Today I am going to introduce my forever Beauty Holy Grail, popularly known as African Black soap. Surprisingly enough by grandmother has always used this on not only her face but also her body! I generally wasn’t a fan of African black soap (also called black soap) visually. It was simply black, gooey and scary. I just could not understand why she would want to use that stuff on me! Like seriously! Especially with its ‘’evil’’ reputation in Nollywood videos where it is always used to bewitch someone.
My grandmother used the traditional black soap called ‘’Ọṣẹ Dúdú” in Yoruba. I used to give it a wide berth whenever I saw it in her bathroom. Black soap is made from dried plantain peels, palm tree leaves, cocoa pods and Shea tree bark, water, coconut oil, palm kernel oil, Shea butter and various others. It is made to spec, so the combination of ingredients varies according to the problem the user needs to treat.
Black soap is extremely versatile as it can be liquefied, made semi-solid for easy scooping or solidified into bars. It is never truly black, rather it’s more a brownish colour with bits and specks of the other ingredients.
Black soap went up in my estimation when I went to boarding school and noticed that nearly everyone used ‘Dudu Osun’ a famous black soap in Nigeria. Unknown to me, black soap had entered the 21 st century and was now being packaged into bars like other soaps such as Lux, Dove etc. Not only was looking modern, it actually worked!! All the girls raved about its benefits; clear, smooth skin. At an affordable cost, for that matter. The ‘’home grown’’ solution I had turned my nose up at all these years had been doing miracles for others. I had to know more!!
Black soap has been my go-to cleanser for the past 5 years. To find out how I became an African black soap devotee and my skin changed for the better tune in next time!!