12 Best Clay Masks – Clearing & Purifying, Perfect For Oily Skin and Acne

A girl trying out the best clay face masks for acne prone, oily skin

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Searching for the best clay masks to thoroughly purify your skin, reduce breakouts and give you that clear, matte complexion? Make sure to check out these 12 powerful little spa babies…

    • Face masks based on cosmetic clay absorb excess sebum, gently exfoliate, clear and mattify your complexion;
    • Clay masks can be drying, which is why they work best for oily, congested and acne prone skin;
    • The trick with clay face masks is to remove them when they start to dry instead of waiting for them to completely dry on your face.

Though every skin type could use some deep cleansing every once in a while, clay masks are especially beneficial for oily, congested, acne and blackhead-prone skin. This is because clay gently exfoliates the skin, absorbs excess sebum, clarifies congested pores and refines them, reduces acne and prevents future breakouts.

Clay is also rich in vitamins and minerals that can restore the skin and improve its overall health and appearance. And even though clay can be quite drying for the skin, the best clay face masks are packed with hydrating and replenishing ingredients that can counter clay’s oil-absorbing abilities and keep the skin clean but well nourished.

Just be careful to remove your clay mask when it starts to dry instead of waiting for it to dry completely. While the clay is still moist, your skin can absorb minerals from it. However, as soon as the mask gets dry, it can actually start to draw moisture out of your skin.

What to Look For in a Clay Mask

Choosing a good clay facial mask requires some research and consideration. Here are some tips to help you select the right one:

    • Determine your skin type: Different types of clay are better suited to different skin types. For example, those with oily or acne-prone skin may benefit from a clay mask with green or bentonite clay, while those with dry or sensitive skin may prefer a mask with more gentle clays like pink or white clay.
    • Consider the ingredients: Look for masks with high-quality natural ingredients that are beneficial to your skin. For example, masks with aloe vera, chamomile, or tea tree oil can be soothing, while masks with vitamin C or E can provide antioxidant benefits.
    • Check the texture: A good clay mask should have a smooth texture that spreads easily on your skin. Avoid masks with rough or abrasive textures that can irritate your skin.
    • Look for additional benefits: Some clay masks have additional benefits beyond deep cleansing. For example, masks with charcoal can help to purify your skin, while masks with honey can provide hydration. Consider what you want to achieve with your clay mask. Are you looking to unclog pores, reduce the appearance of fine lines, or brighten your complexion? Look for masks with ingredients that will address your specific concerns.
    • Research the brand: Lastly, do your research on the brand you’re considering. Look for reviews and feedback from other users to ensure that the product is effective and safe to use.

Having all that in mind, here are the 12 best clay masks for oily and acne prone skin, but also to occasionally detoxify and purify normal and combination skin…

12 Best Clay Masks for Clear, Matte Complexion

*All prices mentioned are from March 2023.

1. Origins Clear Improvement Charcoal Honey Mask


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Price: $37.00/2.5 fl. oz.

If you are looking for a product to thoroughly purify your pores while nourishing your skin at the same time, here’s an excellent option. This one definitely deserves its spot on the list of the best clay face masks for oily skin, but it is gentle enough so that you can use it on normal, combination and dry skin as well.

What makes this mask so special is the combination of bamboo charcoal, bentonite and kaolin clay, which all work together to draw every little bit of impurities out of your skin. Replenishing ingredients, such as honey, hyaluronic acid, glycerin and botanical extracts and oils are in charge of restoring the skin.

2. Fresh Umbrian Clay Pore Purifying Face Mask


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Price: $60.00/3.3 fl. oz.

If you would like a clay face mask that you can also use as a face wash, then here’s your gem. With regular use, this purifying clay mask can make your skin softer and smoother, reduce oiliness and minimize the appearance of enlarged pores.

This one uses the mineral-rich Umbrian clay, which is deeply cleansing but gentle and balancing. Lavender water, grape seed, chamomile and sandalwood oil soothe, tone and rehydrate the skin.

3. Sand & Sky Australian Pink Clay Face Mask


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Price: $39.00/2.1 fl. oz.

It looks like a treat for your skin, and that’s exactly what it is. This Sand & Sky’s face mask got its place amongst the best clay masks because it enhances the radiance of the skin by clearing out the complexion and refining the pores.

As its name says, this mask is based on Australian pink clay, which gently but effectively removes all the excess sebum, toxins, impurities and pollutants. It brightens the skin, evens out the skin tone and even helps with pigmentation.

4. La Roche-Posay Effaclar Clay Mask for Oily Skin


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Price: $21.99/3.4 fl. oz.

When looking for a clay face mask to tackle excess shine and reduce breakouts, you need the product to be non-comedogenic, to effectively mattify the skin and to remove all the usual pore-cloggers. It also needs to be soothing and non-irritating, so that it doesn’t upset the often sensitive acneic skin.

This mask contains kaolin clay, which is one of the gentlest clays you can find. It also contains glycerin, which replenishes the skin, as well as panthenol, which soothes redness and irritations.

5. Kiehl’s Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Masque


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Price: $33.75/4.2 fl. oz.

Another amazing clay face mask for oily skin, acne, blackheads and enlarged pores that helps absorb all the excess sebum, dirt and pollutants and leaves the skin perfectly clear. It mixes Amazonian white & bentonite clay to create a powerful and thorough pore cleanser.

This mask helps refine and smooth the skin’s texture and enhances an even, healthy complexion. To balance the effect of the clays, it contains soothing and nourishing ingredients, such as vitamin E, aloe vera juice, oat flour, allantoin, etc.

6. Tula Claydate Detoxing & Toning Face Mask Stick


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Price: $36.00/1.23 fl. oz.

Speaking of the best clay masks, here’s one that comes in a stick. It is super easy to use, great for a mess-free application, and it promises results such as a smooth, more radiant complexion, less visible pores, soft, even skin and a clearer, healthier look.

What makes this product one of the best clay face masks for acne-prone, oily skin is a variety of purifying and acne-fighting ingredients. These include Mediterranean clay, a blend of prebiotic & probiotic extracts, apple cider vinegar, witch hazel and willowbark.

7. SkinCeuticals Clarifying Clay Mask for Acne


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Price: $66.00/2.4 fl. oz.

Perfect for normal, oily or combination skin, this clarifying treatment unclogs pores without drying out the necessary moisture. With the impurities and dead skin cells gone, the skin feels soft and fresh and the breakouts are reduced.

Like all masks on this list, this one also contains some of the best purifying ingredients out there. Clays such as kaolin and bentonite, fruit extracts rich in AHAs, as well as suiting aloe and chamomile will help clear out your skin and maintain it smooth and acne-free.

8. Pixi Glow Mud Mask

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Price: $22.00/1.52 fl. oz.

This clay face mask is suitable for all skin types and it can be used as a weekly mask or as a spot treatment. It purifies, brightens and stimulates the skin, absorbs excess sebum and impurities and reduces imperfections.

Glow Mud Mask combines mineral-rich kaolin and bentonite clay and sea salt, for visibly clearer, softer and more radiant skin. It is also packed with nourishing and replenishing ingredients, including aloe juice, glycerin, jojoba oil, squalane, botanicals, etc.

9. GlamGlow Supermud Charcoal Instant Treatment Mask


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Price: $30.00/1.7 fl. oz.

When it comes to clearing out the skin, this mask doesn’t hold back. It contains kaolin clay, charcoal and a blend of six exfoliating acids (AHAs and BHA), to exfoliate dead skin cells, unclog pores and pick up every trace of impurities, toxins and excess oil.

These powerful skin cleansers make this product one of the best clay face masks for acne, blackheads and oily skin. To balance things out, Supermud Instant Treatment Mask also contains aloe vera, licorice and cucumber extract, glycerin, etc.

10. Caudalie Instant Detox Mask Vinergetic C+


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Price: $42.00/2.5 fl. oz.

A great option to help you mattify your complexion and reduce the appearance of pores without drying out the skin. This mask can be used for all skin types, and it is vegan and fragrance-free.

Apart from the detoxifying clay, this mask contains caffeine, which reduces dark circles and puffiness. You can also find exfoliating AHAs, glycerin, bergamot oil, grape extract, papain, etc. on the ingredient list.

11. Urban Skin Rx Purifying 2-in-1 Pumpkin Pore Detox Mask and Scrub


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Price: $20.00/2.5 fl. oz.

If blemishes, visible pores, uneven tone or dull looking skin are giving you a hard time, here’s a way to get your skin back on track. This product is a combo of a clay mask and a gentle scrub, perfect for those days when your skin needs some help to look healthy and glowing.

In fact, this clay face mask is packed with skin-brightening, purifying and rejuvenating ingredients sure to enhance your complexion. Kaolin clay, jojoba beads, shea butter, bromelain, salicylic acid, oat flour, aloe, niacinamide and AHAs are just some of its components your skin will love.

12. Burt’s Bees Exfoliating Clay Mask


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Price: $14.99/2.5 fl. oz.

With 99.1% natural formula and ingredients such as antioxidant-rich Kakadu Plum, no wonder this product has found its way to this list of the best clay masks. The treatment smooths and refines the skin and helps reduce imperfections.

This mask also relies on kaolin clay to balance the skin and keep the shine in check. Some other ingredients perfect for most skin types are glycerin, avocado oil, spirulina, honeysuckle extract, vitamin E, AHA, etc.

To Recap: The Benefits of Clay Face Masks for Your Skin Include:

    • Deep cleansing: Clay masks are effective in drawing out impurities, dirt, and excess oil from the skin, leaving it clean and refreshed.
    • Exfoliation: Clay masks can help exfoliate dead skin cells, which can lead to smoother and brighter-looking skin.
    • Oil control: Clay masks can help regulate oil production, making them ideal for those with oily or combination skin.
    • Tightening and firming: Clay masks can help tighten and firm the skin, reducing the appearance of pores and fine lines.
    • Calming and soothing: Clay masks can have a calming and soothing effect on the skin, reducing inflammation and redness.
    • Hydration: Some clay masks contain ingredients that can help hydrate and nourish the skin, leaving it soft and supple.

Overall, clay masks can be a great addition to your skincare routine, helping to keep your skin clean, clear, and healthy. However, it is important to choose a mask that is appropriate for your skin type and to follow the instructions carefully to avoid over-drying or irritating the skin.

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