Is African black soap biodegradable? (9 advantages of African black soap)

This article will cover the biodegradability and eco-friendly status of African black soap. Other related aspects that will be shed light on will be: 

  • Is African black soap natural?
  • Is African black soap biodegradable?
  • How green is the packaging of African black soap?
  • How well is the utilitarian aspect of African black soap?
  • FAQs

Is African black soap biodegradable?

African black soap is made from naturally-derived ingredients that include coconut oil, cocoa pods, shea butter, plantain bark, and palm tree leaf. There are no artificial chemicals or colourants added and that is why African black soap is regarded as 100% biodegradable. 

However, the use of natural ingredients in African black soap does not mean any sort of compromise on quality or utility. African black soap offers advantages that most commercial soaps do not. 

These include antifungal and antibacterial effects, effective against skin conditions, and gentler on the skin. African black soap is suitable for all skin types. It is also claimed that African black soap comes in recycled packaging which is another win toward sustainability and an eco-friendly future. 

Is African black soap natural or non-natural?

The assessment of the environmental impact of African black soap can be rightly done by analysing the materials used to make up African black soap. 

This is because the qualities of the materials involved in any product will be reciprocated in the product itself. If something is made from natural materials, it is more likely to be biodegradable as compared to something that is made from non-natural materials. 

As regards the case of African black soap, it is made from natural materials and ingredients. These include: 

  • Plantain skin 
  • Leaves
  • Cocoa pods
  • Shea tree bark

Based on it, it can very aptly be assumed that African black soap is made from plant-based and natural materials rather than non-natural materials. Another factor that is closely associated with the naturality of a substance is its environmental impact. 

Products made from natural materials are less likely to be degradative to the environment as compared to products made from non-natural materials. The main reason behind this assumption or school of thought is that non-natural materials are mostly made from the derivatives of fossil fuels. 

Such products are responsible for the emissions of Greenhouse gases like methane or carbon dioxide. These gases may cause environmental degradation such as global warming. 

Is African black soap biodegradable?

Another very closely associated parameter is the degradation aspect of African black soap. Biodegradability is the breakdown of waste by microbes into simpler materials. 

Regarding biodegradability, there is a general rule of thumb that natural materials are more prone to be degraded by microbes as compared to non-natural materials. 

Since African black soap is made from natural and plant-based materials, it can very easily be assumed that African black soap is indeed biodegradable. 

Before we move further, let us probe into a bit more details of biodegradation. Biodegradation is a natural process in which microbes break down waste into simpler substances. These substances can then become a part of the system again. 

Biodegradation is regarded as a natural dustbin because if there is no degradation by microbes, there will be detrimental impacts on the people and the planet. 

This is mainly because, in case of no degradation, there will be waste accumulation. This accumulated waste will then further pollute the environment and the atmosphere. 

This is the very reason why there are a plethora of detrimental impacts of non-biodegradable waste that are observed by scientists and environmentalists. 

The case of African black soap is good news because it is biodegradable. Normally, soaps are made from synthetic chemicals such as parabens et cetera. Owing to that, most of the present day, commercial soaps are non-biodegradable. 

How green African black soap packaging is?

One very important question that is usually inquired is how green the packaging of African black soap is. 

The primary reason behind this question is that most consumer products come with plastic packaging. Plastic, as it is known, is a non-biodegradable material that is also associated with a number of impacts on the environment. 

Therefore, even though a product is sustainable and eco-friendly, if it comes in non-biodegradable packaging then there will still be negative impacts on that product the people and the planet. 

As regards the packaging of African black soap, it is claimed that African black soap is packed with recycled packaging material. 

This is another win for African black soap because using recycled material is an indication of the eco-friendly aspect of any consumer product. 

Recycling may be introduced as the reusing of any material after slight changes or modifications to it. 

When materials are recycled, they are not needed to be made from scratch. As a result, the pressure on raw materials is reduced. Also, recycling is also regarded as one of the best ways to deal with non-biodegradable waste such as plastics. 

The key advantages that may be achieved from the recycling of materials or from using recycled materials include: 

  • Better waste management 
  • Better resource management 
  • Decreased emission of Greenhouse gases
  • Less carbon footprint
  • Economic Edge 
  • Time saving
  • Decreased use of agrochemicals 
  • Less water pollution
  • Decrease in water pollution 

Thus, by using recycled material in the packaging, African black soap ensures that the above-mentioned points are offered to the people and also the planet. 

Does the eco-friendly aspect of African black soap affect its utility? (9 advantages) 

Perhaps the most important question that is raised in association with the eco-friendly aspect of African black soap is the curiosity that how well the utility of African black soap aligns with its sustainable nature. 

The main idea is not just about eco-friendliness. The product also needs to offer good utilitarian value. This is the main motivation that will allow the buyers to buy any product. 

Let us take the example of Tesla cars. People buy Tesla not only because Tesla cars run on electric energy. The main reason why people buy Tesla cars is that these cars are the best in the world in terms of performance and working. 

If Tesla cars do not perform better than its competitors (cars that work on fuel), then people are most likely to prefer those cars. This is exactly what the environment-economy tradeoff is. This is also verified by the principles and practices of Environmental psychology. 

Therefore, let us now explore how well the utilitarian aspect of African black soap gels with its environmental aspect of it. As per studies, there is no tradeoff here. It is even claimed that African black soap is better than other soaps because of its natural ingredients. 

Let us explore some of the advantages that are offered by the African black soap: 

  • Antibacterial properties
  • Versatility
  • Anti-inflammatory 
  • Protection against acne
  • Skin benefits
  • Protection from photoaging
  • Anti-fungal
  • Reduction of hyperpigmentation 
  • Effective against skin allergies

As it can be seen, African black soap offers a vast array of applications and advantages. It is for these reasons that it is also called the “Holy Grail” of all soaps. 

Probably the biggest edge that African black soap offers is that it is suitable for all face types. Usually what happens with consumer soaps is that these soaps gel well with a very limited number of people. 

The main underlying reason behind it is that such soaps are mostly made from synthetic chemicals, dyes, and fragrances. These synthetic materials do not gel well with skin types of many.

However, since African black soap is made from purely plant-based materials, it can be used by almost everyone. There are no additional fragrances which mean that people with dry or sensitive skin do not need to worry about it. 

Also, African black soap is known to work wonders against oily skin as well as it reduces or neutralises the oil production in the skin. 

Another great and unmatched advantage that African black soap offers is that this soap also has antifungal and antibacterial properties. Then again, these properties are afforded without the expense of synthetic chemicals. 

It is because of this proclivity that even though African black soap has antibacterial and antifungal activities, it is safe enough to be used on the face and hands. 

Another great and commercial advantage that is offered by African black soap is that African black is effective against skin issues and diseases such as:

  • Irritation
  • Allergies
  • Dermatitis
  • Itching
  • Eczema 

All these benefits plead for one simple assertion that it is possible to achieve environmental-economic harmony. Mostly it is believed that if utility is to be achieved, the environment needs to be sacrificed. 

This assumption is a billion light years away from the truth. The fact of the matter is that real utility is only safeguarded when environmental interests are considered with priority. 

African black soap is perhaps one of the best examples of it. Its natural ingredients are its humbleness and its strength as well which let it outperform most of the commercial, synthetically made soaps. 

Conclusion

It is concluded that African black soap is made from naturally-derived ingredients that include coconut oil, cocoa pods, shea butter, plantain bark, and palm tree leaf. There are no artificial chemicals or colourants added and that is why African black soap is regarded as 100% biodegradable. 

However, the use of natural ingredients in African black soap does not mean any sort of compromise on quality or utility. African black soap offers advantages that most commercial soaps do not. 

These include antifungal and antibacterial effects, effective against skin conditions, and gentler on the skin. African black soap is suitable for all skin types. It is also claimed that African black soap comes in recycled packaging which is another win toward sustainability and an eco-friendly future. 

Frequently Asked Questions: Is African black soap biodegradable?

Are there any fragrances in African black soap?

No, there are no artificial fragrances in African black soap. That is why it is suited for all skin types. 

Is African black soap acidic?

No, African black soap is alkaline in nature. It is, therefore, recommended to use a toner after washing with African black soap. 

References

  • Ogunbiyi, A., & Enechukwu, N. A. (2021). African black soap: Physiochemical, phytochemical properties, and uses. Dermatologic Therapy, 34(3), e14870.
  • Mongadi, A. G., Imonikhe, M. A., & Oyinbo, K. (2012). Analysis Of The Antibacterial Activity Of African Black Soap On Some Selected Pathogens. Arpn Journal of Science and Technology, 2, 359-364.
  • Navarre, N., Mogollón, J. M., Tukker, A., & Barbarossa, V. (2022). Recycled plastic packaging from the Dutch food sector pollutes Asian oceans. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 185, 106508.
  • Chirani, M. R., Kowsari, E., Teymourian, T., & Ramakrishna, S. (2021). Environmental impact of increased soap consumption during COVID-19 pandemic: Biodegradable soap production and sustainable packaging. Science of The Total Environment, 796, 149013.
  • Taylor, A. (1980). Soaps and detergents and the environment. Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society, 57(11), A859-A861.

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