The Benefits of Charcoal in Skincare
02 Jun 2023

The Benefits of Charcoal in Skincare.

The Benefits of Charcoal in Skincare
Activated charcoal has become a popular ingredient in skincare products, known for its purported ability to 'detox' the skin. But what's the science behind this trend, and what benefits can charcoal truly offer your skin? Let's dive into the world of charcoal skincare.

Understanding Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal, different from the type used for grilling, is a form of carbon that has been processed to have small, low-volume pores. These pores increase the surface area available for adsorption, allowing the charcoal to attract and hold onto substances.

Detoxification: A Misnomer, but Beneficial Nonetheless

While the term 'detox' may not be technically accurate (since our skin doesn't require detoxification in the way our liver or kidneys do), charcoal's adsorptive properties can help draw out impurities from the skin. It attracts dirt, oil, and other substances that can clog pores, making it beneficial for those with oily or acne-prone skin.

Charcoal in Different Skincare Products

Charcoal is versatile and can be found in a variety of skincare products:

Cleansers: Charcoal can be an effective ingredient in cleansers. It can help lift and remove dirt and excess oil from the skin, leaving it clean and refreshed.

Masks: Charcoal masks can provide a more intense 'deep-cleaning' experience. These masks are often left on the skin for a period, allowing the charcoal to adsorb impurities before being washed off.

Scrubs: In physical exfoliants or scrubs, charcoal can offer mild abrasive properties to help slough off dead skin cells, revealing smoother, brighter skin underneath.

Soaps: Charcoal soaps, often combined with other natural ingredients, can offer a deep clean without overly stripping the skin.

Considerations When Using Charcoal Skincare Products

While charcoal can be beneficial, it's important to use it judiciously:

Over-Drying: Charcoal's oil-absorbing properties can be drying for some skin types, particularly those with dry or sensitive skin. If you find your skin feels tight or uncomfortable after using a charcoal product, you may want to limit its use or opt for a more hydrating product.

Product Quality: Not all charcoal products are created equal. Look for products where charcoal is a key ingredient rather than just a marketing point. The quality of the other ingredients in the product will also affect its overall effectiveness.

Environmental Impact: Consider the environmental impact of your skincare products. Opt for brands that source their activated charcoal sustainably and package their products in recyclable materials.


Activated charcoal can be a valuable addition to your skincare routine, particularly if you have oily or acne-prone skin. Its adsorptive properties allow it to draw out impurities, providing a deep clean that can leave your skin feeling refreshed and clarified.

However, as with any ingredient, it's essential to use charcoal products that suit your skin type and concerns. Overuse can lead to dryness, so monitor your skin's response and adjust your usage accordingly. And remember, while charcoal can help remove surface-level impurities, it's not a panacea for all skin issues. For best results, incorporate charcoal products into a balanced skincare routine that addresses all your skin's needs.