Recently, I decided it was time to get serious about healing my skin. You see, I’ve struggled with acne since I was a teenager. It got better and worse, mostly “better” as an adult, but then when my hormones went nuts postpartum last year and we were exposed to mold, it flared worse than it’s been in years. Although I finally got it to stop breaking out much and begin healing, I’m still dealing with a lot of redness and some scars and marks that won’t disappear, as well as the last of the spots healing.
What I’ve been doing is helping — oil cleansing and my acne salve — but it’s not enough. My skin has been damaged by the long-term breakouts and I needed something stronger to help really heal. Hence, the lavender green clay mask. This would be good for people with acne, rosacea, or other scarring as well.
I’ve used bentonite clay as a mask here and there, which is great for general use. I always have it around. But, it’s not really for healing. French green clay, on the other hand, is meant for healing skin specifically. It’s rich in several important mineral oxides, magnesium, calcium, potassium, dolomite, silica, manganese, phosporous, silicon, copper, and selenium. It also contains decomposed plant matter and volcanic ash. The clay absorbs and adsorbs (draws to itself) all of the junk in the skin, and helps to start the healing process. Some sources even note that it has anti-bacterial properties (and acne can be caused or worsened by bacteria).
I paired this clay with lavender, which is also known to soothe and promote healing. This is a very simple combination to speed the healing process. The mask itself is also very easy to prepare, with only three ingredients!
Lavender Green Clay Mask
Step 1: Mix the water and lavender buds together in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and remove from the heat.
Step 2: Allow this mixture to steep for 20 – 30 minutes (it’s okay to leave overnight if you’re busy; I did).
Step 3: Strain the lavender mixture.
Step 4: In a small bowl, mix the lavender “tea” with the clay until smooth. It will be thinner/soupier than a normal mask — don’t add more clay. It will thicken over the next few hours.
Step 5: Pour the mixture into an 8-oz. glass jar. Store it this way with a lid on it to keep it from drying out.
Using Your Mask
Since I’m trying to heal my skin, I am using it daily for a little while (a week or so). Then every couple of days, and eventually just once a week. If you are just trying to keep your skin healthy, you can use it just once a week. This is what I do to use it.
First, dip a wash cloth in hot water. Place it over your face and leave it for a minute, to help “steam” your face and open your pores. Then pat gently to get your skin wet.
Smear a small amount of the mask on your face, avoiding your eyes and mouth. Leave it on for 10 – 15 minutes. If it’s your first time using it, you might leave it less than that. I found that while bentonite clay doesn’t really do much to my skin, this green clay makes it throb and it gets itchy and sore. It’s very different.
Finally, use your wash cloth with warm water to remove the mask and exfoliate gently while you do. Pat with warm water, then switch to cold water and pat again to close your pores.
I follow the mask — which dries out my skin a bit — with this homemade acne salve. My skin tends to be really red and inflamed for 20 – 30 minutes after removing the mask (again, different from bentonite clay). I figure this is helping it heal, because each day I see small improvements, after the redness goes away!
I hope this is as helpful for you as it is for me!
Have you struggled with acne or problem skin?
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