How are you all?? How’s your week going? So crazy how it’s March already! Why do I feel like 2018 is going to fly by?
Black soap! I love this stuff. If you’ve never heard of it, you might be living under rock tbh! It’s been used in West Africa for like a million years but it’s recently experienced an increase in popularity in the western world due to companies like Shea Moisture creating black soap-based products.
Black soap is a dark-coloured soap (duhh!) made from the ash of locally harvested plants and barks, such as plantain, cocoa pods, palm tree leaves and shea tree bark. It is traditionally produced in West Africa. Black soap has immense healing and medicinal properties that make it perfect for use on the body, face and hair. I’ve found that different types of black soaps from different suppliers are all slightly different. Some are more oily, others are drier, others are more fragrant – so it’s definitely not a one size fits all type of product. And it is definitely worth having a quick look at the ingredients before you buy it to make sure it doesn’t have anything that doesn’t agree with you – this is key if you’re buying it from a more mainstream brand, which may include chemicals and additives. I use Dudu Osun, which is probably one of the more popular brands in Nigeria/amongst Nigerians. It’s cheap and it works. It is possible to get it on Amazon if you don’t have direct access to it!
Now, I have really dry skin and when I realised this, I steered clear of using it on my face as it can be super drying. I carried on using it as my body wash with no problems and I credit it (along with coconut oil and/or shea butter as the reason for smooth skin on my body). However, about 2 years ago, I developed a horrible rash all over my face (this had NEVER happened before so I was shocked) and NOTHING I tried was working. I use my normal face wash, I used rash creams/face washes, I tried all sorts of things with no luck. But then I tried my black soap again, and, I kid you not, that rash I had been dealing with for weeks cleared up in a matter of days. For about a week, I just used a simple regimen of black soap (without my face brush), aloe vera gel and argan or almond oil on my face and my skin was back to normal. If you’re going to use it on your face, you can. I just strongly suggest using a really good moisturiser afterwards. If you have dry skin, I don’t suggest using it daily – maybe once or twice a week when you need a deep clean or if you wear heavy make up.
Most people don’t know it can be used for your hair too! I only realised when I watched a video by Naptural85, when she used black soap to make a shampoo. I tried it out for myself and I loved the results. It left my hair super soft, clean and defined! You can even use the soap bar to cleanse your hair and scalp. However, again, it can be drying!! So you COULD follow Naptural85’s lead and make your own black soap shampoo – she adds a bunch of oils and other hydrating ingredients so it doesn’t dry her hair out. Or you could go all out and use the black soap as a clarifying cleanser (it’s always good to properly clarify your hair from time to time to get rid of all the oil and product and build up). Just be sure to deep condition after to restore the moisture!
So there we have it! I love black soap – it has become one of my staples. I literally don’t feel clean if I don’t use it everyday lol! Give it a go for both hair and body (and maybe even your face) and let me know what you think. Here’s to baby smooth skin and popping curls without the chemicals!