If you are inclined to problem skin, such acne or over oiliness, clay masks are a must-have. Not only do clay masks provide you with a deep pore cleanse, they’re fun and easy to use, and give you a sense of ‘spa’ and self-pampering in the comforts of your home.
Because clay is natural, it is suitable for most skin types and ages. In our past blog: “6 Jobs Your Skin Is Doing For You And Why You Should Protect It!”, we explain how the skin works like a sponge, and why it’s important to choose your face products selectively, sticking to natural products where possible.
The biggest misconception around the clay face mask is that you can apply one all over your face, have a glass of wine while you wait for it to dry to a hardened shell, and rinse. Clay is a powerful and magical natural resource that should be used correctly if you would like to attain its maximum effect on your skin.
You should never let a clay mask dry fully. In the diagram below, clay’s process of cleansing, detoxifying, and nourishing is explained.
How Do Clay Masks Work?
View further information on our ingredients: clays and botanicals.
There’s the damp phase where your skin drinks in the beneficial minerals from the skin.
Then you have the start of the dry phase, which exercises your capillaries and stimulates blood flow as the mask cools and contracts. At the same time the clay acts like a magnet to draw out deep-rooted impurities from your skin.
Next, it’s important to time the third and final phase of the clay mask right. When the clay starts to dry it draws out moisture from the surface of your skin, along with the impurities. Leaving the mask on too long, allowing it to crack and dry completely, will cause dehydration and irritation. Not only does skin then feel dry, tight, and sometimes itchy, but when you counteract it by slathering on extra face cream, you’re just smothering your freshly cleansed skin.
The best way to use a clay mask to receive the optimal benefits it has to offer, is to apply a thin layer evenly onto cleansed face and neck, avoiding eyes. Let it sit on your skin and do its work for 10 – 15 minutes, until slightly dry. If necessary, keep the mask moist by sprinkling extra water on your face as the clay is active when wet. When 10 -15 minutes have passed, rinse off the clay mask thoroughly, but gently with warm water.
How often should you use a clay mask? Dermatologists recommend a frequency of once to two times a week. Those who rush through the clay mask’s process, might find that they need to use clay face masks more frequently, whereas if it is done the right way you only need to use it about once or twice a week as recommended.
So the next time you use a clay mask, don’t wait for it to reach the flaky stage before you start rinsing. Do the touch test: When you start to see it drying (which usually means it gets lighter in colour) but it still feels a bit sticky, it’s time to wash it off—so it doesn’t suck the life out of your skin.
Skin Clays – Clay Face Masks To Try This Week
Delicately formulated for sensitive and mature skin, this smooth Rose Clay with its gentle toning action hydrates and firms your skin, restoring your youthful elasticity.
Sourced in South Africa, the Healing Bentonite Clay range has been specially formulated for acne and problem skin. Its deep cleansing action and high concentration of minerals, decongests and heals your skin, restoring your natural smoothness.