Kim Kardashian drinks it to feel cleansed and energized, Gwyneth Paltrow uses it to detox, and it’s Vanessa Hudgens’ go-to to get gorgeous, glowing skin. Clearly, charcoal does so much more than provide burger fuel. Currently one of the biggest beauty buzz words, it’s being used in body-boosting health drinks, skin creams, body washes, and shampoos because of its amazing detoxifying and purifying properties.
So what exactly is activated charcoal? Well, in simple terms, it’s carbon that’s been heated and treated to boost its ability to absorb things, meaning it does an incredible job at grabbing onto the bad stuff in (or on) our bodies and flushing it out.
Read on to discover the top eight ways you can incorporate activated charcoal into your health and beauty routine and why a lump of coal in your stocking might actually be a good thing this year…
Beat the Bloat
Its de-bloating properties are one of the biggest reasons celebrities and supermodels swear by charcoal. Able to naturalize gas by binding together the gas-causing byproducts in foods, activated charcoal not only alleviates discomfort and cramps caused by bloating, but it also helps it pass to leave you looking and feeling better.
Despite its dark black hue, activated charcoal is one of the best natural ways to get beautiful and bright teeth. Not only does it kill toxins, which can cause everything from infections to bad breath (no thanks) and discoloration, but it also changes the pH balance of your mouth to prevent cavities. Plus, it’s deeply cleansing and helps remove stubborn stains to leave you with a shiny, superstar smile.
Top tip: If dunking your toothbrush straight into the black stuff feels a little overwhelming, invest in an activated-charcoal toothpaste to reap the same rewards. See below for our top pick.
Gently removing excess oils and grime from the scalp, charcoal works wonders at giving you healthy, shiny, luscious locks. Because it helps get rid of residue and build-up, which often weigh hair down and cause it to get dirtier faster, it will help your locks feel lighter and healthier. Not only that, but it’s said to help with dryness, itchiness, and dandruff too.
Be it for your hair, your skin, or your body, a dose of charcoal can detoxify you from head to toe. Believed to help extract the beneficial nutrients from your food or juice, it helps you get the best out of your meals whilst also assisting major organs by flushing out toxins and harmful chemicals. This, in turn, can help with everything from poor digestive health to reducing joint pain, increasing energy, and boosting the immune system.
To detox your skin and free it from impurities and blockages, charcoal should be your go-to. It’s amazing at drawing out dirt and any other nasty things lurking in your pores, gently, to really get deep-down clean. You can add it to your cleanser, make it into a mask, or even mix it with natural granules like salt or coffee to turn it into an all-over super scrub.
Thanks to its pore-perfecting properties, charcoal is one of the best blemish busters in the business. If you’ve got those pesky under-the-surface bumps or a full-blown pimple, all you need to do is mix charcoal with a little water and leave it on your blemish to work its magic.
If you’re struggling to fall asleep and counting sheep isn’t quite cutting it, then try adding some charcoal to your nighttime routine. Drinking a charcoal-infused nut “mylk” or taking a couple of charcoal tablets before bed can help you drift off faster thanks to its tummy-soothing and detoxifying effects, helping alleviate any discomfort or internal problems that often prevent us from getting some shut-eye.
Just a couple of sticks of charcoal in your water bottle is all it takes to purify it, making it the perfect natural ingredient to take with you on your travels or to give your daily drink a beautifying boost.
According to the chairman of the British Association for Applied Nutrition and Nutritional Therapy, Miguel Toribio-Mateas, “Activated charcoal provides an effective means for the removal of chlorine and chlorinated by-products from water, as well as various types of sediments.”
Shop the Best Charcoal-Infused Beauty Buys
Promo Photo: Courtesy of Live Simply