The best antifungal soap
If you make the mistake of walking around the gym locker room without shoes or not changing out of your sweaty clothes quickly enough after a workout, you're at risk for a fungal infection. Depending on the fungus you pick up, you can wind up with itching, burning, or cracking skin, which isn't just unsightly, but extremely uncomfortable, too. If you wash with an antifungal soap, you can help get your skin back to normal. Antifungal soap contains ingredients that can fight fungus and bacteria and help soothe the skin, so it looks and feels better.
Check out our shopping guide to discover what types of fungal infections you can treat with antifungal soap and the features you should look for when shopping. We've even included some specific product recommendations, such as our top choice from Purely Northwest, which treats a variety of fungal and bacterial skin issues but is gentle enough for everyday use.
Considerations when choosing antifungal soaps
Type of fungal infection
An antifungal soap doesn't necessarily treat all types of fungal infections. It's important to read the label carefully to make sure that a particular soap is effective for the fungal infection you have. Some common fungal infections you may need to treat include:
Athlete's foot, which usually affects the feet. It typically causes itching, but you may also experience cracking, burning, and/or bleeding.
Ringworm, which can affect skin anywhere on the body. It's usually identified by ring-shaped patterns on the skin.
Jock itch, which affects the skin in the groin region. It typically causes redness, itching, and burning.
Check any antifungal soap you're considering to see if it's formulated to treat the type of fungal infection or skin issue you have.
When you're choosing an antifungal soap, it's also important to consider how severe your fungal infection is. Antifungal soaps are most effective when you treat the fungus in its earliest stages. If your skin condition doesn't respond to an antifungal soap, the infection may be too advanced or severe to be treated with an over-the-counter product. Consult a doctor to determine if a prescription-strength treatment is necessary.
Antifungal soap is available in liquid or bar formulas. Both types can effectively treat a fungal infection, so the best formula is mostly a matter of personal preference. Some users prefer a liquid formula because you don't have to worry about spreading the fungus to the soap itself since you can squirt it into your hand to apply it to the skin.
Antifungal soaps use a variety of ingredients to treat fungal infections. If you prefer a formula that uses active medicinal ingredients, choose a soap that contains miconazole and/or ketoconazole. If you're more comfortable using natural active ingredients, opt for a soap that features tea tree oil and/or eucalyptus oil, which are both naturally antifungal and antibacterial.
The active ingredients usually used to treat fungal infections can have fairly strong unappealing odors. In many cases, natural active ingredients offer a more pleasant scent, so if you're concerned about the smell of your antifungal treatment, choose a natural soap.
Antifungal soap prices
Antifungal soaps usually range from $5 to $20. Bar formulas are usually most affordable, ranging from $5 to $12. Liquid formulas are slightly more expensive, costing between $10 and $20.
Q. Will antifungal soap get rid of any fungal infection?
A. An antifungal soap can't necessarily get rid of every skin fungus. It depends on the infection's severity and how early you treat it. If you find that your infection isn't responding to the soap, consult a doctor to see if you need a stronger treatment.
Q. Can I use antifungal soap if my skin is dry?
A. Some antifungal soaps are somewhat drying, so they can irritate skin that's already dehydrated. If you have dry skin, opt for a formula with moisturizing ingredients to help hydrate and soothe your skin while treating your fungal infection.
Antifungal soaps we recommend
Best of the best: Purely Northwest Antifungal Tea Tree Oil Body Wash
Our take: A highly effective, potent antifungal soap that can treat many fungal infections.
What we like: Works for a variety of skin conditions, including both fungal and bacterial infections. Cleans the skin effectively but doesn't dry it out so it can be used daily. Helps reduce odors. Doesn't contain any artificial dyes or fragrances. Has a refreshing feel on the skin.
What we dislike: Some users find the scent to be overpowering. Doesn't necessarily work for all skin conditions.
Best bang for your buck: Defense Soap Two-Pack Natural and Herbal Pharmaceutical Grade Tea Tree Oil Soap
Our take: An ideal option if you're looking for an effective antifungal bar soap that lathers well.
What we like: Works extremely well for athlete's foot and other fungal conditions. Has a fresh scent that isn't overly strong. Cleans the skin well but won't dehydrate it. Hypoallergenic formula. Free of fragrances and dyes.
What we dislike: Isn't effective for all fungal infections and other skin conditions.
Our take: An antifungal and antibacterial soap that can effectively clean and soothe the skin.
What we like: Kills a wide range of germs. Helps heal a variety of skin conditions and infections. Can help calm itching and other irritations. Gentle enough for daily use. Suitable for even sensitive skin.
What we dislike: Some aren't fans of the scent. Can stain fabric.
Jennifer Blair is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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