If you spend any time at all perusing beauty tips and tricks on the internet, you may have noticed that charcoal has taken the facial treatment world by storm. Activated charcoal, to be exact – carbon which has been treated so that it has more surface area to adsorb (bind with) toxins and impurities.
So what does all this scientific talk mean for your acne, blackheads, and crepey skin? The great news is that it means a non-irritating, effective way to brighten, refresh, and cleanse your skin. The charcoal binds to all that nasty stuff that builds up on your skin, makes your pores look huge, and gives your face an oily appearance.
Why Use Charcoal Masks?
If you’ve seen the pictures and videos of women using a charcoal mask, you might be put off by its pitch black, tarry look. Don’t worry though —I promise you, when you’re all done and remove the mask you’ll find that not only does it not leave any residue, but it gives your skin a soft, supple, clean feel that will amaze you.
In addition to smoothing and toning your skin and minimizing your pores, charcoal masks are totally safe. The substance itself is inert – that means you don’t have to worry about any unpleasant results like inflammation or other allergic reactions when you use activated charcoal as a mask. That’s a big deal if you have sensitive skin and are always a little apprehensive about trying a new facial care or anti-aging product!
Different Types of Charcoal Masks
If you’ve been paying attention to this unique beauty care trend, you know that there are different kinds of facial masks made with activated charcoal. There are two main versions, both of which are effective if you want to clear your skin up and look younger:
• Charcoal and Clay: When certain types of clay — such as bentonite — are added to charcoal, the result is a treatment which absorbs oil as well as clears up impurities and buildup that dulls and ages skin. Choose a product like L'oreal Pure-Clay Mask or make your own!
For the DIY version eyeball the following - bentonite clay, charcoal powder, a little water and a drop or two of rosehip or any other essential oil. For one treatment, you most likely will need only a teaspoon or two of the charcoal and bentonite. Stir till you get a thick consistency.
If you choose this option, you apply the mask, wait 15 – 30 minutes, and then wash it off.
• Peel-off charcoal masks: This is the type you want if you’re looking to really get in there and pull out all those unsightly blackheads. Just as the name suggests, you apply the product, wait for it to dry, then peel it off and revel in the results! Try out the Boscia Luminizing Black Mask from Sephora, or mix up your own recipe.
Beauty trends have been shifting to more natural solutions for several years now, making the charcoal mask craze no surprise. It’s simple, effective, and is a great addition to any anti-aging routine!