Is Activated Charcoal Really Worth the Hype?
Activated charcoal is being toasted as the natural skincare wonder ingredient. Several brands have come out with scrubs, face packs, cleansers and shampoos with activated charcoal as the star ingredient. And (almost) everything is selling like hot cakes! So is activated charcoal really worth the hype it is generating? Let’s find out!
What’s activated charcoal and how does it work
First, let’s know what exactly activated charcoal is. Activated charcoal is basically regular charcoal (made by burning wood or bamboo or coconut husk) that’s then treated with steam to create millions and millions of tiny little pores in each and every particle.
Just think: 1 gram of activated charcoal has a surface area of over 32000 square feet!
These numerous pores with their massive surface area have the amazing quality to adsorb (not absorb!) unwanted stuff. These can trap, bind and expel toxins, dead cells, pollutants, excess oil and dirt to leave your skin much cleaner and clearer. Simple yet very effective as a purifier and detoxifier!
So who should use products powered with activated charcoal
Activated charcoal has no adverse side effects (doctors use it as an emergency toxin trapper treatment for alcohol and drug poisoning cases) so there are no contraindications really for topical use. If you are living in high pollution areas with regular and unavoidable exposure to pollutants and toxins, activated charcoal can help you get rid of accumulated toxins and pollutants gently and safely. If you suffer from mild acne, skincare products with activated charcoal can help you control breakouts by cleaning up pore clogging dead cells, the culprit behind pimples. Activated charcoal is also great at refining pore size.
Who should avoid products with activated charcoal
If you suffer from really, really bad acne (the kinds that covers most of your face and oozes with pus) steer clear of activated charcoal as its mildly abrasive effect can worsen the condition. Also, if you have really oily skin, use activated charcoal products sparingly as its strong oil removal action can make the skin produce even more oil.
Last words: Yes, products with activated charcoal are definitely worth the hype!