While we’ve learned that activated charcoal smoothies are a bit of a scam, the black stuff can actually be quite beneficial when it comes to beauty. Charcoal absorbs dirt, toxins and impurities from the skin, leaving you feeling and looking quite fresh. And no, you don’t need to go to your backyard and grab a nugget of charcoal from the barbecue. In fact, please do not do that, because it’s not at all the same thing. Instead, check out these 17 black beauties (one is even for your teeth!), because they’re safe, effective and a gorgeous shade of grey:
BBQ Beauty: 17 charcoal products that will improve your skin
Soap Walla Glycerin Facial/Body Soap BarWhy it works: While charcoal detoxifies, petitgrain and tea tree oils provide antiseptic properties. The combination helps to heal the skin while keeping it soft.
Results: Leaves even the most sensitive skin feeling clean and soft.
Buy it: $14 at eskincarestore.Soap Walla
Bamboo Charcoal Exfoliating Body SpongeWhy it works: The bamboo charcoal draws out impurities, while the textured sponge exfoliates.
Results: Baby soft, clearer looking skin, perfect for skin-baring spring and summer ensembles.
Buy it: $18 at Sephora.Sephora
Bamboo Charcoal Blotting PapersWhy it works: Instead of just absorbing excess oil like normal blotting papers, the charcoal in these ones also absorbs bacteria.
Results: Matte skin and fewer breakouts.
Buy it: $10 at Sephora.Sephora
GlamGlow YouthMud SuperMud Clearing TreatmentWhy it works: GlamGlow is the current leader in banishing blackheads, with this mask rating #1. The combination of charcoal and clay purifies, while a blend of acids balances skin, minimizes pores and helps fade scars and pigmentation.
Results: No blackheads, plus clearer looking skin.
Buy it: $76 at Sephora.GlamGlow
Sumigaki Charcoal ToothpasteWhy it works: While you may not want to look at black teeth while brushing, charcoal toothpaste is supposed to cling to plaque like it does oil and impurities in the skin. But be warned, it may not be as effective as the skincare products.
Results: Whiter teeth.
Buy it: $11 at Amazon.SUmigaki
Bamboo Charcoal Facial SpongeWhy it works: This sponge, made from the root of the Konjac tree, gently exfoliates and refines skin – no cleanser or other products needed. Charcoal adds a toxin-absorbing effect.
Results: Say bye-bye to breakouts and blackheads.
Buy it: $14 at Pure and Simple.Pure and Simple
Charcoal Pore-Minimizing Hydrogel MaskWhy it works: Applied like a paper mask, this hydrogel mask helps remove blackheads and whiteheads with bamboo charcoal.
Results: Blemish-free skin that doesn't feel dry.
Buy it: $10 at Sephora.Boscia
Sea Mud Deep Cleansing BarWhy it works: A combination of mud from the Jordan River for gentle exfoliation, glycerin for hydration and charcoal for detoxifying makes it so much more than your usual bar of soap.
Results: Clean pores and brighter skin.
Buy it: $52 at Sephora. Erno Laszlo
Charcoal CleanseWhy it works: This super affordable, hand-cut charcoal and shea butter soap bar combines moisturizing ingredients with deep cleaning activated bamboo charcoal.
Results: Moisturized, clean skin for about the same amount you'd pay for your usual bar of soap.
Buy it: $4 at Good n Natural.Mountain Sky
Deep Cleansing Charcoal Pore StripsWhy it works: A change from Bioré's usual nose strips, these charcoal-infused pore strips attract and absorb blackheads and dirt.
Results: Clear pores and less oil for 24 hours!
Buy it: $10.50 at Well.ca.Biore
Active Clean Shower GelWhy it works: This multi-use shower gel makes getting clean easy. Use the deep-cleansing activated charcoal formula on your body, face and hair.
Results: Scalp and skin feel clean and look brighter.
Buy it: $5 at Well.caNivea
Skin Diver Active Charcoal body soapWhy it works: This men's product could be just as great for women suffering from bacne. Charcoal pulls out impurities, while clove and wintergreen deodorize the skin.
Results: A clearer body complexion for bathing suit season.
Buy it: $17.50 at Origins.com.Origins
Guv'ner DeodorantWhy it works: Mixed with antibacterial patchouli and odour-fighting sage and lavender, this grey, charcoal deodorant absorbs the stuff that causes B.O.
Results: Lush's strongest deodorant yet, it can also be used for fresh-scented feet.
Buy it: $11 at Lush.Lush
You Snap The WhipWhy it works: This body butter-infused bar of soap isn't all softness and gentle detoxifying. It also contains exfoliating pumice to quickly soften dry, rough skin. Oh, but it smells like blackcurrant and moisturizes with fruit oils.
Results: Glowing, refreshed skin. Leaves even the most sensitive skin feeling clean and soft.
Buy it: $11 at Lush.Lush
Impurities Eliminating ScrubWhy it works: This exfoliating scrub uses charcoal to draw out impurities for an extra deep clean.
Results: Smooth skin that looks and feels cleaner.
Buy it: $12 at Well.ca.Garnier
Revitalizing Black Hydration GelWhy it works:This is black gel moisturizer doesn't leave any colour behind but charcoal helps detoxify the skin while artichoke leaf extract improves elasticity, glycolic acid clarifies the complexion and vitamin C brightens.
Results: This gel feels cool and skin immediately looks brighter.
Buy it: $47 at SephoraBoscia
Active Charcoal Mask To Clear PoresWhy it works:A deep-cleansing formula of charcoal and clay clears out pores, and detoxifies and dissolves impurities.
Results: More radiant skin, fewer black heads.
Buy it: $29 at SephoraOrigins