You may have heard of activated charcoal, the beauty super ingredient that’s vaunted for its detoxification properties. Activated bamboo charcoal is more common in the Philippines. When pulverized and steamed, it can absorb up to 100 times its own weight in impurities and toxins.
Japanese Binchotan is made of oak branches that are burned at extremely high temperatures for days before being rapidly cooled. It is commonly used for purifying water, absorbing odors, enhancing blood circulation in a hot bath and deflecting negative ions.
This ingredient isfound in high-end products and drugstore brands. Here are a few items you should stock up on.
Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask
As soon as I put this mask on, it begins to heat up and my face starts to feel tight. Needless to say, this is pretty potent stuff. In addition to activated charcoal made from Japanese bamboo, Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask (P1,500/100 ml) harnesses the benefits of plant extracts like white China clay to absorb environmental toxins, lecithin to dissolve impurities, and yellow sweet clover, which acts as an astringent and decongests pores. Make it a weekly ritual by following it up with a good facial scrub that also contains activated charcoal, like Lush Dark Angels Face and Body Cleanser (P495/100g).
Origins is available at SM Makati.
Lush The Guv’ner Deodorant
Formulated by Lush co-founder Mark Constantine, Lush The Guv’ner Deodorant (P495/80 g) contains an odor-busting blend of sage, lavender and patchouli in a super absorbent charcoal and lycopodium base. It also contains essential oils vetivert oil, rose absolute and geraniol that perfume skin for a lasting effect, while calamine powder is an antiseptic that also cools the skin. The easiest way to apply would be to use an old makeup brush (we’re sure you have one lying around!) and dust on your pits. You can even take it a step further and sprinkle this in your shoes or gym bag to neutralize odors.
Lush isat Glorietta 4, Shangri-La Plaza, Mall of Asia, Alabang Town Center, and Trinoma. Visit www.facebook.com/LushPhilippines.
Colgate Slim Soft Charcoal Toothbrush
I first encountered the activated charcoal toothbrush when I came across Morihata, a chic Japanese design, culture, lifestyle producer and distribution company location in—of all places— Philadelphia. I was surprised to find that Colgate made their own version.
The Slim Soft Charcoal Toothbrush (P114) has bristles that are less than 0.01mm thin, and are infused with activated bamboo charcoal that fights decay-causing bacteria in plaque. They also sell an accompanying Colgate Total Charcoal Deep Clean toothpaste (P137/150 g).
Colgate is available in leading supermarkets and drugstores.
Camaru Naturals Bamboo Charcoal Soap
Along with bamboo charcoal, Camaru Naturals Bamboo Charcoal Soap (P150) contains coconut oil, camellia oil, jojoba oil and rice bran oil to effectively cleanse, unclog pores, and remove impurities and dead skin cells. The bamboo charcoal acts as an antioxidant that is naturally anti-microbial and anti-fungal. Asthis soap is a little drying, I would recommend using it for the body rather than on your face.
Camaru Naturals available at Echo Store in Salcedo Village in Makati, Centris Walk in Quezon City and Podium Mall in Ortigas. Visit www.facebook.com/camarunaturalsphils.