Four Game-Changing Beauty Habits That Originated in Africa
It's no secret that Africa is home to some of the most talented and inspiring beauty brands in the world. For millennia, Africa has been a haven for innovation in beauty. From the ancient Egyptians to modern-day pioneers, African women have shaped the way we approach beauty today.
And yet, it's still not easy for women of color to find products that work for them—especially when it comes to hair care and makeup. That's why we decided to take a closer look at how Africa has impacted the beauty industry over time and how these game-changing habits can help you achieve your best look ever! But what about the everyday habits and rituals that we don't often talk about? Here are four game-changing beauty habits that originated in Africa:
Cleansing isn't a new idea, but for centuries it hasn't been defined as such. Cleansing in Africa has always been about removing dirt and grime from the skin with natural ingredients like honey, milk and olive oil.
Today, African women still practice this ancient ritual and incorporate it into their daily skincare routine. They even go so far as to apply a thin layer of wax on their skin before cleansing to protect their delicate complexions from harsh soap or detergents. While we might not be quite ready for this particular step (we'll stick with our coconut oil), there's no denying that cleansing is important for healthy, glowing skin.
Cleansing is an essential part of any skincare routine, but it's not just about removing makeup and dirt. Cleansing helps to remove dead skin cells, which are replaced by new ones that give you a fresh complexion. It also promotes circulation and opens the pores so that other products penetrate more easily.
Face masks can make all the difference to your skin. In Zimbabwe, they use okra face masks. The okra is boiled until soft, mashed and applied on the face for about 5- 7 minutes before washing off. The high level of nutritional components like antioxidants and vitamins contained in Okra leave the skin with a very hydrated and soft texture.
In Ethiopia, Qasil leaf powder is used as a form of exfoliating face mask; this moisturizes the skin and helps to improve skin complexion. The Qasil powder can also be used to treat dandruff in the hair.
The Ancient Egyptians were the first to discover exfoliation, which they practiced by using a dry brush. They believed that this method promoted proper circulation, and it also cleared pores and gave an overall glowing skin. Cleopatra also added Dead Sea Salt to her bath as a major exfoliant.
- Dry Brushing
Dry Brushing has been around for ages as well—it's a practice that originated in Egypt and was used as a way to promote circulation and exfoliate dead cells from the body. Here it was believed that dry brushing would clear pores and give an overall glowing skin.
4. Oiling Your Skin
Oiling your skin originated in Africa as well, where people have been using shea butter for centuries (it is actually one of the only fats in nature that can penetrate the skin). In fact, shea butter was used on its own as a moisturizer without any scent or color added to it!