This Brightening Kaolin Bentonite Face Mask came about as a bit of an oopsie. After I made my video on the differences between kaolin and bentonite clay I had a total brainfart as I went to put the clays away. Instead of putting the unused benonite back into its tub… I dumped it into the dish of unused white kaolin clay. Oops. Left with a rough 1:1 mixture of the two clays sitting in a small bowl, I started turning my oopsie leftovers into quick, improvised face masks with a bit of lemon juice. This Brightening Kaolin Bentonite Face Mask quickly became a favourite, so I knew I had to share it.
You’ll only need a handful of ingredients for this mask; smooth white kaolin clay, detoxifying bentonite, brightening lemon juice, and skin-softening honey. That’s it (well, plus some water). Those five simple ingredients come together to make a creamy face mask that brightens your complexion and leaves skin feeling tightened and refreshed.
Bentonite is really weird when you compare it to other clays, like kaolin or the French clays. Bentonite is super crazy absorbent, and goes all jelly-like when you hydrate it rather than creamy-frosting-like, which is what most clays do when they get wet. The video I made on the two does a good job of showing how different kaolin and bentonite clays are from one another, in everything from texture to density.
Anywho, this pairing does a great job of balancing the strengths of each clay. We get the creamy consistency of kaolin (bentonite can be weirdly blobby/globby/gel-like when you try to spread it over your skin) and the extra-strength pore-emptying goodness of bentonite. I’ve included some lemon juice to help counter the basic pH of bentontie, as well as bring a bit of vitamin C and brightening.
Bentonite does have a negative charge when it’s wet that contributes to its ability to detoxify as it attracts anything with a positive charge (most of what I’ve been able to find on bentonite as a skincare clay says that most “toxins” and heavy metals are positively charged, with no details on what those “toxins” are). Because of this charge it is commonly advised that you don’t use anything metal with bentonite as the bentonite can pick up that metal if it is positively charged, which will reduce its efficacy. I’ve read that stainless steel is ok, but I haven’t read that from any scientific sources. I found this neat video showing you how that charge works—check it out!
Brightening Kaolin Bentonite Face Mask
1 tsp water
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp raw honey
Whisk the water, lemon juice, and raw honey together in a small bowl. I used a solitary wooden chopstick to do all my mixing for this mask to keep metal out of the equation.
Blend the white kaolin clay into the water mixture, and then start adding the bentonite clay, a wee bit at a time, whisking between additions. You’ll notice some small bubbles forming in the mixture—that’s the result of the reaction between the acidic lemon juice/honey and the basic bentonite. Cool, eh?
When you have a smooth, creamy paste, spread it all over your face and leave it to dry for 20–30 minutes.
Once the mask has dried and feels tight, rinse it off. I find it’s useful to soak a washcloth in warm water, hold it up to your face, and let that re-hydrate the mask a bit before beginning to wipe it off. Once you’ve wiped off all the clay, hydrate with a serum of your choice and enjoy your refreshed complexion!
Want to make up a big batch of this face mask to use later? Read this.