We have been making our activated charcoal soap for about five years and it’s been increasingly popular. We started making it in response to customer requests who wanted an all natural soap to get rid of caked on gardening dirt and find something to clean mechanics’ hands. Now Activated Charcoal is one of the trendy items in all-natural body care and we’ve been getting more and more questions about it including what is activated charcoal, how should we use it and what does it do?
Charcoal was used in ancient Ayurvedic, Egyptian and Traditional Chinese Medicine practices, and now activated charcoal has found its way into today’s beauty and body care because of its purifying qualities and its ability to neutralize toxic chemicals. It’s still used medically to combat overdoses from medication or poison (we have it in the emergency cabinet for accidental poisoning of any of the animals), and now it can be found in many other products as an ingredient.
Activated charcoal comes from various hard woods (a renewable resource) or coconut shells. It is produced by a high temperature steam activation process. This very high temperature process removes all the oxygen and activates it. What is left is the charcoal with millions of tiny pores that capture, bind and remove heavy metals, chemicals and poisons.
Activated charcoal is processed so finely and becomes so porous that it acts like a magnet to collect and trap toxins and chemicals. In skincare, or specifically in soaps, it is thought that the activated charcoal binds to dirt and other toxins to alleviate or prevent blemishes and irritation. And while we don’t specifically promote it other than a fabulously cleansing soap, we have reports from many customers who have used it successfully to combat acne. We have chosen to offer the activated charcoal soap with Teatree and Lavender Essential Oils, both of which are attributed with soothing and healing properties.
A little disclaimer at the end: activated charcoal soap lathers just as nicely as the other scents in our soap line, only the lather is black. Don’t let that deter you though, in its soap form, the black lather will not stain your shower or your towels. Here you can see one of our volunteers, McKenzie, having fun with making the soap: