How to Use Clay for Body Detox and Great Skin
I first heard about clay when I applied it to my skin as a face mask, but little did I know how many wonderful uses clay has. Clay’s healing properties have been known since ancient times, and it is still popular in alternative medicine today. According to wikipedia, clay is a general term including many combinations of one or more clay minerals with traces of metal oxides and organic matter. When we speak about healing clays, we talk about several types of clay that are great for body detox and skin care:
Types of Clay
1. Bentonite clay- bentonite clay usually forms from weathering of volcanic ash, most often in the presence of water. Bentonite clay has some antibacterial properties that help to combat acne and is a powerful detox agent.
2. Green clay – green clay is loaded with iron and magnesium which gives it its green color. It acts fast to absorb oils and toxins, and is suitable for oily skin.
3. White clay – also called kaolin. This is a very gentle clay, and is suitable for sensitive, dry and mature skin. It softens, exfoliates and purifies the skin. It has many benefits including antibacterial and detoxification properties. This type of clay can be used on a daily basis to help clean the skin and remove toxins and dirt from the pores and helps to regenerate cells in the skin.
4. Fuller earth – this is a clay-like earthy material that absorbs bacteria and toxins. It is used as a body or face mask and has a slightly gritty texture that is great for exfoliating. It also has antiseptic properties.
Uses of clay:
1. Taking clay orally to detox your body
Bentonite clay is a powerful detox agent. It is naturally absorbent and gentle on the body’s systems. It contains a certain mineral called montmorillonite, which is believed to be the primary component responsible for its health properties. It also contains magnesium and many other trace minerals that attract all sorts of toxins, including bacteria, heavy metals and pesticides. It enriches and balances the blood, absorbs radiation and neutralizes poisons in the intestinal tract.
This clay is very versatile, and is used to treat a large number of physical conditions, such as bloating and constipation, food allergies and food poisoning, colitis, viral infections and parasites, helps to detoxify the liver, cleanse the colon, strengthen the immune system, alkalize the body and helps to improve the bacterial balance in the digestive tract.
How to use bentonite – bentonite clay comes in a powder form. Mix 1 tsp of the clay powder into eight ounce glass of water and drink the mixture on an empty stomach and at least one hour before eating or taking other supplements or herbs. This is because you don’t want the clay to interfere with the absorption of beneficial nutrients in your food. A daily regime can be as long as three weeks; then take a break of at least a week. While bentonite considers to be safe for the body, you will need to consult with your doctor if you are taking any prescription medications or having high blood pressure or if you diagnosed with iron intolerance.
2. Applying clay on your skin
You can use clay externally as a poultice or by applying a paste of clay and water on any skin irritation like blemishes, insect bites, cuts, burns, and other skin irritations and common skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis. If you make a paste, leave it on until it dries and then wash off. To make a poultice, add water to the clay until you get a paste that holds together and doesn’t fall apart. Then place it on a clean dressing and place gently on the body. Allow time for the affected area to stop hurting. The clay will fall off naturally when it finished its job.
You can also use it as a face mask for smooth and healthy skin: make a paste of clay and water and apply to your face as a mask. Leave on for 20 minutes and wash off. Do this once or twice a week. You can also see a great recipe for cleansing homemade face scrub for blemished skin. It can also be used in a baby powder (see the recipe for herbal baby powder) which is very soothing when there is an infection or redness.
Another use of clay is as a body wrap in spa treatments to get glowing skin, remove the dead layer of skin and draw toxins from the skin. On a deeper level, clay wraps can relieve joint, rheumatic and arthritis pain.
3. Clay baths
Clay baths help to detox the body. See recipe for fantastic bath salt that also contains white clay. It will not only help in the detox process, but it will also soften and rejuvenate your skin.
If you want to find helpful information about detoxifying your body, have a look at my e-book The Detox Guide which will teach you how to cleanse and energize your body naturally and safely: