Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Shea Moisture African Black Bar Soap Review

Shea Moisture is heralded as a skin and hair care line that caters to those whom are concerned with what they put on their skin. All of their products are naturally made, organic, and even help support communities in impoverished countries. I have a few of Shea Moisture's hair care stuff, but I never wandered into their skin care products. Until now. Introducing, Shea Moisture African Black Bar Soap. Which looks like this.

​It's a big ass, black thing. Initially, I thought that this bar of soap was just going to end up staining my face and my bathroom sink. That's a half truth. The suds will be gray, but it will not stain your face. However, it will leave dark smears on your bathroom sink if you are not careful. I was forced to place the African Black Soap in a zip-lock bag. A more aesthetically pleasing solution is purchasing one of Lush's storage tin cans. ​

Shea Moisture African Black Bar Soap Review

African Black Soap Ingredients Overview:​

  1. African Black Soap Base: What exactly is an "African Black Soap base"? No idea. Moving along...
  2. African Shea Butter: Noted as one of nature's wonders. Shea butter is known to help alleviate hyperpigmentation, promote smooth the skin, as well as act as a skin healer. Shea butter has an oddly high fat content, making it superbly moisturizing.
  3. ​Oats: Oats helps to gently exfoliate the skin without drying it out.
  4. Aloe: Aloe vera helps calm inflamed skin, ​fights the signs of aging, and helps reduce the visibility of stretch marks. So why not?
  5. Plantain Extract: This ingredient kind of made me chuckle. As a person of the Hispanic strain, I eat plenty of plantains. Apparently, plantain on the skin is known to treat excessively dry skin. ​Who knew?
  6. Vitamin E, Essential Oil Blend, and Vegetable Glycerin: Oils and essential oil blends on the skin act as humectants, allowing the product to grab moisture from the air. The essential oils also help mask any offensive odors, which can be a problem with some natural skin care products. ​
  7. Palm Ash: You can actually see small bits of the palm ash on Shea Moisture's African Black Bar soap. I can safely hypothesize that the palm ash acts like a mild skin exfoliant. ​
  8. Rose Mary Extracts: Rosemary on the skin acts like a toner and mild astringent. ​
  9. ​Iron Oxides: This is a colorant - it basically gives cosmetic products its color. At first I though that this was not a natural ingredient. Iron oxide, however, is a naturally occurring ash that is non-irritant, and non-allergenic. Iron oxide in its rawest form is not safe for human use, so the iron oxide used in cosmetics is treated and purified for safe use. I will let this ingredient pass.

Shea Moisture African Black Bar Soap On Oily Skin

​Like a lot of mixed race people, I have oily skin. One of the benefits of oily skin is that I will age a lot slower than people who have dry skin. However, I will always have to fight for any make up to stay on my skin. Also, having your face looking like an oil spill is never attractive. I have heard that Shea Moisture's African Black Soap can be a bit drying - and the reviews did not lie. I would like to think that I have resilient skin. However, I definitely suffered a bit of dryness, as well as a feeling that my skin was about to crack. This was quickly remedied with the application of moisturizer as soon as I pat dried my face after cleansing it. A moisturizer is definitely a requirement when using Shea Moisture's African Black soap.

​I did find that any kind of tinted moisturizer adhered to my skin a lot better. And I stayed matte for hours on end. And for the first time, I was complimented on how "glowy" my skin looked. I was a bit hesitant with that compliment. But my close coworker made sure that I did not look greasy, but indeed "glowy". I was happy camper.

African Black Soap and Hyperpigmentation

One thing that I noticed about my skin is that my hyperpigmentation spots have lightened - significantly. ​These are marks that I had for many years - and I accepted it as a permanent facial feature. Almost two months of consistent use and I have never seen my face so clear and bright.

African Black Soap: Final Verdict

I will rebuy this product. I use this product mainly on my face, but I will see how it will react with the skin on my body. I sometimes I suffer through bouts of bacne that leave unsightly marks. If the African Black Soap is effective in removing spots on my face, then I hope that it will help remove marks on my back as well.

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