Smearing deep black beauty products on your face or squeezing them onto your toothbrush? Granted, we were a bit more skeptical than usual at the beginning of this self test. Are we accustomed to white or clear creams because they’re associated with cleanliness and making what’s already beautiful even more so? But we stayed brave and got going, because the black products that we gathered contained very promising sounding ingredients.
This sponge made out of 100 percent natural konjac root is the best travelling companion. Small but fine, it fits perfectly into any cosmetic bag and has earned its place there honestly. It’s robust enough to remove debris and thoroughly clean, and delicate enough to not irritate the skin. Through added bamboo charcoal (rich in active coal) the Charcoal Konjac Sponge from Daily Concept is doubly effective. Because activated carbon acts like a sponge itself. The large surface area works like an absorbent and pulls impurities from the skin. In addition, the bamboo charcoal exfoliates and detoxifies. Moisten with water and move in a circular motion across the face. What remains is deeply cleansed and clarified skin.
The little pink pot misleadingly hides a grainy, black, powdery mass. Dipping into the pot containing Skin Delight Revitalizing Black Exfoliator from Sensilis takes some overcoming, but it’s worth it. With wood charcoal that pulls dirt and sebum from the pores cleaning to the deepest layers of the skin, the exfoliating material contains the small grains to remove dry flakey skin and vitamin C returns tightness and radiance to the skin. Used once or twice a week the peeling promises softer skin and a more even complexion. And have no fear: not a spot of grey remains, only a luminous skin. Here you can find the shops closest to you that carry Sensilis products.
JorgObé is facial care from Copenhagen, produced 100% in Denmark and works equally well for men and women. The small range consists of black and white face masks and a face cream. We tested The Original Black Peel Off Mask. With extracts of dragon’s blood, witch hazel and echinacea (an antibacterial and anti-inflammatory) the mask prevents blemishes and clogged pores. The oak tree coal also binds (as in the aforementioned sponge principle) to dirt and dead skin cells, which are withdrawn from the skin’s surface when the mask is removed. The mask is particularly suited for slightly oily and blemished skin, because it reduces the production of sebum and deep cleans. Free from parabens, mineral oils or silicones, it does the skin and conscience good. Here’s how to use it: Shake the tube well before use and apply a thin but covering layer on the T-zone (nose, forehead, chin). Wait about 30 minutes until everything is dry and gently pull the mask off.
This pitch-black bar soap Charcoal Grit Bar from Crux Supply Co. is not only for washing hands – it’s suitable for washing and peeling the entire body and belongs with you in the shower. Active carbon cleans and black walnut shell peels, coconut oil nourishes and cedarwood, clary sage and lime provide a warm, woody, lemony fresh scent. There’s another great charcoal soap from Herbivore Botanicals.
At first, black toothpaste to whiten teeth sounds about as useful as a deep fried Snickers against nausea. At closer look, however, the dark paste for oral hygiene makes sense. Because of the active carbon’s high capacity for absorption, discoloration and deposits are gently removed and teeth are kept permanently whitened. Curaprox White is Black Toothpaste doesn’t have abrasives and chemical bleaches. The toothpaste comes in a set with a matching black toothbrush (also with activated charcoal). Again: Trying the unknown is totally worth it! The black paste doesn’t darken, on the contrary, creates bright clean teeth.
Sortofcoal.com, the page from Dane Pernille Lembcke, deals exclusively with active carbon as an ingredient. Products such as the Binchotan stick for purer water, or Kuroshampoo can be purchased in the online shop.
Translation: Alicia Reuter
Originally from Hamburg, Julia Alfert moved to Berlin from Paris in 2010. After completing her studies in Art History and trying out different jobs, her path led her to Harper’s Bazaar, where she worked as Fashion & Beauty Assistant until mid 2015. While she’s harboured a love for all things beauty-related for as long as she can remember, her discovery of the written word is recent. When Julia isn’t busy trying out different creams, oils, and sprays she writes and styles for an assortment of magazines and websites.