Around 200 million years in the making clay comes in a variety of colours, which vary according to its mineral content. A good quality Clay has high absorptive properties and a high cation exchange or drawing power, it has a very fine, velveteen feel and is odourless and non-staining. While it contains a wide variety of trace minerals, these minerals are not absorbed from applying clay to the body. High bonding between these minerals prevents absorption. It is however one of the most effective natural cleansing and purifying agents available.
The Egyptians used it to preserve their famous mummies. The ancient Greeks and Romans used it to for a variety of applications in daily life. The great German Naturopaths of the last century hailed clay as one of nature’s great gifts.
1. Clay unclogs the skin pores and shrinks them
Whether you have oily skin or not, your pores will undoubtedly become clogged at some point. Shrinking the size of your pores can help tremendously with keeping your face clean and blemishes as bay. Make a mask from clay using enough water and clay to make a paste along with a little lime juice. Apply to your face and neck and leave it on for about thirty minutes. You will feel your face tighten slightly as the mask dries. Rinse with warm tap water and pat dry with a clean towel. Repeat this twice a week to reduce the size of your pores and leave your skin feeling vital and fresh.
2. Clay helps control the overproduction of sebum
Too much oil on the skin, abnormal shedding of dead skin cells and excess bacteria generally results in acne. You may also be prone to outbreaks if you take certain medication, produce too much sebum (a natural oil) or have a family history of acne. Blackheads or whiteheads are produced due to an excess of sebum, which cause blocks within the hair follicles on the skin. Oily skin with too much sebum encourages the production of bacteria which irritates the skin. This can result in acne.
To keep your skin soft, supple and blemish-free, use a dab of clay mixed with water directly on blemishes. Leave on overnight and repeat until blemish is gone.
3. Clay draws out the toxins from the skin
Natural clay has a very strong negative electrical charge. Since many toxins have a positive charge, the clay bonds to them. When it comes in contact with a toxin, heavy metal, chemical, or other impurity, the clay will gobble up the toxin and release its minerals for the body to use. In addition, Bentonite clay also pulls hydrogen from cells, allowing room for oxygen. This helps with circulation, and overall skin tone and health.
4. Clay makes skin softer
Clay is loaded with silica, a trace mineral that strengthens connective tissue including muscles, tendons, ligaments, cartilage and bone. In addition, it makes your skin super soft. Silica is the most abundant mineral in the earth’s crust and is the name for the chemical compound silicon dioxide. Glass, quartz, and sand are all comprised of oxygen and silicon. Using clay on your skin means you reap all of its benefits as it is readily absorbed.
5. Clay gives a definite glow to your face
Clay conditions and nourishes one’s skin by removing the dead cells and also extracting the extra oils and impurities from the surface of the skin. For a “glow” you should apply the clay mask regularly.
Be sure to clean your face with water first and then apply the mixture of clay and water and a few drops of tea tree essential oil, to the face. Keep the mask for five minutes and rinse with lukewarm water. The aftermath of this is an instant glow on the face. Many use the mask just a few times a week or once a week and have great results.