Ever thought that covering your face with a black, icky looking paste will actually leave your skin looking and feeling clearer? Not sure what we are talking about? Charcoal, of course! Activated charcoal has been in use medically for ages but lately has been all the rage in skincare.

So what is activated charcoal and exactly how does it benefit your skin? Let’s dig a little deeper...

What is activated charcoal and how is it different from regular charcoal?
 

What is activated charcoal and how is it different from regular charcoal?

Activated charcoal is what you get when regular charcoal is heated to very high temperatures so it develops a lot of small pores on its surface. Coconut shells and saw dust is first burnt to get charcoal, and then very hot steam is passed through this to ‘activate’ the charcoal. The pores help draw out and bind impurities from the skin.

What are the benefits of using activated charcoal?
 

What are the benefits of using activated charcoal?

  • Helps clean out pores – activated charcoal acts as a sponge which absorbs impurities from deep within the pores
  • Helps balance oily skin – activated charcoal also absorbs any excess oil secretion and leaves your skin feeling lighter
  • Helps treat acne – you can use a paste made of activated charcoal as a spot treatment for your acne. A face scrub also might help by acting as a gentle exfoliant to your skin
  • Helps deep cleanse your scalp – a shampoo made with charcoal will help detox and cleanse your scalp by drawing out the impurities and oils, which is then rinsed away
  • Helps fade marks and scars – because of the slightly gritty texture of the charcoal; any face scrub made with it gently exfoliates while also deep cleansing the skin. This removes dead skin cells and reveals newer skin underneath

How can activated charcoal be used?
 

How can activated charcoal be used?

Activated charcoal is being used in everything! From toothpaste, shampoo, soap, face washes and scrubs to even lemonade (yes, it’s a thing and it’s delicious!), charcoal has seen a wide-spread rise in popularity.