JUARA Skincare
JUARA Skincare

Shower Gel Vs. Body Wash: What's The Difference?

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What Is Shower Gel

At first glance, showering might seem like a straightforward enough task. But before you lather up, it's a good idea to find a shower gel, body wash, or bar soap that suits your skin type.

At a glance

  • Shower gel is a liquid cleanser that has a thick and gel-like consistency.
  • Body wash is a liquid soap that is often has a light foaming action.
  • Bar soap is a solid cleanser that may be harsh on your skin unless you opt for a natural and gentle formula.

From tropically-scented gels to skin-brightening body scrubs, a plant-based cleanser should be the foundation of your daily self-care ritual. Your chosen formula should be effective and free from harsh chemicals, containing only natural ingredients that provide your skin with nourishment and moisture.

Keep reading, and we'll share the difference between shower gels and body washes, and the best products for your shower routine.

See Related: What Are Botanicals And Why Should You Use Them?

What is shower gel?

Shower gel is a type of liquid cleanser that contains emollients, skincare ingredients that serve to soften the skin. Shower cleansers also often contain mild surfactants, which help to formulate the foamy lather that washes away the day's grime and grub.

Though the formula of any given shower gel can vary, all of them typically have the same firm, thick, and gel-like consistency (hence, the name shower gel.) Shower gels tend to have a subtle fragrance, such as our signature Candlenut-scented Hydrating Shower Gel.

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Is shower gel just soap?

Shower gel is a derivative of liquid soap. Though shower gels might be a modernized skincare product, the ingredients in our Candlenut Hydrating Shower Gel have been used for centuries in ancient Indonesian wellness and beauty rituals.

This silky-smooth gel contains a moisturizing mix of candlenut oil and coconut oil that serves to keep your skin soft and supple. Plus, it contains sulfate-free botanicals that thoroughly cleanse the skin without stripping away natural oils.

If such a luxurious formula isn't enough to draw you in, keep in mind it's also a winner of the 2021 Byrdie Eco Beauty Awards. And after a steamy shower, don't forget to seal in this refreshing moisture with our Kartini Oil Candlenut Creme Duo!

Can I use shower gel on my face?

The right shower gel is able to restore your skin's pH balance and promote natural moisturization. However, most shower gels aren't suitable for your face, as the formula likely wasn't specifically designed for such delicate skin.

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Instead, you should use a sulfate-free cleanser that is gentle and soothing on your face. Our Rice Facial Cleanser is a lightly foaming face wash with a luxurious lather that can whisk away dead skin cells, bacteria, makeup, and dirt with ease.

This cleanser, inspired by traditional Indonesian rice water, contains plant-based ingredients that brighten and soften your skin. It's free of harmful chemicals and is ideal for different skin types, from acne-prone skin to oily skin.

What's the difference between body wash and shower gel?

Though shower gels and body washes are very similar, they're not identical. There are some key differences that shouldn't be overlooked, especially if you're trying to give your skin the nourishment and nutrients it needs in order to thrive!

Both shower gel and body wash are liquid soaps and have certain moisturizing properties that help to prevent skin dryness (as long as you pick the right formula!) They are both formulated to remove dead skin cells, bacteria, and dirt from your skin while unclogging pores.

Some body washes tend to be more moisturizing, and many shower gels contain some sort of fragrance. However, it all comes down to personal preference and what works best for your skin type.

What's the difference between body wash and bar soap?

Though the line between shower gel and body wash can be blurred, it's much easier to tell the difference between body washes and bar soaps. Though they are both body cleansers, they come in different forms.

It should go without saying, but bar soap comes in the form of a solid soap bar, while body wash is a liquid body cleanser. They also interact with your skin differently, depending on the ingredients used.

Many bar soaps are made with harsh chemicals that can irritate and dry the skin. That's why many people prefer a moisturizing body wash or shower gel. However, the right bar soap made with natural, plant-based ingredients can offer a convenient way to cleanse your skin from head to toe each time you step foot into the shower.

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A bar soap that nourishes skin and soothes irritation

The Candlenut Bar Soap is one in a million, a soap bar with a creamy lather that balances and nourishes the skin. It's made with plant-based ingredients that refresh and hydrate your skin without stripping away the natural moisture.

From the ultra-moisturizing shea butter to the vitamin C-rich mango seed butter, each ingredient only has your skin's best interests in mind. With a non-drying formula and our signature JUARA scent, this seemingly simple skincare product is truly a must for any daily routine.

Ingredients to avoid in your shower gels and body washes

Especially if you have sensitive skin or dry skin, you need to be particularly mindful about what you use on your body. You should use a cleansing product that contains natural or plant-based ingredients, not harsh chemicals.

If you're prone to skin irritation or dryness, avoid products with synthetic detergents or heavy fragrances. Other ingredients like sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium laureth sulfate also can contribute to dry skin or irritated skin if overused.

Pair these products with your moisturizing shower gel

Whether you're hoping in and out of the shower for a quick rinse or indulging in a ritualistic at-home spa day, it's important to have all the necessary skincare products at your disposal. In addition to a body wash or shower gel, you should have a body scrub that buffs rough patches to leave skin feeling soft and smooth.

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The Candlenut Body Polish is a dual-action scrub that can be used on wet or dry skin. It contains crushed walnut shell that polishes and refreshes your skin, along with candlenut oil and avocado oil to moisturize your skin.

If you're a morning shower type of person, then the Exfoliating Scrub Invigorating Coffee Treatment might be the better option for you. This coffee-based body scrub can energize and invigorate both your skin and mind to help you feel more refreshed and ready to take on the day.

Regardless of your regular shower ritual, it's important to always follow up with a nourishing body creme to introduce additional moisture and keep your skin healthy. Armed with our iconic Tiare Jasmine Body Creme, you'll be able to refresh and hydrate your skin while supporting a natural all-over glow. It's non-greasy and feels silky smooth on your skin.

Bonus: The 6 Best Vitamins & Nutrients For Healthy Skin

Final thoughts

Whether you use a soothing shower gel or a refining body wash, the right cleanser can offer your skin numerous benefits, all while keeping your body clean and refreshed. Pick active ingredients that are gentle yet effective and a natural formula that serves your skin well.

Keep Reading: How To Make Ginger Tea For Better Health


Juara Skincare incorporates ancient rituals with Western skincare science, creating the ultimate beauty experience. We aim to transport you from the mundane to the extraordinary with our exotic ingredients, intoxicating scents, and powerful, skin-improving formulas. All of our products are nutrient-rich and botanically based. We are proud to be certified cruelty-free. Get the latest skin care tips and info on Juara products by following us on TwitterFacebookInstagramLinkedIn, and Pinterest.