Bentonite Clay: What It Is & How I Use It Every Day, Week, & Month

Bentonite clay belongs in every natural medicine cabinet AND natural beauty routine! But what is bentonite clay? And how exactly do you use it?

Bentonite clay belongs in every natural medicine cabinet AND natural beauty routine! But what is bentonite clay? And how exactly do you use it?


In my bathroom I have about 7 small paper bags filled with an identical substance.

Bentonite clay.

They’re basically… everywhere. (Note to self: consolidate their contents into a single glass jar.)

Needless to say, I’m kind of, sort of, definitely obsessed with the stuff. It’s more than an obsession, really — it’s a dependence. I’ve grown to need it. No no, the stuff isn’t addictive, but it’s become a staple in both my health and beauty routines that I really can’t live without.


First things first, what makes bentonite clay so special?

Bentonite clay is sedimentary clay composed of weathered and aged volcanic ash. The most active deposits of which are in Wyoming and Montana.

What is bentonite clay and how to use it || Bentonite clay is an amazing ingredient that belongs in every natural medicine cabinet AND natural beauty routine! Let's take a close look at what makes it so special and some of the best ways to put it to good use...

It’s a “healing clay,” a clay that absorbs impurities such as toxins and heavy metals either when ingested or applied topically. According to Mountain Rose Herbs,

Bentonite is very unusual in the fact that once it becomes hydrated, the electrical and molecular components of the clay rapidly change and produce an ‘electrical charge’… When it becomes mixed with water it rapidly swells open like a highly porous sponge. From here the toxins are drawn into the sponge through electrical attraction and once there, they are bound.”

It is for this reason that bentonite clay should never be stored in a metal container or stirred with a metal spoon (hence the bamboo spoon in my photos) since the clay absorbs the metals and becomes less effective.

Bentonite clay is also rich in minerals like silica, calcium, magnesium, sodium, iron, and potassium.

A good quality bentonite clay is grey or cream in color — steer clear of white “bentonite clay” (since it’s likely not actually bentonite clay). It is very fine, has a velvet feel, is odorless and non-staining. I get my bentonite clay from Mountain Rose Herbs — it’s my go-to for the highest quality herbal remedy and DIY natural skincare ingredients!


So how can you use this oh-so-special clay in your natural health and beauty routine?

There’s a seemingly endless number of ways to put bentonite clay to good use!

Here’s how I use bentonite clay every day, week, and month…

Everyday

In my deodorant for some extra detoxification

Bentonite clay is the ingredient that puts the “detox” in my DIY all-natural detoxifying deodorant. Not only does it absorb moisture, but it also helps pull toxins from the skin. This is so SUPER important since we have lymph nodes near our armpits. In essence, it is the anti-antiperspirant 🙂

What is bentonite clay and how to use it || Bentonite clay is an amazing ingredient that belongs in every natural medicine cabinet AND natural beauty routine! Let's take a close look at what makes it so special and some of the best ways to put it to good use...

Every Week

As a pure-purging face mask

Because of its ability to absorb impurities, bentonite clay works wonders for clogged pores.

Pair it with activated charcoal — a medicinal charcoal that also works to absorb impurities — and a little water and you’ve got the Blackhead Busting Blackout Mask. I use it once a week to help maintain a clear complexion.

Every Month

Sprinkled in the tub for a detox bath

I add just ¼ cup of bentonite clay to my baths to help draw out impurities while I relax and get nice and clean. See what else I add here: Relaxing Detox Bath Recipe

Bentonite clay detox bath || Bentonite clay belongs in every natural medicine cabinet AND natural beauty routine! But what is bentonite clay? And how exactly do you use it?

As a detox clay foot mask

Yes, a foot mask! I know, it sounds a little nutty. BUT detoxing through the feet is considered one of the safest ways to do so. Get all the details here: Detox Clay Foot Mask


But this is just the beginning… There are so many great ways to use bentonite clay!

Now I know that 7 bags is a little excessive (I have a habit of buying more before I actually need it!), but it is a great staple for every medicine cabinet.

Do you use bentonite clay for anything in particular? I’d love to hear how!

Bentonite clay belongs in every natural medicine cabinet AND natural beauty routine! But what is bentonite clay? And how exactly do you use it?

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  1. Hi Nadia,
    If I cannot buy the bentonite clay you linked in your post, as I live in a different country, are there other brands of high quality bentonite clay you also recommend?
    Thank you.

  2. Neither bentonite clay nor activated charcoal should come into contact with metal, as mentioned in the blog post.

  3. Can charcoal and bentonite clay mixed into a paste for facial masks be stored in a food safe rust resistant steel can that are tin plated and are coated with rust resistant finish?

  4. Bentonite clay shouldn’t be pure white. Yes, I use Redmond since it’s what they sell at the local store!

  5. 1) Your skin may be sensitive to ANY of the ingredients in the wash you created, not necessarily the clay. But 2) clay can be very drying since it absorbs oils, and oils are our skin’s natural moisturizer (including the skin on your scalp), as can apple cider vinegar. Not sure how much honey and aloe you were using but I’d guess you’re drying your scalp out and so it’s itching.

  6. I would like to ask you something….

    I used organic non sulfate shampoos for long time with no problem at all. Than I wanted to go even more natural, so I try to use different clay and herbs to wash my hair and also as skin mask. I tried bentonite, rhassoul, yucca, amla, slippery elm, fenugreek, orange/lime peel, aloe, honey, apple cider vinegar and so on…. I mixed the “saponine” with conditioning herb and aloe for example and rinsed with apple cider or honey… I tried different version of these clays/herbs and I did really like how my hair looked and felt, but a couple of hours after the wash my scalp and also the skin (if used as mask) start to itch like crazy and it lasted at least until the next day ….So now I really want to go more natural but I am afraid to use something new…. could you help me to understand why my hair react like that, since clays are supposed to heal itchiness … I don’t understand why my scalp react the opposite way ?

  7. i use it with acv on my face 2x a week but also in my all natural deodorant that i store in the fridge. one depdorant container is made with this recipe – 4Tablespoon coconut oil, 4 teaspoon arrow root powder and 2 teaspoons bentonite clay plus 6 drops of cocoa oil essential oil from edens garden oils. mix well, pour into empty deodorant container, let set in fridge. it smells like chocolate coconut. amazing.

  8. I am desperately trying to find a good clay for consumption in Canada with no luck. Any suggestions?

  9. To anyone wondering why bentonite clay says for external use only, I was told a couple of days ago that the companies were told they had to because people are not drinking enough water when using it and ending up hurting themselves, same goes for activated charcoal. It is recommended that you consume 12 to 16 glasses a day while using it.

  10. Sorry if this sounds like a commercial, but Wellness Mama has some good recipes for toothpaste on her site and one of them also uses bentonite clay. I prefer this recipe to the “normal” toothpaste, since it makes a kind of mud which is easy to use.
    Will definitely start using it more as a regular mask ingredient to help keep my skin clean. Will also recommend it to my son who sometimes has outbreaks of zits. Thank you!

  11. I’ve been brushing my teeth with bentonite clay for more than a year. I was concerned about it being abrasive and chose not to use sodium bicarbonate for this reason. My dentist assures me that my tooth enamel is in good condition. I make a paste using bentonite clay, filtered water, peppermint essential oil and stevia.

  12. I use bentonite clay to make toothpaste. I was recently told by a dental hygienist that it should not be used daily as it is like brushing your teeth with sandpaper. I’ve been using it for a little over a month and haven’t had any problems but am now concerned it may be doing more harm than good 🙁 Thoughts?

  13. I’m so glad that I finally found someone with a similar problem as me! I used calcium bentonite clay mixed with organic apple cider vinegar as a shampoo for my hair. As I was applying it my teeth began to hurt and ever since then they have been very sensitive to cold. I have only porcelain fillings, no metal or alloy in my mouth. Any thoughts on why this would happen? I love the results on my hair but not sure I can continue to use it with this sort of side effect, especially if it gets worse.

  14. I have recently begun using homemade deodorant. I found that the solid kept away the odor but the spray not so much so I began an underarm detox with the bentonite clay and after 3 treatments the spray kept me odor free. I continue to detox my underarms about once a week.

    Blessings,
    Johnna

  15. I would advise you to see a functional medicine practitioner (in addition to your MD) with this question. Best of luck to you!

  16. I have ganglions one lg. on mid. finger. I read that bentonite clay can make it disappear by taking the toxins out of my body. I ordered it already prepared in Liquid form hydrated. I took one 32 oz bottle of it. The ganglion is soft and I feel it was working but noticed an old cancer scar under armpit had come to the skin surface and had turned red/whereby before it was only felt under the skin and taped off during annual ultra sounds. It looked bad and had increased to size of marble I went to Cancer Dr. and she wanted to remove it at once that same day I went to surgery and it turned out to be cancer. I am having second surgery in couple weeks since an MRI shows she did not get it all, but is deeper and wider, but no where else in breasts or armpit. What I am wondering is, if the Bentonite clay I took for about one month (one bottle) brought all the cancer cells together that might be in that area and were forcing them to the surface thru that old tiny drainage scar tissue. I am ordering another bottle from Nature’s sunshine as it is already prepared and easy to measure, stir and drink. I want to continue the detox to get rid of the ganglions. Lorayne Pate