The benefits of African black soap
1. It cleanses and exfoliates
At its core, African black soap is, well, soap, which makes it effective for cleansing the skin of dirt, oil, and impurities. The fine grains of the natural ash act as a gentle exfoliant, which helps to slough away dead skin cells as you wash your face. The result? Cleaner, brighter skin that is well-primed for the next steps of your routine.
2. It helps to treat acne
“One of the most effective benefits of African black soap is its ability to exfoliate and remove dirt, oil, and bacteria from beneath the skin,” says Douglas. As we know, these are some of the main forces that can cause pimples to pop up on your skin. “Not only does African black soap help to fight off acne once you see it, but it also can be used as a preventative measure,” she says.
3. It reduces dark spots and acne scars
Thanks to its natural oils African black soap is rich in both vitamins A and E, giving it the ability to both prevent and treat discoloration. Vitamin E is rich in antioxidants that help stave off dark spots from forming in the first place, and vitamin A ( which is what retinol is derived from) has been shown to help reduce the appearance of uneven skin tone by stimulating cell turnover.
4. It soothes skin
With a combination of and natural butters oils, African black soap supplements its exfoliating properties with skin-nourishing ones. Shea butter, common in many formulations, mimics your skin’s natural oils to give it a non-comedogenic, hydrating effect. Vitamin E works to repair your skin’s lipid barrier and offers conditioning benefits that will leave even the driest complexion feeling quenched.
5. It fights fungus
In addition to its skin-soothing properties, African black soap also has anti-fungal properties. So if you’re dealing with anything from dandruff to athlete’s foot, it might just be exactly what you need.
Can everyone use African black soap?
While African black soap is generally safe for all skin types, it is especially helpful for oily or acne-prone skin. “It has the natural ability to remove excess oil from skin like a magnet,” says Douglas. That said, since it is more alkaline than your skin, it can irritate dry and sensitive skin types; do a patch test to ensure your complexion can handle it before applying it to your entire face.
If pure African black soap is too harsh, you can opt for a gentler, more moisturizing option.