What is clay?
Since the dawn of time, clay has played a key role in the development of various civilizations. It has been used in countless important ways such as to make mortar, tiles, ceramics, and porcelain. Industrially, it is used to filter, deodorize, and mold.
Clay is also used in spas around the world as an essential ingredient in natural body care products.
There are approximately 1,500 types of clay, but in this article we will focus on the seven clays most commonly used for cosmetics and skin care. After reading this article, you’ll be able to choose the clay best suited to your needs and skin type and know how best to use it.
How is clay formed?
Clay is a loose, earthy material that forms as a result of the erosion of rocks. Most particles are created by the disintegration of silicate rocks such as granite (mica and feldspar). Most clay is found within a few meters of the earth’s surface. In fact, feldspars are the most common minerals in the world, making up nearly 60% of the earth’s crust.
Clay is dried in the sun and crushed; then iron particles are extracted with a magnetic force. The resulting powder is then sufficiently pure to be used in body care products.
Clay is a natural source loaded in various proportions with minerals and trace elements such as silica, silicate, aluminum, magnesium, calcium, iron, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, copper, zinc, selenium, cobalt, manganese, and lime.
What are the cosmetic properties of clay?
Depending on their place of origin and mineral and trace element content, clays possess the following properties to different degrees. While they are all different, they share properties such as these:
- Absorption: ability to act like a sponge, absorbing particles
- Adsorption: ability to adhere particles to a surface
- Mildly exfoliating
How to use clay?
We’re all familiar with the benefits of clay masks and body wraps. If you haven’t already done so, now’s the time to try one of our mask recipes! But first, let’s take a look at the many ways you can use clay:
- Hair mask for oily hair to absorb excess oil (sebum)
- Make-up: clay acts to cover and absorb in powder bases for foundation, blush, and eye shadow
- Cold process soap: clay makes soap foamier and creamier; moreover, depending on the clay used, it adds natural colour to the soap. Add about 1 tablespoon per 1000 g. of base oil
- Cleaning products: clay is found in scrubbing creams and is also excellent for removing oil spots from fabric or clothing and eliminating odours.
- Body and shoe powder
- Purifying cream, gel, and lotion
- Clay bath
- Dry shampoo
Homemade recipes with clay
Was this post helpful to you? What is your favorite clay? How do you use it?