Without a doubt, everyone should practice self-care. Self-care can be expressed in many forms when you take the time to address your physical, mental, and emotional health. These days (facial) sheet masks and cleansing masks are the epitomai of at-home self-care. While we agree that everyone should practice self-care, many facial products negatively impact our oceans. This DIY Clay Mask project brings awareness to one issue surrounding the environmental impacts of the cosmetic industry!
Microplastics are a huge problem facing oceans around the world. Microplastics are pieces of plastic (less than 5 mm in size) that are carried into the marine environment. Many aquatic species mistake them for algae or plankton, causing these plastics to enter the food chain and accumulate to toxic levels higher up the food chain. In addition, these plastics can disrupt water-treatment filtration processes.
Source: The Ocean Cleanup
Microplastics are defined as plastic matter that is less than 5mm in size
Microplastics enter the marine environment due to the fragmentation of other larger plastics, or directly as a result of personal care products, like facial scrubs.
Microbeads are a notorious form of microplastics that are often less than 1mm.
In June 2016, the Government of Canada officially listed "microbeads" as toxic substances.
As of July 2018, the Government of Canada banned the manufacturing and import of all products that contain plastic microbeads.
Many cosmetic products such as face masks, scrubs, and cleansers have microbeads or synthetic exfoliants. Such products are marketed (compared to those without) to have superior abilities at cleansing pores. Currently, microbeads are banned in Canada, however, these products are likely still found in households around the country!
We hope this DIY Clay Mask project inspires you to learn more about the problems with microbeads and microplastics.
Check out these helpful resources to expand your knowledge:
You will need...
Activated Charcoal Powder
A small mixing bowl
In a small bowl, mix 1 TBSP of bentonite clay with 1tsp activated charcoal powder. THAT'S IT.
If you don’t have activated charcoal, not to worry! Just mix 1 TBSP of clay with 2 TBSP water, add water as needed and mix until smooth.
no really, thats it
Apply a thin layer to your face and let dry (about 5-7 minutes)
Wash off with warm water. And enjoy the feeling of freshness!
TIPS AND TRICKS
Get your ingredients at your local bulk store to make it a zero-waste project!
You can decorate your jar using some upcycled fabric and give your DIY face mask as a gift :)
Scale your recipe up to make as much or little mask as needed, use the ratio of 4 parts clay, 1 part activated charcoal, and since the charcoal is optional, feel free to just use the clay!
Want more of an exfoliant mask? Try mixing one part baking soda one part water, and gently scrub onto your face in circular motions.
Making your own personal care products not only reduces the toxins and pollutants in the oceans but also in your body! Many cosmetics contain carcinogens such as parabens and phthalates, so by making your own products with natural ingredients you are avoiding these cancer-causing compounds!