marți, 26 aprilie 2011

Soap Black

Black Soap, also known as African Black Soap (Anago Soap, Alata Simena,or Ose Dudu), has long been used to heal problem skin. Its good for thinning fine lines, eczema, razor bumps , evening out dark spots,  and eliminating blemishes. It is also used to lightly exfoliate and give you healthier looking skin, body or hair or for oily skin, dry skin, skin rashes, scalp irritations, body odors and is good for sensitive skin.

Black soap is made from the ash of locally harvested plants and barks such a plantain,  shea tree bark, palm tree leaves, and cocoa pods. First the leaves and bark are sun-dried and then roasted in a kettle or pot at an even, constant temperature, which is important to ensure color, texture and smell. Then water and various oils - coconut oil, palm oil,  palm kernel oil (including shea butter and cocoa pod powder) - are added to the mixture and stirred for at least a day. After that, the "soap" is left to set for two weeks to cure. Oftentimes the soap is made by women and is fair-traded, though not always.

Black soap is traditionally made in west Africa, typically Ghana, from secret recipes. Different tribes and communities have adopted their own specific (secret) blend of oils and cooking techniques, which can be seen in the different color variations among black soap. The ash itself was often used to heal cuts. Varieties of black soap actually made in Africa tend to be pure, while soaps made in Europe or the US tend to have added artificial ingredients.

The plantain skins give the soap Vitamin A & E, and iron. Because the soap has the highest shea butter content of any soap, it also offers UV protection. The soap is also good for sensitive skin, meaning its a good option for babies or the elderly. Some people with caffeine sensitivities may need to test out soap that contains cocoa pods as there is some evidence that the caffeine can be transmitted through contact with the skin.

Shea Terra Organics offers an African Lemongrass and a Rose Hip facial soap made with 10% shea butter and pure black soap. When it comes out of the bottle it oozes like the something out of a sci-fi movie, but it doesn't have much of a smell so it's pretty easy to get past the horror movie resemblance.

I've used the Shea Terra black soap and have noticed that my skin feels clean but doesn't feel like its been scrubbed. Its hard to tell if my skin is improving due to the soap or from other causes, but either way it does look clearer. Some sites have said that black soap can be crumbly or have an "odd" smell, but the Shea Terra soap comes out smooth with very little smell at all.

African Black Soap Benefits

1. Pure African Black Soap is free of preservatives (it is pure afterall) however this means it needs to be kept in an airtight container, or well wrapped. With consideration to this, it is often best to peel a chunk off, of the black stuff. Although this may feel difficult at first, continue exerting pressure on your African black soap and a chunk will come off.

2. For use on your body, you can either use your chunk of black soap like any other bar of soap. If you prefer to use a body glove or washcloth, simply lather the chunk of black soap onto your washcloth as you would any other bar of soap.

3. If you’d like to use it for your face and hair, it is much better to make a lather with your chunk of black soap between your hands and then rub the resulting lather on your face or through your hair.

4. Once you have lathered your skin (leaving it in for 30 seconds or so), hair or face with your black soap, simply wash off as you would normally after a shower.

Acne Effects

Black soap is considered an effective treatment for acne. The powerful cleansing properties of black soap are also effective in fighting and preventing acne. Acne is caused by overactive oil glands and the build-up of bacteria on the skin, says Therefore, black soap's ability to remove excess oil and provide a deep cleansing of the skin is effective in relieving acne for many individuals. The LovetoKnow website also reports that black soap help decrease the appearance of acne scars.

African Black Soap Recipes

      Solid Black Soap
      Remove the cocoa beans from the pods and burn over low flame until they turn to ash. Burn the plantain skins to ash. Add water to the cocoa bean and plantain skin ashes. Place the coconut palm oil in a double boiler. Add the ashes and shea butter to mixture. Cook over low heat, stirring until mixture becomes smooth. If you want, add an essential oil like lavender or rose geranium while liquid is cooking to add a scent. Soap should start to solidify and float to the top of liquid. Use a spoon to scoop out the soap mixture as it settles on top of the liquid. Place the soap mixture in a mold. The soap will conform to the mold once it has completely cooled. Allow two weeks for soap to cure before using.

      Liquid Black Soap
      Liquid black soap can be made by following the same directions for making solid form and adding distilled water to prevent hardening. Use one part water to four parts of soap mixture.

Water ( Dark Water )

Dreams about Black water ( Dark Water ) tend to offer clues to your emotional state.Where the water is black, and you are afraid of it, or fall into it, or can't see, yet the water is calm on the surface, this imagery conveys an impression that you present yourself to the world as "still waters run deep", someone who is outwardly calm on the surface, but inside is another matter, with all manner of powerful emotions going on.

 The Land of  Black Water

The condition of the water indicates what your emotional state is at the time of the dream. Black Feel- That you are afraid of what is going on under the surface, or can't see what is going on under the surface, suggests that you don't want to get too deep into exploring your own emotions, they are powerful, and you are afraid of them, and perhaps afraid of what others would think if they knew how you really feel about stuff.

The second image conveys this sort of idea as well, here we have other people navigating emotional territory (they are swimming in the water) yet there are sharks in it, and you wonder how others can deal with their emotions when you feel you can't, you feel like you could be over powered by your emotions.

The Black Water Powers       Black Feel

Your emotions are so strong that you don't even want to know what you really feel about stuff. The one about falling in to the water suggests a fear of being "drowned", in this context, a sense of being emotionally over whelmed.


The Meaning of Black in Dreams

Dream Black

Black symbolizes the unknown, the unconscious, mystery, danger,  darkness, rejection, death, mourning,  hate or malice. Black color invites you to delve deeper in your unconscious in order to gain a better understanding of yourself. It also signifies a lack of support  and lack of love. More positively, black represents potential and possibilities. It is like a clean or blank slate. 

Dream in Black

Blackness could imply hidden spirituality and divine qualities.

    When mixed or associated with other colors it adulterates their meaning e.g. darker shades of red, blue yellow.

    Black and White indicates simplistic extremism , Intolerance,  - ‘If something is not good it must be evil’

Alternatively, black and white dreams is a sign of depression or sadness.

To dream in black and white, suggests that you need to be more objective in formulating your decisions. You may be a little too unyielding in your thought process and thus need to find some sort of balance between two opposing views.