DIY Bentonite Clay - Simple, inexpensive and great for your skin!

December 18, 2013

I want to tell you all about Bentonite clay - where to buy it, what to look for when buying it, what you can use it for and how great it is for your skin.

To accompany this post I've also made a video on my YouTube channel which shows you how to make a DIY Honey and Clay face mask, click here to watch it.

All About Bentonite Clay
  • Clay has been used throughout history to rid the body of toxins, it is often seen being used by animals as well, they will seek out and eat clay if they are ill.
  • Clays are good for you internally and externally - Bentonite in particular is described as, 'one of the most effective and powerful healing clays'.
  • Bentonite clay is aged volcanic ash.
  • On contact with fluid it's electrical components change giving it the ability to absorb toxins.
  • The clay swells like a porus sponge.
  • Toxins are drawn in by electrical attraction, the negative bonds with the positive. This is also when the minerals are released into the skin.
  • Clay helps to bring oxygen to the skin as it pulls excess hyrodgen which the cells replace with oxygen instead.
  • Clay boasts a high level of minerals including: silica, calcium, magnesium, iron and potassium.
  • It is excellent at soaking up dirt and grease generally, which means it does this on your skin too!
How to use it:

There are lots of ways to get the healing benefit of clay: in a face mask, in a bath or take it internally. (As with the Aloe I don't want to go into the details of taking clay internally as I don't feel confident to offer advice on it.)

If you want a detoxifying bath simply add 1/4 cup to the water, lie back and relax.

To make a basic face mask you can simply mix the clay with water. I found it best to mix it with honey and water as it goes on thicker and you get the added benefit of the antibacterial and moisturising honey as well.

Important things to know about clay:

You should not let your clay touch anything metal. If it comes into contact with metal then it will become less effective. Mix with glass, plastic, wood or anything else that is not metallic.

Do not let your mud mask dry on your skin!! This is very important and, until a few months ago, it was brand new information to me. When the clay is wet the good stuff happens: minerals go into the skin, yucky stuff comes out and blood flow is increased. As soon as the clay starts to dry it actually begins to draw out moisture from your skin. This can cause some horrible de-hydration and irritation. I experienced this first hand and won't let it happen again! I was red and blotchy for a good couple of hours after... ooops.

The clay mask process is as follows:
Wet/Damp: Skin drinks in the minerals
Starting to dry out: Stimulates blood flow
Dry: Draws out moisture from your skin

You may still experience a little bit of redness but this is normal, likely from the increased blood circulation.

Where to buy it and what to look for:

I bought mine from eBay, I believe you can also get it from Amazon, other online suppliers and some health stores.

I looked for a seller with a good standing on eBay; high feedback, long trading period, etc. I also looked at their other items, were they selling something they got as a random job lot or were they a seller that specialises in those kind of items?

You want 'cosmetic' grade clay.

You should expect the clay to feel soft, smooth and velveteen. Bentonite clay should be grey or cream coloured, not pure white.

I paid under £2.50 (inc postage) for 100g of high quality clay. This will last me months and months, you only need a very small amount each time, probably 5-10g for each mask and I use it once a month. You cannot buy a ready made clay mask for that kind of price!

Make sure you watch my video to see how to make my own invention: DIY Honey and Clay mask, perfect for oily and/or blemish prone skin. Or, great if you want to detox every so often.

Hope you've enjoyed this, do you use clay? How do you find it? Are you going to give the DIY mask a go? I really recommend it!

Rach xx


  1. Wow this is a great post! :-) I have heard many great things about clay, but I didn't know u could use it in ur bath, nor did I know u shouldn't let it dry on ur face!! Alot of commercial face masks with clay in never tell u not to let it dry, they say to leave it on for 15 mins which it then ends up drying in that amount of time anyway. I have been meaning to get my hands on some clay but haven't really got round to doing it yet. And £2.50! That's cheaper than fish and chips, please let me know where u purchased it from on eBay please dear :-) Great post, thank you so much for sharing xx

    1. Loving your comments Louise :-) thanks so much, I love your enthusiasm! I will send you a DM on twitter with a link to the clay I bought (if I can find it again! Hope I can as I will certainly want more!)

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  3. I'm going to give this a go tonight! I actually bought like 400g because I wasn't sure how much I would need haha that's going to last me forever! Thanks for sharing and I love your new blog design by the way :D xx

    1. haha, 400g will keep you in masks for aaaaages! lol. I always buy the wrong sizes of things when I do my food shopping on line, I buy something thinking its a bargain, turns out it's actually cheap cos it's so small pahahaha!
      Thanks for the feedback on the design, I'm working on my .com site and that's blue so I wanted this blogger site to kind of 'match' as it goes with my new button :-)

  4. Really glad you mentioned the advice about not letting clay masks dry on your face!! This might explain why I had a reaction to a sea silt clay mask - it dried really quickly and my face began to feel hot...cue really red face :-O Thanks for all the clay tips
    Leanne x

    1. Ah that's great news! yeah the first time I did some parts of my face went really red so I looked into it and made this new discovery! Second time I used it there was no reaction at all, just a nice, healthy flush of colour :-)
      thanks so much for stopping by :-)
      Rach xx

  5. So glad you mentioned the fact that the mask shouldn't be dry. I've got pretty sensitive skin to begin with, but always come out looking like a lobster after using clay masks. Now I know why! :)
    I did have a question though. After making the mask and applying it, both my daughter and I found that it was dry within 5 minutes. Could it be that we didn't apply a thick enough coat (we still had a good amount left over in our bowls), or is it more likely related to the fact that we live in the desert and the temp today is 106°?

    1. I think that is a 'mistake' that most people make! I know I used to!
      To answer your question - I think it is a combination of both, I like to apply a really thick layer to stop it drying out so easily... but your high temperatures probably didn't help either!
      Rach xx

  6. Thank you for the great explanation! I experienced nice and bad things with clay. And I've just known that it shouldn't be dry on the skin! I always wait for my clay mask to dry then wash...and voilĂ , a pimple appear! So that's why. So good to know how to manage a good masking habit.

    Great post, Rach! :D

  7. I'm glad this can help you! I have seen much better results since using clay the 'right' way... hope you do too! :-)

  8. eleventh beauty16 April 2015 at 23:28

    I love Bentonite Clay too. I think the addition of honey is awesome. My skin is prone to redness so I always experience more redness after applying it, but the next day no trace of redness at all. It's the best!


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