Simplify Your Beauty Routine With a Packet of Clay Powder (Part I)

Rhassoul Clay Personal Challenge photo
Clearing out the under-the-sink area of toxic cleaners is a very TreeHugger kitchen activity which is great for our water, our skin, and our health. But reducing the number of household cleansers seems infinitely easier than reducing the number of personal care products in the bathroom cabinet.

Brown clay for green and clean?
Greening personal care comes down to habit, and that dreaded 'c' word - convenience. There are harmful and (at the very least, questionable ingredients) in the shampoos, gels, and conditioners that we all use on a daily basis that could bear closer scrutiny - especially for anyone sensitive to chemical suds-making agents, preservatives and aromas. Males are not immune - they've started to use nearly as many personal care concoctions as women. But can a packet of 100 grams of single-ingredient Montmorillonite clay serve to clear out the clutter and keep you squeaky (and safely) clean?Paper packaging a plus
Montmorillonite clay is named after the Montmorillon region in France where it was first 'discovered' but now clays that bear that name come from all over - basically sodium bentonite used by many cultures for medicinal purposes. The clay used in TreeHugger's one-week clay challenge is a Moroccan Rhassoul clay from Natural Spa Supplies in the U.K. and is sourced in a Moroccan mine. It comes in plain paper packaging with no hidden plastic - a plus! Also no hidden or difficult ingredients - just Montmorillonite clay.

Low-impact mining, but not a renewable resource
Natural Spa's owner Sally Mittuch says the Moroccan Rhassoul mine she is sourcing from is an important local source of jobs (the clay is mined with a pick-axe!) which has a very low impact on the surrounding areas, and that about 12 tons a day is the economically sustainable amount to keep the local population in work. Ecologically the clay is not a 'renewable' resource, however.

This is what you'll be washing with - brown, oozy goo
The amount of clay allotted for a one-week Natural Spa "lose your personal care products" challenge is just 100 grams - less than half a cup - which, when reconstituted with just about a cup of warm water makes over a heaping cup of brown, oozy goo. This is what Natural Spa suggests people use to replace soaps of all kinds, shampoo (and conditioner) and face care. It's kind of hard to imagine washing hair with this gritty pudding, but I've had some experience with green clay and with strange personal care rituals. An important patch test reveals no allergy problems, just smooth skin underneath, so here goes. Check back in a week for results Via: Natural Spa Supplies
Read more
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