Toothpaste, deodorant, face masks, shampoo and even juices: it seems like activated charcoal is everywhere!
The charcoal used in these products is made of carbon-rich matter such as wood, coconut shells or peat that is burned to obtain the black porous powder that we call activated charcoal.
The Powers of Activated Charcoal
Because activated charcoal is so porous, it has an excellent absorption capacity; it acts like a magnet or a sponge, whether it be used to lift impurities from the skin or to neutralize bad smells.
Activated charcoal can be a great ingredient to incorporate into your beauty routine if you have oily or acne-prone skin! But it has many other uses…
The detoxifying and absorbent properties of charcoal make it a key ingredient in haircare products, especially dry shampoo, as it lifts oil from your hair and eliminates odours.
IGK’s First Class Charcoal Detox Dry Shampoo is amazing to space out your washes and keep your hair feeling fresh after a workout.
Charcoal has amazing purifying properties when used in combination with tea tree oil. Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Tea Tree Scalp Treatment is a game-changer if you are suffering from dandruff as its ingredients include both, in addition to biotin to support hair growth as well as witch hazel to manage oil production. It uses Binchotan charcoal, which is derived from a Japanese oak of the same name and has a higher carbon content, making it the crème de la crème of charcoals and the key to removing buildup on your scalp.
Activated charcoal is used in skincare, particularly facial products, to absorb impurities such as dirt, environmental toxins or too much sebum. It can be as efficient as chemicals to deal with acne and blackheads, which is great if you’re looking to make the switch to green cosmetics.
Exuviance Detox Mud Mask has Japanese Binchoatan charcoal as its magic ingredient; mixed with french clay and neoglucosamine, this is a great mask to use once or twice a week to deep cleanse and decongest your skin.
Shea Moisture African Bamboo Charcoal Detoxifying Micellar Water with Aloe is amazing for the skin. This refreshing micellar water provides a rinse-free cleanse, gently attracting and removing dirt, impurities and makeup. Clarifying african black soap plus detoxifying bamboo charcoal help to balance blemish-prone skin and improve its appearance.
When used in makeup products, activated charcoal can help smooth out and mattify your skin. This Blackdrop Charcoal Brightening Primer by Smith & Cult uses bamboo charcoal powder to absorb excess oil on the skin, giving you a great base on which to apply your foundation and concealer. What I love about this primer is that it works well with all skin tones; the primer becomes invisible once blotted onto the skin.
Using activated charcoal may help to get rid of surface stains on your teeth, such as the ones that you get from drinking too much wine or coffee. It’s an interesting all-natural alternative to other chemical teeth whitening products but can be messy to use on its own. That’s why I like Cali White Activated Charcoal & Organic Coconut Oil Teeth Whitening Toothpaste. It combines the powers of baking soda, activated charcoal and coconut oil to remove plaque and doesn’t taste too bad thanks to the peppermint oil!
Activated charcoal lemonade is all the rage in Hollywood; if you want the same benefits without actually having to drink it, supplements are handy. Many people claim that it helps them with bloating and digestion, as it soaks up the toxins from your stomach.
These high-potency, vegan Organic Activated Charcoal Capsules by NaturaLife Labs contain activated charcoal that is derived from coconut shells.
Note that you should always check with your doctor before adding new supplements to your diet, especially if you are taking any medication.
This valuable information on charcoal wellness and beauty products was included in Uploader’s September Issue in my Beauty Scope column! So, proud to be a part of this. To order your own copy, please click here.