INSIDE: Activated charcoal is an amazing home remedy for radiant skin and vibrant health. Here are 10 ways you can use it to revive your skin and health.
The search for the perfect skincare product is a very real issue for many people, especially women.
It certainly has been for me!
I searched for literally decades for a skincare product that would…
- Reduce the size of my pores
- Eliminate blackheads
- Nurture my aging skin
- Reduce pimples
- And give me a deep cleanse
- All without chemicals
I thought it didn’t exist until recently.
Now that I found it, I get to enjoy all of those benefits with a product that is only $8.00 and lasts for 3-4 months!
And I’m so excited to share it with you!
What is this wonder product, you might ask?
It’s called Activated Charcoal, and specifically, I use Lemongrass Spa’s Detoxifying Charcoal Face Soap (that’s the product that is only $8).
But the benefits of activated charcoal don’t stop at skincare. Here are all the different ways you can use it as well as some recommended products. You’ll find it is very versatile and effective.
What is Activated Charcoal?
Activated charcoal is not charcoal that you would use on a grill. That kind of charcoal is loaded with toxins and would serve the exact opposite purpose as activated charcoal.
Instead, it is a type of activated carbon that is processed into a powder substance. The “activated” part of the word simply means that high temperatures have been combined with an activating agent or gas in order to expand its surface area and create tiny pores in its surface.
Activated charcoal is very porous and it works like a filter, trapping toxins into its tiny pores. Essentially, it absorbs toxins and chemicals and then the body is able to flush them out. The reason toxins bind with the activated charcoal is because it has a negative charge that causes positively charged toxins to bind with it.
The purpose of activated charcoal is to help extract the toxins that are in the body. It can be used externally for things like skin cleansing and teeth whitening, and it can be used internally as a detox.
Where Activated Charcoal Comes From
Activated charcoal can be made from different sources like wood and coal, but it is always best to use brands that are made from more natural sources like coconut shells, coconut husks, and other nut shells.
Different Ways to Use Activated Charcoal
There are many ways to use activated charcoal for natural health and beauty. Here are 10 home uses.
I highly recommend using activated charcoal in your daily skincare routine. Since I have been using it, I have less blackheads, my pores are smaller, and I hardly ever get any pimples. This is due to its natural detoxification properties.
What I Use & Why It’s One of My Favorite Natural Beuty Products
Rather than using loose powder for my skin, I prefer to use products that are already made with activated charcoal. I use Lemongrass Spa’s Charcoal Face Soap once a day to wash off my makeup, and I use their Detoxifying Charcoal Facial Mask once a week to draw out toxins.
As I mentioned earlier, the bar soap is only $8.00 and lasts me 3-4 months, which is just incredible! The mask is only $16.00, and that lasts me several months as well.
I love all of Lemongrass Spa’s products in general because of the following reasons:
- Natural and organic ingredients
- All products are 97-100% natural
- No phthalates, parabens, sulfates, SLS, or isopropyl alcohol
- All products are gluten-free
- They use beneficial botanicals and plant extracts
- Their products are affordably priced
- There is a 60-day return and exchange policy
- All products are hand-made in the USA
- No animal testing
I particularly love their activated charcoal products because they are blended with essential oils, antioxidants, and vitamins, and they leave my skin feeling and looking radiant.
Natural beauty products really do make a difference in your health. It’s a much-needed part of healthy holistic living. I highly suggest leaving the chemicals behind!
As an alternative, you could purchase loose charcoal powder and simply add it to your existing skincare products. This is a good way to add activated charcoal into your skincare routine without having to stop using the products you already love.
For those of you who enjoy making your own beauty products from scratch, you could even make your own activated charcoal facial scrub. Live Simply has a great recipe that you can print out here.
Teeth whitening is probably one of the most popular and well-known uses for activated charcoal when it comes to beauty and health. Many recent advertisements claim that activated charcoal removes stains and lightens the color of your teeth.
The main benefit to using this type of charcoal powder is that it balances the pH levels in your mouth. This not only helps to remove stains, but it can also help with general oral health, preventing cavities, bad breath, and gum disease.
The reason it helps with whitening is because the activated charcoal helps to absorb the plaque on your teeth that is leading to staining. As with any other natural teeth whitening option, it is not going to work perfectly for everyone, but since it doesn’t pose any major side effects, it is definitely worth a try.
How to Use Activated Charcoal for Whitening
- Activated charcoal for this purpose comes in powder form, and you simply wet your toothbrush, give it a shake, so it’s not soaking wet and then dip it into the powder.
- Then, you simply brush your teeth as you normally would, paying special attention to the front of your teeth.
- When you are done brushing, spit the activated charcoal out and then rinse with water like you usually would. Do so until your saliva is completely clear.
Tips for Using Activated Charcoal Orally
- Activated charcoal won’t stain your teeth or skin, but it can stain toothbrushes, clothing, grout, or crowns, caps and porcelain veneers.
- I recommend having a toothbrush specifically for use with activated charcoal because it will stain your toothbrush.
- You’ll get the best results if you brush your teeth with activated charcoal two or three times per week.
Activated charcoal is also great for hair, and it’s very easy to add into your routine because all you have to do is add a tiny bit of loose powder to your shampoo.
If you have light colored hair, however, be careful that you don’t use too much because there is a slight risk of it causing discoloration.
If you don’t mind switching your shampoo brand and you don’t want to bother with mixing the powder into your shampoo, here is a great shampoo and conditioner set that already includes activated charcoal and is free of sulfates, parabens, phthalates, gluten, drying alcohol and artificial colors.
Activated charcoal can also be used to help detox your body either from the inside or the outside. This is important because our bodies are subjected to an abundance of toxins on a daily basis which leads to toxic overload and reduced health.
Some of the chemicals we come into contact with on a daily basis include pesticides on produce, hormones, and antibiotics in dairy products and meat sources, chemicals in our water, phthalates, parabens and other toxic chemicals in our skincare products, mold, food additives, and much, much more.
Internal Body Detoxification
When used internally, activated charcoal is especially good for the digestive tract because it removes oxidative stress and toxins that can cause allergic reactions, and since the digestive tract and the immune system are so interlinked, it improves immune function as well.
Taking activated charcoal orally is also beneficial for reducing joint pain, improving energy levels and enhancing mental clarity.
For internal detoxification, you can purchase activated charcoal capsules such as Purest Vantage Charcoal Capsules. It can be difficult to find capsules that are made from 100% coconut shells, but this one is.
Some people are even adding the powder to juice or lemonade, and calling it black lemonade.
WARNING: Make sure you talk to your doctor before ingesting activated charcoal. There are certain risks, some of which include drug interactions and dosage issues.
External Body Detoxification
For removing toxins from the outside in, you can mix activated charcoal powder with water to form a paste, and then apply that to your skin. I find it easier to just use the same charcoal bar soap that I get from Lemongrass Spa on my body because there’s no reason it can only be used on the face.
Since activated charcoal flushes toxins out of the body that would otherwise damage our organs, it serves to prevent cellular damage that leads to premature aging.
To use activated charcoal, you can take charcoal capsules after eating non-organic foods or heavy meals, or after known contact with toxins, as suggested by Dr. Axe. Just make sure to contact your healthcare provider before doing so.
Gas & Bloating
According to the Journal of Gastroenterology, activated charcoal is also helpful for relieving gas or bloating. This is because it can bind the gas-causing byproducts in food that cause gas and bloating.
It’s important that you talk to your doctor or a health practitioner to discuss dosing, but it is typically suggested to take it before eating food that would normally cause gas or bloating, as opposed to waiting until after you already have symptoms.
Make sure you are drinking plenty of water with, before, and after taking the activated charcoal.
If you are exposed to mold in your home or place of work, there is a good chance mold is living in your body as a result of inhaling the mold spores in the air.
When mold is in the body, it can lead to health issues such as decreased brain function, headaches, depression, respiratory issues, heart issues, kidney and liver failure, and more.
Try taking Purest Vantage Charcoal Capsules with the approval of your healthcare provider if you believe mold is an issue for you.
Overdoses & Poisoning
Activated charcoal is often used to help people struggling with alcohol and drug overdoses and other types of poisoning because of its powerful ability to reduce the effects of toxins on the body.
Many toxic compounds and pharmaceutical drugs, such as mercury, bleach, pesticides, fertilizer, aspirin, acetaminophen, opium, cocaine, and morphine bind to activated charcoal, which assists the body in the elimination process.
While it is good to have some activated charcoal on hand for emergency medical purposes, be sure to call 911 in the event of poisoning so you can be sure to use the right dosage.
Several studies have indicated mixed results, but taking activated charcoal capsules to prevent a hangover can still be worth a try. Since it helps with alcohol absorption, activated charcoal has been shown to lower blood alcohol levels or the effects of alcohol in some people. Others did not see a significant difference, however.
WARNINGS: I feel it’s important to mention that activated charcoal should not be used as an excuse to drink heavier. Always practice caution and drink responsibly. Also, as we mentioned above, it is important to consult a healthcare provider before ingesting activated charcoal.
Since activated charcoal is so effective at trapping pesticides, solvents, and other chemicals, it is often used in water filtration devices. It even filters out some of the fluoride in the water, but not viruses, bacteria, and hard-water minerals.
Tips for Using Activated Charcoal
Before you give activated charcoal a try for yourself, take note of the following tips.
Watch Out For Drug Interactions
There have not been enough studies done to determine how dangerous activated charcoal is when taken with other medications, so it is best that you practice caution. If you are considering ingesting it, you should consult with your doctor first and be sure to disclose any medications you are taking, whether prescription or over-the-counter drugs.
It Can Be Messy
When charcoal is in powder form, it can get very messy.
When using it for a face mask, body scrub, or to whiten your teeth, it’s better to be safe and wear old clothes, a towel, or a bath robe. It’s also a good idea to use an old towel when drying off since that could get stained as well. Certain materials like sinks, countertops or grout can get stained as well, so use caution.
Don’t Ingest it Daily
While activated charcoal has many uses for removing bacteria and toxins from your body, it is best to make sure you don’t ingest it on a daily basis. Since it is so effective at removing toxins from the body, it could also hinder nutrient absorption as well. That means that having too much activated charcoal in your body could make you ill from malnutrition, so it is best to use it sparingly.
Drink Lots of Water
It is very important to drink a lot of water when taking activated charcoal internally. This is true for anything that involves detoxification because it is important to flush out all the toxins that are being pulled out. If you are taking loose powder, it’s also possible to get some of the powder stuck in your throat. Drink lots of water before, during, and after swallowing charcoal capsules or loose powder.
Always strive to rinse your mouth really well anytime you ingest activated charcoal or brush your teeth with it. In these cases, rinse your mouth until it is completely clear when you spit it out after swishing it around in your mouth. Depending on the amount used, it’s not uncommon for this to take a few minutes of rinsing.
Precautions & Side Effects
Always use activated charcoal safely. While it has not been shown to have severe side effects, the studies are still in their beginning stages.
Risks Involved With Ingesting Activated Charcoal
When ingesting activated charcoal, you might experience black or darker stools, as well as constipation, vomiting or diarrhea. If you are taking too much, it could lead to gastrointestinal blockages as well.
According to Dr. Axe, you should drink 12-16 glasses of water each day that you take activated charcoal. There are three reasons for this:
- Water is what will help flush the toxins out of the body.
- It helps prevent constipation.
- The strong detoxification process that your body will undergo as a result of taking activated charcoal can lead to dehydration.
It is best to avoid ingesting activated charcoal when you are taking medications unless directed by your doctor.
Avoid ingestion of charcoal during pregnancy or while breastfeeding unless directed by your doctor.
Do not give activated charcoal to children without asking your pediatrician.
Take only small doses first to see how your body reacts.
If you have any medical conditions like chronic dehydration, slow digestion, intestinal bleeding or blockages, holes in the intestines, or if you have had recent abdominal surgery, you should avoid using activated charcoal.
As long as you follow these simple guidelines, you can avoid any potential risks when using or ingesting activated charcoal. In general, natural remedies are meant to have very few side effects and risks, but you should always be careful when trying anything new.
As you can see, activated charcoal comes with a large variety of uses and health benefits. My favorite is definitely what it has done for my skin.
Comment below and let me know what you like best about it!
*This page contains affiliate links. You can read my full disclosure here.
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