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19 Jul 2014

We’ve all been there before…you walk into a department store and head for the health and beauty section.

You examine a wide variety of cleansing bars and you choose one that seems to match your needs. It usually takes a few tries before you find that one soap that really works for you. Do you ever stop to look at the ingredients of this soap?

You are likely to find triclosan, which can disrupt the thyroid hormone and increased exposure can contribute to the development of breast cancer. You will find fragrance, which is usually a safe word for phthalates, a chemical that can cause birth defects and liver damage. There are so many chemicals that are used in nearly all “cleansing bars” sold in stores today.

I often say “never put anything on your skin your wouldn’t eat!” Whatever soap or cosmetics you use are absorbed through your skin into your blood stream. Health first, beauty second.

African Black Soap comes from plantain skin, which is a natural source of vitamins A & E & iron. It is made with rare tropical honeys & pure unrefined Shea butter. It contains a high amount of glycerin, which absorbs moisture from the air and literally deposits it into the skin, making the skin soft and supple. 

African black soap is unique in that it contains no preservatives, color enhancers, or fragrances. It helps to heal acne, eczema, shaving bumps and spots. African black soap creates a soft lather without the animal fat additives that are commonly used in soaps made in the US/Canada.

How Black Soap is Made:
First, leaves and bark of various trees and plants are burned in a vat or kettle. These may be leaves from banana trees, plantain skins, palm tree leaves, Shea tree bark, and/or cocoa pods.
Secondly, water is added to ashes to be filtered. Oils such as coconut oil, Shea oil, palm oil, palm kernel oil, and cocoa butter are added to the water to create the soap.
The soap is then hand-stirred by local women for at least a day and then set out to cure for about two weeks.

The methods of making traditional black soap and its secrets have been passed down from generation to generation to keep the soap close to Mother Nature and avoid exploitation and imitations. Many have tried to create their version of black soap with all kinds of ingredients, but Ghanaian & Nigerian black soap are the best quality because they are ORIGINAL.

The most common form of black soap which comes from the Yoruba people of Nigeria, Togo, and Benin republic is called Ose Dudu (Dudu Osun). Ose Dudu literally means Soap (ose) and Black (dudu). If it ain’t broke don’t fix it!

There is no such thing as traditional liquid black soap. If you encounter liquid black soap bear in mind it is not traditional. There are liquid black soaps on the market made from natural ingredients. Do not confuse these with traditional black soap. Liquid black soap is new to the market and an extension of traditional black soap. If you are into natural products, you should ask your vendor what the ingredients are in their liquid black soap. 

DIY Liquid Black Soap:
For a liquid black soap, fill a container with the soft African Black Soap; crumbled or broken into smaller, more easily dissolved pieces. Add 20% purified or distilled water; again, that’s 2 parts water to 8 parts black soap. Seal the container and set aside for several hours. This makes an excellent shampoo or shower gel.

African Black Soap contains a whopping 48% unrefined Shea butter! The commercial soaps and lotions only add 1% to 4% ultra refined, which is too little Shea and it has the healing properties removed; it most likely was refined using a chemical process that leaves trace chemicals in the Shea butter. The average homemade Shea soap can only handle 10% Shea butter. How will I know the difference? Oh, you’ll know! African Black Soap is made using a natural lye saponification with no preservatives added or needed.

Where to buy Black Soap? Shakara Natural Tips.

Warning: The FAKE SOAP is hard, jet black and does not even compare to the original. Real Black Soap is always brownish-black. The longer the plantain skins are roasted the darker the soap. But the soap is never completely black and it is not scented. 

Have a question about this post? Email Yemi at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

References:
Dr. Oz Fans. “Dr. Oz: Acerola Cherry, Frankincense oil & Africa Black Soap.”. Drozfans.com. February 14. 2012. Web. 24February. 2012.
Mad hatters Wholesale. “African Black Soap.” Sheanmore.com. 03 April. 2012. Web. 23 February. 2012.
“A Brief History of Black Soap, Alata Samina or Anago Samina.” www.sheabutterr.com. N.D. Web. 22nd February. 2012.
“African Organic Black Soap.” organicblacksoap.com. N.D. Web. 23 February. 2012.

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