Being rich in minerals and known for their healing powers, clays are often used in skincare and cosmetics, and for improving digestion. However, when it comes to adding cosmetic clays to your skincare routine, there are so many different types and colors to choose from. Unlike most types of clay that can be drying for the skin, rose clay is gentle enough so that it purifies the skin while also providing hydration and soothing. That being said, in this article we’ll explore rose clay benefits, and discuss how is it different from other types of clays.
Firstly, clay is a very fine-grained mineral substance that occurs naturally all over the world. In fact, there are several different types of natural clays used in skincare, which differ in mineral content, structure, origin and variety of colors. Interestingly enough, the color of the clay depends on the concentration of the minerals that certain clay contains.
In addition to having different mineral properties, various clays also have different level of absorbency. In other words, more absorbent clays are more drying and work better for oily, acne-prone or combination skin. While less absorbent clays are more gentle and work better for dry, mature or sensitive skin. If you are interested, the overview of different types of clays is at the end of this article.
At a glance:
What Is Rose Clay?
To begin with, rose clay is also known as pink clay, and these two terms can be used interchangeably. This naturally occurring clay received its name due the color – rose or pink, which ranges from pale pink to deep purple. In fact, the hue of the color depends on the concentration of iron oxide. For example, rose clay that is pale pink in color has lower percentage of iron oxide, which makes it less absorbent.
Rose clay is one of the most gentle clays. Since it’s non-drying and mild, it is recommended for dry, dehydrated, troubled and sensitive skin.
To point out, the three most commonly used types of rose (pink) clay are French rose clay, Australian pink clay, and rose/pink kaolin clay. All these clays have fine texture, and similar mineral composition and benefits, however they differ slightly in the concentration of the minerals.
French Pink (Rose) Clay. Harvested in southern France, this clay is a combination of white and red clays. Rich in kaolinite, iron, illite, montmorillonte and calcite, this clay helps to stimulate blood circulation, and improve skin tone.
Australian Pink Clay. Just as name suggests it, this clay is harvested in Australia and considered as one of the most pure clays. It is rich in silica, magnesium, zinc, selenium and calcium, which have strong healing and anti-inflammatory properties.
Rose/Pink Kaolin Clay. This clay is made by mixing white and red kaolin, and combines properties of both of these kaolin clays. Since white kaolin is great for sensitive dry skin and red kaolin is great for oily skin types, rose/pink kaolin will benefit the most those with combination skin and for balancing oil production.
Benefits Of Using Rose (Pink) Clay
In general, clays are commonly used in skincare due to their highly absorbent and therapeutic properties. For example, clay is a popular ingredient used for making facial masks, masks for hair, dry shampoo, soap, bath bombs, and can be added to baths for mineral soaks, etc. However, rose clay in particular is also known for its skin soothing and balancing properties. Additionally, this gentle clay has been used in wound healing since it has ability to improve cell renewal. So as you can see, rose clay benefits have a wide range of applications in skin care:
- Ideal for sensitive and dry skin
- Reduces irritation
- Soothes inflammation
- Reduces signs of acne
- Purifies skin (targets impurities)
- Minimizes blackheads
- Balances complexion
- Improves cell renewal
- Increases skin elasticity
- Replenishes natural minerals
- Locks in moisture
- Provides mild exfoliation
Even though rose clay benefits the most dry and sensitive skin, people with other skin types can use it as well. For instance, those with oily and acne prone skin can use this clay to sooth inflamed skin, and decongest pores without drying out the skin (which causes more oil production). On the other hand, those with mature and dehydrated skin will benefit from a more balanced and well nourished skin after using rose clay. Check out these highly rated and effective rose clay products curated by SkinPerception.com.
Best Pink/Rose Clay Products
Sand & Sky Australian Pink Clay Mask
One of the most trendy luxurious clay masks on the market! This 4-in-1 rose clay mask deeply cleanses, refines pores, brightens complexion and invigorates. In addition to nourishing pink clay, it also includes kelp, witch hazel, vitamin A, mangosteen, pomegranate, kakadu plum, and antioxidants. Comes with free applicator brush.
Skinbery Australian Pink Clay Face Mask
Detoxifying and brightening face mask with vitamin C, A & E, seaweed, aloe vera gel, and lactic acid. It draws out impurities, refines pores, reduces inflammation, and reveals smoother flawless skin. Can be used by all skin types. Moreover, it’s budget friendly and long lasting!
Origins Original Skin Retexturizing Mask
This 2-in-1 facial mask with Mediterranean rose clay, willowherb and algae not only purifies the skin but also gently exfoliates with jojoba beads, improves skin texture, and reveals glowing skin. And its floral essential oil scent is very pleasant! Best for normal, combination and oily skin types.
Wyld Skincare Clay Konjac Sponge
This gently exfoliating 100% natural konjac sponge is infused with French pink clay, and is a great addition for cleansing dry, dehydrated, sensitive and normal skin. It gently purifies and soothes while also promoting healthy complexion.
Herbivore Pink Clay Soap Bar
All-natural rejuvenating soap handcrafted with French rose clay, and a blend of coconut, olive and sustainable palm oils. The added essential oils of geranium and blood orange help to smooth skin texture and balance oil production. Great for all skin types, especially sensitive, dry and dull.
Andalou Naturals Marula Oil & Purple Clay Mask
Revolution Skincare Pink Clay Mask
Detoxifying and soothing clay face mask with seaweed, witch hazel, citric acid, and aloe. Not only it absorbs excess oil and impurities, but also moisturizes and soothes troubled skin.
Related: Natural toner for sensitive skin.
Rose (Pink) Clay Powders
In addition to purchasing already prepared clay masks, you can purchase dry powdered clay. To clarify, dry clay mixtures are free of stabilizers and preservatives, and are great multi-purpose products. By simply adding lukewarm water to the dry clay you can make homemade products like face mask, hair mask, soap or body soak. Moreover, dry clay powders usually cost less than pre-made masks, and are great addition to diy skincare.
- Mixing Tool Kit (at amazon.com), includes mask bowl, spatula, silicone brush, gauges, puff.
- Australian Pastel Pink Clay (8 oz. jar from amazon.com), pure clay.
- MD Herbals French Pink Clay Powder (8 oz. bag at amazon.com), pure clay.
- Terra Beauty Bars Rose Clay Face Mask powder ($17, 2 oz. jar at ulta.com), rose clay+ white kaolin clay, coconut milk, rose petal powder.
Different Types Of Clay
According to the clinical study on clay face masks, not only are clays effective in absorbing excess oils, but also they have the ability to draw out toxins, bacteria and viruses, and gently exfoliate dead skin cells. In fact, there are several different types of clay used in skincare, which differ in mineral properties, origin and natural color. Even though all cosmetic clays have sebum absorbing properties, they differ greatly in the level of absorbency. Moreover, each clay has a specific indication, and will work better for a certain skin type and skin condition.
Also known as Indian healing clay or montmorillonite, this type of healing clay is derived from aged volcanic ash beds of different origin. In particular, 70% of the worlds supply comes from Wyoming, and the rest is harvested in Greece, Japan, Italy, Brazil, etc. It usually has light grayish color, but can also appear in different color hues depending on the mineral composition and the origin. To point out, this clay is detoxifying, and has strong absorbing properties. It is considered a great option for those with clogged pores, acne-prone, blemish-prone and oily skin. This clay draws out toxins and excess of natural oil (sebum), deeply cleanses, purifies, and replenishes vitamins and minerals within skin.
Known as China clay, kaolin is the most common cosmetic clay. It has gentle exfoliating properties, mild absorption properties, and is less drying than other types of clays. Since this clay is commonly occurring in nature, it can be harvested anywhere in the world. In general, depending on mineral composition, kaolin comes in few different colors including white, grey, pink, yellow and green:
- White clay – universal and mild kaolin clay that is good for all skin types, especially mature and normal skin. It gently exfoliates skin, unclogs pores, draws out excess oil, clears complexion, and doesn’t dry out the skin.
- Pink (rose) kaolin is rich in iron and magnesium, and is made by mixing white and red kaolin. Rose kaolin clay benefits those with combination and sensitive skin due to its soothing, anti-inflammatory and balancing properties.
- Green kaolin is rich in iron oxide and plant matter, and is great for improving skin tone and more glowing complexion.
Related: Read more about kaolin clay skin benefits >>
French Green Clay
This clay is also know as “illite”. Not only it is purifying, but also it helps to balance skin’s pH levels. In addition, French green clay unclogs pores, absorbs excess oil, deeply cleanses, stimulates cell regeneration, and has antibacterial properties. In comparison to kaolin, this clay has stronger absorption properties, and is great for people with oily, combination and acne-prone skin. However, it has milder absorption properties than bentonite clays.
Fuller's Earth Clay
This type of clay is very potent and it also has mild skin lightening properties. Fuller’s earth clay is similar to bentonite clay and is very absorbent. Since it can be drying for skin, it is recommended for oily, congested and acne-prone skin.
Also known as Ghassoul or red Moroccan clay. It is dark red or brown color volcanic clay that comes from Atlas Mountains in Morocco, and is rich in magnesium, silica, potassium, and iron. Rhassoul is non-drying milder red clay that has soothing properties, and can be used by all skin types, especially those with aging and dry skin.
To sum up, different types of clays have different mineral properties and different level of oil absorbing properties. For example, clays like bentonite, French green clay and Fuller’s earth clay can be drying to the skin as they have strong absorbing properties, and are recommended for oily, combination or acne-prone skin.
On the other hand, those with dry, sensitive or mature skin will benefit more from white and pink kaolin clays or Rhassoul clay, which are less drying. Also, rose clay is the most gentle and soothing out of all clays, which makes it a great option for those with sensitive or irritated skin. Since rose clay benefits also include wound healing and reducing inflammation and skin irritation, it is ideal for troubled skin.
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