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The Wonders Of Colloidal Oatmeal & Kaolin Clay

Becky De Graaf colloidal oatmeal kaolin clay soap

woman using soap in bath

Build Your Own Triple-Scented Bath Soap

Perhaps you've already discovered the wide range of ready-made organic bath soaps offered by Becky's Tallow Treasures. Maybe you have a favorite – say the lavender, the lemongrass, or the black licorice. Or perhaps you prefer to try a different one each time around: this month vanilla, next month sandalwood, and frankincense for special occasions.

But did you know that Becky's also gives you the option to create your own custom-made soap? It's true! You can have fun and indulge your creative energy by selecting the specific ingredients used to make the bars of soap – which then make for great gifts or a special treat for yourself :)

How does this work? First, you get to choose up to three among 44 possible essential oils for inclusion in your "triple-scented" soap. The myriad possibilities include sandalwood, ylang ylang, frankincense, blood orange, clary sage, cedarwood, peppermint; lemongrass, tea tree, star anise, vanilla – and many more!

Next, you select the liquid base – water or organic goat milk -- to be used in the creation of your personalized soap. And finally, if you'd like, you can request the addition of health-enhancing ingredients such as colloidal oatmeal, shredded luffa, ground coffee, activated charcoal, or kaolin clay. How awesome is that?!

In a previous post, we described the many benefits of activated charcoal. Here we'll have a closer look at colloidal oatmeal and kaolin clay – exploring reasons why these two ingredients work wonderfully in a bath soap.

What Is Kaolin Clay?

Kaolin clay – also known as white clay, kaolinite, China clay, or French green clay – is composed primarily of the mineral kaolinite: hence its name "kaolin." Though this clay is oftentimes bright white in color, it can also have a pinkish hue (from iron oxide) or be a bit green (from decomposing plant material). All three colors of kaolin clay are equally excellent, in terms of their skin benefits.

Because of its worldwide availability and relative abundance, kaolin clay was used by many ancient peoples to create pottery and is still used widely for this purpose. It has also long been renowned for its health and beauty-enhancing qualities, particularly when applied directly to the skin. While we're all for the creation of beautiful pottery, here we'll be focusing instead on the skin benefits and healing qualities of kaolin clay.

Why Kaolin Clay Is Great For Your Skin

kaolin clay

As you perhaps have already noticed, kaolin clay is a frequent ingredient in face masks, cleansers, and various other cosmetic products. Its many skin-nourishing attributes also make it a great ingredient for a bath soap. So let's have a closer look at the specific ways that kaolin clay can make your skin happy. Kaolin clay …

1. Cleanses & Detoxifies. Kaolin clay has the power to pull dirt and other impurities out of the skin pores, gently cleansing without causing redness.  

2. Exfoliates. The crystals found naturally in kaolin clay are great for exfoliating dead or damaged skin cells and other debris from the surface of the skin.

3. Works As A Natural Mask. When mixed with water, kaolin clay forms into a lovely smooth paste, which can easily be applied as a mask.

4. Absorbs Excess Oil. Because kaolin clay is super-absorbent, it effortlessly draws excess oil out of the skin and, over time, helps to balance the skin's oil production levels.

5. Tones & Stimulates. When used long-term, kaolin clay creates a beautifully tightened and toned quality to the skin.

6. Is Gentle As Well As Healing. In spite of its powerful healing qualities, kaolin clay is very gentle. It can be used on any skin type, and by people who have sensitivities to harsh skin products.

Is it really any surprise – given these excellent attributes – that kaolin clay has long been a favorite for enhancing skin health and beauty? And it's these same qualities that make it an awesome addition to a bath soap bar – which is why we make it available, here at Becky's Tallow Treasures, as one of our ingredients.

What is Colloidal Oatmeal?

When oatmeal is finely ground and then suspended in liquid, it's known as colloidal oatmeal. But what's the reason for doing such a thing? This form of oatmeal is easily absorbed into the skin, which allows its soothing and protecting benefits to become fully activated. When applied topically, colloidal oatmeal attracts moisture to the skin and locks it in via the protective barrier that is formed. Overall, it's a wonderfully soothing and nourishing addition to any skincare product.

The Skin Benefits Of Colloidal Oatmeal

The particular ingredients in colloidal oatmeal that account for its healing qualities for our skin include:

  • Avenacins compounds - that have antifungal properties;
  • Saponins - which support the cleansing process;
  • Flavonoids - that absorb ultraviolet-A (UVA) rays;
  • Vitamin E – a nourishing anti-inflammatory;  
  • Phenols & starches – which deeply moisturize; and
  • Cellulose & fiber – skin-softening and soothing emollients.

Colloidal oatmeal can be used to resolve the irritation, itching and redness associated with conditions such as eczema and rosacea. It's also effective in treating bug bites, sunburns, poison ivy or oak, and pretty much any other similar skin condition involving inflammation and/or itching –including acne and even chicken pox! According to dermatologist Dr. Rachel Nazarian:

Colloidal oatmeal is a natural anti-inflammatory and rarely causes allergy. Those with incredibly sensitive skin such as eczema and atopic dermatitis can usually find relief and calm their skin by applying colloidal oatmeal lotion or taking baths that contain oatmeal.

The finely-milled oatmeal that, when suspended in water, becomes colloidal oatmeal is easily incorporated into soap bars – and to great benefit. Washing with this kind of soap is a simple way to avail yourself of its many healing qualities. And this is why we offer colloidal oatmeal as another of our ingredients, here at Becky's Tallow Treasures.

The Alchemy, Magic & Medicine Of Soap

So have fun exploring our soap-making laboratory, and with great joie de vivre experimenting with various combinations of ingredients: healing blends of essential oils, combined with colloidal oatmeal or kaolin clay. Become your own soap-making artist, alchemist, master-healer … and watch as your skin says "thank you!" a thousand times over.

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