A green clay mask on the face, cucumber slices on the eyes, and a towel on the head – this is a classic image of a woman who takes great care of herself. Cosmetic clays are efficient and safe, but the great number varieties can be confusing. Let's untangle the clay mystery!Clays are essentially decomposed rocks. Over millions of years, erosion destroys mountains, turning them into heaps of silicate molecules with additions of iron, magnesium, and other elements – that is, clay. Clay can both absorb and adsorb – that is, both chemically pull other particles inside it and make them attach to its surface. Both are good for different types of skin: absorption works best with oily skin, while adsorption is better for those whose face is dry. Research shows that apart from cleansing, clay has an antibacterial effect, too. Let us examine the many varieties available on the market!
Choose your colour
- French Green – it owes its green colour to iron and magnesium. This may be the best one for absorbing excess oil from the skin, and it can also regulate the production of sebum (skin oil). It removes dead skin cells; be advised, however, that it has a serious drying effect, so it’s not suitable for dry skin.
- Moroccan Red – mined in the Atlas mountains, it takes its red colour from high iron contents. It does a great job absorbing grease and dirt and can detox and improve blood circulation. It is one of the traditional cosmetic secrets of Moroccan women.
- Cambrian Blue – this type of clay, called montmorillonite, can be used to treat acne and improve the appearance of oily skin. It is a powerful detoxifier, but too drying for sensitive skin.
- White Kaolinite – this is perhaps the most famous of clays, found in lots of cosmetics. In does not absorb but rather adsorbs, making it a perfect choice for dry skin. It gently removes impurities and exfoliates the skin (you can find even more types of clay here).