In this article, we will be discussing the topic “how often can I use bentonite clay on my hair ”. We will also be reviewing and discussing some of the major benefits of using the product. Bentonite clay can offer deep moisture to the hair and scalp.
It also deeply cleanses the scalp, removes dead skin cells and toxins, while strengthening the hair and preventing hair loss by clarifying the hair follicles so that they can absorb water, which can contribute to growing thicker, healthy hair.
As clean beauty continues to rise around the globe, consumers who once sought prepackaged items are now looking to take control of what they put on their bodies.
This is taken a step further by those who want to get their hands on DIY methods that are rich in botanicals and benefits.
Hair masking has been one of many entry points for eager concoctors out there, however, there’s been a resurgence in the use of bentonite clay for a variety of concerns.
Keep reading to learn more about bentonite clay, and its benefits for hair, which we will be discussed below in this article on “how often can I use bentonite clay on my hair”.
What Is Bentonite Clay?
Before we go on to answer the question “how often can I use bentonite clay on my hair? ” let’s first take a brief look at what is bentonite clay?
A thick, mud-like substance, bentonite clay is derived from volcanic ash in deep rock deposits from the smectite group.
It has the highest absorption of oil and it is very pliable and soft. It has been a helpful ingredient throughout history due to it being an absorbent aluminum phyllosilicate clay.1
In simpler words, it can get rid of toxins with a negative charge, whether it be through internal or external applications.
The ingredient typically used in the making of bentonite clay is Mineral-rich clay. Some of its major benefits include; Eliminates toxins, dandruff, and dead skin cells removing build-up, and drawing out impurities.
Benefits of Bentonite Clay on Natural Hair
When it comes to hair, bentonite clay has been used in Iran and other places around the world as a go-to deep clarifying cleanser and softener. Some of its benefits include;
Hydrates the hair and scalp: It helps with dry, irritated, or flaking scalps, in addition to conditions including psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis.
Bentonite clay has the ability to clarify without drying out the scalp. It can also create a protective barrier or help heal minor wounds, so you can experience a little relief from itchiness.
Eliminates dandruff: According to Shamban, bentonite clay is negatively charged, and therefore, attracts positive ions in products thus, lifting and removing debris from the scalp and hair.
It is highly beneficial in eliminating dandruff and is also antimicrobial, antibacterial, and anti-fungal.
Strengthens the hair follicle: Not only does it wash out toxins, but bentonite clay also keeps follicles clean and clear while building hair strength and vitality, to eliminate breakage and support the continued growth of healthy, thick, more vibrant hair.
Controls frizz: According to Shamban, bentonite clay can help control frizz. The ingredient benefits the African American population, as their hair has a different composition and is both more delicate and more susceptible to breakage.
How To Use Bentonite Clay On The Hair
Now that you know some of the benefits of using bentonite clay on your hair, which we’ve discussed in this article on how often should i use bentonite clay on my hair, let’s move on to how to use it.
There are different ways of applying bentonite clay to the hair, but there are two that are most common: as a hair mask, or as a substitute for shampoo.
Using Bentonite Clay As A Hair Mask
If you’re after extra moisture for your hair through a hair mask, this recipe is for you. This is applied less often to the hair, which saves you precious time.
The ingredients for a bentonite clay hair mask are;
- Non-metal measuring equipment, bowl, and whisk/spatula
- ½ cup of bentonite clay
- 3 to 9 tablespoons of water
- 6 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons of natural oils (such as coconut oil, castor oil, or olive oil)
It is important to note that the volume of water you will add to the recipe depends on your use of other liquids (oil and vinegar) in the mixture. Both vinegar and oils are optional but are recommended for better results
Directions for use;
- Measure the bentonite clay then transfer to a non-metal bowl
- Add essential oil/s of choice, if using, to the bowl. Mix using a non-metal whisk, spoon, or spatula
- Add apple cider vinegar, if used, to the mixture. Let the mixture rest and aerate for around 15 seconds.
- Add enough water until the consistency of the mixture starts to feel like Greek yogurt.
- Wet your hair and divide it into sections for easier application.
- Get some of the hair masks and apply them to one section at a time, starting from the roots and working your way down the tips. Do this until all sections are covered.
- If the mask starts to harden, spray water onto your hair to keep it damp.
- Roll up your hair and then keep it in place using a shower cap.
- Leave the mask on for around 20 minutes before rinsing.
- Use warm water to rinse out the water. Shampoo can be used to help with the washing.
- Apply conditioner then rinse your hair again.
- Apply the mask sparingly, around once a week.
Using Bentonite Clay As A Cleanser
For that deep cleanse and extra shine, you can actually use bentonite clay for washing your hair instead of shampoo.
The Ingredients for bentonite clay hair cleanser are;
- Non-metal measuring cups, bowl, and spoon
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup of bentonite clay
Directions for use and Application procedure;
- Place all ingredients in a non-metal bowl. Mix using a non-metal spoon or spatula.
- Use the mixture in place of shampoo.
- Let it sit for 3 minutes and then rinse off with water.
- Use as often as you use a shampoo.
Now, while you might feel excited about using bentonite clay for the hair, remember that everything must be done in moderation.
Using the product too often may end up ruining the hair, so we’d like to watch out for that. In that regard, it’s important to know how often you should use bentonite clay on the hair.
Generally, if you have oily hair, it might be alright to use bentonite clay regularly. However, the same isn’t the case for dry hair.
As you know, bentonite clay cleanses the hair and removes excess oil or sebum, along with product build-up.
Using it too much on a dry scalp, which doesn’t produce much oil, may strip it of the oils it needs to keep hydrated. This is a key consideration when determining how often you should use bentonite clay on the hair.
In general, it’s really up to the individual to decide how often a hair mask should be used. That applies to bentonite clay as well.
If you have oily hair, it would be good to start using a bentonite clay mask once a week, and then see how that affects your hair. If you feel that you need to use it more often, then you can do so. Once a week might be enough for people with dry scalps.
However, if you feel that it’s still stripping your hair of too much oil, then you may want to decrease your frequency of use. For the times you will be using a bentonite clay hair mask, though, remember also to keep the mask on for at most 20 minutes.
The ions in bentonite clay can adhere to and remove your hair’s impurities in around 10 to 20 minutes, so that should be enough time. Leaving it longer risks having it harden in your hair, which will make it difficult and messy to remove.
How often can I use Bentonite Clay on my Hair?
Now that we know what bentonite clay is as well as its benefits and how to use it, let now go over to the topic of interest, “how often can I use bentonite clay on my hair ”. Bentonite clay is recommended for natural hair types, to begin with.
It works well with; Apple cider vinegar and other humectants, ingredients like HA, PGA, niacinamide, peptides, oleosomes, ceramides, and lipids.
It should be used at least once a month or as needed. Those with a highly sensitive scalp may want to use with caution and test patch before embarking on a routine.
Bentonite clay can also be harsh on super high porosity hair, and anyone with an oily scalp/hair should avoid it as bentonite clay can cause more oil and weigh down the hair.
More research needs to be done in this specific area (and when it comes to ingestible), but many beauty enthusiasts swear it works. The few scientific journals that are available reaffirm the benefits some may find when using the mask.
However, if you choose to use bentonite, just make sure to do a patch test to avoid adverse reactions.
Major Setbacks of Using Bentonite Clay
Although bentonite clay has been used as an ingestible, there hasn’t been enough scientific evidence to say for sure whether this is a valid way to detoxify. Nor has there been a study that shows bentonite clay ingestion contributes to the health of natural hair.
Like any other supplement, talk to your physician before administering dosages. Some clays or soils can have high levels of harmful germs and heavy metals like lead, arsenic, and mercury.
This is especially important to know if you are going to use bentonite clay as a supplement. But the clay has not been classified as a carcinogen by any regulatory or advisory body carcinogenic when used topically.
Although bentonite clay does contain lead, the trace amounts are minimal (much like it is with common foods people eat on a daily basis like sweet potatoes and carrots).
According to the naturopathic endocrinologist and New York Times best-selling author Alan Glen Christianson, MD, FDA reports found that bentonite clay contains up to 37.5 micrograms of lead per gram, which is the same as parts per million.
Shamban notes that generally, this ingredient is safe and that levels of lead exposure causing damage to the nervous system, kidneys, or other functions would more likely be from ingestion, not dermal absorption.
“There are standards for allowances and there have been warnings issued by the FDA regarding products in the category if levels of lead were found to be in high-risk exposure,” she says.
“Moderate amounts of home care products by reputable hair and skin brands on the market should be fine for home use.”
Despite this, bentonite has been used by countless people for thousands of years without issue. People who are susceptible to lead toxicity should heed caution and check with a medical professional. You can also lookup specific bentonite brands on the FDA’s website.
All things considered, bentonite clay appears to be a safe DIY mask for natural hair. Nevertheless, you still need to know “how often can I use bentonite clay on my hair”.
Every patient should be aware of risks, read the packaging on products and check with their board-certified dermatologist or primary care physician with any questions or concerns.