What is Pine Tar, and Is It Safe?

What is Pine Tar, and Is It Safe?

The word “tar” conjures up a network of negative associations. From black, gooey pits trapping dinosaurs to the smelly stuff sprayed on roadways, it doesn’t seem like something you would want in your soap. If that sums up your current understanding of pine tar, keep reading to learn a little more about pine tar products and why they’re good for you.

What is pine tar?

Pine tar is a byproduct of burning wood. When certain types of trees are burned, the resin inside of them can change with heat and pressure to become wood tar. This tar has been used for thousands of years for a wide variety of applications, from waterproofing ships to sealing exterior wood to treating skin conditions like psoriasis or eczema. Today, pine tar is used as a natural soap that can be a relief for psoriasis, dandruff, eczema, and bug bites. Because it is biodegradable, it is perfect for outdoor use, making it a favorite of campers, loggers, etc.

Why is pine tar soap good for the skin?

Pine tar is an ingredient that makes great soaps and shampoos for sensitive skin. One of the most important ways pine tar protects and soothes skin is by providing protection from skin irritants. Some of the biggest causes of skin irritation are bacteria and fungi. These microorganisms that live on our skin can quickly overgrow and cause irritation and skin conditions like acne, dry, flaky skin, and even dandruff. Because pine tar is a natural antimicrobial agent, it prevents these forms of bacteria from causing damage to your skin, keeping you feeling comfortable and looking great.

Packer’s Pine pine tar soap is also a great choice for sensitive skin because of what it doesn’t contain. Many soaps and hygiene products today contain ingredients that irritate sensitive skin. For people with conditions like eczema or psoriasis, harsh ingredients can cause recurring flare-ups that leave skin inflamed, painful, and sometimes so dry it causes bleeding. Packer’s Pine deliberately avoids these harsh ingredients to keep our soap and shampoo perfect for healing sensitive skin. Even better, our soaps and shampoo are sulfate and paraben free, keeping the skin inflammation free.

Is it dangerous? I thought tar was carcinogenic?

Pine tar is completely safe for external use. While tar made from petroleum is known to be carcinogenic, it is derived from oil and contains large amounts of benzene. Pine tar is created from wood and is a completely different set of chemicals from petroleum tar. Pine tar is a natural product that has been used for generations. The recipe Packer’s Pine uses has been passed down since 1869 with no complaints.

Why are pine tar soaps popular with men?

Pine tar soaps and shampoos do have a strong, woodsy scent that most people associate with masculinity. While Packer’s Pine is a great choice for anyone with sensitive skin, the aroma of pine forest is so overwhelmingly manly, you might have difficulty convincing others you’re not a lumberjack from the North.

Pine tar soap is also popular for outdoorsmen, as there are many claims that pine tar soap is a natural insect repellent. As a soap bar is easy to carry, lightweight, and easy to use in the outdoors, campers, hikers, and real lumberjacks love to use pine tar to keep themselves smelling like the forest’s trees and not like the forest’s animals.

Are there any downsides to pine tar?

As we said, it’s difficult to convince your friends that you really are a guy who works in an office, not Paul Bunyan in a necktie, but otherwise, we don’t think so. Pine tar soaps and shampoos are a great choice for anyone who struggles with dandruff, irritated skin, or dermatitis. What’s more, it’s a biodegradable soap that’s renewable, so it’s good for the environment too. Packer’s Pine is dedicated to maintaining the sustainable nature of our product and uses our giveback program to protect and plant forests across the globe.

The one potential danger is for people who may be allergic to pine oil. These individuals may notice rash or dermatitis that intensifies when using pine tar products. These individuals should avoid products with pine tar.

The takeaway…

Not only is pine tar soap, shampoo, and body wash perfectly harmless to use on the skin, it can encourage overall skin health by preventing inflammation and dermatitis. If your skin is constantly dry, flaky, itchy, or inflamed, it may be time to give soothing pine tar soap a try. Our formula is time-tested and favored by customers to keep skin healthy and dermatitis-free. You can pick up a bundle or subscribe to our delivery service. Take the hassle out of hygiene and let us deliver high-quality, natural soap for sensitive skin.


Pine tar has been around for years and is used for many things, such as treatment for skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis, and is also suitable for waterproofing ships. Nowadays, there are products that use pine tar as an ingredient for their soaps and shampoos. What are the advantages of using these? Is it safe to use? Find out in this infographic.

5 Reasons to Use Pine Tar Infographic