Once upon a time – 81 million years ago, to be approximate – the Elkhorn Mountains formed. There was a lot of volcanic activity in these mountains, which sprinkled ash far and wide – as far away as Fort Benton, Montana. When people began harvesting the clay made from that ash, they noticed that Fort Benton had the largest deposit of that particular form of clay, so they named it for the town – Bentonite Clay. And they all lived muddily ever after.
Thanks for sitting through that history lesson. Now that you know where it comes from and what it’s made from, let’s talk a little bit about why you should care about Bentonite Clay.
What does it do?
Bentonite Clay is predominantly used to remove toxins. When it comes in contact with a liquid, it binds with any toxins it finds. Then, the toxins are washed away with the clay. This makes it a popular ingredient in face masks, toothpastes, etc. You can also mix a little in your bath water for an all-over deep clean.
It helps fight acne, eczema, can improve oral health, and kills bacteria and viruses. Who knew that the same stuff that destroyed Pompeii could do so many wonderful things, too?
How to use Bentonite Clay
As I mentioned above, Bentonite Clay is used in a variety of personal care products. That means you can add it to your products, too! Use it in toothpaste, shampoos, bath products, as an acne spot-treatment, or as a mask.
Masks seem to be the most popular way to use Bentonite. Our wonderful clay from The Soap Works suggests mixing the powder with 2 parts apple cider vinegar or water. If your skin is sensitive, start with water. No matter what your skin is like, always do a patch test to see how your skin reacts. Apply the mask over your face, and leave for 20 minutes, or until the clay dries (but before it cracks). Wash off with warm water.
You may notice some slight redness afterwards, but should fade in about 30 minutes. Some people will immediately notice an improvement in their skin. For others, the clay draws out deeper-seated toxins, and they notice more breakouts for the first little while. These should clear up after a week or two of use, as the underlying gunk works its way out.
Have you used Bentonite Clay before? What’s your favourite way to use it?