Organic raw African black soap benefits virtually every skin type and may even help with acne scars, blemishes, fine lines and more. A blend of different plant ingredients, it just might be one of the best all-around natural body cleaners on the market.
Does it drive you crazy when your boyfriend or spouse uses your bar of soap and gets his body hairs all over it?
Well, if so, that’s one reason to use black soap.
Those pesky, unattractive strands of body hair are at the very least much less visible on a dark body-cleansing bar.
But if you’ve been paying attention lately to natural beauty articles, you’ve likely come across several other reasons to buy a dark cleansing bar.
Organic raw African black soap benefits are numerous. And, best of all, regardless of your skin type or condition, it’s most likely safe and effective for you to use.
Table of contents
- What are the benefits of using African black soap?
- African black soap ingredients
- Does African black soap really work?
- African black soap for acne
- Is African black soap safe for all skin types?
- How is black soap made?
- <strong>What Does Raw African Black Soap Smell Like?</strong>
- African black soap reviews
- Can you use African black soap on your face?
- African black soap on Amazon: What to know before you buy
What are the benefits of using African black soap?
Many plant oils act as a protective barrier to the skin. They help the skin retain moisture.
The plant oils in raw African black soap are easily absorbed by the skin. And, these oils contain antioxidant properties, which kill free radicals.
Free radicals damage your skin’s DNA. Changes to your skin’s DNA leads to premature skin aging signs such as dark spots, fine lines and wrinkles.
Another couple raw black soap benefits: controlling inflammation and encouraging wound healing.
Furthermore, the oils in black soap strengthen the barrier of your skin. The oils in a bar of black soap don’t actually penetrate that deep into the skin. But the oils retain moisture in the outer layer of the epidermis. This helps prevent dry skin.
African black soap ingredients
This natural body wash bar is a combination of a handful of plant ingredients.
And some of these natural ingredients have plenty of research studies backing their positive effects on skin care.
The ingredients depend upon where in Africa it is made. One common formula includes coconut oil, shea butter, cocoa pods, palm oil (and palm kernel oil), and the bark from plantain trees (plantains are mini bananas).
Some formulations also include essential oils. The soap may also include other ingredients that may promote more beautiful skin, including Aloe or oatmeal.
Does African black soap really work?
At least one study (this one), suggests black soap has antibacterial properties.
The study also says some herbal soaps can contribute significantly to the treatment and management of skin infections caused by bacteria.
The herbal formulations in the study, include one with cocoa pod ash solution, honey, palm kernel oil, palm bunch ash solution, and shea butter. (All the soaps in the study were made in Nigeria.)
In addition, the oils in black soap also encourage the growth of protein-rich skin cells, such as keratin. [SOURCE]
If you have mild to moderate atopic dermatitis, topical coconut oil can help lessen the severity of the condition. [SOURCE]
This study also demonstrates the coconut oil in black soap protects the skin from UV radiation.
African black soap for acne
One reason why African black soap benefits are numerous is due to the lauric acid in coconut oil.
Lauric acid accounts for about half of coconut’s fat content. In studies (like this one), it shows the ability to kill bacteria, even the most abundant bacterium on human skin–Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes).
An overabundance of P. acnes into the dermis triggers an inflammatory response. This response can produce inflamed red pimples. Also, the more inflamed skin cells you have, the greater the chance of developing pustules (pimples containing pus), which if left untreated can lead to painful nodules or cysts.
In light of this, a couple of the biggest benefits of African black soap is its ability to fight inflammation and control the number of bacteria on the skin. In fact, skin conditions such as dermatitis and psoriasis may be improved with it.
Is African black soap safe for all skin types?
The plantain bark in this herbal soap contains several vitamins and minerals. Some of these, including vitamin E, are very beneficial for skin of all types.
And as mentioned above, there are antibacterial properties, which benefit all skin types. In fact, it’s just as good at removing harmful bacteria for skin as harsh chemicals.
The combination of coconut oil and shea butter help provide the perfect balance of oiliness. Many people use abrasive pads to strip away dirt from and oil from the skin.
But healthy skin has some oiliness. If your skin tends to be excessively oily, the coconut oil, despite its greasy coating, controls the level of oil the glands produce.
If you have acne scars or stretch marks African black soap may help minimize their appearance.
And in addition to its strong bacteria-killing properties, it also kills fungus. In fact, you can even use this herbal soap to treat athlete’s foot. It may even benefit your scalp, too, including red bumps.
How is black soap made?
African black soap is made using a traditional sun-drying and roasting process. The soap’s dark color is the result of this ancient technique.
Just like meat is hung to dry and cure in traditional societies with no refrigeration, so, too is African black soap.
An obvious benefit to this natural cleansing bar is that it’s free of synthetic chemicals. By comparison, virtually all commercial soaps in the U.S. contain harsh chemicals.
(Want to know how safe your beauty products are? Visit the EWG “Skin Deep” website or download the app.)
What Does Raw African Black Soap Smell Like?
In one word, it smells earthy.
That’s because there are no artificial ingredients. On some skin creams, you’ll notice an ingredient simply listed as “perfume.” Even some brands of commercial coconut oil contain perfume. Perfume is synthetic.
So if you’re used to using a bar of soap that smells like freshly-picked flowers, using raw African black soap may not stimulate your sense of smell.
However, that doesn’t mean this soap has no smell at all. Because not all African black soaps contain the same ratio of ingredients, each brand can have a different smell.
As mentioned above, one of the ingredients is cocoa pods. So you may smell a slight scent of chocolate. You may also notice a smoky odor, owing to how it’s made in some West African nations such as Nigeria.
African black soap reviews
Online reviews claim this herbal soap can ease eczema. Other claims include virtually every single positive skin care attribute, including reducing wrinkles, acne scarring, fine lines and blemishes.
Some reviews say using this soap feels like you’re cleaning your body with silk.
But don’t freak out when you look down in the shower or tub and see water the color of sewage going down the drain. It’s just the natural color of the bar mixing with water.
The luxuriously smooth feeling of your skin after washing with it makes the sludgy color well worthwhile.
Some people who have tried it claim that it’s an excellent exfoiliator and doesn’t irritate your skin.
Like many other herbal soaps, this bar will wear away faster than soaps with synthetic ingredients. Therefore, to make it last longer, don’t keep the bar right under the faucet or shower head.
Some reviews suggest that if you have sensitive skin, it’s best to test a small amount of soap on your face and skin. Although African black soap benefits all skin types, you never know if you’ll have a negative reaction.
If you have used herbal soaps in the past, you may already know that some bars contain specks or fragments.
Black soap is no different. Remember, one of the ingredients in the bar is tree bark.
Rubbing tree bark on your face, of course, isn’t pleasant. And neither is rubbing a bar of soap with tree bark in it.
Thus, to avoid irritation, lather up the soap for a good while in your hands before applying it to your face. Do the same for other sensitive skin areas.
Shea butter and coconut oil might feel nice and smooth when applying it to your skin. But like tree bark, cocoa pods are rough. So rub the bar gently on your skin.
There are lots of anecdotal benefits of using black soap you can read about online. However, the ones mentioned in this post are those that are supported by research.
Can you use African black soap on your face?
Yes. Using the soap over time should help give your face a nice healthy glow. Your face will feel better lubricated, and less tight and dry. However, after you apply the soap to your face, you may want to wash it off with a damp clean facial sponge or cloth.
African black soap on Amazon: What to know before you buy
Before you buy black soap online, keep these things in mind, as not all these herbal beauty bars are the same.
First of all, make sure you know exactly where the soap comes from. You can easily do a little research and find out not only the country of origin, but the village, too.
If you have trouble finding out where the bar comes from, there could be a chance it’s not made with high-quality ingredients. Or worse, maybe it even contains impurities.
And if you see the country of origin is a country in eastern Africa, then chances are, it’s not real African black soap. The product usually derives from West African countries such as Ghana and Nigeria.
However, there’s an abundance of great herbal soaps that come from eastern Africa as well.
The organic and raw designations ensures that the coconut oil and other ingredients are not refined.
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