Curly Haircare Ingredients: 5 Surprising Benefits of Activated Charcoal for Hair Growth
By Jacqueline Samaroo
True: activated charcoal isn’t the most popular hair care ingredient out there. But, there are certain benefits of activated charcoal for hair growth that are really hard to ignore. Read on to explore them!
Activated charcoal is an amazing ingredient that can be found in a wide range of products. Among these are activated charcoal toothpaste, soap with activated charcoal, as well as activated charcoal bleach for hair. When it comes to hair care, activated charcoal hair shampoos, scalp scrubs, and masks are among the items you’ll often see.
Here’s what this article covers:
What Is Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is made from plant material, such as bamboo, coconut shell, and wood. In this way, it is similar to the charcoal you might use in a barbecue grill.
However, for activated charcoal, the material is heated at very high temperatures and treated to give it a high level of microporosity – a very large number of very tiny pores. This sets it apart from barbecue grill charcoal.
Activated charcoal can be made in several different forms, such as powders, granules, and beads. Many of us might be more familiar with its powdered form.
Activated charcoal is also known as activated carbon. It is odorless and tasteless. It is also non-toxic and generally safe to use.
How Does Activated Charcoal Work?
Activated charcoal powder looks very much like any other regular powder, right? But, those little bits of black charcoal powder have an amazing secret – lots and LOTS of tiny pores. These give activated carbon the ability to attract and hold all kinds of particles (a process known as adsorption).
How Is Activated Charcoal Used
Because of how well it traps particles, activated charcoal is frequently used as a way to remove impurities from substances. It is also used to clean surfaces due to the scrubbing action of its particles.
Here are some of the most common uses of activated charcoal.
- Activated charcoal is often used in water filters. It helps to remove heavy metals, chlorine, and impurities from the water.
- Activated charcoal air filters help to remove solid particles, mold, bacteria, odors, and pollutants from the air.
- Activated charcoal is used in medical settings as a way to help remove ingested poisons from the stomach and intestines. Doing this at home with OTC activated charcoal is not advised, however, since hospitals use a much more effective form of activated charcoal.
- Some persons use activated charcoal to treat excess gas and bloating but prolonged use may cause dehydration and constipation.
- Activated charcoal benefits for skin have long been highlighted by many skincare brands. Not only will you find soap with activated charcoal, but there are activated charcoal cleansers, scrubs, and pore strips, as well.
- Thanks to its odor-absorbing ability, you can also find deodorants with activated charcoal in them.
- Some dental care products also claim to take advantage of the benefits of activated charcoal as a whitener. Toothpaste with activated charcoal is said to put the bleaching/lightening properties of activated charcoal to work.
5 Benefits of Activated Charcoal for Hair Growth
The use of activated charcoal for hair growth is directly related to the various activated charcoal benefits for skin. It’s why many activated charcoal hair products focus on scalp care.
Here’s what it does:
1. Detoxifies the hair and scalp
Research shows that activated charcoal can be used in formulations that are intended to draw toxins out to the surface of the skin. These toxins, often from chemical hair care ingredients, adversely affect the health of the scalp and might also lead to other, more serious conditions elsewhere in the body.
2. Deep cleans by removing excess oil, dirt, and flakes
Activated charcoal can soak up excess oil and scrub away flakes caused by dry skin and dandruff. It may also exfoliate dead skin cells, as well as remove dirt and impurities from the pores of the scalp. It has definite benefits for oily scalp and skin and is sometimes used in acne treatments.
3. Soothes itching
Activated charcoal is thought to have antimicrobial properties since these microorganisms are small enough to get caught in its pores. In this way, it may help to create a healthier scalp that is free from the irritation and itching that a microbial infection can cause.
4. Deodorizes the hair and scalp
Impurities and some types of scalp conditions can leave your hair and scalp with an unpleasant smell. Activated charcoal is known for absorbing odors. And, since black charcoal for hair has no scent of its own, it leaves your hair smelling simply clean.
5. Adds volume to hair
Here is a styling benefit of using activated charcoal – in particular dry shampoo with activated charcoal. The dry shampoo powder has a volumizing effect on your hair as it helps to remove oil and grime from your hair and scalp.
Find out more about dry shampoos and how they work, here: Dry Shampoo for Curly Hair? Here Are 6 Amazing Must-Read Points.
4 Activated Charcoal Hair Products
This long-lasting and nourishing charcoal dry shampoo is made with charcoal powder and rice starch, along with grapefruit peel oil and lemon peel oil. It’s lightweight and so will not weigh down your curls but expect it to leave them with a intoxicating citrus scent.
This exfoliating pre-wash contains activated bamboo charcoal and jojoba wax beads. It gently lifts and removes oils, dirt, and impurities from your hair and scalp. If you love using this activated charcoal hair product, there are others in the Not Your Mother’s Restore and Reclaim line you can try, too.
This activated charcoal hair shampoo is good for removing flakes from both dry and oily hair. It soothes itching and irritation and works with all hair types and textures. It’s made with binchotan charcoal, coconut oil, and a blend of tea tree oil and peppermint oil.
This activated charcoal hair mask is specifically made for curly hair. Its ingredients list includes bamboo charcoal, shea butter, tea tree oil, and willow bark extract. It deep conditions hair, giving it a boost of moisture while lifting impurities from the pores.
Do you use any activated charcoal hair products? Tell us about it!