Benefits of Black Soap
African Black Soap Benefits: 13 Reasons Why It's an Ultimate Beauty Buy
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African black soap (also called African soap or black soap) is the latest skin care product to reach “holy grail” status, and for good reason.
Touted as a solution for breakouts, hyperpigmentation, stretch marks, and everything in between, black soap is the ultimate beauty buy for those on a budget. A one-size-fits-all approach to flawless skin? Sign us up!
And unlike the synthetic soaps you find at the drugstore, authentic black soap is handmade from plant-based ingredients in Africa.
If possible, buy fair-trade black soap. Each fair-trade purchase supports sustainable production, and, in some cases, it directly benefits communities in need.
Still not convinced? Read on to learn more about this skincare favorite and how you can add it to your routine.
Natural antibacterial properties make African black soap an excellent alternative to chemical-laden cleansers.
In fact, it may actually remove more bacteria than chemical cleansers do. Despite its strength, black soap is gentle enough to use on your:
If you have dry or sensitive skin, you likely already know that scented soaps and lotions are off-limits. African black soap is naturally fragrance-free — just make sure your chosen product is labeled “unscented.”
People with oily or combination skin are also in the clear! Black soap can help balance your skin’s natural oil production without stripping necessary oils or adding excess oil to your skin.
Shea butter is a crucial ingredient in black soap. While shea can help relieve itchiness and soothe dry skin, cocoa and coconut oil add moisture.
If you have combination skin, black soap makes choosing the right soap that much easier. Shea may add moisture, but coconut oil may help prevent overactive oil glands.
African black soap may also soothe itchiness and irritation caused by:
It may even help clear rashes related to eczema and psoriasis. To maximize these benefits, find a soap with oatmeal added.
This may be helpful for people who have inflammatory conditions like rosacea.
On that note, black soap may also help fight acne.
In addition to balancing your skin’s natural oils, the soap’s shea content may help repair damaged cells.
Its antimicrobial properties may even clear severe acne caused by Propionibacterium acnes bacteria.
We discuss with Paula Green-Smith from the Black Women's Health Imperative and more in our Live Town Hall: COVID-19 One Year Retrospective.
Shea butter and coconut oil may help reduce collagen loss and encourage new development.
In turn, this can help plump up fine lines and wrinkles. The rough texture of the soap can also exfoliate dead skin cells that make fine lines more noticeable.
African black soap is chock-full of natural ingredients, but part of its benefits come from its form.
When left unprocessed, the raw ingredients that make up black soap leave the product far less smooth than the average drugstore soap bar. This makes it a natural exfoliant, which may help improve skin texture.
Exfoliation is another key factor in keeping your skin smooth after:
- other methods of hair removal
Exfoliating will help remove dead skin cells before they can clog your hair follicles. The moisture in African black soap may also help prevent the lumps and bumps that result from razor burn.
The benefits of African black soap lie in its ingredients, which includes a combination of:
- cocoa pods
- coconut oil
- palm tree leaf derivatives, including palm kernel oil and palm oil
- plantain bark, which contains iron, as well as vitamins A and E
- shea butter
Keep in mind that the ingredient makeup of black soap largely varies based on the region of Africa where it’s made. For example, plantains are found in Central and Western Africa, but not in Eastern Africa.
You may also find black soap with added essential oils, such as eucalyptus, to promote relaxation. Some African black soap bars contain added oatmeal or aloe vera.