The term Bentonite was first used for a clay found in about 1890 in upper cretaceous tuff near Fort Benton, Montana. The main constituent, which is the determinant factor in the clay’s properties, is the clay mineral montmorillonite. It’s also known as Montmorillonite clay after a region in France with a large deposit. And you may hear it called calcium bentonite clay. Bentonite is an absorbent swelling clay consisting mostly of montmorillonite. It usually forms from weathering of volcanic ash in seawater, which converts the volcanic glass present in the ash to clay minerals. Bentonite beds are white or pale blue or green in fresh exposures, turning to a cream color and then yellow, red, or brown as the exposure is weathered further. It has minerals like magnesium, sodium, and potassium. Bentonite also has aluminum and silica.

It also has trace minerals like calcium, iron, copper, and zinc. Some people eat it to get these nutrients. That’s called geophagy. But the foods people typically eat already have these minerals.

How to use it?

Bentonite is a very old clay that has been used as a remedy for many things. You can use calcium bentonite clay in several ways, depending on what you’re hoping it will do.

Skin: Bentonite clay works like a sponge on your skin. To use bentonite clay to cleanse impurities for your skin, consider a calcium bentonite clay mask. You can make a mask like this at home by purchasing bentonite clay powder. After adding purified water to the powder, you’ll have a clay paste that you can layer on your face.

Use: Mix bentonite clay powder with water to make a thick paste. Apply to the areas of skin that are prone to oil or acne. Leave the mask on for 20 minutes and rinse thoroughly. Repeat two or three times per week.

Teeth: Natural toothpaste makers say the minerals in bentonite clay are good for teeth and gums. Some say brushing with clay can “purify, detoxify, and alkalize” your mouth. 

Use: Take your toothbrush, then dip it into the bentonite tooth clay powder or pour the powder onto the toothbrush carefully. Brush your teeth for two minutes to get the maximum benefits of bentonite. After brushing, rinse your mouth with cold water. For best results, brush your teeth with bentonite powder two times a day.

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