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The Best Stool Softener - 2022

Last updated on May 27, 2020

We looked at the top 10 and dug through the reviews from 8 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best .

Best Stool Softener

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Our Picks For The Top

Show Contents
Our Take
  Best Overall

MiraLAX Stimulant-Free Laxative Powder Stool Softener

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

MiraLAX

Stimulant-Free Laxative Powder Stool Softener

Overall Take

Stimulant-Free Stool SoftenerSince this stool softener is unflavored, you can mix it into your favorite beverage for easy consumption.

  Runner Up

Dulcolax Pink Stool Softener

Dulcolax

Pink Stool Softener

Overall Take

Gentle and Reliable ReliefIf you're having a little trouble with dry stools that are a bit hard to pass, this stool softener is for you.

  We Also Like

Colace Gentle Dependable Regular Strength Stool Softener

Colace

Regular Strength Stool Softener

Overall Take

Safe for ChildrenWith this stool softener, you won't need to strain to have a bowel movement.

  Also Great

Kirkland Signature Stool Softener

Kirkland Signature

Stool Softener

Overall Take

Stimulates Muscles in the ColonKeep this stool softener in your medicine cabinet and you'll be ready the next time constipation strikes.

  Strong Contender

Phillips’ Milk Of Magnesia Cramp Free Liquid Stool Softener

Phillips'

Milk of Magnesia Liquid Stool Softener

Overall Take

Delicious Cherry FlavorIndividuals who have trouble swallowing pills will love this liquid stool softener, which has a delicious cherry flavor.

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The Best Overall

MiraLAX Stimulant-Free Laxative Powder Stool Softener

Our Expert Score

9.6

Our Take

When you opt for this stool softener, you'll relieve your constipation without cramping, bloating or episodes of gas. The formula works with the water in your body and can be consumed in either a hot or cold drink. It's also free of gluten, sugar and preservatives, which means just about anyone on any diet can use it.


The Best Bang For Your Buck

Dulcolax Pink Stool Softener

Our Total Score

9.6

Our Take

This stool softener comes in an easy to swallow softgel that begins working within 12 to 72 hours. It's gentle and works with your body to make passing stools less painful. This specific formula is created for use by women.

Our Buying Guide

The Mayo Clinic describes constipation as having three or fewer bowel movements or difficult to pass stools in a week. While chronic constipation should be treated by a doctor, occasional constipation can be handled at home with an over-the-counter stool softener. There are several different stool softeners on the market, so you’ll want to take a look at this guide in order to choose the one that will work best for you.

Start off examining the ingredients used within the stool softener. You want to make sure it doesn’t go against your diet. For example, the MiraLAX Stimulant-Free Laxative Powder Stool Softener is free of preservatives, sugars and gluten. That makes it a good choice for individuals who have a gluten-intolerance or a disease like diabetes.

Determine the method of delivery that works best for you. Many stool softeners come in a softgel or pill that can be swallowed in an instant; however, some individuals have trouble swallowing pills. In that case, you’ll want to go with a liquid or a powder that can be dissolved in a glass of water or hot tea.

Check the age range of the stool softener next. If you want to keep a bottle in your medicine cabinet that is able to treat the entire family, go with a softener like the Kirkland Signature Stool Softener, which is safe for children ages 2 and up. Some stool softeners are only listed as safe for adults.

Go with a stool softener that is gentle on your digestive system. For example, the Colace Regular Strength Stool Softener is stimulant-free and utilizes the active ingredient docusate sodium for gradual constipation relief. It reduces straining, which is often the cause of hemorrhoid flare-ups. Other brands also provide relief without the bloating, stomach discomfort or bouts of gas.

It’s also possible to choose a stool softener that is specifically formulated for a certain people group. The Dulcolax Pink Stool Softener is made just for women. Others are made with an added laxative for individuals who have both trouble going and have hard stools.

Simplemost Fun Fact

Unfortunately, constipation happens and it’s more common than you think. A study conducted by researchers at the American Gastroenterological Association revealed that 16% of the population suffers from constipation. That figure jumps to 33.5% in individuals who are age 60 and older. The study lists a few risk factors that may be the cause of one’s constipation. They include a low-fiber diet, stress, low physical activity, certain medications, depression and abuse.

Fortunately, individuals no longer need a prescription to purchase a stool softener to treat their constipation when it arises. Of course, you’ll want to consult your physician if you have more than just the occasional bout of constipation.

The Tips and Advice

  • Even though some of the stool softeners are safe for children ages 2 and up, they can be harmful if taken in a dose above the recommended amount. It’s best to keep the stool softener out of the reach of children. If your child does get a hold of the stool softener and consume a dose above what is permitted, call Poison Control at 1-800-222-1222.
  • Always store the stool softener at room temperature. Most stool softener directions state that temperatures between 59 and 83-degrees Fahrenheit are best. They also warn against freezing the medication.
  • Always consult with your doctor if you are taking any other medications, as stool softeners may interact with certain prescription drugs. You’ll also want to speak with your doctor if you are pregnant or nursing, have kidney disease, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting or follow a magnesium-restricted diet.
  • If you begin to experience rectal bleeding after taking the stool softener, or you don’t produce a bowel movement, contact your doctor right away to determine if there is a more serious cause for your constipation.
  • In addition to taking the stool softener, try increasing your fiber intake through fiber-rich foods. These include broccoli, berries, squash, beans, leafy greens and mushrooms.
  • As you examine the price of the available stool softeners on the market, you want to look at how much you’re paying per serving. That’s the best way to compare prices to know which brand is offering the best deal. The Kirkland Signature Stool Softener is one of the most affordable stool softeners on the market. Both the Dulcolax Pink Stool Softener and the Colace Regular Strength Stool Softener are moderately priced. You’ll pay the most per serving for the MiraLAX Stimulant-Free Laxative Powder Stool Softener.

About The Author

Alicia Bodine 

Alicia Bodine is a New Jersey-based writer specializing in health and nutrition. She enjoys spending time searching for the best all-natural products that will keep her and her family in optimal health. With more than 15 years of experience, her work has appeared on leading health and wellness publications. When she's not writing, you'll find her gardening, spending time with her kids, cooking in the kitchen or playing with her two kitties, Flitter and Otter. Alicia loves researching the latest and greatest gadgets, products and items that help her save time, energy and money.