Our Ingredients

About CleanO2’s All-Natural Bar Soaps

At CleanO2, we think that personal-care products should benefit, not harm, the environment. And we think that less is more. Here’s how we put those ideas into action.

The World’s First Carbon Capture Soap 

Every CleanO2 product contains captured carbon, to help fight climate change. At CleanO2, we make CarbinX™ devices that capture the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide and turn it into pearl ash (or potassium carbonate; you can learn more about this technology at carbinx.com). We add the pearl ash to our products, giving the lather wonderfully silky suds and to give consistent performance even with hard water. Even after you use the bar, the carbon remains captured as pearl ash, so it doesn’t revert to climate-changing carbon dioxide — a major win in itself. 

Earth Friendly Ingredients Only

Even without the captured carbon, CleanO2 soap is still an earth-friendly premium bar by any measure. Let us explain by showing you all the key ingredients you’ll find in our soaps.  

FYI—What's with the italics? 

In the ingredient descriptions below, you'll see some words in italics. These are the scientific names of the plants from which the ingredients are extracted. We also include the common names for the plants beside the scientific names. On the ingredients list on our soap boxes, you'll only see the scientific name. That's because we adhere to the International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients (INCI).

Body Bar and Shave Bar Ingredients

Botanical (Base) Oils

There are six oils that make up the heart and soul of every CleanO2 body bar. Extracted from plants, these oils are converted into soap by the saponification reaction.

- olive oil (sodium olivate)

- shea butter (sodium shea butterate)

- castor oil (sodium castorate)

- avocado oil (sodium avocadate)

- coconut oil (sodium cocoate) 

- rice bran oil (sodium ricate)

In our shave bars, you’ll also find kokum (Garcinia indica) seed butter and hydrogenated soybean oil. Both rich with stearic acid, they add a lather boost to your shave.

We’ve carefully curated and blended these oils to make a great cleansing and shaving experience. Note that there’s no palm oil on this list. 

Coconut Milk & Glycerin

In our soaps, you’ll find two types of moisturizers. Emollients are natural oils like coconut milk extract (Cocos nucifera) that help replenish your skin’s natural moisture barrier.

Other moisturizers we use are humectants that attract water to the skin surface and keep the skin moist. These are ingredients like propanediol and glycerin.

Glycerin is a welcome byproduct of the soap-creating saponification reaction and is found in all of our body bars, hand bars and shave bars.

Want products rich with moisturizers? Consider Restoration Scrub Hand Bar and our Eco Aloe Body Bar.

Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal is a natural deodorizer and great for cleaning oily skin due to its ability to absorb oil, bacteria, and toxins. We use activated charcoal made from bamboo because it is  sustainable, thanks to the ability of this plant to grow fast with minimal water. 

Find it in our Activated Charcoal Body Bar.

Essential Oils

Essential oils give our soaps their wonderful scents. They are natural oils extracted from plants. We use a wide variety of all-natural essential oils that you can enjoy while you lather up.

For example we use spearmint essential oil (Mentha spicata) in our Enviro Mint Body Bar and tea tree oil (Melaleuca alternafolia) in our Activated Charcoal Body Bar. Plus, the luscious smell of Boreal Wood Shave Soap is thanks to a blend of 10 unique oils.

Aloe Leaf Extract

Aloe leaf extract (Aloe barbadensis) is a moisturizer (a humectant, to be specific) that attracts water to the vulnerable surface layer of skin.  

Find it in our Eco Aloe Body Bar.

Chlorophyll & Coffee

Plain soap tends to have earth shades. We use natural colourants, such as chlorophyll (chlorophyllin) and coffee (Coffea arabica), to perk them up on occasion.

Natural Sugar

Soap, as you know, is bubbly. Lather enhancers make it even more so. In our soaps, these enhancers are either sugars from starch or extracted from fruits. Examples are sorbitol and maltodextrin. Other sources of sugars are liquids, such as wine and beer.

Found in our Eco Aloe Body BarMontane Meadow Body BarSustainable Spice Body Bar, Renewable Rose Body Bar and our Shave Bars.


The clays we use come as a fine powder. While you might think they’d be abrasive, clays like bentonites, montmorillonite and kaolinite actually give the soap a pleasing slickness. They also “fix” the scents and colours, for a more sensual appeal. 

You’ll find at least one clay in all of our body bars.

Pumice & Coffee Grounds

If you want to scrub away dead skin and other debris, you want an exfoliant in your soap. These mild abrasives can come from many sources, including volcanic rock (pumice) and recycled coffee grounds (Coffea arabica).

Pumice adds to the cleaning power of Restoration Scrub Hand Bar and ground coffee is used in Earthly Almond Body Bars.

Soap Nuts

The peel of the soap nut (Sapindus mukorossi) contains natural foaming agents called saponins. Along with sodium cocoyl isethionate, an ingredient made from coconut oil, the saponins help give our CleanO2 Shave Bars a creamy lather without the need for added sulfates. What’s more, both of these ingredients act as gentle cleansers.


It's formally called hydroxypropyl methylcellulose, but it's made from the same fibres that make up wood. In our shave bars, it gives the lather a thickness that wet shavers call cushion. Arachidyl alcohol and behenyl alcohol (fatty alcohols made from vegetable oils) and the closely related arachidyl glucoside also play a role in creating a thick luxurious lather in CleanO2 Shave Bars.

Yeast Ferment

On the box, you'll see these ingredients listed as lauroyl lysine and Saccharomyces ferment. They're what give our shave bars their extra “glide,” for a smooth, nick-free shave. Chemically speaking, they're what you get when you ferment yeast with amino acids and coconut fatty acids. Of course, the silky slickness produced by the captured carbon (potassium carbonate) that’s in all our bars also contributes to the glide of CleanO2 Shave Bars.

Haircare Ingredients


Volumizers are ingredients that give body and, obviously, volume to your hair. In our bars, volumizers like hydrolized rice protein and velvet flower (Amaranthus caudatus) seed extract either add a thin coating to the hair, make it thicker, or add charges to the hair strands that repel each other and create volume.


Emollients lock-in moisture. These ingredients include butters (shea (Butyrospermum parkii) and cocoa (Theobroma cacao)) and, for fine hair, oils like babassu (Orbignya oleifera), which won’t weigh hair down. Tucuma (Astrocaryum tucuma) butter acts like a natural silicone, for shine and moisture retention. And heptyl undecylenate, cetearyl alcohol, cetyl alcohol and butylene glycol are our other main natural emollients.


Panthenol is probably the best-known moisturizer. While it acts as an emollient, it's also a humectant, attracting moisture to the hair. Other natural humectants include glycerine, lactic acid and propanediol. They all deliver plumper, healthier hair. 

Essential Oils

Our shampoos are only scented with essential oils, extracted directly from plants. Wondered why some ingredients are written in italics and look like Latin with no other explanation? They're likely the scientific names of plants like rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), lavender (Lavandula officinalis) and spearmint (Mentha spicata) that give our hair care products their scents. 


Who doesn't want tons of bubbles from their shampoo? The bubble-generating cleansing power of our shampoos comes mainly from two natural surfactants: the extract from the peel of the soap nut (Sapindus mukorossi) and an ingredient obtained from coconut oil, sodium cocoyl isethionate. No harsh sulfates here!


Conditioners smooth hair by coating the shaft. In CleanO2 products, you'll find artichoke (Cynara scolymus) leaf extract, hydroxypropyltrimonium inulin, guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, behentrimonium methosulfate (note: not a bad sulfate), hydrolyzed quinoa and safflower (Carthamus tinctorius) seed extract . All natural, they work differently, but collectively work to soften and detangle hair, provide "slip", protect/smooth the cuticle and control static. 

Water Softener

Captured carbon (potassium carbonate) is a water softener. Why does that matter? Hard water can be tough on your hair and scalp. And it can keep your hair products from suds-ing and doing their job. So, water-softening captured carbon, in addition to helping the environment, helps your hair care program too.


The cuticle, the outer layer of hair, should be flat and smooth. When it’s damaged, the cuticle cracks open and is prone to frizz caused by humidity. So you want ingredients that help your cuticle lay flat. In our hair care products, extracts from baobab (Adansonia digitata) trees and artichokes (Cynara scolymus) help tame frizz.


Some of the oldest colourants are from the leaves and petals of plants. We continue with this all-natural approach using extracts from gardenia petals (red and blue) and fruit (yellow) and from the green chlorophyll pigment found in plant leaves. In addition to giving our hair care products their colour, they are also natural antioxidants, so your hair is extra protected.

The Virtues of CleanO2 Cold Process Soap

Vegan, Biodegradable and Eco-Friendly

Our all-natural soap is made with skin-nourishing fats and oils derived from plants and captured carbon that produces a silky lather. We’ve proven that it’s possible to create an effective eco-soap that’s gentle on your skin and helps the environment.

Our all-natural soap bars and liquid soaps are fully biodegradable, meaning they can be naturally broken down by microorganisms. This means our biodegradable body wash, hand soap and body bars leave no harmful trace in the environment after they wash down your drain. Plus, we never use palm oil, sulfates, phthalates, parabens, or synthetic dyes...only skin-friendly and eco-friendly ingredients. 

Handmade and Cold Processed

Handmade and Cold-Processed

While we use modern carbon capture and sequestration as the cornerstone of our products, our natural soap bars are still authentic in every way. 

Each of CleanO2’s handmade soaps is cold processed and takes six to eight weeks to cure. This process was first documented nearly 5,000 years ago and we use it today. We could speed up the curing process by applying heat to our formulations (this is called hot processing). But that would create additional carbon emissions. Plus, we think good things take patience.

Think Global, Act Local

We go even further to minimize our own carbon footprint and build communities. We partner with community-based suppliers, to help build up sustainable capacity around the globe. 

We also take into account shipping distances when sourcing our ingredients. This helps minimize the carbon emitted by transportation. And for every online order, we plant a mangrove tree with the help of our friends at Ecologi.

See our growing forest ↓↓↓

CleanO2 Forest

Convinced These Suds Slap?

Now that you're familiar with how we make our premium carbon capture body bars and soap products, go check them out for yourself!

See our soaps