Activated charcoal is just overly burned charcoal, but it is used in air filters and gas masks to purify air, and it is also used internally to help digestion and absorb toxins in the case of accidental poisoning. The porous nature of activated charcoal can also be used in a facial mask to cleanse skin of toxins, clear up acne, and make the skin feel smoother and softer.

Grind the charcoal tablets in a coffee grinder (clean the grinder well before and after) or place the tablets between two sheets of paper and smash them with a rolling pin or other implement.

Mix all ingredients in a bowl, stirring until the salt is dissolved.

Rinse your face and neck and pat dry. Apply the mask to your face and neck in a thin, even layer. Let it dry for 10 to 15 minutes.

Rinse your face well with warm water. Any leftover mask can be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days.


  • Activated charcoal can be purchased at most health food stores and at some drug stores. It is mostly sold in capsule form, but it can also be found in powder form. For an even easier mask, just mix equal parts powdered activated charcoal with your favorite rinse-off (not peel-off) mask. Use once a week to keep your skin in great condition.