The Dirt Magnet Mask…

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DIY Activated Charcoal and Clay MaskHave I got the DIY activated charcoal clay mask for you…   A few months ago I shared a recipe for an activated charcoal healing salve.  I absolutely love this salve and have used it all summer to pull the venom/itch out of mosquito bites. Since then I’ve been working on other ways to use the incredibly detoxing activated charcoal. 

Turns out, there are so many DIY skin care recipes we could use activated charcoal for but today we’ll start simple.

Let’s make a DIY activated charcoal clay mask that is going to literally act as a magnet to pull dirt and other impurities out of your skin.  Sound good?  I thought so!

This is a simple mask to make with few ingredients and the results are clearer smoother skin! Use it weekly for less breakouts and clearer pores. 

This DIY mask is not meant to nourish or replenish your skin.  Because of the nature of activated charcoal, it is fruitless to put anything in this mask for replenishment.  The activated charcoal literally absorbs everything in it’s path-good and bad.  That’s why, getting creative on this DIY won’t work.

In order to make this the most potent detox mask EVER, I’ve added kaolin clay to my mask.  It helps make the consistency as it should be to spread evenly and it works with the activated charcoal to pull impurities out of the pores. 

I add water to make the mask into a paste and that’s it!  Don’t worry if you don’t have kaolin clay-Any skin care clays will work-Bentonite is also really great!  

Activated Charcoal Skin Benefits:

Activated charcoal is a fine black powder that’s produced when common charcoal is exposed to high heat. This exposure creates tiny internal spaces or holes in the charcoal, making it highly absorbent and able to trap chemicals and toxins.

Activated charcoal has the ability to absorb bacteria and toxins in the body. This is also true when it is applied to the skin. 

Don’t forget, activated charcoal comes in handy when you feel a stomach bug coming on!

Activated charcoal can absorb impurities out fo the pores making it helpful for people prone to clogged pores. It can even be used to extract venom from a bug bite!

Clay Benefits & Options

Clays are an incredible skin care tool that can and should be used by every skin type. There are many types of clay you can choose from each being suited for a particular skin type

Clays most important benefit is that it pulls dirt and oils out of the pores. It also is a gentle exfoliator and can even tighten pores. 

DIY Activated Charcoal Clay Mask

DIY Activated Charcoal Mask:


  1. Cleanse your skin and pat dry.
  2. Add clay and charcoal to a bowl.
  3. Slowly add enough water to make a paste. (about a teaspoon or 2)
  4. Smooth a thin layer over the skin.
  5. Leave on for 10 minutes.
  6. Cleanse your skin. Activated charcoal can be hard to totally remove. 
  7. Follow up with a toner, hydrating mask and/or a moisturizer.

It’s difficult to tell you exactly how much water to add because it depends on the clay you choose as well as the brand. 

DIY Activated Charcoal Clay Mask

After the Mask:

Clay pulls blood to the surface of the skin which improves circulation-something vital for radiant skin.  Your skin might be red for about 20 minutes.  This is a good thing so don’t be alarmed!

I suggest finding a way to replenish your skin after you use this mask. You can just apply a moisturizer or use another mask to replenish your pores. 

I also don’t recommend you do this mask more then once a week.  It will dehydrate your skin. 

If your not a big DIYer, THIS moisturizer is my all time favorite for my type of skin and a good mask like THIS is great. 

I also urge you to double up on the water. It will help replenish your skin cells and flush out any impurities that were left behind.

More Activated Charcoal DIY Recipes:

For an activated charcoal 3 in 1 (cleanser, mask and exfoliator) check out my activated charcoal multi purpose balm recipe! I also have an activated charcoal bar soap recipe!

You might also be interested in my DIY peel off activated charcoal mask recipe! Think biore strips for your entire face!

WARNING: Activated charcoal is messy but it won’t stain your clothes, towels or skin.  I don’t suggest exfoliating before this mask though-You could have a tinge of gray on your skin but it can easily be removed with a couple of washes.

There you have it-a truly effective DIY activated charcoal mask for ridding pores of dirt and sebum that lead to the dreaded BLACKHEADS!

xx, Jenni


DIY Activated Charcoal Clay Mask Pinterest


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Jennifer Phillips worked as a licensed aesthetician for over 8 years before creating the green beauty blog, Jenni Raincloud and her natural skin care line, J. Raincloud Organics. Jennifer has been blogging full time for 7 years and loves to gain and share knowledge on living a natural lifestyle.

11 thoughts on “The Dirt Magnet Mask…”

  1. I have tried this in the past with bentonite and it works great! Activated charcoal can also be used to whiten teeth. I have tried it and it’s great. You simply brush with it ( using a dedicated toothbrush) then brush with your regular toothpaste. I am sometimes sensitive to hydrogen peroxide as a whitener, but the charcoal never bothers me.

  2. I’ve seen other people combine Apple Cider Vinegar with similar ingredients to make a mask. Would you recommend using ACV in place of the water in this recipe? Why/why not? I would love your input. Thanks!

    1. Laura-I like apple cider vinegar for the skin so I would suggest that you use it-however, it can sting and be too strong so it needs to be diluted. Maybe 1/2 water and 1/2 ACV.

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  6. Hey there! First of all,I love your recipes. Need your help with this one though. The clay and charcoal did meld wonderfully with my impurities. Unfortunately they did so within my pores… Do you think I maybe didn’t let it sit long enough? I rinsed before the ten minutes were over, when it was half dried (because of what I read in the green clay mask post). Was this the mistake or what do you think I did wrong?

    1. Hi Andrea! Were you hoping to purge your pores of whiteheads and blackheads? This can be a bit more tricky and won’t usually happen with a mask like this. However, this mask will most likely greatly loosen them and they could come out on their own after a shower or a few more applications of the mask. Check out THIS mask. This one will help pull impurities out of your pores.

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