9 Best Charcoal Soaps: Which Is Right For You?

charcoal soap


If you’re looking for a detox facial treatment you can use every day, activated charcoal is the way to go. But we don’t expect you to smear the black stuff on your face alone, because you can use charcoal soap. Many soaps feature activated charcoal because it can actually help to pull the dirt, oil and toxins to the surface of your skin, where they can be washed away.

Charcoal is a bit of a beauty miracle in face masks, soaps and even teeth whitening treatments, all of which make sense when you think about how it draws out impurities. We’ve picked our favorite formulas, with each soap offering a slightly different set of ingredients to tackle a variety of skin issues from acne to eczema, psoriasis and even athlete’s foot.

While many of these charcoal soaps are marketed toward men, don’t worry ladies -they’re perfectly suitable for your skin too. Fair warning, however, they won’t do any favors for your white or light colored washcloths and towels. Additionally, they tend to leave some dark residue on soap dishes, counters and showers.

That said, you can have clearer skin with fewer breakouts and irritations by using activated charcoal soap. Another plus? Most of those we’ve reviewed are organic or feature mostly natural ingredients. Be sure to check out our comments following the reviews to learn more about some of our favorite additional ingredients, and how they might specifically benefit your skin issues.

These Are the Best Charcoal Soap Bars

Activated Charcoal and tea tree oil soap Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Skin detoxifying
  • Cedar vanilla scent
  • Sulfate, paraben and alcohol free
Price: $7.60 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
dead sea mud and charcoal soap bar Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Dead Sea mud formula
  • Detoxifies and exfoliates
  • Very moisturizing
Price: $9.45 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
all natural activated charcoal bar soap Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Minimizes break outs
  • Moisturizing
  • Detoxifying formula
Price: $9.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
charcoal and bentonite clay soap Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Bigger bar than most
  • Bentonite clay and charcoal formula
  • Helps with eczema and psoriasis
Price: $8.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
goat milk and activated charcoal soap Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Super gentle on all skin types
  • Acne fighting
  • Helps to tame psoriasis and eczema
Price: $19.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
organic charcoal soap bar Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Skin conditioning
  • Detoxifying and exfoliating
  • Smells manly
Price: $7.88 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
tea tree oil and charcoal soap Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Fights fungal infections
  • Formulated for athletes
  • Combats acne
Price: $13.97 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
organic bamboo charcoal soap Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Very exfoliating
  • Deeply moisturizing
  • Anti-aging
Price: $8.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
pine tar and charcoal soap Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Highly exfoliating
  • Antiseptic
  • Smells delish
Price: $14.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. Art of Sport Body Bar Activated Charcoal Soap (2-Pack)

    • Skin detoxifying formula with activated charcoal
    • Tea tree oil helps to fight acne and prevent future breakouts
    • Rose hip oil adds skin loving essential fatty acids and lots of antioxidants
    • Smells refreshing without a heavy lingering scent
    • Scent is overpowering to some
    • Not as moisturizing as others
    • Bars tend to melt fast in water

    If you’re the kind of person who simply can’t wash with a soap that doesn’t lather, you’ll fall in love with Rise charcoal soap from Art of Sports. It makes so much lather, in fact, that you could easily swear off your shave cream and just use this refreshing black bar. When I first unboxed my sample bar, I was worried that it might be too strongly man-scented for a woman. No worries. Post shower, you’ll have skin that feels soft and clean, definitely not dried out, and there’s just a slight lingering fragrance of cedar and vanilla that’s super fresh.

    This soap incorporates all the good stuff to keep your skin detoxified, and if acne is an issue it’s an especially great choice. Activated charcoal literally pulls dirt and toxins from your skin, while naturally antibacterial tea tree oil fights breakouts and acne, and because it’s anti microbial too, it can prevent new breakouts from forming.

    Often tea tree oil soap can be pretty drying, but not this soap, because it is fortified with shea butter so it’s deeply moisturizing. The addition of rose hip oil, which is filled with fatty acids and antioxidants helps to fight aging as well as dry, itchy skin. If you’re interested in checking out more tea tree oil soaps, be sure to look at our recommendations for the best ones here.

    We think you’ll love that the two bar pack is super affordable, and don’t worry about the color dripping on your shower floor. Once you’ve lathered up, you’ll discover all those bubbles are nice and light and they rinse away quickly.

    Art of Sport also makes a citrus and green pear scent soap with a similarly great ingredient list, as well as a tea tree oil and aloe body wash and shampoo in one. Formulated for athletes, it leaves skin feeling soft and clean, and it also lathers and rinses well.

  2. 2. Aspen Kay Naturals Dead Sea Mud & Charcoal Soap

    • Dead Sea mud formula is excellent for those with acne prone skin
    • Certified organic oils leave skin deeply hydrated
    • Charcoal draws impurities from the skin to be washed away
    • Exfoliating without being harsh
    • May cause breakouts at first
    • Scent is off-putting to some
    • Doesn't lather really well

    Since you’re looking at natural ingredients like charcoal to clean and detoxify your skin, you’ll appreciate this 100 percent organic soap from Aspen Kay Naturals. Let’s start with the fact that it’s made with pure and natural Dead Sea mud from Israel. This mud has amazing detoxifying effects on the skin, helping to draw out impurities and exfoliating away dead skin cells. This magic mud also has been proven to be high in salt and magnesium, and according to the experts at Healthline, it can improve your skin’s natural moisture barrier and helps to treat psoriasis.

    This handmade soap uses activated charcoal to draw out dirt, bacteria and other impurities, bringing them to the skin’s surface so you can wash them away. But the non-drying formula is definitely not harsh, because this bar is enriched with Certified Organic shea butter, extra virgin olive oil, sunflower oil, palm oil and castor bean oil. 

    Olive oil has been getting lots of great press for it’s skin nurturing properties. If you’d like to learn more about olive oils soaps, check out our guide to the best ones here.


  3. 3. The Yellow Bird Activated Charcoal Soap

    • Activated charcoal formula cleanses and detoxifies your skin
    • Essential oils add fragrance and are also bacteria and fungus fighters
    • Moisturizing shea butter leaves skin soft
    • Certified organic oils deliver tons of antioxidants to your skin
    • Pretty expensive per bar
    • Melts awfully fast
    • Soap residue can stain washrags and towels

    This cold pressed soap is a boon to breakout prone skin with activated charcoal that provides more surface area to better pull toxins from the skin. The Yellow Bird’s handmade formula helps ensure this soap’s efficacy and freshness, because it’s only made in small batches, version the millions of bars that are commercially produced. The Yellow Bird is a cool small family-owned company that focuses on skin care products that are good for people of every age, and are chemical free. That kind of commitment might be important to you.

    This soap uses lavender and lemongrass essential oils to give this black bar its relaxing fragrance, but don’t be fooled. This soap is serious about detoxifying your skin and fighting breakouts and acne. These two essential oils are naturally antibacterial and antifungal, so they do more than just smell good.

    The activated charcoal absorbs dirt, oil and toxins to help clear up breakouts and prevent new ones from forming. Shea butter helps to leave your skin moisturized, while antioxidant-rich sunflower, palm and coconut oils help to fight free radicals and prevent premature aging. 

  4. 4. KÉiKA Naturals Charcoal Black Soap

    • Triple threat detoxification with charcoal, bentonite clay and pink salt
    • Himalayan pink salt helps to tone and soften skin
    • Bar is 25 percent larger than most others
    • All natural vegan formula
    • Residue is somewhat messy
    • Harder to rinse off than some
    • May cause breakouts at first

    A couple of things you’ll notice right away about this charcoal soap from KÉiKA Naturals are the size and the shape. This bar is lots bigger than most of the soaps we’ve tried – about 25 percent bigger, which means it lasts longer. Second is the cool shape of a mountain on the top. Question is, will this black bar climb mountains to fight your troubled skin? Indeed it will.

    By now you know that charcoal is naturally detoxifying, so suffice it to say this soap effectively fights acne and helps prevent future breakouts. But interestingly, this formula also incorporates a couple of other ingredients which we think highly of – bentonite clay and Himalayan pink salt. Bentonite clay is another wicked detoxifier, but it is also loaded with beneficial minerals that nourish your skin at the same time. 

    Himalayan pink salt is another natural acne fighter and a perfect exfoliant. It also helps to balance your skin’s natural pH, plus it softens skin and acts as a natural toner. All-natural tea tree, eucalyptus and lavender essential oils offer fragrance as well as antibacterial properties. 

    This soap is also effective for those who suffer from eczema and psoriasis, both frustrating skin conditions that are uncomfortable and sometimes embarrassing. You may want to look at our recommendations for the best eczema creams if you’re specifically buying this soap for that purpose.

  5. 5. Southern Natural Goat Milk & Activated Charcoal Soap (2-Pack)

    • Super gentle goat milk formula is rich in vitamins and natural fatty acids
    • Detoxifying and exfoliating
    • Good for all skin types
    • Feels refreshing on the skin
    • Expensive compared to some
    • Too drying for dry skin
    • Leaves a dark residue on washrags and counters

    Do you have acne prone skin that’s also super sensitive and prone to redness and irritation? This goat milk soap from Southern Natural may be a great way to remedy all your skin issues. Goat milk is one of our favorite skin care ingredients because it’s filled with skin loving vitamins and minerals and high in vitamin A which boosts production of new skin cells. It’s also rich in lactic acid, one of the exfoliating alpha hydroxy acids.

    In addition to nourishing dry sensitive skin, this goat milk soap adds activated charcoal and Dead Sea mud to the mix, meaning you’ll get superior detoxification, as well as a ton of beneficial minerals delivered straight to your troublesome complexion. Dead Sea mud has been shown to be especially helpful in fighting eczema and psoriasis. 

    This soap fights acne without drying out your skin. It uses natural olive, coconut and palm oils to ensure you’re left with soft, smooth and hydrated skin. Peppermint, rosemary and eucalyptus essential oils give it a refreshing scent and feel, while also delivering natural antibacterial and antioxidant benefits.

  6. 6. Viking Revolution Activated Charcoal Soap

    • Made with detoxifying and exfoliating charcoal and Dead Sea mud
    • Big bar with a manly scent
    • Very helpful for eczema and acne
    • Conditions skin with silk proteins
    • Big bar can be hard to handle
    • Scent could be stronger
    • Doesn't lather well enough to shave with

    Those dapper dudes at Viking Revolution have made a name for themselves with a great line of beard care products, and now they’re stepping into the skin care fray with this man-sized bar of charcoal soap. This 100 percent natural and organic formula features two of our detoxifying favorites – natural bamboo charcoal and dead sea mud.

    These ingredients bring dirt, oils and toxins to your skin’s surface so they can be washed away once you’re done. They also gently exfoliate, to leave your manly skin super smooth and as nearly as soft as a baby’s … well, you know. This bar will help to clear your pores, blast away blackheads, and terminate tough acne. 

    Naturally scented with peppermint and eucalyptus, you’ll get a refreshingly pleasant wash that leaves your skin bright, clear and feeling deeply cleansed. Silk proteins condition your skin to improve your overall look.


  7. 7. Submission Tea Tree Oil & Charcoal Soap (2-Pack)

    • Naturally antibacterial and antifungal formula
    • Invigorating scent and feel
    • Detoxifying and exfoliating
    • Organic and natural ingredients
    • Gets soft fast
    • Scent fades quickly
    • Leaves messy residue

    With a soap named Submission, you can bet this isn’t some sissified attempt to detoxify your skin – this soap means business. Formulated especially for athletes and grapplers, in particular, this soap is touted for its antifungal and antimicrobial properties as much as it for detoxifying sweaty and dirty complexions.

    This pack of get down and dirty bars utilizes powerful tea tree oil to fight jock itch, athlete’s foot and other fungal infections, while activated charcoal detoxifies and helps to exfoliate skin. It features an all natural formula that is fortified with organic palm, sunflower and coconut oils to leave skin moisturized, despite being deeply cleansed.

    For those who engage in close contact sports, this soap is a super popular choice. The natural peppermint and tea tree oils give it both an invigorating scent and refreshing feel.


  8. 8. SAPO Organic Bamboo Charcoal Soap

    • Activated bamboo charcoal detoxifies and exfoliates
    • Oatmeal powder soothes irritable skin
    • Natural oils and butters moisturize and nourish skin
    • Grapefruit oil keeps bacteria at bay
    • Expensive for the size
    • Melts very fast
    • Can be drying

    This handmade soap is the perfect foil for those with sensitive skin who suffer from acne and irritation. Of course, you know it includes organic bamboo charcoal to detoxify and clear pores, this soap bar has a few additional secrets up its sleeve. It’s particularly good for dry skin sufferers because it’s fortified with skin loving oils. Olive oil, palm oil, sunflower oil and coconut oil deeply moisturize and nourish your skin with essential vitamins and natural free radical fighting antioxidants.

    Shea butter and safflower oil add the skin conditioning and softening power of this bar, but we also love that it includes exfoliating oatmeal powder and sea salt which acts as a natural toner in addition to helping with exfoliation. It also helps to balance your natural oil production, helping to thwart acne before it starts.

    This soap also contains grapefruit essential oil – known for its natural antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties. It’s also rich in vitamin E, flavonoids and polyphenols – all of which act as antioxidants to protect your skin from free radical damage. It leaves skin deeply cleansed, moisturized and feeling super supple.

  9. 9. Oliver Rocket Pine Tar & Charcoal Soap (3-Pack)

    • Pine tar formula is naturally antiseptic
    • Very exfoliating with charcoal, sand and oatmeal
    • Contains hemp oil which improves skin elasticity
    • Lathers well compared to many
    • Melts ridiculously fast
    • Sand is too rough for sensitive skin
    • Scent fades quickly

    By now you know that we’re talking about soaps with charcoal or activated charcoal because of their awesome ability to detoxify and clarify problem skin, as well as to exfoliate. This Oliver Rocket pine tar soap takes it a step further, using natural pine tar for its antiseptic properties and power to effectively target skin conditions from eczema, psoriasis, and seborrhoeic dermatitis to dry, itchy, flaky or inflamed skin. Even the National Institutes of Health is a believer in the power of pine tar.

    Formulated with olive oil, this soap delivers a load of natural antioxidants and naturally moisturizes and softens your skin. There’s a reason it’s been used in beauty treatments since the times of the ancient Egyptians.  It also features hemp oil which helps to promote skin elasticity, while coconut oil and shea butter moisturize and nourish your skin as well.

    When it comes to exfoliation, count on this soap to do the trick. In addition to the activated charcoal, it also uses fine sand and oatmeal to scrub away dead skin cells revealing smoother and softer skin. This pack of three big five ounce bars is a deal compared to many of those reviewed.

There are a variety of different ingredients that are included in the soaps we've reviewed above. These additives can have beneficial effects on your skin issues, but only if you know which ingredient does what.

Let us break it down for you here:

Pine Tar - naturally antiseptic, it has been used in healing remedies for centuries.

Goat's Milk - an anti-aging wonder that delivers antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and even exfoliating lactic acid.

Dead Sea Mud - mineral rich, this mud helps to both exfoliate and purify the skin. It also improves psoriasis and eczema as well as fights acne.

Hemp Oil - Improves skins elasticity and overall youthful appearance.

Grapefruit Oil - rich in essential oils, it delivers a host of free radical fighting antioxidants directly to the skin.

Tea Tree Oil - naturally antibacterial, antifungal and antimicrobial, it is especially effective for fighting acne and fungal infections like jock itch and athlete's foot.

Salt - whether sea salt or Himalayan pink salt, they both soften, smooth and exfoliate, while acting as a natural toner.

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