Is Charcoal Good for Your Skin?

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TL;DR: Yup, charcoal is surprisingly good for your mug. Activated charcoal is the secret weapon in a lot of Black Wolf products because it detoxifies skin and shrinks pores. 

On the list of the best skin care ingredients, one seems more confusing than the rest, and that’s charcoal. We admit it: the idea of rubbing charcoal all over the face seems weird. No one wants to look like they just walked out of Ash Wednesday service after washing their face, am I right? But once you get down to the nitty gritty, you realize that charcoal isn’t that weird at all, and it can actually whip even seriously problematic skin into shape.

Shop Our Award-Winning Charcoal Face Wash

What Is Charcoal in Skin Care?

Let’s start with the basics. What even is charcoal when it’s in your skin care products? The most important thing to know is that the charcoal that’s in your face wash isn’t the same as the kind you use to grill burgers in the backyard, so don’t go raiding the Char-Griller. Typically, when you see this ingredient listed on your products in your shower, it’s referring to activated charcoal. 

What is activated charcoal? Also known as activated carbon, activated charcoal is a substance made from burning a carbon material like coconut shells, peat, olive pits, sawdust or wood, which leaves behind a highly porous fine black powder. The process also purifies the charcoal so it’s safe for use on your skin. While it’s being processed, activated charcoal develops a ton of tiny pores all over it, which makes it work amazingly well at adhering and binding to other surfaces. 

Since it’s so porous and can bind to other substances, activated charcoal is great at detoxifying by pulling out dirt, dead skin cells, bacteria and odors. Its chemical structure is also beneficial because it carries a negative electrical charge, which allows it to pull positively charged toxins and gases out of the pores. It’s kind of like those little magnetic flakes in an Etch-a-Sketch. 

What Activated Charcoal Can Do for Your Skin

So now that we understand what the stuff is, it’s time to learn about what it can do for you. Because of its ability to purge even microscopic toxins and gases from deep within the skin, charcoal has been added to a ton of amazing skin care products (see: our Activated Charcoal Face Wash and Activated Charcoal Mask). Here are some specific reasons why:

Charcoal soap
  • It detoxifies pores, clearing out toxins, debris and other unwanted impurities that can lead to acne and blackheads. 
  • It draws out more microparticles and brings them to the surface of the skin. When paired with gentle cleaning agents and chemical exfoliators like salicylic acid, this can leave your skin way cleaner than before.
  • It shrinks pores, which helps your skin appear cleaner and clearer.
  • It absorbs odors. Not that your skin smells bad or anything, but it’s kind of nice to know it wouldn’t even if it did, ya know?

How to Use Charcoal Skin Care Products

If you grapple with stubborn zits or blackheads, you’re going to want to introduce an activated charcoal face wash into your routine. Ours is the MVP because it combines detoxifying activated charcoal with salicylic acid, which is an oil-soluble chemical exfoliator that takes no s**t from zits.

Most dudes don’t just have acne on the face, so you should also use an activated charcoal body wash on the back, butt, shoulders and arms to clear away blemishes all over your body. For best results, use both of these products twice a day and follow up with a good moisturizer to keep the hydration alive.

Shop Our Detoxifying Charcoal Mask activated charcoal powder

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Keep It Simple, Guys

Want to see the benefits of activated charcoal for yourself? We make it easy with our men’s skin care bundles featuring everything you need to overhaul your shower in support of clear skin. Grab a bundle to create a charcoal-infused routine that doesn’t require a ton of time or energy.


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