Activated Charcoal: Hot Organic Beauty Ingredient

by Laura Beans

Experiencing a revival, activated charcoal is taking the natural skincare world by storm

With a history of use in Egyptian, traditional Chinese and Native North American cultures, activated charcoal has been used for ages to treat poisonings and drug overdoses, given its ability to adsorb toxins and chemicals, and prevent them from entering the blood stream. Activated charcoal is said to adsorb up to 100 times its weight.

Now the natural cosmetics industry has begun to feature the latest “it” ingredient in everything from beauty products to facial scrubs to toothpastes.

Activated charcoal contains oxygenated carbon, which gives it a magical magnetic quality and allows it to pull dirt, oil and impurities from the skin. Because activated charcoal can give a deep cleanse without over-drying, it is a great option for blemish and acne-prone skin.

Also an anti-aging element, activated charcoal has antibacterial properties that natural skincare companies are harnessing to achieve exfoliation and improve overall skin tone.

Here are some of Organic Spa Magazine’s favorite activated charcoal products:


Soapwalla Activated Charcoal & Petitgrain Glycerin Soap Bar is perfect for a gentle, yet squeaky, clean. Founder Rachel Winard says that Soapwalla’s charcoal is sourced from new-growth bamboo forests. “I want to make sure the charcoal I’m purchasing isn’t being created from old-growth trees and isn’t participating in deforestation practices,” she says.

Beauty Sponge

Made with mineral-rich activated charcoal, Konjac Bamboo Charcoal Facial Puff Sponge can be used with or without cleanser. Gentle exfoliation makes the sponge suitable for the most sensitive skin.

piperwai white background copy


PiperWai Natural Deodorant uses the power of activated charcoal to absorb moisture, unlike conventional antiperspirants, which use aluminum and other chemicals to plug up sweat glands. Plus with the light, gender-neutral scent, this deodorant is unisex.

You may also like