Activated charcoal in skincare is all the rage. But can it really help your skin?
While common charcoal consists of peat, coal, wood, coconut shell and petroleum, activated charcoal is created by heating common charcoal at high temperature in the presence of a gas. The high temperatures change its internal structure, reducing the size of its pores and increasing its surface area, resulting in a form of charcoal that is more porous than usual.
The charcoal’s porous texture has a negative electrical charge that causes it to attract positively charged molecules, such as toxins and gases. And as your body does not absorb activated charcoal, it can carry the toxins attached to its surface out of your body.
Activated charcoal works by “trapping” chemicals and preventing their absorption and can help draw micro particles, such as dirt, dust, chemicals, toxins, and bacteria, to the surface of the skin, thereby making it easier to remove them.
Which is why we are bringing to you three benefits that your skin can receive when you make activated charcoal a part of your skincare regime:
1. Activated charcoal can treat acne
Acne is caused by a build-up of dead skin cells and oil, and that clogs your skin pores, resulting in breakouts. Activated charcoal may help by removing bacteria and other impurities from your pores, and provides exfoliation. Charcoal is inert, hence, you can manage and treat your acne, without running the risk of facing allergic reactions or irritating sensitive skin.
Also, read: 3 reasons why charcoal is a godsend for all you oily-skinned peeps out there
2. It can cleanse your skin
Activated charcoal helps to remove dead skin cells as well as in the absorption of excess oil from your skin, leaving it smooth and supple. Activated charcoal, when used in a face mask, helps bind the oil and dirt in your pores, and pulls them out, which clears your pores and makes them look smaller. Hence, the cleared pores will help remove impurities, blackheads and blemishes, giving you an evenly toned and radiant skin.
3. It heals wounds and infections
Activated charcoal can produce an antibacterial effect by absorbing harmful microbes from wounds. Additionally, the anti-inflammatory properties of activated charcoal help bring down swelling, and decrease the pain caused by wounds. Moreover, when applied in the form of a paste, activated charcoal will take the sting out of a bite or the wound, drawing out any infection on its way out. The benefits also extend to deep cleaning the wound, encouraging new skin cells to grow and reducing any scarring.
Activated charcoal offers a variety of benefits for your skin, and you can consider using it as a face mask or as an over-the-counter supplement in the form of capsules, cream or paste. A dermatologist or a licensed medical practitioner should be consulted, before you start using activated charcoal-based products.