Bentonite is used as filler in pharmaceuticals, and due to its absorption/adsorption functions, it allows paste formation. Such applications include industrial protective creams, calamine lotion, wet compresses, and ant irritants for eczema. In medicine, bentonite is used as an antidote in heavy metal poisoning. Personal care products such as mud packs, sunburn paint, baby and face powders, and face creams may all contain bentonite.
When combined with water and left to dry on the skin as a clay mask, the clay is able to bind to bacteria and toxins living on the surface of the skin and within pores to extract these from the pores. This helps to reduce the outbreak of blemishes, alleviate redness, and also to fight allergic reactions from irritating lotions or face washes, and even helps heal poison ivy.
Thanks to the clay’s special ability to act as an antibiotic treatment when applied topically to the skin, the clay can help to calm skin infections, like contact dermatitis, and speed up healing time of wounds, even when prescription antibiotics were not able to help solve the problem.
Topical application of bentonite clay has even been shown to heal Buruliulcer, which is a “flesh-eating” infection resulting from Mycobacteriumulcerans bacteria generally seen in third-world countries. Some people have reported using bentonite clay as a soaking liquid to remove toxins on the skin.