Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Charcoal Craze: The Benefits & Uses

I never ever realized how incredible charcoal was.  Growing up, the only thing I knew was that it was used in grilling (to give food that subtle hint of smokey flavor) and for stuffing into the Christmas stockings of bad little boys and girls.  

Fast forward a few years and I remember my roommate in college always being very firm about taking her charcoal supplements before bed.  She said she used it to treat bloating and gas (too much information roomie, but thank you).  So I became curious and started searching for more facts on this popular substance.

What I found was that there are two types of charcoal; Black and White.

Black charcoal is soft, ignites easily and burns hot; hot enough for melting metal (also stains hands). 

White charcoal, on the other hand, is as hard as cast iron and does not stain hands.  It's made at a low temperature and only near the end of its process does the temperature get raised to about 1000 °C to make the wood red hot.  The charcoal is then pulled out and covered with a powder for cooling; consisting of sand, earth and ash--giving it a whitish color.

The white charcoal (White Binchotan Charcoal) is the one that fascinates me the most; it's a Japanese charcoal that is chemical-free, smoke-free and burns three times hotter and 4-5 hours longer than American charcoal.

Binchotan charcoal has an alkalizing effect which means you can add it to your drinking water to filter out chemicals and chlorine; absorbs odors, kills stomach viruses, prevents food poisoning, stops indigestion and even stimulates soil for a healthier garden.  Add it to your bath water to help improve blood circulation, skin & hair.

Here's a  look at some of the beautifully curated collection of binchotan charcoal products:

*Some favorites*

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The binchotan charcoal sticks is the best quality charcoal for purifying water and air.  Its benefits can be found in a number of everyday uses: whether to absorb chemicals in tap water, enhance blood circulation in a hot bath, stimulate healthy soil in the garden, or deflect negative ions in your home, binchotan charcoals are a natural, clean way to boost overall wellness. 

This puffy cleanser is made with 2 simple ingredients: Binchotan charcoal & Konjac plant.  Safe for even sensitive skin.  Blemishes that otherwise would not want to disappear, do so with this perfect cleansing companion.  It exfoliates to reveal a brighter & prettier complexion.  This face sponge has yet to become all the rage here in the U.S. but it is extremely popular in Asia and Europe right now.


The infamous "black toothbrush" has binchotan charcoal blended into the bristles which radiates negative ions to deodorize your mouth and remove plaque; also prevents icky bacteria and viruses from growing on the brush (nice bonus).  I'm a total fan of this product and it's very inexpensive compared to the store-bought toothbrushes that don't even measure up to the benefits this one can provide.  A must-try! (comes in 5 pretty colors).

I love pampering my eyes with this eye mask especially during long flights.  What makes this so unique?  It has binchotan charcoal layered inside. Not just one layer, but four.  Voila!  It enhances blood circulation so the muscles around your eyes are more relaxed, less puffy and healed; help with sinus issues and promotes a more restful sleep.  zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

A great shower buddy, this detoxify charcoal cloth for absorbing body odors, removing toxins and excess oil from your skin.  The Binchotan charcoal powder is blended very lightly in this high performance fiber cloth so it does more than one thing at once.  I really like this and so does my husband.  He's not much of a loofah man but he loves this and calls it, "The coolest body scrub towel ever." 


Black charcoal vs. white charcoal, which do you prefer?


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