How could I not begin this by doing a little research on one of my most treasured natural ingredients to my current natural hair regimen!? Bentonite clay is a highly sought out but rare clay that is formed through the weathering of volcanic ashes. Lets dig a bit deeper into it...
WHAT IT IS
Bentonite clay comes in different types including...
- Sodium Bentonite which is the most absorbent of all bentonite clays. This type of bentonite clay may often clog up your bathroom drain and can also cause constipation if taken internally. This clay is mainly used in construction such as cement, concrete, and suspension agents but can also be used for external clay baths as well.
- Potassium Bentonite which contains a rich amount of Illite Clay and makes it less absorbent than any other type of bentonite. Illite Clay is very rich in potassium and is what causes this type of bentonite to be less reactive to moisture.
- Calcium Bentonite is also very high in absorbency and is a soft, odorless clay that is used for natural healing and detoxifying. Having an alkaline of 8 or 9, it is tasteless and smooth and has no consumption restrictions.
Of the many ways to incorporate Bentonite clay into your life, here are a few of Bentonite's main uses...
- Externally - Bentonite clay is most commonly known for being used in hair and face masks to help detox the skin and hair of impurities and toxins. You'll never be able to escape the film of toxins the natural elements coat you with everyday, and bentonite clay is great for removing those from the body so that you can start fresh!
- Internally - While I have not personally hopped on this bandwagon. there's been great things said about taking bentonite clay internally. The most used type of bentonite clay for this purpose is calcium bentonite but sodium bentonite can be used as well as long as you drink plenty of water or add a bit more fiber to your diet to help soothe constipation episodes.
- Absorbency - Bentonite clay can be used to absorb water, odors, oils and grease. Because of it's water-absorbent qualities, it is also used as a sealant and a type of barrier for groundwater and water-proofing below grade walls........... to me, this sounds like a GREAT alternative to use during hurricane season instead of lining up somewhere for sandbags... Just throw some bentonite on the floor! (I'm kidding....or am I?)
- Medical - Because of it's extracting properties and ability to pull toxins from the body, bentonite clay is a great resource to extract something as a fatal as poison from the skin.
- Improves and promotes healthy skin, digestion, hydration, and internal organs such as the colon and liver
- Heals skin cuts, bites and stings and can extract poison and other fatalities
- A source of healthy minerals such as calcium, potassium and sodium that can otherwise be lacking in your diet when used internally
- Clarifies the hair and scalp, removing buildup and promoting hair growth while decreasing hair loss
- For those with natural ringlets, it improves curl definition and shrinkage promoting healthier and stronger hair
The main side effects come when you begin taking bentonite clay internally. Symptoms may not last depending on how your body adjusts to it, but these side effects can include:
- Muscle Pain
- Joint Stiffness
- Fatigue or Extreme Energy
- Nasal or Sinus Issues
- Sore Throat
- Cold Sores
- Skin Rashes
- Flu-like Symptoms
Using bentonite clay externally may include some of these side effects as well...
- Burning Sensation
- Itchy Skin
Special Note: It is advised that if you suffer with iron deficiencies or high blood pressure, to abstain from taking bentonite clay internally since bentonite will continue to extract moisture from you internally.
HOW TO USE
Simply add enough water to the bentonite clay in order to make a paste.
That is the most basic form of using bentonite clay and this alone will help detox and purify your body. I personally find that mixing bentonite clay with apple cider vinegar allows for the mixture to mix extremely easy though I can't say it's anymore of an added benefit other than that.
Do NOT mix using anything METAL (especially if you plan on drinking it). The metal can be pulled into the bentonite clay and as you use it, you'll also be using the metal that was incorporated into it.
There are also recipes out there to help you whip up better bentonite clay mixes such as adding oils, honey, floral waters and anything else to the mix to help give you a more luxurious experience. Personally, I don't feel that is incredibly necessary since the main point of bentonite clay (as well as pretty much all clays) is to extract and detox the hair and body and not necessarily infuse your hair and body with moisture of any kind. It's pretty much to leave you with a blank slate.
SO YOU WANT SOME OF THAT!?
Just a few spots where you may be able to come across some bentonite clay...
Vitamin Shoppe (or locally)
Want a little more detailed information? Check out these sites then!
Hope you all have enjoyed!
But until next time,
♥ Keep calm 'n coily ♥