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Consumers are more conscious than ever about the food and the products they buy. Beyond the aisles of the grocery store, the shift toward natural ingredients and environmentally-friendly products is perhaps most evident in the skin-care industry. And it makes sense; people care about what goes both in and on their bodies, especially when most products are chock-full of harsh chemicals, parabens, phthalates, and ingredients you probably can’t pronounce.
The average person’s willingness to try safer alternatives has them turning to natural ingredients (some with questionable levels of effectiveness) to solve their woes — and activated charcoal is one of the most popular. You’ve seen it in everything from toothpaste and teeth whiteners to facial masks, body washes, and shampoos.
Every Man Jack is one of the latest to hop onboard with a collection of skin-clearing activated charcoal products — and they’re all under $7. The collection includes face wash, face scrub, body wash, facial wipes, and even deodorant. You can read more about my experience with the products if you scroll down, but if you’re interested in the science behind them, I spoke with a dermatologist to learn more about how and why activated charcoal works (or if it does at all).
How does activated charcoal work?
According to Dr. Hadley King, the consulting dermatologist for AcneFree, charcoal is known as a detoxifying ingredient because it has a strong negative charge, which allows it to attract and bind to excess sebum (oil), bacteria, and toxins, which usually have a positive charge. He explained to me that the porous molecule structure of charcoal also aids in the binding process, and since charcoal is not absorbed by the body, all the excess oil and dirt that promote acne are washed away with it.
In addition to activated charcoal, the new Every Man Jack collection also uses salicylic acid, a naturally-derived substance that gently exfoliates and eats away at the debris that clogs pores and causes irritations. Together, the combination is essentially your acne’s worst nightmare.
My thoughts on the Every Man Jack collection:
With the exception of an occasional whitehead, bump, or breakout, I have relatively clear skin, so I used to only treat my acne when it was present. Once I realized that was a mistake and probably the reason why I was having those recurring breakouts, I decided to be proactive (no pun intended) and try something that could get rid of my existing breakouts and keep them from coming back.
Every Man Jack sent me the entire Clear Skin Activated Charcoal collection to test and I began working them into my grooming regime immediately. All of the products in the collection are cruelty-free and free of phthalates and parabens, and ultimately helped me clear up my breakouts. While my results were great (more on that if you keep scrolling), what impressed me the most was the price. You could easily buy all five products I tried for about $30.