decor.


The design of a soap dispenser largely depends on what material it’s made from. Common dispenser materials include plastic, stone, and metal. You can find these materials in a variety of colors and patterns to match the aesthetic of your home.


Most soap dispensers are manual, meaning you push the handle down yourself to dispense soap. However, there are also automatic dispensers on the market that release a blob of soap onto your hand when you get near their motion sensor. Though more expensive, these dispensers are useful if you’re worried about contaminating the handle of a manual one.


Most dispensers are compact to fit neatly on a shelf or counter. However, keep in mind that the smaller the dispenser, the more often you will need to refill it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do you need to wash your hands?

According to the CDC, people frequently touch their eyes, nose, and mouth, which are prime locations for germs to enter the body. By washing your hands, you can eliminate the bacteria that settle on your hands, preventing their spread.

When should you wash your hands?

Although you shouldn’t limit hand washing to after a particular event, the CDC outlines some instances where washing your hands is absolutely necessary:

  • Before, during, and after preparing food
  • Before eating food
  • Before and after caring for someone who’s sick with vomiting or diarrhea
  • Before and after treating a cut or wound
  • After using the toilet
  • After changing diapers or cleaning up after a child who has used the toilet
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
  • After handling pet food or pet treats
  • After touching garbage

What steps should you take to properly wash your hands?

Here are some of the CDC’s recommended steps for properly washing your hands:

  • Wet your hands with clean, running water—the water can be warm or cold.
  • Apply soap to your hands, and lather it by rubbing your hands together. Ensure that you’re getting between your fingers, on the back of your hands, and under your fingernails.
  • Continue lathering and scrubbing for at least 20 seconds. If you don’t want to count to 20, sing the alphabet once or the “Happy Birthday” song twice.
  • Rinse your hands under clean, running water.
  • Dry your hands with a clean towel, or let them air-dry.

Why Trust The This Old House Reviews Team

This Old House has empowered homeowners for more than four decades with top-notch home improvement content in the form of television programs, print media, and digital content on its website and social media platforms. The This Old House Reviews Team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content to help inform your purchasing decision for just about any item or resource that you might need for your home. The This Old House Reviews Team has written over 1,000 reviews on products in the home space, from cordless drills to kitchen trash cans, lawn mowers, and dining room decorations.

We recommend products in each review using an intensive research process, spending hours combing through the best available models on Amazon. For a product to make our list of top picks, it must hold a solid sales record on Amazon, have consistently positive customer reviews, and offer unique features, among other factors. After narrowing down our list of recommendations, we conduct additional research and sometimes in-person testing to ensure that the products meet our standards. Once we conclude the research phase, we craft a well-rounded, user-friendly article that includes our recommended products and additional information to help homeowners like you make the right purchase.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at

The 5 Best Hand Soaps (2022 Review) (2024)


What is the most effective antibacterial hand soap? ›

Keep reading for our list of the best antibacterial hand soaps in stock online.
  1. Softsoap Antibacterial Liquid Hand Soap. ...
  2. Dial Complete Antibacterial Foaming Hand Wash. ...
  3. Mrs. ...
  4. Method Gel Hand Soap. ...
  5. Dove Hand Wash For All Skin Types. ...
  6. J.R. Watkins Foaming Hand Soap. ...
  7. Solimo Antibacterial Liquid Hand Soap. ...
  8. Everyone Hand Soap.
8 Mar 2022

What hand soap do doctors use? ›

Before any medical or surgical procedure, it is recommended that healthcare professionals wash their hands with Hibiclens antiseptic solution. The cleanser is a 4% chlorhexidine gluconate soap solution designed to protect the area from germs for up to 24 hours, controlling the spread of infection and skin antisepsis.

What is a better option than an antibacterial soap? ›

Plain soap is recommended for non-healthcare settings in the public and home unless antibacterial soap is recommended by a doctor. Antibacterial soaps are no more effective at killing germs outside of a carefully sterilized healthcare setting.

Which soap has least chemicals? ›

What is the best soap without chemicals? According to our research, EcoRoots' face and body bars are the best natural soaps. We also highly recommend Dr. Bronner's Pure-Castile Liquid Soap and Tom's of Maine Natural Beauty Bar Soap for Sensitive Skin.

Which soap is not harmful for skin? ›

Cetaphil's Gentle Cleansing Bar is recommended by dermatologists, and it's one of Dr. Klein's favorite soaps for dry skin. It's unscented and hypoallergenic, thus safe for the face and body. It's also gentle enough to use every day on eczema or rash-prone skin.

Which soap is not harmful? ›

Glycerin soap (while still soap) is also a decent alternative. It's a more gentle soap that can be made with completely natural ingredients. Because of this, glycerin soap can be beneficial for people who have mildly sensitive skin or as an alternative for anyone wishing to avoid the most harmful chemicals in soap.

What soap do most dermatologists recommend? ›

Avoid using harsh soaps that dry the skin. Recommended soaps are Dove, Olay and Basis. Even better than soap are skin cleansers such as Cetaphil Skin Cleanser, CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser and Aquanil Cleanser.

What is the most moisturizing soap? ›

The Pré De Provence Specialty Soaps – Ocean Air is one of the best formulas for dry skin as it is enriched with a moisturizing ingredient like shea butter. The Tone Cocoa Butter Bath Bar is also a good choice for dry skin as it has vitamin E and cocoa butter for moisturization. Is bar soap better than body wash?

What soap is good for anti aging? ›

Anti Aging Soap
  • Orange 100g Albella Carrot Anti-aging Soap, For Bathing. ...
  • Solid Natural Honey Citra Green Apple Bathing Soap, 125 Gms. ...
  • Bar Kojie San Dream White Soap. ...
  • Solid Musk Anti Aging Skin Care Natural Bath Soap, For Bathing, 100gm. ...
  • X. ...
  • Glycerine Clear Essence Anti Aging Complexion Soap, For Personal.

Which is the best chemical free soap? ›

12 Best Organic Soaps in India 2022
  • Kaprica Natural Handcrafted Coconut Oil Soap. ...
  • Mamaearth Natural Nourishing Bathing Soap. ...
  • Soulflower Handmade Milk And Chocolate Soap. ...
  • Chandrika Ayurvedic Handmade Soap. ...
  • Looms & weaves Natural & Hand Made Ayurvedic Soaps. ...
  • Ancient Living Daily Bath needs.
2 Jul 2022

What do surgeons wash their hands with yellow? ›

Chlorhexidine belongs to a group of medicines called antiseptic antibacterial agents. It is used to clean the skin after an injury, before surgery, or before an injection. Chlorhexidine is also used to clean the hands before a procedure.

What brand of soap do hospitals use? ›

Hibiclens has been trusted by hospitals for more than 40 years, with patients frequently instructed to wash with Hibiclens antiseptic skin cleanser before surgery or other procedures to reduce the risk of infection*.

What do surgeons wash their hands with? ›

1. Liquid or foam soaps. These are the most common products for surgical scrubs and are used in conjunction with water and dry scrub brushes or sponges. The most common antimicrobial agents in these products are CHG (chlorhexidine gluconate), iodophor, or PCMX (parachlorometaxylenol).

Why did they stop making antibacterial soap? ›

Companies will no longer be able to market antibacterial washes with these ingredients because manufacturers did not demonstrate that the ingredients are both safe for long-term daily use and more effective than plain soap and water in preventing illness and the spread of certain infections.

What is the best antibacterial soap to use before surgery? ›

IMPORTANT: You will need to shower with a special soap called chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG). A common brand name for this soap is Hibiclens, but any brand is acceptable. The soap comes in a liquid form and can be purchased at most pharmacies, or from the hospital's gift shop.

Is there a natural antibacterial soap? ›

Neem soap is a powerful ally in the fight against bad bacteria, flu and cold germs. This naturally antibacterial soap also has strong antiviral properties and a high vitamin E content to help protect against dry skin.

What soap is toxic? ›

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, also known as SLS, is the ingredient added to soap to make it lather, and according to the EWG's Cosmetics Database, it's highly toxic. SLS carries a high concern for irritation of the skin, eyes, and lungs, as well as moderate concern for organ system toxicity.

Should you use a washcloth to wash your body? ›

If you love using your washcloth for showers, then Dr. Schlessinger recommends reserving it for use on the body. “The best way to wash your body with a washcloth is by using a gentle touch, don't scrub your skin too hard and avoid rubbing body acne or other skin irritations,” Dr. Schlessinger says.

Which soap is free from chemicals? ›

Best Chemical-Free: Keika Naturals Charcoal Bar Soap

Handmade and long-lasting, this soap is free of artificial fragrances and harsh chemicals, making it ideal for sensitive skin.

What is the number 1 dermatologist recommended brand? ›

Developed with dermatologists, CeraVe is the #1 dermatologist recommended skincare brand1.

What is #1 recommended dermatologist? ›

The cosmetics company knows the results and can refer to them at any time. Dermatologist recommendation means a skin expert was paid for their endorsem*nt. No actual testing has been done behind this endorsem*nt.

Which is the No 1 soap in the world? ›

Behind the brand: why Lifebuoy's the world's No. 1-selling germ-protection soap | Unilever.

Which soap makes skin glow? ›

It effectively removes the early signs of aging, like wrinkles and dark spots. Kojie San soap is proven to be most effective for acne and oily skin.
KOJIC skin glow soap,skin whitening soap (0.3 g)
Sales Package1 Soap
Ideal ForMen & Women
Fragrance ScentRose
TypeBathing Soap
9 more rows

What is the number one antibacterial soap? ›


What is in antibacterial soap that kills bacteria? ›

Ingredients. Triclosan and triclocarban are the most common compounds used as antibacterials in soaps. However, other common antibacterial ingredients in soaps include benzalkonium chloride, benzethonium chloride, and chloroxylenol.

Does the CDC recommend antibacterial soap? ›

Studies have not found any added health benefit from using soaps containing antibacterial ingredients when compared with plain soap. Both are equally effective in getting rid of germs.

What is the negative effect of an antibacterial hand soap? ›

Antibacterial soaps have the potential to create antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The reason that the FDA is making manufacturers prove these products' efficacy is because of a range of possible health risks associated with triclosan, and bacterial resistance is first on the list.

What is the best soap recommended by dermatologists? ›

Avoid using harsh soaps that dry the skin. Recommended soaps are Dove, Olay and Basis. Even better than soap are skin cleansers such as Cetaphil Skin Cleanser, CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser and Aquanil Cleanser.

What soap do dermatologists use? ›

Cetaphil's Gentle Cleansing Bar is recommended by dermatologists, and it's one of Dr. Klein's favorite soaps for dry skin. It's unscented and hypoallergenic, thus safe for the face and body.

Which soap is better grade 1 or 2? ›

The most important factor to be considered in soap quality is its total fatty matter (TFM). Higher the TFM quantity in the soap, better is its quality. As per BIS, Grade 1 soaps should have 76 per cent minimum TFM, while Grade 2 and Grade 3 must have 70 per cent and 60 per cent minimum TFM, respectively.

Is it safe to use antibacterial soap everyday? ›

Overuse of antibacterial products can reduce the healthy bacteria on your skin. Added chemicals to antibacterial soaps can remove natural oils, making skin drier. Using antibacterial soap or hand sanitizer can make people think they do not have to wash their hands as thoroughly or frequently.

Is antibacterial hand wash better than soap? ›

The best option is soap and water. According to a 2019 study by the American Society for Microbiology, using running water and soap to wash your hands is more effective than a dab of gel that you have not quite rubbed in.

Which is the world No 1 selling germ protection soap? ›

Behind the brand: why Lifebuoy's the world's No. 1-selling germ-protection soap | Unilever.

What did people use before soap? ›

Before soap, many people around the world used plain ol' water, with sand and mud as occasional exfoliants. Depending on where you lived and your financial status, you may have had access to different scented waters or oils that would be applied to your body and then wiped off to remove dirt and cover smell.

Why is there more bacteria after washing hands? ›

This effect is due in part to the act of rubbing the hands together during the washing or subsequent drying steps, since bacteria living within skin pores or under the fingernails can be forced to the skin surface. Another factor that contributes to this phenomenon is the detergent action of soap.

What bacteria grows in liquid hand soap? ›

The best-known species is Burkholderia cepacia, which is aerobic, gram-negative and rod-shaped, capable of growing even in disinfecting solutions.

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