Why Are Natural Clay Masks Now A Leading Cosmetic Product?

When it comes to skin care, there is such a dazzling array of products to choose from that it can be hard to know where to start. It seems that there is a product for every skin type, purpose, and fragrance preferences, and you could probably spend all day browsing slickly marketed cosmetic brand names.  


However, many commercial products have a daunting and opaque list of ingredients, and it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly what the active ingredients are and where they have been sourced. This can be off putting for people with sensitive or problem skin, and also for the increasing numbers of consumers who want eco-friendly products. 


In recent years, there has been a growing recognition that natural products such as cosmetic clays offer the same or better quality of care, without any of the drawbacks that synthetic products can have for our health and the environment. Indeed, natural clay has stood the test of time, and its use for cosmetic purposes can be traced back to ancient times.


The origins of clay masks

The use of clay as a cosmetic tool can be traced back to the ancient Egyptians. It is thought that the legendary beauty Queen Cleopatra used clay from the Dead Sea to make masks and maintain her complexion, because of the nourishing combination of minerals, algae, and sodium the sea clay contained. 


In ancient Greek and Roman societies, the natural healing powers of clay were used to rejuvenate the skin, and also treat rashes, wounds, burns and stings. In Asia, clay was used not only for skincare, but also to cleanse and condition hair and to detoxify the digestive system.  


On the American continent, bentonite and kaolin clay were used by native people to make poultices to treat wounds and bites, and draw out infections. This is because certain types of clay have naturally occuring ultra-absorbent properties, which draw out toxins and promote faster and more effective healing. 


The modern resurgence of cosmetic clays

The instinctive understanding of the healing and therapeutic powers of clay demonstrated by ancient civilizations is now underpinned by modern science. For example, research has shown that clay is naturally absorbent and effective at drawing out excess oil and impurities from the skin. 


This is why clay masks are often used to treat acne and blemishes. Clay also contains natural minerals that help to soothe inflamed skin, leaving it looking more even toned and softer and brighter.


Cosmetic clay products avoid or make very minimal use of artificial additives, which is better for people with sensitive skin who may find that conventional products cause reactions and irritations, leaving them with dry or red skin that looks in worse shape than before.


Natural clay products are biodegradable and free from harmful chemicals, so they can be an eco-friendly choice that will not damage the environment if it makes its way into natural waterways. 


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