African black soap is seemingly a one-and-done skincare powerhouse that tackles dry skin, fades dark spots, and heals breakouts. This age-old beauty secret is known for its cleansing and clarifying properties, but there are plenty of other skin benefits to be had. This article takes a look at African black soap and a few things you may need to know about it before incorporating it into your own beauty routine.
What Is African Black Soap?
Also known as African soap or black soap, African black soap is a handmade soap that has been used in Africa for centuries. It’s typically used as a shampoo, face soap, or a body bar. Black soap is a nourishing mixture of the ashes of plantain skins, palm leaves, cocoa pod powder, palm oil, coconut oil, shea butter, and honey. If you ask me, that sounds like a lot of “good for your skin” ingredients. Due to its combination of natural ingredients, black soap has a rough texture, making it a great exfoliant.
Before You Use Black Soap
The important thing to know about black soap is that it's made from a slew of plant products and natural ingredients that may not grow the same way every time. That means that every batch of black soap can be different from the last, even if they come from the same brand or manufacturer. That also means that one batch could have been fine for your skin, but the next batch contains slightly more of a certain plant-based ingredient that causes a reaction.
Beyond the variance between batches, it's important to remember that black soap typically has a rough texture that can irritate, especially to those with sensitive skin. Just as you do with any new skincare routine, it may be best to do a test spot on your skin before going all in.
Benefits of African Black Soap
African black soap has plenty of antibacterial properties, making it an excellent natural alternative the chemical cleansers. And while it is strong enough to kill bacteria, it’s still gentle enough to use on your face, hands, and body.
Infused with coconut oil and shea butter, African black soap makes an excellent moisturizer. And while it is rich enough to deeply moisturize dry skin, it doesn’t leave your skin feeling oily, and it moisturizes enough to keep your oil glands from going into overdrive.
It Improves Skin Tone And Texture
Courtesy of the ashes from the plantain leaves, African black soap improves cell turnover and gently exfoliates your skin. With continued use, users have seen brighter skin and improved skin tone.
It Helps With Acne And Alleviates Razor Bumps
Black soap is rich in vitamins A and E, both of which are antioxidants known to combat free radicals and inflammation. Moreover, one of the active ingredients in the soap itself is sulfur (courtesy of the ashes of the plantain leaves), which is an antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory agent. Put all of these ingredients together, and you have soap that’s great for keeping acne or razor bumps from shaving at bay.