Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Clay for Skin: French Green Clay | Part III

Part III of this series will be on a clay that is not so common and may go under a few names. Rich in minerals, it can draw out toxins, dust and dead skin cells.

French Green Clay: a clay mineral composed mostly of illite clay.

Where is it found: first produced on a huge scale in France, hence the name, but deposits are also found in Wyoming, Montana and China.

  • medium cation-exchange capacity, but higher than kaolin (absorbing toxins)
  • mainly a non-expanding clay
  • antibacterial (Williams et al., 2011)
  • contains many minerals: calcium, copper, potassium, silicon, iron, magnesium.
  • not as 'powerful' as bentonite clay, is slightly more gentle
Colour: green, which is due to a combination of iron oxides and decomposed plant matter.

'Green Landscape' modified by Ron Brinkmann licensed under CC BY 2.0

What to buy
Popular masks with French Green Clay or Illite

French Green Clay would be a great clay mask for those with less oilier skin, and do not like the 'pulling' sensation that comes with bentonite clay.

Studies Referenced

Williams, L., Metge, D., Eberl, D., Harvey, R., Turner, A., Prapaipong, P. and Poret-Peterson, A. (2011). What Makes a Natural Clay Antibacterial?. Environmental Science & Technology, 45(8), pp.3768-3773.

B. Williams, L., E. Haydel, S., F. Giese, Jr., R. and D. Eberl, D. (2008). Chemical and Mineralogical Characteristics of French Green Clays Used for Healing. Clays Clay Miner., 56(4), pp.437-452.

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