Does Castile Soap Kill Germs? Everything About Green Cleaning

By Marsha Harrison

Fact-checked by Kia Lowe

does castile soap kill germs

Castile soap is often touted as an environmentally friendly product that can replace a wide variety of cleaners. Thanks to its all-natural ingredients, it is quickly becoming popular among vegan communities.

If you have not tried using it before, you are probably wondering, “Does Castile soap kill germs?”

The short answer is yes. Follow along as I share my research with you in this article!

What Is Castile Soap, Anyway?


Before we get started with the discussion on the whole Castile soap antibacterial topic, let me talk about the product for those who are not familiar with it.

Instead of animal fats, Castile soap is made of olive oil from the Castile area in Spain, which explains the name. Like any soap, it is also formulated with key ingredients like lye and water.

Note that true Castile soap is highly concentrated. So, you will have to dilute the Castle soap before using it.

The amount of water needed to dilute Castile soap varies depending on the surface you want to clean.

Fun fact: One of the benefits of Castile soap is that you can use them for at least 18 different purposes at home. From general cleaning to warding off insects, you can count on this wonder soap to do everything that 18 different products would do.

Do Antibacterial Soaps Kill Viruses?

On September 2, 2016, the US Food & Drug Administration released a final ruling that store-bought, antiseptic wash products containing active ingredients like triclosan and triclocarban should no longer be marketed.

It also says that there is no scientific proof to support that antibacterial can kill bacteria better than washing with regular soap water.

Also, check this guide on the quick comparison between castile soap vs regular soap here!

Can Castile Soap Eliminate Germs?


Although we don’t often see “Castile soap disinfectant” on the product label, it can get rid of pathogens like any regular soap.

These days, we are constantly bombarded with marketing stunts that tell us to protect ourselves from diseases with bacteria-killing soap.

This type of advertising is more prevalent since the World Health Organization declared that the entire planet is under a pandemic. Handwashing and disinfecting surfaces suddenly play important roles in preventing COVID-19.

From a scientific standpoint, Castile soap does not “kill” germs the way. Rather, it binds the germs and flushes them out. Of course, some of you will wonder if simply getting rid of germs is enough to protect yourself.

Does Castile Soap Kill COVID-19?

Cleaning regularly with household cleaners that contain either soap or detergent can reduce the risk of infection.

Any cleaner, be it Castile soap or other products marketed as germ-killing soap, will be good enough. What matters is your cleaning strategy.

Note that the strategy differs depending on the situation you have at home. If you don’t live with anyone and consider yourself at low risk of contracting COVID-19, then you can clean your house the way you normally would.

However, you may need to disinfect doorknobs and other items that may potentially be exposed to the virus when you go out to high-risk areas like a clinic or groceries. Of course, this can be treated on a case-to-case basis since not all countries have a high surge of COVID-19 cases.

If you have family members who got infected with COVID-19, for instance, you will have to isolate the infected persons. Moreover, you will have to provide them with a set of cleaning supplies if they are not suffering from severe symptoms.


Unless you’re a soap maker or a scientist, it can be difficult to know which product can effectively protect you and your loved ones against disease-causing germs. It does not help that we learn about how soap works mostly from advertisers, and not experts.

With this article, I answered one of the most frequently asked questions on the topic: Does Castile soap kill germs?

While it technically only binds the germs and flushes them away, Castile soap can still effectively keep your body and home clean.

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