Bentonite Clay: Toxicity, Benefits, Properties And Uses

What is bentonite clay?

It is a normally commercial name by which natural clay is known. For many years it has been used as a medicinal product , and as a product for cosmetic purposes, bringing a large number of benefits to health in general.

Its mineral properties make it very popular, it can be found in various presentations, but normally it looks like a powder with some grains, and in some cases the color of the clay may vary just a little.

Scientific name of bentonite

For a long time, bentonite has been used as a natural method to eradicate many problems that can appear on the skin, however most people do not know the scientific name that belongs to this natural cosmetic powder.

La does not have a scientific name as such , but is a mineral that belongs to the phyllosilicates, physically it is considered a colloid. Colloids are very small particles that have a smooth surface.

Origin of bentonite

Bentonite was discovered in 1888 and its name comes from the place where they were found, in Fort Benton, Wyoming, United States. Since then it has been marketed all over the world as it has a myriad of uses.

Beyond the normal products that are obtained with this clay, it has been adapted for cosmetic and medical purposes, it can be found in many places either as the manufactured product or as the natural bentonite powder.

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What are other names for bentonite?

There are several names by which bentonite can be called, each of the names is due to the different components that can vary in them. These are the most common and important.

Bentonite is also known as activated clay , due to the chemical reaction it can have when there is an excess of negative charge. These are other names that bentonite has according to its properties:

  • Montmorillonites: this is a layer-based clay, in this bentonite the aluminum ion is predominant in its structure, however it can be replaced with another metallic ion, turning it into a clay full of new minerals.
  • Sodium bentonite: it is a montmorillonite which is found in a natural form and has high levels of sodium ions. This has the peculiarity that it swells on contact with water. It can also be called as “Wyoming Bentonite” or “Western Bentonite”.
  • Calcium bentonite : compared to sodium bentonite, it does not swell, but becomes absorbent. It is also called as Mississippi Bentonite, Southern Bentonite or Texas Bentonite.

Bentonite characteristics

The particles are smaller than kaolinite (white clay). The most readily available type of bentonite is calcium, which has absorbent properties.

On the other hand, sodium bentonite complies with the property of swelling when in contact with water. Thanks to the amount of iron it contains, it usually has a characteristic color , although there is a type of bentonite that is usually white.

Bentonite can have different changes in terms of plasticity and molding, or how hard it can be when working with it. Most of the time it is very sticky and when it dries it can break.

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Chemical formula of bentonite

If we talk about the physical part as such, bentonite is considered a colloid , which is made up of small smooth particles of about 0.002 mm, which in turn has certain non-mineral particles called phytoliths.

In the chemical formula side bentonite it is composed of the following formula: A the 2 O 3  · 2 If 2  · 2 2 O All this means that chemically bentonite is a hydrated alumina silicate. This can have plasticity, hardness and sound depending on the state in which it is and how it is mixed.

Benefits and Uses of Bentonite

Although this clay is normally used for industrial purposes, it also has a large number of benefits for the body that can be very helpful when it comes to eliminating certain imperfections or discomfort on the skin.

Since bentonite has a high proportion of minerals, it is an effective remedy to combat common skin problems , its ease of acquisition and its low cost in health food stores also makes it one of the most favorite and most comfortable to apply.

Why is it good for the skin?

Bentonite has the ability to cleanse, invigorate, and cleanse all of the skin . It also has the ability to deeply hydrate it, all due to the minerals that will each act in their own way once they are in contact with the skin.

Once the clay is used on the skin, it is revitalized and looks much younger, it also fulfills the ability to improve circulation in the skin, guaranteeing a better functioning of the body.

There are several benefits that bentonite brings to the skin, these are the most important:

  1. Clean the skin: bentonite has the ability to remove many of the residues that may be deep in the skin, in this way the skin is much cleaner, and the probability of having blemishes is reduced. Bentonite mud masks can be applied to eliminate toxins and fats found on the face.
  2. Combat acne: since clay has antibacterial properties, it allows to eliminate all the bacteria that cause acne on the skin. In the same way it can clean the pores and act as a kind of exfoliator. This is achieved thanks to the fine particles that make up bentonite.
  3. Anti aging: thanks to its detoxifying power, bentonite can stop the damage of free radicals that can cause all kinds of wrinkles, fine lines, blemishes and sagging skin. This can cause the renewal of cells in the skin making the light much healthier, smoother and brighter.

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Medicinal and therapeutic properties of bentonite

Likewise, how bentonite can be good for external use , it also works for internal use , providing a large number of benefits to the body, these are some of those benefits:

  • It has the ability to detoxify the body, all this thanks to the fact that the minerals they contain can carry away toxins and wastes that exist.
  • It cleanses the colon, eliminating all bacteria and heavy minerals that may be obstructing, providing relief and reducing inflammation in the area.
  • It can eliminate eczema and common problems that appear on the skin.
  • It works as a bath salt for relaxing and bacteria-killing effects.

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Where to Buy the Best Bentonite

We know that it is not always easy to find all the products in stores close to home or we cannot trust what they sell in large supermarkets, so that is why I recommend buying directly from the seller through amazon for example, here I put the best Bentonite brands:

  • 100% Calcium Bentonite Clay – 454 grams – Pharmaceutical Grade – Indian miracle of healing with this clay | detoxification, deep pore cleansing and anti aging.
  • Bentonite MED® 400g Detoxifying powders
  • Bentonite clay 250 G
  • Fullers earth powder 2 kg – Pure & Natural Calcium bentonite
  • Sodium clay bentonite powder

Does bentonite cause allergies? Why?

Clay can cause allergies , but this is not in everyone but in those who may be allergic to some minerals that make up clay. Although the type of allergy it causes is not very serious, the necessary medications should be on hand to treat it.

It is a small allergy that may only last a few weeks, since they are usually quite mild when they appear . In the same way, to prevent all this, it is recommended that before using the clay, apply a little on the skin and wait a few hours to verify the reaction that it has on the area.

In case of being unfavorable , the allergy cream is applied , and if there is no rash, the mask, cream, ointment is applied to the affected area.

Oenological use of bentonite

Bentonite has the ability to help clarify red , white and rosé wines. In the same way, it can improve rosé and white wines, since it eliminates the proteins that can cloud the wine.

When the wine is young, it tends to have very susceptible proteins , which over time can precipitate with heating, and this in the long term can cause cloudiness, these proteins have a lot of positive charge at the pH of the wine.

Bentonite has a large electronegative charge , this is fixed thanks to a phenomenon of electrostatic attraction, which allows them to be eliminated. Other oenological properties that wine has is that it can absorb polyphenol oxidases, and eliminate the colloidal fraction of the coloring matter, either in red wines or in liqueur wines.

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Bentonite and agricultural use

Bentonite has the ability to help soil fertility , they also have the ability to retain water, fertilizer, and organic matter, this makes the oxidation process slow down.

In the same way, bentonite can contribute silicon to the earth as a good nutrient, in this way silicic acid is formed, which provides slow assimilation in crops . Bentonite acts in the retention of metallic elements, which has sorbent properties, it alleviates the problems that many fertilizers usually cause.

Cosmetic properties of bentonite

Due to the large amount of minerals that bentonite has, it makes the skin have much more hydration , making it look much more nourished and with much more youth.

These are several of the properties that bentonite has:

  • Hydrate: the large amount of minerals that bentonite has allows the skin to have a much deeper hydration, higher than what can normally be achieved with different creams.
  • Vitalized skin: bentonite can improve skin hydration, this even makes it not only noticeable on the surface of the skin, but also internally thanks to good circulation.
  • Eliminates residues: clay can clean the skin in depth, in this way it eliminates toxins and allows the skin to be much cleaner and healthier, leaving aside imperfections.
  • Acne: thanks to its deep cleansing of the skin, it can reverse all types of infections such as acne on the skin, it also removes the fat that accumulates in the hair follicles.
  • Exfoliating: bentonite can exfoliate the skin, removing dead cells and toning the skin, it is recommended that this type of mask should not be applied more than once a week.
  • Hair mask : a mask on the scalp can remove dirt and remove any grease that may be in it, when the hair is dry, this mask should not be applied. It is best when it is wet.
  • Scars: the clay can regenerate the skin, and that makes the appearance of certain conditions in it can be corrected, such as burns or scars that may be in the area. Scars as such will not be completely removed, it can improve their appearance considerably.
  • Detoxifying bath: ¼ cup of clay can be added in a bathtub combined with a little lavender essential oil, in this way the skin will be much smoother and fresher and in turn will improve blood circulation in the body.
  • Baby powder : if you want to alleviate the inflammation and rashes that usually appear in babies, you can apply a little powdered clay. In case clay dust is a problem, it can be mixed with a little water to create a kind of healing cream.
  • Toothpaste: Mixing bentonite with toothpaste can remove toxins from the oral cavity. Mix ½ teaspoon of clay and ¼ cup of water to be used as a mouthwash, eliminating toxins and bacteria found in the mouth.

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Is bentonite polluting? Is it toxic?

Due to its mineral compound, no type of evidence has been obtained in which it is shown that bentonite can be toxic for contact with humans or for the environment. It actually ends up being a great benefit to the earth, as it can filter and store much more moisture than you think.

In the same way, it has great benefits for the skin, causing a lot of good results in it, likewise it happens internally, since the clay promotes circulation. Thanks to all this, bentonite is not characterized as toxic .

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Bentonite datasheet

Based on sodium bentonite there is a technical sheet that is quite common:

  • Synonyms: Colloidal clay. Denver clay. Wilkinite. Tailorita.
  • Molecular formula: Al2O3 · 4SiO2 · H2O.
  • Description: It is a natural clay, which has hydrated aluminum, silicon, magnesium, calcium and iron. All this together with a large proportion of montmotillonite.
  • Physical-Chemical Data : It is a rather grainy powder, its color is usually beige. It is usually poorly soluble in water and is insoluble in ethanol and ether.
  • Properties and Uses : Bentonite is normally used for natural cosmetic and medical preparations. It can absorb water very easily and quickly. Depending on the concentration, it can become a gel that is used to make all kinds of creams or ointments. The pH has an efficiency that ranges between 9 and 10. Bentonite can be sterilized if it is kept at a temperature of 150-170 ºC for at least one hour.
  • Dosage: – To form gels: 8 – 25% – As an emulsion stabilizer: 1% – As a suspending agent: 0.5 – 5% – As an adsorbent (clarifier): 1 – 2% Side effects: Bentonite is not absorbed by the gastrointestinal tract. No type of allergic response has been observed after topical application of bentonite.
  • Incompatibilities: The aqueous suspension can maintain a viscosity due to the pH around 6, however this can precipitate on contact with acids. While the pH is more acidic, the ability to absorb water decreases. While on the other hand alkaline substances such as magnesium can help increase the probability of producing gel.
  • Observations: Bentonite as such is hygroscopic.
  • Conservation: It is essential that bentonite is stored in dark and well-closed spaces.

Resources on types of clay for the reader

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Kathie Sand always saw the world of beauty as the terrain on which to build her professional career, a goal that was clear to her when she was only 15 years old. Her great concern to expand knowledge led her to settle in Paris where she studied hand in hand with the best beauty professionals and with the most advanced techniques for skin care.

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