The Affordable Natural Beauty Brand You Need On Your Shelf
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There’s nothing we love more than discovering a new brand that’s budget-friendly, packed with natural, nourishing ingredients, and delivers on ALL of its promises. This was the case when we tried Alaffia, a skin and hair care brand that uses ethnically sourced and traditionally crafted ingredients from West Africa. Not only does the clean beauty brand honor and celebrate African beauty but it also gives back to the community it celebrates. As soon as we heard the brand story and tried the products, we fell in love. Here’s everything you need to know.
The Brand Story
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Brand founder Olowo-n’djo grew up in Togo, West Africa, and was inspired by the rich cultural and iconic beauty heritage of his home to create Alaffia, which means a state of peace, health, and well-being. The products are formulated with locally-sourced, nourishing ingredients, including unrefined shea butter, virgin coconut oil, and African black soap, all of which are sourced by local farmers.
Not only are the ingredients ethically sourced but a portion of Alaffia sales is reinvested back into communities in Togo, West Africa, allowing for a more sustainable future. And it doesn’t stop there: Alaffia’s non-profit partner, GACE, also known as The Alaffia Foundation, focuses on empowering African communities by advancing fair trade of indigenous resources, education, sustainable living, and gender equality.
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Alaffia’s facial cleanser contains balancing and skin brightening turmeric, protective shea, and moringa to gently cleanse and clarify the skin. We love it as it removes impurities, makeup, and dirt without stripping our skin or leaving it feeling tight like other cleansers can.
Finding a toner for sensitive skin can be difficult but this gentle toning mist is the real deal. Enriched with soothing coconut, nourishing reishi, and relaxing rose hydrosol, it rebalances and tones your skin in one quick spritz. Use it after you’ve cleansed or throughout the day when your skin needs an extra hit of hydration.
This lightweight yet rich leave-in conditioner is formulated with unrefined shea butter, chamomile, and yarrow extract to hydrate hair strands while improving their natural elasticity for bouncy, defined curls. The intense moisture will also help smooth cuticles, detangle, and reduce frizz. Plus, it’s free of sulfates, parabens, phthalates, silicones, mineral oil, artificial color and synthetic fragrance.
Curl Defining Gel, $12
If you’re looking for a formula to hold your curls, look no further. This gel, which is enriched with castor oil, fair trade coconut oil, aloe vera, comfrey, and arnica, will add definition to your curls without leaving a greasy or crunchy residue. Instead, it’ll add a glossy shine to your curls and provide the ideal amount of slip for finger styling, twist-outs, and braids. It also smells amazing!
This whipped moisturizing butter will instantly soothe and replenish even the driest skin. Shea butter is one of the richest, most restorative ingredients you’ll find and it’s been paired with mega-hydrator, coconut oil. Be sure to warm up the formula in your hands before, as it’s very rich. And, despite the fact that it’s unscented, the coconut lends a subtle and delicious fragrance.
As soon as we tried the Everyday Shea Body Wash Vanilla Mint, $15, we fell in love with the scent. The mint scent is invigorating and energizing, and pairs beautifully with the warm vanilla notes. Formulated with shea butter and coconut oil, it also feels super luxurious on your skin, leaving it feeling plump, soft, and clean.
This soap is likened to the home remedies of Togolese mothers. The centuries-old recipe, which involves curing the soap in the sun for six weeks, is enriched with unrefined shea butter and orangutan-safe West African palm oil (grown and harvested by small-scale farmers in the Maritime region of Togo) to clean, clarify and soften your skin like no other. The sulfate-free soap is also suitable for all skin types and is scented with salt stone water, which is a warm blend of lemon, lime, and western red cedar oil.
Thanks to wearing masks 24/7, our lips are constantly dry and chapped. However, after using this lip balm for just three days, our lips felt nourished, soft and plump again. The four-ingredient balm is enriched with coconut oil and cocoa butter, which are both packed with fatty acids and omegas that’ll nourish the lips, all the while ensuring it tastes great.
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Disclaimer: Every product we review has been independently selected and tested without bias by our editorial team. We never take payment to review products, however, some brands allow affiliate links, so we may earn a commission if you purchase a product by clicking on one of our links.