There is nothing novel about clay in skin care. It’s a powerhouse ingredient with ancient history and straightforward benefits, but we can’t help but notice it’s staging a mini comeback in 2018. We’re barely a month into the New Year and some of our favorite brands, both high-end and drugstore, have already unleashed a handful of detoxifying formulas that our skin could use a little more of this winter and beyond.
But before we get into the new kids on the block, a brief breakdown (get a full one here) on the most widely used clays of the moment and why experts can’t stop utilizing them:
Bentonite Clay: A highly porous substance with electric properties that can absorb great amounts of excess oil when mixed with water.
Kaolin Clay: An exfoliator whose different color variations yield different benefits. For instance, white kaolin is gentle enough for sensitive skin while red kaolin is slightly tougher and recommended for oily skin.
Rhassoul Clay: A negatively charged ingredient that’ll instantly suck up skin toxins, which are almost always positively charged. However, it can be super drying if used in excess.
French Green Clay: This sea-born clay is so absorbent that in addition to absorbing oil, it also pulls blood toward the surface of your skin, resulting in better circulation and regeneration of new cells.
Fuller Earth’s Clay: This multitasker totes such powerful absorption capabilities that it’s even used in kitty litter and to spot-dry-clean fabrics.
Clean & Clear Night Relaxing Detox Clay Mask
This brand has a number of cult favorites on its roster, but could we have a new classic on our hands? Its newest product is this deep-cleaning face treatment that includes a handful of clay ingredients, including bentonite and kaolin, to destroy oil and makeup residue at the end of a long day. And with a mere $5 price tag, it’s hard to say no to this one.
$5.49 at Target
Honest Beauty 3-in-1 Detox Mud Mask
Even Jessica Alba had to put her stamp on a clay-infused mask. The newest addition to her Honest Beauty family is infused with a group of deep-cleansing ingredients (volcanic ash, activated charcoal, white bentonite) and conditioners (sea buckthorn oil, manuka honey, shea butter) to ensure that your skin is pampered to perfection by day’s end.
$22 at Honest Beauty
Dear by Renee Purifying Kaolin Mask
This new skin care line combines two of our favorite things: clinically tested dermatological technologies and naturally derived ingredients. We’re pretty sure its exfoliating face mask will be an instant hit, thanks to a balanced mix of antiseptic properties and detoxifying kaolin clay.
$49.95 at Dear by Renee
L’Oreal Clarify & Smooth Pure Clay Mask
The newest member of the Pure Clay family is this kaolin-, Moroccan lava–, and montmorillonite clay–infused mask, made with yuzu lemon extract to further clarify freshly detoxed skin.
$12.99 at L’Oreal Paris
Clarins SOS Pure Rebalancing Clay Mask
This 10-minute treatment was made especially for oily/combination skin, as its clay formula also includes alpine willow herb, a prime ingredient for shrinking pores and minimizing shine.
$34 at Clarins