Mom's Guide to an Exquisite Complexion

Herbal Acne Face Mask 

An Original Homemade Skin Care Recipe

Incredible acne face mask, combing botanicals, herbs from around the world, and charcoal powder to naturally lift dirt from deep in your pores and lift it to the surface, while deeply cleansing your skin.

About this Acne Face Mask

I stumbled across these herbs when I was trying to develop my own shampoo. I didn't want to use soap, because it dries out your skin and hair. I wanted something completely natural, something that comes from nature to my skin unchanged.

The more you read my homemade skin care recipes, you'll find that all of my products use ingredients that come directly from nature without any processing.

Anything that is good for your skin will also be good for your hair, and vise-versa. Skin and hair are both made of collagen, so they can be treated with the same ingredients.

This recipe is almost identical to my deep pore cleanser recipe. There are two main differences. This acne face mask recipe does not have baking soda in it, because baking soda can be a little tough on the skin when it's sitting there for a while, like in a mask. 

Secondly, this mask has bentonite healing clay in it, which allows the mask to rejuvenate your skin, while the other ingredients obliterate any acne.

Like the deep pore cleanser, this mask was inspired due to the popularity of the charcoal peel-off mask.

If you noticed in many of the videos with the peel-off mask, people were talking about how painful it was to peel off. That is because the mask would grab onto their skin when it dried, and instead of only taking the nastiness and dead skin cells, it would actually rip off a thin layer of skin that is still living.

That is a lot more abrasive than you want to be with your skin, and here's why. If you rip off living skin, your body rushes to repair the spot, and replaces it with a thin layer of scar tissue. With continued use over time, this will make your skin look rough, leathery, uneven, and worn. 

Your skin is a living organ, that needs to be protected, just like any of your other organs. That's why I developed this gentle acne face mask, that lifts the dirt to the surface, so you can just wash it away, instead of ripping it out. These ingredients have the ability to pull everything to the surface, so it isn't necessary to rip things out of your face.

Herbal Acne Face Mask Recipe:

For Dry Storage:

  • 1 T Amla Powder
  • 1 T Neem Powder
  • 1 tsp Reetha Powder
  • 1 tsp Shikakai Powder
  • 1 tsp Activated Charcoal 
  • 1 tsp Bentonite Clay
  • 5 - 10 drops of Melaleuca (tea tree) essential oil

For Mixing:

  • 1 T Mixture from above
  • 1 tsp Castor Oil
  • 2 tsp Water


For Dry Storage:

Carefully mix all of the ingredients together, holding the bowl roughly arms length from your body so you don't inhale any dust. Store in a sealed glass container.

For Usage:

Mix 1 T of the dry mixture with 1 tsp castor oil and 2 tsp water. Mix until completely combine, and apply all over your face.

Let it sit until it's dry (15-20 minutes), then wash clean with warm water and a wash cloth.

Optional: Wash face with your regular cleanser to remove any residue from the mask. 

Pat face dry, apply toner and moisturizer.

About the Ingredients:

Amla Powder

Amla powder comes from the Amla berry, which is extremely high in vitamin A. When topically used, vitamin A can help tighten your pores, giving your skin a glowing sheen and even consistency. 

The Amla berry is dried out and ground into a fine powder, which is what we use here. Amla powder is also used in India as a natural conditioning agent for hair, because it's ability to tighten the strands, giving it a shining aesthetic and an airy softness. 

While the other ingredients get in deep and clean out the inside of your pores, the Amla works to tighten them up, so they let less inside in the future. Amla is a very important part of this acne face mask. 

Neem Powder

Ancient healers believed that the Neem tree was sacred, because every part of the Neem tree can be used for some form of healing. The bark is very good for cleaning teeth, and relieving tooth pain. The stems of the leaves, can be made into tea to help boost the immune system, and the leaves themselves have been used for thousands of years to fight infection.

Neem powder comes from dried, ground up Neem leaves. The Neem leaves combat topical infections that may lead to acne, and also wipe our lingering infection under the skin, that is already starting to make an acne spot.

Neem cleans out any possible infection from your pores, making it a vital part of the acne face mask. 

Reetha Powder

Reetha powder strips dirt and excess oils from the skin. In India, this is often used as a scalp cleanser in home made shampoos. 

Reetha is pretty potent, and a small amount goes a long way, so it works well for cleaning the scalp, which can be hard to get to under all the hair. 

Reetha works equally as well for pores as it does for scalp. It's very effective at getting in and stripping off the dirt and excessive oils. While the neem is killing bacteria and infections, the Reetha strips potential trouble makers from your skin.

Skikakai Powder

Shikakai is also something I found that is generally used for hair. Like I've said before, anything that is good for your skin is good for your hair because they are both just collagen. The same is true vise versa, as well.

Shikakai is traditionally used as a conditioning agent for hair. I always use Shikakai for skincare in anything that I am using Reetha. Reetha is great for stripping away dirt and oil, but it can leave your skin pretty dry.

That's where Shikakai comes in. Shikakai is rich in nutrients that skin and hair drink up, leaving it softer and more relaxed. Shikakai helps repair skin or hair damage, which is why I call it a skin conditioner as well as a hair conditioner. 

The reason Shikakai is important to this acne face mask is because it helps protect your skin from being ravaged by any other ingredients that are powerful cleansers.

When you're stripping bad things from your skin, it's important to give some good back as well.

Activated Charcoal

Although charcoal in it's diamond form may be far more expensive, charcoal in it's coal form is far more useful. From fuel for fire to cleansing your skin, charcoal has a wide range of uses.

Activated charcoal is very good at drawing foreign bodies out of your body. When I was a kid we used to use charcoal mixed with black ointment by Nature Sunshine to draw the venom out of a spider bite. I still use this combination on myself and my dogs for other kinds of drawing.

Charcoal has a strong charge that helps it pull on toxins and impurities like a magnet. The charcoal pulls them to the surface and latches onto them, so they can easily be wiped away when you wipe away the charcoal. 

The activated charcoal is probably one of the most important ingredients in this acne face mask. The others fight infection, sooth your skin, or tighten your pores, but the activated charcoal is what actually pulls the dirt and grime out of your pores. 

Charcoal is a highly effective drawing agent. I use this acne face mask about once a week, as a facial reset. It's gentle, it's herbal, and it's effective.

Melaleuca ( Tea Tree) Oil

Essential oils are included in almost all of my skincare recipes. Essential oils have many, many uses from improved sleep to skin care and metabolic function. I've incorporated essential oils into my every day life, and thus they have made it into my skin care products. 

Melaleuca essential oil is similar to charcoal in that it is an excellent drawing agent. However, it is also a really good topical cleanser for skin and hair. Melaleuca is good for balancing skin, as well as driving away infection.

In natural medicine Melaleuca has been used to treat cold sores, cleanse open wounds, and drive away acne. I incorporate Melaleuca in all of my natural skin care products, and it plays a big roll in my natural toner.

Melaleuca sort of "super charges" this acne face mask. Some people are sensitive to Melaleuca in it's pure form, so if you are using doTERRA oils, use only a couple drops. They are so pure and concentrated that you don't need a lot for it to be effective.

Castor Oil

Image By Pete Markham from Loretto, USA - It looks so harmless, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

Castor Oil's two best traits are curing acne, and making your hair grow faster and thicker. I love castor oil, because it's so cheap, so natural, and so effective.

Castor oil is a natural antibiotic, anti-microbial, and disinfecting agent. Castor oil is good at killing germs, hidden pathogens, and stomping out any infections (like acne). Castor oil can kill the infection lurking below the skin, before it ever becomes a full grown pimple or zit. 

I like to use castor oil in this acne face mask, because it's really good at combating infection, and since it's an oil it sinks into your skin and continues to work after you wash the mask off.

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