Mud, mud, glorious mud, nothing quite like it for cooling the blood ... or for cleansing the pores! Seriously, the old adage is right: There’s nothing more simple, rich or good for your skin than mud. For centuries, diverse cultures across the globe have understood the healing powers of mud. According to Greek researchers, mud therapy has been successfully used in the treatment of many ailments, including neurological, cardiovascular and inflammatory diseases. (Chadzopulu, A., J. Adraniotis, and E. Theodosopoulou. "The therapeutic effects of mud." Prog Health Sci 1.2 (2011): 132-136.)
Are you looking for some good clean fun? Here are the top five reasons your skin will thank you for getting a down and dirty with mud masks:
1. There’s a reason for that dewy glow you get from a mud mask: It’s called vasodilation. Researchers have found that mud applied to the face actually causes your tiny blood vessels to relax and widen, giving you a healthy flushed complexion. Better circulation to your skin also means faster healing time for blemishes, and it can even slow the aging process! (Poensin, Dominique, et al. "Effects of mud pack treatment on skin microcirculation." Joint Bone Spine 70.5 (2003): 367-370.)
2. Mud reduces inflammation, reducing puffy eyes and irritated skin. The cooling properties of mud are well-known, and many mothers have soothed their children’s bee stings with nothing more than a glob of the stuff. Because of its unique chemical composition, mud is the ideal substance to absorb excess heat, drawing out swelling and discomfort. (Gomes, Celso, et al. "Benefits of mud/clay and thermal spring water in the human health." Environment (2010): 1-6.)
3. Continued use of mud masks can actually reduce the appearance of cellulite. Yes, you read that right. Research indicates that mud is “lipophilic,” meaning that it acts on fatty glands and tissue below the surface of the skin, leading to a smoother, toned appearance. Even if you never use mud on your thighs, this fat-smoothing action will leave you looking younger than ever. (Odabasi, Ersin, et al. "Lipophilic components of different therapeutic mud species." The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 13.10 (2007): 1115-1118.)
4. Adding a mud mask to your skincare routine helps you get your face cleaner. This is because the mud opens your pores, allowing the accumulated dirt and debris to be whisked away when you wash. Skipping the mud treatment and going straight for a scrub may leave behind pesky blackheads and pimple-causing crud. The detoxifying properties of mud ensure you look and feel the cleanest you can be, meaning you need less makeup to disguise imperfections. It’s a win-win! (Rastogi, Rajiv. "Therapeutic uses of Mud therapy in Naturopathy." (2012).)
5. Mud provides real treatment for frustrating skin conditions. The Journal of Cosmetic Science has declared that mud, specifically mud containing Dead Sea salts, is useful in the treatment of many skin disorders, including psoriasis and rosacea. Mud is truly mother earth’s healing salve for the skin. (Abu-Jdayil, Basim, and Hazim A. Mohameed. "A facial mask comprising Dead Sea mud." Journal of cosmetic science 57.6 (2005): 441-454.)
As you can see, the many unique properties of mud can work wonders on all types of skin, whether you’re dry, oily or a bit of both. So what are you waiting for? Your skin will be singing your praises once you slather up with some glorious mud!