What are cleansing grains?
Cleansing grains are a powdered facial cleanser that is made of clays, oats, nuts/seeds, herbs, and other powdered ingredients that can be used to cleanse, exfoliate, and transform your face. You wet a small amount of the powdered blend, in the palm of your hand, and cleanse your face with the wet muddy concoction as you would with your normal soap cleansers.
Why should you use cleansing grains?
Every hour, we shed 30,000 – 40,000 skin cells. Daily we are shedding millions of skin cells, leaving many all over our homes, bedding, clothing, and cars. Daily gentle exfoliation helps to gently remove this layer of dead skin cells, helping to clear your pores without destroying the balance of your skin’s oils. Daily gentle exfoliation helps to reduce and minimize wrinkles and fine lines, while the soap-free skin-nourishing herbal ingredients provide your face with a healthy dose of the vitamins and minerals it’s craving.
Use as a mask
The benefit of a dry face mask and scrub? First, taking out the liquid means that many of the preservatives found in conventional masks are gone. Secondly, they use up less packaging and so are more sustainable and eco-friendly. Thirdly, the absence of liquids means that you can easily take them along with you when you travel.
Many dry masks and cleansing grains advise you to use water. But one of the best aspects of dry masks is that they are infinitely customizable. If you already know that your skin reacts well with specific natural oils, you can mix that oil with the mask for added benefits. You can do any combination of oils that works best for you.
If you already oil cleanse with a pre-mixed set of oils, you can try that as well. Or if you’d rather use these products as cleansers, you can mix them with the facial cleanser that’s already a part of your routine. That way, you’ll have an exfoliant and mask in a single product. Savings!
However, if you’re not sure that oils work with your skin, you can always try a gentle green or herbal tea, or just try it out with good, old-fashioned water!
- Mix it Up
Once you’ve got your liquid of choice, it’s time to mix it up. I’ve found that mixing equal parts liquid and powder in a small bowl helps a lot. And no matter which product I’m using that day, it seems that a half teaspoon of each is enough to cover my face. Then it’s just a matter of mixing until it forms a paste!
I’ve found that the best and least messy way to apply these masks is to use a brush. You can use a concealer brush that you don’t use for mixing and application. If you don’t have one and you’re as frugal as I am, you can either find or buy a never used paint brush.
Then you simply brush it onto your face. For cleansing, you can start massaging the concoction immediately with your hands or a konjac sponge. And for a mask? Leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes, and then rinse.
Clays for every face type
You can customize your facial cleansing grains, based off of your needs, with the clay that you choose to use in it. These are the four most common types of clays that are found all over the market, but there is a ton more healing clays out there to choose from too!
Kaolin Clay (a.k.a. white cosmetic clay) – One of the most common and versatile clays used in cosmetic applications, white kaolin clay is in just about everything from body powders and dry shampoos to deodorant and face masks. White kaolin clay is the perfect choice for sensitive skin types when other clays are too harsh.
Rhassoul Clay – Rhassoul clay is usually mined from the Atlas mountains in Morocco. It contains higher percentages of silica, magnesium, potassium, and calcium than other clays. One of the most luxurious clays, rhassoul clay is used in most high-end spas around the world and is great for all skin types.
Bentonite Clay – Rich in bone feeding minerals such as calcium and potassium, bentonite clay is a fabulous non-toxic teeth cleaner, facial mask, and even hair mask! Not only can you take bentonite clayinternally for detoxifying purposes, but the high mineral content that this clay contains also helps to re-mineralize the teeth! Bentonite clayis great for all skin types NOTE: Do not house this in anything metal (including the lid) or use metal utensils when using bentonite clay. Bentonite clay is negatively charged (the reason it’s able to absorb and purify toxins in the body) and when it touches metal, the positive charge deactivates some of its amazing benefits.
French Green Clay – French green clay is high in minerals as well as decomposed plant matter (the reason French Green Clay is green!), giving your skin a large drink in mineral magic. Used extensively for its extremely absorbent powers, French Green Clay is great for use on acne/oily skin types helping to tighten pores and soak up oils.
Dry ingredients for a beautiful face
There is a large variety of skin nourishing dry ingredients that can be used in facial cleansing grains and each one has their own healing properties that benefit different types of skin! Seriously everything from what kind of clay you choose to fruit/veggie powders, to herbs, and anything else you can think of in between.
- Dried Fruit/Vegetable Powders – These are a few good ones to grind up and use: blueberry, raspberry, strawberry, mango, peach, orange peel, lemon peel, lime peel, pumpkin, mixed berry, carrot, banana, elderberry, camu camu, amla, mangosteen, acai, acerola, pomegranate, moringa, goji berries, coconut, etc.
- Seaweed Powders – Chock full of vitamins and minerals, seaweed is ultra moisturizing to the skin and has long been used by natives to heal wounds of all sorts. Seaweed is well known for its ability to combat acne.
- Oatmeal– Extra gentle and great for all skin types including those with sensitive skin, oatmeal is very healing, nourishing, and softening to the skin and is always in my grains. It’s great at helping to heal almost any skin condition, all the way down to poison ivy/oak/sumac.
- Nuts/Seeds – These are great for adding just a tad more exfoliation, if your grains are feeling too light, though you don’t want to overdo the exfoliation because if it’s not gentle, then it shouldn’t be used daily. Nuts and seed have many different wonderful vitamins and minerals that are great for your skin. Many nuts and seeds contain a certain percentage oils too, so they can be very moisturizing and repairing to your skin.
- Powdered Milks – To get that uber softening experience, adding powdered milks are a must. You can choose from many different powdered milks too, such as coconut, goats milk, or organic cow’s milk.
- Herbs – Some great herbs to use in cleansing grains are: lemonbalm, rosehips, hibiscus, rose, lavender, chamomile, oatstraw, activated charcoal, flax, horsetail, nettle, raspberry leaf, cacao, etc.
Bee Happy Essentials crafts three “3-in-1” Cleanser+Exfoliator+Mask facial grains.
“Glow” is crafted with turmeric, powdered goats milk, cinnamon, bentonite clay and colloidal oatmeal. This blend helps lighten the appearance of acne scarring, evens skin tone, and helps reduce pore size. Also great for blemishes, blackheads, dark spots, hyper-pigmentation and other minor skin conditions.
“Detox” is a blend of activated charcoal, powdered goats milk, bentonite clay and baking soda. Our activated charcoal clay mask is the ultimate detoxifier for your face. Sodium Bicarbonate (baking soda) is the secret ingredient. This ingredient not only acts as a cleanser but also removes dead skin cells. It also helps with scars and acne. Sodium Bicarbonate regulates the pH level of the skin and helps in healing breakouts.
“Tender” is a gentle combination of the luxurious Moroccan Ghassoal clay, powdered goats milk and colloidal oatmeal. This luxurious clay mined in fertile Atlas mountains of Morocco and has been used for over 12 centuries by population in North Africa, Europe and Middle East. It is mild enough for all skin types, even sensitive skin. In addition to pulling excess oils and toxins from the skin, it also adds gentle exfoliating and polishing properties to the mask, to help bring out a fresher, younger-looking complexion.