A friend sent me a WhatsApp picture with her face covered in a jet black mask. My curiosity was certainly piqued. What kind of face mask was this? Why was it so dramatic?

I soon learnt that it was a ‘trending’ activated charcoal and PVA glue (yes, PVA glue!) face mask. It was definitely a mask I was looking forward to trying out, and I must admit it was mainly because it involved peeling PVA glue off my face. The thought alone excited me!

Activated charcoal is usually sold in the form of capsules, and the main purpose of activated charcoal is to reduce bloating/gas and to aid digestion. The main benefit of an activated charcoal face mask is to clean out clogged pores.

I purchased my activated charcoal capsules from Holland and Barrett (£5.59 for 100 capsules). Activated charcoal is readily available at health and wellness stores, and can also be purchased online: Buy Activated Charcoal on Amazon

Before applying my activated charcoal face mask, I steamed my face over a pan of hot water for approximately 5 minutes to open up my pores. I also ensured that my face was cleansed of any creams/lotions.

To prepare the activated charcoal face mask, all you need are the following two ingredients:

  • Activated charcoal
  • PVA glue

I opened up four capsules of activated charcoal and poured the powder into a small bowl. I added PVA glue to the powder and mixed together to form a thick paste to apply to my face.

I applied the face mask using a makeup sponge. It felt fresh (and rather strange) as I applied the activated charcoal face mask to my face. My face mask completely dried in approximately 20 minutes, and the time arrived to peel away the mask. I soon realised that removing the face mask would be a painful process, especially on the hairier areas of my face.

I was not wrong. It was almost as painful as waxing! I removed the majority of the face mask by peeling it off, and I washed off the remaining little bits using just water.

Once my face was clean of the mask, I applied coconut oil to my face to provide some much needed relief.

The immediate result of using the face mask was that it left my face feeling super smooth. I am sure it has cleansed my pores out nicely, however it was too painful an experience for me to repeat. In future, I would use egg white instead of PVA glue (or anything else less painful than PVA glue!).

It was a fun experience, and my face does feel nicer after testing the activated charcoal and PVA glue face mask. Have fun with it 🙂

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