Bentonite clay is one of those magical ingredients that seems to be having a moment. For me, clay is the new coconut oil. I want to put clay in just about everything I make, whether it’s a bath, cleanser, or face mask. This healing ingredient can reduce inflammation and increase overall immunity.
That’s because bentonite clay, composed of volcanic ash, is known for its ability to absorb and remove toxins. It works by acting like a magnet to draw out impurities—toxins, viruses, parasites, fungi, bacteria—and bind with them to remove them from your body [source].
7 Bentonite Clay Uses
If you’ve been wondering how to benefit from clay (I use Aztec Secret), here are 7 ways to harness its detoxing power, both inside and out.
1. Internal cleanser
You can ingest bentonite clay in small amounts, which is great for cleaning out the GI system of pathogens [source]. Add 1 teaspoon to 8 ounces of water and drink 45 minutes away from any supplements. If you consume clay, you must drink a lot of water afterwards to prevent sludging in the GI tract.
2. Homemade itch cream
Bentonite clay added to sea salt, baking soda, and essential oils makes a homemade calamine lotion that gives easy, natural relief for bug bites and poison oak/ivy [source]. You can also combine clay with activated charcoal for a super healing black salve that works on stings, bites, and splinters.
3. Detox bath
You can get clay’s benefits just by spending time with it in the tub. Dissolve 1 cup of Epsom salt in warm water. Mix 1/2 cup bentonite clay in 1/2 cup of warm water, and stir until the clay is dissolved. Add the clay to the bath, and then soak for 20 minutes.
4. Facial cleanser
Make this DIY cleansing balm the first step in your beauty regimen. The oil breaks down makeup and pulls out gunk from your pores, with a big assist from bentonite clay. In addition to its healing properties, clay is a very good antibacterial agent [source]. But that’s not all, you’ll soon be addicted to how soft and smooth it makes your skin feel.
5. Oily skin face mask
Put bentonite clay to work on your pores. It can be as simple as mixing the clay and enough water to make a paste. Or combine it with activated charcoal and apple cider vinegar to fight acne, or include witch hazel to battle oily skin.
6. Athlete’s foot treatment
Treat athlete’s foot with a natural antifungal powder made with bentonite and essential oils. Add 5 drops tea tree oil, 5 drops rosemary oil, and 2 drops oregano oil into 8 ounces of bentonite clay. Apply this powder to your feet and sprinkle inside your shoes to absorb moisture.
7. Detox hair mask
Apply the same power of a clay face mask to your hair. A hair mud mask can detox chemicals, heavy metals, and buildup from synthetic hair products from follicles, roots, and scalp.
Mix 1/2 cup of clay powder with 1 cup of distilled water or tea and 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar. Add more water if needed to create a smooth consistency.
Apply all over hair and scalp, and let it work for at least 30 minutes (this is a great combo with a detox bath) and rinse.
Not in the mood to DIY it? Here are some of our favorite clay beauty products:
This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Gina Jansheski, a licensed, board-certified pediatrician who has been practicing for more than 20 years. Learn more about Hello Glow’s medical review board here. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.472
Do you ingest this Aztec brand even though it says for external use only? Wanting to dry using it as an internal detox as well! I have been using this stuff on my hair and face and LOVE it!
love this,pls where do I get the bentonite clay
I love this stuff! Do you have any suggestions for how to get it smooth when mixing it? No matter what I do mine always ends up clumpy.
If you are using it as a mask, try mixing it with apple cider vinegar instead of water. Otherwise try using hot water, although it will still be a little clumpy, that’s just how it is. But somehow the vinegar makes it smooth.
Wont this stuff clog ur drains? I always worry about how to dispose of it!
Nope! You just rinse it right down the drain. You’re using so little of it that you don’t need to worry about anything.
Is the hair mask safe for color treated hair? just wondering because of the vinegar.
The Nova Studio says
We love adding clay to masks, and also to soap! It can give cold process soap a natural color, avoiding some of the more unnatural ingredients out there :)