Bentonite Clay: Natural Cleansing Mask for Hair & Skin

It's that time of the month. It's time Bentonite clay treatment!
Bentonite clay can be found all over the world but the largest deposits lie in North America and the Italian mountains. The clay is comprised of deposits of volcanic ash and has been used by different communities, most notably the Aztec people....when they were around....for centuries. It contains important minerals including magnesium, calcium, potassium, etc, which are important for hair growth and skin rejuvenation.  Bentonite clay regulates the amount of sebum secreted from the scalp and skin, which is what makes it such a great cleanser and detoxifier. When applied to the hair and skin, the clay swells up like a sponge and attracts toxins into it.  Drawn by the electric charge of the clay, the toxins stick to it and wash off when the clay is washed off!

Bentonite clay is really popular in the natural hair community. When I first went natural and read about women buying "ancient healing clay" to clarify their hair, I was like "This is too much! I'll just buy some clarifying shampoo instead and call it a day." Then....I changed my mind actually after reading about the efficacy of this mask on skin. I hopped over to the Vitamin Shoppe and purchased some Bentonite clay. I've been hooked ever since! I do this treatment on my hair every 4-6 weeks, depending on how dirty my hair is.  And I do this treatment on my skin twice a month.

Some Benefits of Bentonite Clay:
  • increased curl definition for hair
  • increased shine for hair
  • anti-fungal, anti-microbial and anti-bacterial
  • clearer skin
How to make the Bentoinite Clay Mask:

What You'll need: 
Water/Water Bottle/Hair clips/Towel/Plastic cap
Bowl + non-metal spoon
Apple Cider Vinegar
Bentonite Clay
(Optional additional ingredients include: aloe vera juice for added softness and conditioner for added moisture)

1. Pour 1 cup of Benonite Clay into a bowl
2. Add 1/2 cup of warm water to mixture
3. Add 1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar
4. Mix, Mix, Mix until the mixture forms a pasty consistency
Hair Application:
1. Separate hair into 4 sections with clips
2. Spritz each section of hair with water
(Optional step: gently finger detangle with conditioner)
3. Apply Bentonite Clay paste from root to tip
*Avoid getting the paste on your scalp since it is difficult to get out.  Also avoid detangling with the clay since it is drying.
4. Put on a plastic cap and leave mixture on for 15-25 minutes
5. Rinse out and proceed to washing- I follow a bentonite hair mask with a deep conditioning mask to restore the moisture, then I proceed to shampooing and conditioning.

Bentonite clay makes my hair soft, curly, and shiny.  Consistent with the experience of other naturals, my hair usually shrinks up ALLOT. My almost shoulder-length curls shrink up to about chin length, but it's all good! Bentonite clay gives your hair a clean slate and a fresh start!

Facial Application:
1. Dampen face with warm water
2. Apply mixture evenly to face
3. Leave on for 5-10 minutes
4. Run hot water on a towel
5. Wipe mixture off
6. Rinse face with cool water to close your pores

Bentonite clay makes my skin nice and smoothe. It could be a little irritating and drying for me because I have really sensitive skin, but overall the pros definitely outweigh the cons! Once I rinse the mixture off, my skin looks a little pale (see picture below) but after I add some shea butter to my skin, I'm good to go!

See how I don't really apply it close to my scalp?
 I like to create a smoother liquidy paste for when I apply Bentonite clay to my face because it makes it easier to wash off!
Curl definition!
Curl Definition/shine/shrinkage! 

If you enjoyed this post, make sure to check out my popular henna post and my henna update post with PICTURES.

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Medical Disclaimer: Naika, the writer of this blog, is Naturopathic Doctor and Acupuncturist. Please do not take this as medical advice, without consulting your health care practitioner. Also remember, knowledge is power and your health is your wealth!