In a world full of serums, toners, exfoliators, lotions and lasers, taking care of your skin can feel confusing and complicated. But it doesn’t have to be.
Simple skin care works, as long as you choose products that do double-duty, triple-duty or—dare I say—quintuple-duty for your skin. If you’re looking for that unicorn skincare product that’s simple, natural and affordable but still beautifies your skin in multiple ways, bentonite clay may be the thing for you.
People have been applying clay to their skin for centuries. The ancient Egyptians did it. The Aztecs did it. And people still do it today. For a beauty practice to have that kind of staying power, there must be something to it, right? Scientific evidence and anecdotal evidence shows there definitely is.
In fact, there’s plenty of evidence that bentonite clay can help your skin in at least five feel good (and look good) ways:
1. It sucks up sebum.
Sebum is an oily substance that your body produces to keep your skin and hair moisturized . But sometimes your body produces too much sebum, and that causes clogged pores and acne . Studies show, though, that bentonite clay can soak up sebum [2;3]. That may be why so many acne-sufferers say bentonite clay masks are literal skin (and life) savers.
2. It sends your skin into healing mode.
It may sound far-fetched that a bit of clay can help skin heal. Isn’t that the immune system’s job? But studies show clay can interact with the immune system to encourage skin regeneration and healing [4;5]. In fact, it’s even been shown to support skin healing for people dealing with skin wounds and ulcers . But the healing capabilities of bentonite clay don’t just come in handy when you have a major wound. Heightened healing and regeneration helps when you’re dealing with acne, acne scars and skin aging too.
3. It battles bacterial bad guys.
Just like you have a microbiome (community of bacteria and other microorganisms) in your gut, you have a microbiome on your skin too . Unfortunately, when certain strains of skin bacteria get out of hand, they can cause acne . But bentonite clay has a proven ability to fight bacteria . That may explain why so many people rely on it to knock out breakouts.
4. It soothes that insatiable itch.
Irritated, itchy skin can have a lot of causes—poison ivy, allergic reactions, eczema. But bentonite clay can support healthier skin no matter what the culprit. Studies show it can ease dermatitis (red, itchy, inflamed skin) caused by poison ivy, poison oak, eczema, allergic skin reactions and diaper rash, among other things .
5. It exfoliates.
Exfoliating your skin has a lot of benefits. It gets rid of dead skin cells, brightens your complexion and helps keep pores clean [8; 9]. But people are getting pretty aggressive with the exfoliators nowadays. Chemical peels and harsh at-home scrubs may work for some people. But they can also damage your skin. So, if you’d prefer something gentler, try bentonite clay. Bentonite clay has the texture of a fine powder, so it can provide less intrusive exfoliation that still has a bunch of benefits.
If you’re new to the world of bentonite clay skin and beauty treatments, you may be wondering how to use clay on your skin. The answer’s simple: Just add water. By hydrating your clay, you make a paste you can apply to your face or other areas of skin that need a little TLC. You can also try our facial mud, which is pre-hydrated clay that’s less messy and more portable.