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Jul 07.21

African Paradise: Hand-picked ingredients that do a world of good

Posted In: Ethical Buying

If you’ve tried our newest African Paradise Body Conditioner, then you already know how luxurious and softening it makes your skin feel. But what you might not know is that what we put into that black pot is a variety of amazing ingredients that we’ve carefully handpicked from a variety of our SLush Fund projects in Africa, including Ghana and Kenya. It’s a whole lot of good in one pot – and not just for your skin.

Laikipia Permaculture Center

Photo credit: Cadi Roberts


Aloe from Kenya

Used for centuries for medicinal and beauty purposes, aloe is one of the oldest skin remedies out there. We pack African Paradise with loads of this light, soothing gel to help leave skin cool and hydrated every time you use it. It’s even said that Cleopatra herself made it part of her beauty regimen.

We work with the Laikipia Permaculture Center, a women’s co-op in Kenya to source aloe. This partnership allows us to offer guidance and support so the women in the community can successfully green the desert earth with nutritious plants, including aloe, which helps to improve both the land and their diets. We buy full, fresh aloe leaves and send them directly to our factory where the gel is extracted and added to African Paradise and other LUSH products.

Ojoba Women's Cooperative

Photo credit: Karen Wolverton

Shea butter from Ghana

Rich and moisturizing, shea butter is no stranger to cosmetics. Used for centuries in Africa and other parts of the world, it’s a main ingredient in a variety of lotions, massage bars and salves. It’s high in oleic acid and lipids, and has so much in common with our own sebum that we use it in African Paradise to ensure that it’s easily absorbed by the skin to keep it incredibly soft and moisturized.

Shea butter is made by roasting, grounding and processing nuts that have been harvested from the karite tree. We buy our shea nut butters from the Ojoba Women's Cooperative in Ghana, where everything is handmade. The cooperative works to provide the women with a place where they can generate an income, build a stronger economic foundation, create a sustainable environment for their families, and ultimately empower them to be a vehicle for change in their community.

Moringa leaves and seeds

Photo credit: Cadi Roberts

Moringa oil from Ghana

To create a Body Conditioner that would hydrate and brighten the skin, we add anti-oxidant rich moringa oil to African Paradise. Moringa oil comes from the seeds of the Moringa oleifera tree, also known as the “miracle plant”. Almost every part of it – the leaves, fruit, stems and roots – are all used in various household and nutrition products.

To source this special ingredient, we work closely with the Ghana Permaculture Network and its Director, Paul Yeboah. With the goal of breathing new life into degenerated land, it’s here that the moringa tree and other plants are nurtured and grown with great success. We buy the moringa oil that’s made here and in turn, that money goes back into the Ghana Permaculture Institute, which works to educate the community and helps to regenerate agriculture in Ghana.