Indeed black soap has become globally known for the healing properties on the skin and hair, acne, and as a result, brands are cashing in under the umbrella of 100% raw African black soap.(ABS)
How then can a customer tell the imitation soap from the 100% raw African black soap?
If you walk into any supermarket, you will likely see a very well packaged, bar of soap that is hard, shiny and smells of lavender
Although the packaging might have the name Africa written on it, these are possibly mere imitations….
….regular soaps that have been dyed black to give the illusion of the real deal, with the sole aim of profiting from the craze
Take a look at the ingredients in some of these brands. Some have the african black soap base as one of the ingredients, but no one knows what is in the base, and most importantly what quantity.
Just like juice right?
Because a bottle of juice says it is orange juice does not make it 100% orange juice ….or does it?
In fact if you look at the ingredients, you might find that the juice was made from 1% orange juice concentrate….or artificial orange juice flavoring and the rest 99%?…
But they are still marketed as orange juice!!!.
I would hate to think that this is what happens to the branded African black soap.
Using this juice example,
If therefore, the branded products have a base of 10% and other additives to make up the remaining 90% then,
Should you class this as fake?.
disclaimer :It is not the intention of this article to start a controversy between branded made in USA versus made in West Africa black soap…..just providing insight for users to make an informed buying decision on the subject.
Where to buy 100% raw African black soap and how much it costs
foto credits -Natures form image
Don’t expect to find the the 100% organic ABS in stores like Walmart,boots, holland and barrets, or target.
If you have a local African foods shop near you…you might want to check with them if they carry this stuff.
Regardless of where you live, UK, Canada, Australia, USA, Germany, wherever….amazon now ships world wide so you should be able to buy online.
These sellers carry stock which have really great reviews on amazon so you cannot go wrong.
check them here:
Please note that I DO NOT earn any affiliate income from these links.
Prices range from $10 -$30 depending on the size (LB) of the soap, and there are bulk(wholesale) deals as well.
Which ever one you decide to buy, below are the properties you should be looking out for in a good soap.
What To Look Out For When Buying Raw African Black Soap
A simple buying guide for an authentic organic black soap is to look at the:
- color and texture
- fair trade
A rule of thumb when buying pure organic black soap is to read the ingredients. There should be no lye, oxides, peroxides, or any other name that you cannot pronounce.
For the real deal, you want to see names like plantain skin, unrefined Shea butter, cassava skins,camwood, cocoa pods husks, palm kernel bunch waste, groundnut shells, sorghum chaff.(.source ), all pure and organic
color and texture
Branded black soaps will appear smooth and very dark in color.
I think is is a misconception that the real African black bar of soap must not come in molded form and should not be black.
Dudu Osun has good reviews. It is a very popular soap that is made in Nigerian and comes in a molded form. However,It strips easily with each use and has a slightly rough texture and feel to the body.
The African made black soap comes in colors ranging from light brown to dark brown, to black.
This is as a result of the cooking time of the plantain skin in the soap. The longer the plantain skins are cooked, the darker the soap will be.
By the way, when bathing in case you are wondering
“why the heck is the foam brown?”
Well, these soaps lather very well and the foam is brownish when you take a bath, so this is purely normal
Most everyday soaps come in nice lovely fragrances, so perhaps when you pick up a block of ABS , you might be expecting it to smell of fresh lemons or vanilla….
The organic black soap has smells ranging from earthy to smoky but nothing off putting.
African black soaps are made by Ghanaian and Nigerian women who rely on this form of soap making to support their families, hence one could argue that these brands pose and unfair competition.
foto credits: Body Harmony Day Spa
UHHH…so what about the branded soaps??
If you have been buying and using these branded ones to clear your skin or hair problems and these have worked for you, by all means keep doing so. Just because they are not authentically made in Africa does not mean they will not work for you depending on the reason why you are using them.