Discovering Black Soap: A Survey on the Attitudes and Practices of Black Soap Users

J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2017 Jul;10(7):18-22. Epub 2017 Jul 1.


OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to discover the general attitudes and practices of black soap users with regard to amelioration of various dermatologic conditions. DESIGN: This was a prospective questionnaire-based study with a sample size of 100 black soap users. Setting: Outpatient dermatology clinics of Montefiore Medical Center and other Albert Einstein affiliated dermatology clinics in Bronx, New York. PARTICIPANTS: One hundred subjects who have used black soap were recruited. MEASUREMENTS: The participants evaluated and reported their attitudes and applications of black soap. Data on sociodemographic prevalence and user satisfactions of black soap were collected and analyzed. RESULTS: The age distribution of participants was uniform among the specified age categories: 1) 18 to 29 years; 2) 30 to 39 years, 3) 40 to 49 yesars, and 4) 50 years and older. The sex distribution favored women, comprising 74 percent of those surveyed. A significant number of participants were born in either Africa (23%) or the Caribbean (19%). Black soap usage was applied to mitigate many dermatologic conditions, including acne (23%), dark spots (20%), razor bumps (13%), eczema (7%), and fine lines (4%). The most popular usage was for overall skin care (70%). The vast majority of users found black soap helpful for their skin condition (51% very satisfied, and 40% somewhat satisfied). Conclusion: The survey results indicate widespread usage and satisfaction with black soap for reduction in symptoms of various dermatologic conditions. Further investigations are warranted to discover active ingredients present in black soap that may unveil future therapeutic options for various dermatologic conditions.

Keywords: Africa; Black soap; Caribbean; dermatology.