Raw Black Soap
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Black soap is generally made from locally harvested African plants such as plantain, cocoa pods, palm tree leaves and shea tree bark. The ingredients are sun-dried and roasted, which is how it gets its deep colour. Water and oils such as coconut, palm, and shea butter are then added. The soap is then left to sit and “cure.”
The soap detoxifies and purifies the skin, but it does much more due to its powerful constituents. It works equally well on dry, oily, sensitive, and distressed skin, thanks to its bevvy of wholesome ingredients:
Plantain skins have a high concentration of vitamin A, which increases collagen production; vitamin E, which is healing and helps moisturize skin; and iron, which boosts the benefits of both vitamins A and E.
Cocoa powder softens and firms skin, and its antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties fight free radicals, repair damaged skin, and renew skin cells.
Cocoa butter is a natural moisturizer packed with vitamins A and E that fights the signs of ageing and eases rashes, eczema, and psoriasis.
Shea butter also has vitamins A and E to strengthen skin, repair damage, and diminish wrinkles. It can heal burns, sores, and scars, and treat psoriasis, eczema, and dermatitis.
Palm oil is rich in antioxidants and two forms of vitamin E-tocopherol and tocotrienol-that help heal acne and eczema.
Palm kernel oil, extracted from the fruit seeds of the African palm tree, is high in lauric acid, giving it antibacterial and antifungal properties that can help heal acne.
Coconut oil has fatty acids that reinforce the skin's lipid barrier and lock in moisture. It helps repair skin damage, dry skin, and eczema, and reduces the appearance of wrinkles. It has cleansing and antibacterial properties, and when combined with other ingredients, works as a natural deodorant.
Top Health Benefits
As any soap should, African black soap is an effective topical cleanser. The lauric acid in palm kernel oil and coconut oil creates a nice lather and is naturally antimicrobial. Due to the presence of shea butter and other moisturizers in African black soap, it will clean your face and body without stripping oils from the skin.
Whether you have dry skin, oily skin, or a combination of the two, African black soap works wonders for every skin type. Thanks to the addition of coconut oil, this soap counteracts dryness by deeply hydrating the skin. It’s excellent for oily skin too since it adds moisture to the skin, which helps to correct and balance an overactive sebaceous gland.
African black soap is organic, unprocessed, and raw – which means that you shouldn’t be surprised if your bar comes with fine particles of vegetative matter inside. Aside from knowing you bought the authentic stuff, the grainy quality of this soap makes it a fantastic gentle exfoliator.
In addition to the cleansing powers of lauric acid, African black soap also contains other nutrients and fatty acids that make it a robust acne fighter. Coconut oil is an excellent acne treatment since it is comprised of caprylic acid, capric acid, and vitamin E, which work in tandem to balance the skin’s pH levels and calm inflamed and irritated skin.
Likewise, palm oil can help prevent and heal acne breakouts since it is rich in beta-carotene, oleic acid, and linoleic acid. These fats also have anti-inflammatory properties that create an occlusive barrier that keeps moisture in, while vitamin A is an essential nutrient for all-round healthy looking and feeling skin.
Utilizing two ingredients that are frequently discarded as waste products, cocoa pods, and plantain peels are both a rich source of antioxidants. Cocoa pods are composed of gallic acid, tannins, and catechins while plantain peels contain rutin, protocatechuic acid, and quercetin. Providing a diverse mix of phenolics and flavonoids that work in synergy with one another, African black soap can help fight free radical damage that contributes to the physical signs of ageing.
Hyperpigmentation – or the darkening of an area of the skin – can be caused by sun damage, acne, inflammation, and other skin injuries that increase the production of melanin. Tyrosinase is an enzyme that helps regulate melanin; if tyrosinase is not functioning properly in the body, it allows melanin to increase unchecked. This can result in dark circles under the eyes, liver spots, and other patches of discoloured skin.
Studies have shown that cocoa pods can inhibit tyrosinase activity, resulting in lighter skin tones. It also has the ability to naturally absorb UV light, offering some added protection from sun damage that causes dark spots to form in the first place.
Marked by dry, red, sensitive, and itchy skin, eczema symptoms can be swiftly treated with African black soap. Free of artificial chemicals that can irritate sensitive skin, African black soap is enriched with plenty of things that can counter inflammation and add moisture to the epidermis. Coconut oil, shea butter, and red palm oil, in particular, provide deep hydration while soothing the swelling and pain that often accompanies an eczema flare-up.
The unique combination of ingredients in African black soap also means it is excellent for reducing the appearance of acne scars, evidence of past skin wounds, and stretch marks. Shea butter is a well-regarded ointment for repairing skin tissue and boosting collagen production. Red palm oil is a good source of vitamin E, a crucial element for the maintenance of healthy skin. And lastly, the essential fatty acids in palm kernel oil, red palm oil, and coconut oil bolster the regeneration of skin cells to help scars fade away.
Dry skin, shampooing too often, using lots of styling products, and dermatitis can cause flaky dandruff on the scalp. Remove this flaky build-up with the African black soap clarifying treatment. For oily hair, dilute a small amount of soap with water and let it permeate the scalp for 10 minutes. For normal or dry hair, dilute with a conditioning oil like coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, or shea butter, and rinse away soon after massaging it into your scalp. African black soap is powerful stuff, so finish by rinsing with apple cider vinegar to help detangle and soften your tresses.
Shown to be effective against several strains of fungus, you can use African black soap to treat athlete’s foot, nail fungus, ‘jock itch’, ringworm, and candida overgrowth. It can be used against household mould too.
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