Charcoal Face Masks: Everything You Need To Know Before Trying Them

Written by Aaron Guldager — August 17, 2017

Charcoal Face Masks: Everything You Need To Know Before Trying Them

Like the Korean face mask, the charcoal face mask is making its rounds through social media. It’s growing in popularity as the new, go-to solution for all your skin woes. Simply apply the mask to your face, wait for it to harden, then peel it off for 100% smoother, more radiant skin. But the realities of this product are actually closer to 10% healthy skin, 45% skin damage, and 45% pain and suffering. That’s not a good ratio at all!

ingredients for charcoal face masks

That said, there are benefits to using charcoal products in your daily routine but the charcoal face mask probably isn’t the best solution to start. In this article, SiO Beauty’s experts will investigate the fact and fiction that surrounds this newest craze. In the sections to follow, we’ll show you:

  • The benefits of charcoal
  • The promises those charcoal face masks make
  • What’s really going on when you peel off a charcoal face mask (and why it’s so bad)
  • A more effective and less-painful alternative

That’s right, there is a better, less-painful alternative. You don’t have to suffer through the agonizing “peel-and-cry” process any longer. But before we get to that, let’s learn what we can about what’s really going on with the charcoal face mask that everyone is talking about.

The Benefits Of Charcoal

charcoal used in face masks

Even though charcoal face masks might not be the best solution to your skin problems, the main ingredient—charcoal—does have some benefits. First, though, we need to make it clear that the charcoal in question isn’t the stuff you put in your barbecue grill. The charcoal used for skin care is what’s known as activated charcoal. It just means it has been treated to increase its absorbency. And activated charcoal isn’t anything new—it’s been around for years. In fact, it got its start in the emergency room as a treatment for accidental poisonings and overdoses. In this case, the charcoal absorbs the foreign substance before it has a chance to enter the bloodstream.

Activated charcoal can be used in a similar way just by spreading it on your skin. The charcoal first draws bacteria, toxins, chemicals, dirt, oil, and other micro-particles to the surface of the skin. It then absorbs those foreign substances and carries them away when you rinse the charcoal off your face.

Unlike other masks, with charcoal face masks, you don’t wash them off, you rip them off. And despite the lofty claims these masks make (which we’ll discuss next), what happens when you peel off a charcoal face mask is less than desirable.

The Promises That Charcoal Face Masks Make

charcoal face mask ingredients

Like the pore strips that came before them, charcoal face masks promise to:

  • Cleanse pores
  • Absorb oil
  • Exfoliate
  • Remove blackheads and dirt
  • Leave your skin cleaner, healthier, and smoother

Don’t get us wrong. We’re not saying that these claims are false. Face masks absorb oil, dirt, and toxins and cleanse pores because of the presence of activated charcoal. The face masks also remove blackheads and exfoliate your skin thanks to the active ingredients in them.

But the problem is not what the charcoal mask does, but the way it does it. Simply put, the process REALLY hurts. Most masks even say this right on the bottle. But products and practices that cause pain on the skin of your face, neck, and chest are not good. Pain means that something is wrong and here’s what actually happens.

What’s Really Going On When You Peel Off A Charcoal Face Mask

charcoal face mask on woman

As discussed, the charcoal face mask does absorb oil and remove dead skin cells. But it does this in an extremely aggressive way that can actually damage your skin. First, the mask removes all the natural oils that sit on the surface of your skin. And we mean ALL the natural oils. “That’s great!” you say. Wrong! Those oils act as a barrier that protects your skin from dust, bacteria, dirt, UV rays—anything from the outside that can harm your skin. When you rip off that charcoal mask, you’re exposing your skin to all kinds of nasty stuff in the air around you.

And that’s not the worst of it. When the mask dries, it adheres to everything on your face. And we mean EVERYTHING. Sure it gets the dirt, but it also gets the hair, the top layer of skin (the stratum corneum), and even sebaceous filaments (often mistaken as blackheads). Just to reinforce the point, sebaceous filaments, like the natural oils, are there to protect your skin from harmful bacteria floating around in your environment. So, when you rip off a charcoal face mask, you are essentially ripping off your top layer of skin and everything that is there to protect the deeper layers. Ouch!

Thankfully, there is a better, less painful way to happy, healthy, smooth, wrinkle-free skin.  

The Better, Less-Painful Alternative To Charcoal Face Masks

While the more effective and less painful alternative to the charcoal face mask may have a few more steps, it doesn’t take up any more of your time. That’s because the bulk of the process occurs while you sleep. Here is what you need to know:

Wear A Silicone Patch While You Sleep

Wearing a silicone patch while you sleep is truly the best way to correct existing wrinkles and it also helps prevent new wrinkles from developing. The silicone patch treats and smooths by creating a microclimate between itself and the wearer’s skin. This microclimate draws moisture from the deeper layers of skin and brings it to the surface of the skin, thereby plumping it. 

When the patches are worn while you sleep, it’s like soaking your skin in moisture for eight to ten hours. When you wake in the morning, skin is plumper, lines and wrinkles are less pronounced, and your skin is fully hydrated.

SiO Beauty’s silicone patches come in five unique shapes for targeted healing:

When compared to the charcoal face mask, the difference is obvious. SiO’s skin patches are not messy, easy to apply and remove, and don’t cause any pain. They improve the appearance of wrinkled skin better than any mask ever could. And because they are reusable up to ten times, SiO’s skin patches are priced competitively to that tube of charcoal face mask you’ve been contemplating.


Charcoal face mask. Everything you need to know before trying them - This at home skincare treatment absorbs oil, dirt, and toxins, cleanses and reduce pores on face because of the presence of activated charcoal. The face masks also remove blackheads and exfoliate your skin. #siobeauty #facemask #skincarediy #beautytips #charcoal #naturalskincare