A TO H African Beauty Ingredients for Glowing, Dewy Skin

 A TO H African Beauty Ingredients for Glowing, Dewy Skin. 

Africa is believed to be the mother of all civilization. Abundant in natural resources with a rich history marred by slavery and exploitation of indigenous peoples. We are constantly barraged with pictures of starving children, mosquitoes, poverty, diseases, greed, dictatorship, internet fraud and war in the media, when Africa comes up as a topic.

By Fiontain - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=36154972


But we are about changing that narrative! Indeed, it is a beautiful continent packed with a diverse range of plants, herbs, spices, flora, fauna and remedies for virtually every ailment out there.  There are so many ingredients harvested from the desert, land and sea that deliver astonishing results when used the right way.


Flickr: Rod Waddington


I am indeed convinced that there are so many ‘yet to be discovered’ plants that could possibly do what was previously deemed impossible for your SKIN without having a surgical procedure.

'Team flawless, supple and GLOWING skin', here we come! For each ingredient, we will explore how you can achieve your beauty goals by incorporating the ingredients into your routine. After-which you will be armed with some ways to ‘up’ your skin game this summer.

With any new skincare product or ingredient, always remember to do a patch test first and monitor results after 24-48 hours before use on other parts of your body.

Without much further ado, I bring to you the first series of an alphabetical list of renown and little known ingredients that you should have in your closet right now, that is, if you are serious about having that skin that increases your CONFIDENCE and SELF-WORTH when you step into any room.



Burst: Matthew Henry


Also Known As: Liquid Gold, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Argania Spinosa

Origin: Morocco

Fun Fact:  Traditionally, goats helped in harvesting the nuts of the Argan tree by climbing up the trees to eat the bitter fleshy pulp and spitting out the seeds. Their bodies are unable to digest the nuts so they would either spit it out or it would pass through their digestive system and you know what's next?

The nuts are picked from the ‘goat droppings’ and the seeds are extracted and cold pressed into Oil.

I believe that the potency of Argan oil is inextricably linked to the organic composition of the nuts. You know, after marinating in all the enzymes present in the goat’s droppings, why wouldn’t it be such a potent beauty ingredient? (I kid...)


  • Anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and moisturizing
  • Protects against harsh sun and other environmental pollutants
  • Rich in Vitamin E and Anti-oxidants
  • Protects the skin against free radical damage
  • Prevents & reduces stretch marks
  • Helps skin infections and wound healing
  • Improves the overall appearance of skin

    Credit: Burst

    Uses: Face, Body, Hair, Nails, Massage Oils

    How can this ingredient help my SKIN or HAIR goals?

    Have you heard about the Oil Cleansing Method (OCM)? It is purportedly derived from ancient bath practices of the Egyptians including my namesake - your fave 'Queen Cleopatra'. 

    This method has received rave reviews by experts in the beauty industry. But what is it? Well, it is a way of cleansing your skin with natural oils, helping to extract all the grime and make up residue accumulated during the day.

    The key to OCM is using premium quality oils, understanding your skin type and using the oils that are best suited for your skin. Argan Oil is lightweight, universal and multipurpose.  It penetrates easily without leaving your skin feeling greasy.


    1. At night-time, cleanse your face with a good facial cleanser and rinse off with warm water 
    2. Slather some Argan Oil on your face and massage in circular motions for 2 minutes
    3. Heat up a soft wash cloth in hot water, relax and place over your face until it cools off
    4. Wipe your face with the wash cloth
    5. Repeat 3 & 4 above about twice
    6. Allow your skin to air dry
    7. Drink some water, go to bed & wake up to well hydrated, clean, soft skin.                                                  

        BAOBAB OIL

         Also Known As: Tree of Life, Pharmacy Tree, Adansonia Digitata (Baobab) Seed Oil, Mbiyu, Upside down tree

        Origin: Malawi, Kenya, Madagascar, South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria, Tanzania amongst others

        Fun Fact:  The tree can live for 600 years and is considered a Lost Crop™ due to it being underutilized and neglected due to the low demand. However, with the recent surge in demand for Baobab oil, it would probably be removed from the list soon.  

        Uses: Skin, Hair, Body, Spa Treatments

         By Bernard Gagnon - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3646805

        • Helps damaged skin
        • Soothes cuts, burns, acne, rosacea and painful skin conditions
        • Excellent after sun treatment
        • Helps mature skin due to its regenerating, toning and moisturizing properties

        How can this ingredient help my SKIN or HAIR goals?

        This golden oil is a savior of sorts for inflamed, sensitive and even oily skin. It is lightweight, easily absorbed into skin and suitable for topical applications to your skin.

        BUT it has a high comodogenic rating so it’s best not to apply to your face directly, so that you do not clog your pores. 

        It is helpful for dry, flaky, frizzy or damaged hair. You can choose to use this oil in the OCM method above or make a Baobab Hot Oil Hair Treatment following these easy steps:


        1. Wash your hair first as this makes it easier for the oils to penetrate into your scalp and hair cuticles
        2. Pour some Baobab Oil or mix with equal parts of Coconut Oil (or any other carrier oil) of your choice into a jar or glass bowl.
        3. Warm the oil either in the microwave in 10 second bursts or place the bowl in another bowl or pan of hot boiling water for 5 minutes
        4. Check the temperature of the oils by applying a little dollop on your wrist to ensure that it’s not too hot
        5. Partition your hair into 4 equal parts and apply the oil evenly from roots to tip
        6. Cover your head with a shower cap for 30 minutes
        7. After 30 minutes, rinse out the oil and follow with a good quality conditioner

        Doing this every week will result in shinier, bouncy and well moisturized hair, especially if you have thick curly hair. It will also help to get rid of dandruff, dry flakes and will add volume to your hair naturally.


        Other Names: African Red Sandalwood, Osun,

        Origin: Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Cote d’voire

        Fun Fact:  Camwood is said to have some magical spiritual powers that can help enhance spiritual activity during meditation.  Please don’t ask me how this is done. I only know about skincare!

        Uses: Moisturizers, Soap, Masks, Scrubs



        • Remarkable skin rejuvenation properties
        • Regular use will give you glowing skin
        • Eliminates crow’s feet, eczema, blemishes and breakouts
        • Reduces fine lines & wrinkles
        • Helps with dark spots, sunburn and uneven skin tone
        • Anti-inflammatory properties help with insect bites and swelling

         How can this ingredient help my SKIN or HAIR goals?

        Camwood powder is widely used in West Africa for its skin rejuvenating properties. It is a red powder that comes from the core of the camwood tree, after peeling the bark. It is a powerful beauty secret that will do so much for your skin.

        This natural fibrous powder has been used for ages in West Africa and applied to various skin products to give natural, glowing and supple skin. To reap the magical benefits of this wondrous ingredient, you could put together a DIY Face mask and apply to your skin.


        1. Measure 2 equal table spoons of Lemon Juice and Honey
        2. Mix in a teaspoon of Camwood into a bowl of Rose water or Milk
        3. Combine all the above ingredients
        4. Apply on your skin and leave to dry for about 10 minutes or longer
        5. Rinse off and follow with any of our Authentic African Black Soaps. This will sweep away dead skin cells and reveal beautiful, flawless skin with consistent use.

        DEVIL'S CLAW


        By Roger Culos - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=43061735

        Other Names: Devil’s Claw, Harpagophytum procumbens, Grapple Plant, Wood Spider, Kamangu, Teufelskralle

        Origin:  South Africa, Botswana and Namibia

        Fun Fact:  Its curious name is derived as a result of the ‘hook-like’ projections which it uses to attach itself to the fur of animals. This then helps to propagate its seeds. Don’t you just love Mother Nature? The wisdom in her ways is beyond astonishing.

        Uses: Skin, Tea, Supplements


        • Fights inflammation
        • Reduces arthritis pain, neck & lower back pain, headaches
        • Heals boils, sores, cuts, skin lesions

        How can this ingredient help my SKIN or HAIR goals?

        The roots have been used for centuries by the Khoisan people of Southern Africa in ointments as a traditional way of treating boils and other skin problems. You could get an ointment that contains an extract of the herb when next you have a painful boil or sore and apply to the spot. You can also get devil’s claw powder from your local health food or supplement store and infuse in hot water to make tea, especially if you have itchy skin that results in painful blisters.



        By Alvesgaspar - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3569131

        Other Names: Pelargoneum Graveolens

        Origin: Egypt

        Fun Fact:  It is one of a handful of essential oils known as a ‘girl’s best friend’ because of its beneficial and soothing effects on menstrual cramps and alleviating symptoms that come with ‘that time of the month’.  It is also known to have calming effects on the whirlwind of emotions that come with hormonal changes in women.

        Uses: Skin, Massage, Soap, Moisturizers, Hair, Aromatherapy


        1. Excellent for both Dry and Oily skin because it regulates sebum production
        2. Balances and enhances complexion to promote radiance
        3. Hydrates Dry Skin and helps resolve blemishes and the appearance of wrinkles
        4. Helps renew and rejuvenate your skin, mind and body
        5. Uplifting scent that helps ease day to day stress

        How can this ingredient help my SKIN or HAIR goals?

        Egyptian Geranium is extracted from the leaves and stems of the plant through steam distillation. It has been used right from Ancient Egyptian times to beautify skin and promote the appearance of healthier looking hair. You can incorporate this luxurious oil by adding a few drops into your favorite carrier oil. To make your very own DIY Bath or Body Oil you can follow these steps:


        1. Measure out 100ml of Sweet Almond Oil
        2. Add 5 drops of Egyptian Geranium Essential oil
        3. Mix thoroughly with a stainless steel spoon
        4. Pour into a glass bottle
        5. Massage into your skin and leave on for 10 minutes before stepping into a bath


        Burst by Shopify: Sarahpflugphoto

        Following the steps above will give you supple, soft and glowing skin with consistent use!

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         This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional and medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.  Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified health providers with any question you may have regarding a medical condition.  Never disregard professional or medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on the Zawadi Naturals Website


        Yes this exotic ingredient is native to Africa as well. its trees are in abundance in the coastal areas of Somaliland! ✨

        This ancient beauty secret was highly revered & sacred in biblical times, one of the 3 gifts given by the 3 wisemen to Baby Jesus ⭐️

        Frankincense essential oil known as the ‘king of oils’ is derived from the resins of the frankincense tree.

        It helps calm your complexion and has natural healing elements that help with blemishes, dry skin,sunburn, breakouts & rosacea ✨

        Apparently it also has cancer-fighting properties including skin cancer & is also known to restore, tone and uplift the epidermis, remove age spots & also tackle fine lines, wrinkles.


        GUM ARABIC

        Gum Arabic is a dried sap obtained from the stems and branches of the Acacia senegal, which is the preferred Acacia specie✨

        It’s native to the Sahel region of Africa, from Mauritania 🇲🇷, and Senegal 🇸🇳 in the west, to Sudan, Eritrea, Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania in the east.

        Found in thousands of lotions, creams, balms, body washes, even mascara & lipstick 💄but also in the food & pharmaceutical industry!

        In Ancient Egypt, Cleopatra’s cosmetics had Gum Arabic in it 💯

        Apparently, 👑 Queen Elizabeth I’s favorite lipstick had a mixture of acacia gum, egg white and fig milk🥛

        This beauty ingredient has an instantaneous lifting effect and improves the texture of skin, smoothing over wrinkles and leaving the skin soft and supple.

        It’s also excellent in anti-wrinkle creams!


        Did you know that Honeybush is actually a plant native to South Africa. It has a lot of great press because a number of studies have proven its efficacy 💫

        It has a mild, sweet aroma like honey 🍯 and was used as a herbal local drink!

        Anti-oxidant rich, this can be your #retinol alternative as it performs the same anti-aging function, reduces the length and depth of skin winkles caused by UV irradiation!

        Also found to be beneficial for the skin if you suffer from: acne, psoriasis, vitiligo, photo aging, wrinkles or UV burns.

        So drinking honeybush tea regularly is an effective way to get these benefits ☕️

        You can also look out for creams, face wash, scrubs and other natural skincare products that use this as part of the ingredients!✨


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