Thursday, May 19, 2016

Once you go never go back!

Like they say, once you go Black, you never go back.....

.....this is my personal confession.  My humiliating past, my present situation and my hopeful future.  

I was in sixth grade the first time it happened. 

At first, it almost seemed like a right of passage. It meant I was turning into a woman… I had just hit puberty after-all.  But then..... it just kept happening. Over. And over again.  I was ashamed; And for me, it was so much worse than all of the other girls in school.  Like writing on my face.... There was no hiding it.


My acne started in sixth grade and unlike most of the other kid's whose blemishes dissipated towards the end of high school, mine persisted.  I saw dermatologists who prescribed me drugs and expensive topical treatments.  I tried the infomercial stuff. I tried all of the commercial brands one by one only to look in the mirror and see no results. Sometimes a facial wash would work but not enough to really clear my face… But even then, it seemed like the potency would wear off after a month or two… As if my skin had built up an immunity against it.  In school, some people would pick on me. In college, I was asked why I wore so much makeup… But the truth was it didn't matter whether I wore makeup or not they were still there.  So, I tried to cover them up which only helped them blend in but did nothing for the mountains and valleys on my face.  And then the make up made it worse. But if I didn't wear it I was even more embarrassed and ashamed.

This didn't just last through college.  Into adulthood, I continued to break out regularly. It wasn't as horrendous as high school but.... and I say this very literally: Until two years ago there was never a time when I did not have at least a dozen pimples on my face.  And I am in my 30's.  Everyone is self-conscious about certain things and often parts of their bodies… But it really sucked knowing that what I was most embarrassed about I could not hide.   I could not conceal it underneath vertical stripes or a slimming black dress.  I couldn't dress it up or bedazzle it to make it pretty.  I could not put a hat on it or wear longer anything to cover it... It was in plain sight for everyone to see like walking around naked in public.  

Even after my big lifestyle overhaul when I changed my diet and tossed almost all of my conventional body products in the trash and started buying all natural products, I would still throw my money away on chemical laden face washes and creams that promised results and were supposed to help… But they never did. I tried organic and all natural face washes but those didn't work either so I would switch back-and-forth… to no avail.  

Until the day came that I was formally introduced to African Black Soap. I had a friend that talked about it a lot because she used it… but she's beautiful and has great skin so I brushed it off like a friend telling you that they like blueberry muffins… "OK, that's when does the movie start?"  I had absolutely no expectations for this product as had become a learned behavior with regards to this issue.  After I used it the first time my face felt great. But that was nothing new, often the first few times I would use a new product it felt wonderful until it stopped working. But here's the thing: it's been two years now and it Has. Not. Stopped. Working.

I have naturally oily skin so my instinct was always to reach for the oil free products, when in fact, this is oil-based.  The first time I used it I wasn't quite sure what to do with it… It kind of looked like an 8 ounce tub of manure....but had almost no scent whatsoever.  I had to reach out to my friend for advice on how to use it....which is basically just scraping a booger-size amount onto your finger, getting it wet and then when you rub your hands together, this little gelly-like nugget of soap lathers up like nothing I have ever seen before.  Like magic.  Like Harry Potter just waved his freaking wand over my black booger nugget and POOF....suds and suds of powerful cleaning microscopic angels that just erased my acne in a mysteriously fast matter of weeks.  

And.  It didn't.  Come back.   It's hard for me to convey in writing and without before and after pictures… Because I was so mortified and embarrassed that I didn't allow pictures of my face to be taken....but Black African Soap has honestly changed my life. Sure, every once in a while I might find myself with a pimple which I can usually relate to having had sugar (tsk tsk).... But those times are few and far between.  I have had a few people ask me recently what my skin care regimen is which now almost makes me fall over simply because....if they only knew the struggle and what my skin looked like a few years ago!

Many people don't realize it but at The Juice Box, most of the things sold in retail were not just picked randomly.  We sell them because we believe in them and for one reason or another they have changed or improved our lives.  Black Soap is no exception.  It is the single most important thing in my arsenal of beauty/skin products.  The best part is it worked for me and continues to but the second best part? It's really inexpensive!!  

No, this isn't some MLM marketing nonsense… Because it works better than anything I've ever used and because it's 100% natural we buy it bulk in large bricks at The Juice Box and then we just cut it up and sell it by weight… But a little goes a long way.    You can probably scrape up the change under your couch and buy enough to last you almost a year, lol!!  


UPDATE!  So, I raved about my absolute most favorite product and I told you how to use it but I forgot some other important stuff that you need to know:

1. I store my Black Soap in one of those small reusable Gladware containers. Any airtight container works.  I use it several times a day so I keep it in its little box with it's lid and if it ever feels dry, I just add a dash of water inside the box to soften it for next time.  

2.  I was messaged about what other products do I use afterwards??

I make my own whole system that I'm hoping to have time to blend and offer at The Juice Box.... but for starters, I use regular old Witch Hazel as an astringent...though I don't use it all the's what I use.  Sometimes I add rose water or thyme extract.  

Here's the biggie: 

MOISTURIZING! at the risk of crushing many people's hopes and dreams here's the real dirt on everyone's beloved COCONUT OIL!  Coconut oil is food and to cook with and on wounds and to oil pull with and lots of other things but if you are prone to breakouts, have sensitive skin or even normal skin....for the love of all things holy, do NOT use coconut oil on your face.  There's this thing called the comedogenic scale.  It is a scale that rates oils and their ability to clog pores.  Well, everyone's been so hyped about all the benefits of coconut oil they are just slathering that stuff everywhere but here's the truth.

Personal Story: so I decided a few years back to try to make my own face stuff.  I used coconut oil for the moisturizer because of all the hype.  I woke up the next day as bad as my high school days....broken out into a million little bumps all over my face  Little did I know until a later why....

The Comedogenic scale rates oils like this:

0 - Will Not Clog Pores
1 - Low
2 - Moderately Low
3 - Moderate
4 - Fairly High
5 - High

Coconut oil is rated a 4!!  No wonder I broke out like a pubescent teenager after using it!  

I now use raw organic Shea butter which is rated a 0 and I often mix it with a drop or 2 of essential oils like lavender or frankincense which are both excellent for your skin, anti-aging and reduce blemishes!    Other 0-rated oils safe for use as a moisturizer are ARGAN, MANGO & HEMPSEED oils.  Keep an eye out because I hope to be able to offer these at the JB very soon!

I hope this helps someone!  

Peace.  Love.  Juice.  💚