Sankofa Premium Organic Deodorant & Moskito Repellents now available...
Growing up in Ghana, we kids in the family usually cleaned our teeth with boodobaa, a natural fibrous paste that we’d prepare by pounding bamboo or coconut charcoal and plantain stalk on our Mama’s traditional, cooking stone. Unbeknownst to us, the plantain stalk contained calcium, phosphorus, and other nutrients that reduced our plaque acid levels and kept our enamel and teeth strong. No wonder we could crack and chew bones like dogs!
Unfortunately, my underarms weren’t doing as great; they stunk so badly - that was what Dada, my father, always told me anyway (oh and guess what: it seems I’ve managed to pass my ‘smelly genes’ onto my poor, little boy . This was disconcerting given that I was required to sell things on the street to supplement the family’s income which involved carrying them on my head with my arms up, exposing my underarms. I couldn’t afford deodorants so I tried my luck with whatever I had and that was the boodobaa. Once I started using it, Dada stopped calling me a ‘stink bug’ so I knew it was working. It was only in recent times that I learned charcoal has deodorizing properties.
I changed from boodobaa to antiperspirants when I went to college. At one point, I was using a different antiperspirant each week day. Given the rate at which I was using antiperspirants, I wasn’t surprised that, later on, I developed strong sensitivity to them, including contact dermatitis.
Wifey and I quit using antiperspirants and began searching for a safer alternative which felt like revisiting the boodobaa days. Given that we weren’t in Ghana and couldn’t get boodobaa, we decided we’d make the most of the natural things in Australia. This notion of revisiting the past - which is symbolized traditionally by Sankofa, a mythical bird reaching backward to pick up an egg from its back - is very vital to the story. For this reason, we not only incorporated Sankofa into the business logo but we adopted it as the brand name. We also incorporated boodobaa raw materials into the logo.
Our quest for natural deodorants didn’t go well. First, they were generally ineffective, or needed reapplication several times a day. Second, those which were slightly effective were over-priced. Third, they mainly came as a paste, which we found not just unhygienic and a hassle to apply with our fingers and into hairy underarms, but embarrassing to apply in public. Finally, and more importantly, many contained the same dangerous chemicals we were avoiding.
We began researching and ultimately came up with a natural spray after nearly two years of trying, which the family, including our son and daughter, could safely use. To share the joy of our discovery, we produced a few and handed them out. We were encouraged by the suggestions to produce them for sale because of its supreme effectiveness. And here we are: We listened! With your involvement, we can sustain this venture into the future for your benefit and for the benefit of others.
If you’ve had the chance to read the storyline, you’d be aware that the logo incorporates a plantain crop, bamboo and coconut trees, and a Ghanaian, traditional Sankofa symbol. These elements have conceptual and meaningful significance for the business.
Growing up in Ghana, we kids in the family usually cleaned our teeth with boodobaa, a natural fibrous paste that we’d prepare by pounding bamboo or coconut charcoal and plantain (like banana) stalk on our Mama’s traditional, cooking stone. Even though my teeth were fantastic, my underarms smelled horribly. And my father would constantly embarrass me by drawing attention to those putrid underarms. Given that I didn’t have access to conventional deodorants, I decided to try my luck with whatever was available, one of them being the boodobaa, which surprisingly worked well.
I changed from boodobaa to antiperspirants when I went to college. At one point, I was using a different antiperspirant each week day. Given the rate at which I was using antiperspirants, I wasn’t surprised that, later on, I developed strong sensitivity to them, including contact dermatitis. Wifey and I quit using antiperspirants and began searching for a safer alternative which felt like revisiting the boodobaa days.
As explained in the storyline, our quest for natural deodorants didn’t go well so we decided to revisit the past and make our own natural deodorant spray. In the Akan Twi dialect, the concept of revisiting the past is called Sankofa which comes from san (return), ko (go), and fa (take). Sankofa therefore translates literally as ‘return and go and take it.’ It’s traditionally represented by a mythical bird, usually with its feet planted firmly forward, reaching backward to pick up an egg - a revered Akan cultural artifact - from its back. Sankofa symbolizes the Akan people’s strong quest for valuable knowledge; more importantly, retrieving knowledge from the past and bringing it into the present for the betterment of humanity.
In the context of this business, Sankofa conceptualizes the rejection of using antiperspirants and mainstream personal care products in favor of safe, traditional, and natural ones as a consequence of lessons and knowledge garnered from the past.
Very effective Moskito repellents & Sankofa Premium Organic deo also available. Check 'em out at the shop...
What are they saying about the Moskito repellents, Sankofa Premium & Sankofa Forest deodorants, etc.?
My little daughter has sensitive skin so I've been cautious about what I put on her. She hasn't reacted to the Moskito Foe repellent I bought. We haven't had mosquito biting us since we started using it. We like the smell too. - Veronica, WA
Sankofa has been really good. Brett [my husband] has also been using it with great results - Vanessa, WA
I am extremely happy with your product, Sankofa Deodorant. And as I am still using the original bottle I got in January - two and a half months ago - it is very long lasting. I use it everyday and I have to say I shall continue using your product and definitely intend to reorder when it is all gone. Well done Kwasi, your product is a winner as far as I am concerned. - Val, NSW
I have been using Sankofa forest over the past year. I absolutely love the smell and also find it very effective in fighting body odour. Not only do I use it as an underarm deodorant, I have also used it effectively on my 4-year old daughter's bad foot odour. It works wonders! The best part is that it is natural and it doesn’t come off on my shirts. - Sylvie, WA
I love Sankofa… I told Sonje today that I think it’s the best. Good job. - Sarah, NSW
The product is good and effective. - Robert, WA
It’s good, Kwasi, well done! - Nicole, NSW
Sonje, I meant to tell you that I’ve been using Kwasi’s deodorant since you gave it to me and I’m loving it. It was brilliant in Brisbane and I was sweating tonnes. I didn’t have to reapply once. I will write a review when the website is up and running. - Natalie, UK
Thank you Kwasi for my Sankofa Forest Deodorant, it’s a great product, I love it - Naomi, Qld
I love the deodorant, it smells amazing. I’ll write up my FB posts on Kwasi’s deodorant. Love it and the smell is amazing - Michelle, WA
- I bought extra bottles to pass on to my friends... it is perfect :) . Keep up your amazing work... - Mandy, WA
The Moskito Foe repellent really works, and I absolutely love the smell. - Lisa, WA
Sankofa works. Fantastic deodorant, even well enough to skip a day - Kieran, WA
I have always used the one deodorant brand for years - it was a supermarket brand and seemed to be the only one that mostly worked. I had tried heaps! But over the last little while, I noticed they had changed the product (and it had gotten cheaper, strangely), but it wasn't working as well. I then started looking into other options, and had purchased 2 different deodorants in the $13 - $15 - range, they just didn't work so well either. I was just about to try a very expensive, more natural option, after reading a review. But then I found your product! I have only used it now for a few days - but it works! And what’s even better, it is healthier and safer than any other product I've used before. And I love buying local, Australian made products. Thank you! Very proud of you and the new business. - Julia, NSW
I love your products, thank you for creating them. - Joanne, Vic
I can vouch for this, it’s amazing! I finally got around to buying some and am most impressed. Well done! - Jennifer, WA
Have tried Unfriend Mosquito repellent. Smells great...- Lisa, WA
Hello Just to let you know I have been using the deodorant and find it is very effective and I only need to use a little of the spray for it to work. The smell is lovely and the size of the bottle very handy for traveling! I've passed it on to a couple of friends who have been interested in trying the product. I would be interested if you had any plans to develop the range further, such as a gentle face cream especially one that is suitable for dry, red and inflamed skin conditions? Many thanks. - Jane, WA
I’m very fussy so if I would buy it must be good. It’s fantastic! Love it, love it, love it. It’s a really good product. I strongly believe if you get the right bottle you’ll have a very good natural deodorant. It’s a really good product. Good luck - Isaias, WA
I have very sensitive skin and am always on the lookout for more natural products. I have been using Sankofa deodorant for about 2 months now and love it. It has a gentle, pleasant scent and it's just as gentle on my skin - which is rare. Plus-it works, and it doesn’t harm animals or the environment. I am delighted with the product.Thank you Dr. Kwasi! - Helen, WA
Great product, by far the best natural product I have used and smells fantastic. As someone who naturally sweats a lot, I was amazed at how well it worked. Need to order some more. - Brendan, Vic
I did find your deodorant very effective for odour control and liked the clean feeling of the spray (I have tried other natural deodorants which were a paste/ cream but felt oily). The only negative for me was I found the scent a bit strong (I usually wear more floral or fruity perfumes) - Aurora, WA
The product, the smell, is worth every scent, Kwasi. Keep the $10 change. - Aranda, WA
Hey Kwasi, after 3-4 pumps into the armpit, it definitely is enough coverage. Sankofa deodorant has been good for everyday use. Good news, bro! I did my normal workout and cardio and I smell fine. 2 thumbs up. I’m really surprised coz when I finish weights, I normally have to top up with more Lynx before I hit the treadmill!!! - Andrew, WA
I purchased a bottle of your deodorant and have been very happy with the results. I will be promoting your product to my friends, as I prefer to see local businesses succeed with good products. - Andrew, WA
Thank you so much for the deodorant. I still love it! I get a small irritation but I actually think it is something else, possibly hair related, or a mixture of both since wearing T-shirts instead of singlets over the last few days seems to be helping…I do really like using it. - Amelia, WA
The spray…I just love it. MWA! - Ali, WA
Hey mate, I really like your product. - Vince, WA
Dr. Kwasi’ O.’s Sankofa forest deodorant spray is a fantastic natural local product. I did notice that I seemed to be using more than expected only to find out that my teenage son had taken a liking to it and has been using it as well. Well done Kwasi on a fantastic product. - Jarrod, WA