Everything you’ve heard about how salt interacts with your body, has probably led you to avoid it—food or otherwise—like the plague. Now, while there’s no denying that salty foods can make your face look puffy if you eat too much of it, you’re probably wondering whether using it ON your skin can have a similar effect. The truth is, a slather of salt on your skin can actually do you a world of good, giving you that illuminating glow you’ve been looking for. Here’s how…
Body scrubs are a pretty obvious indication that salt is a great natural exfoliant, much like sugar. In face scrubs, salt helps slough away dead skin to brighten dull complexions. Salt can leave skin visibly smoother and improve skin texture over time. This mechanical form of exfoliation comes with a warning, though… One has to be cautious when using salt to scrub their face as each particle could cause minor abrasions of the skin.
Unlike sugar, salt has a slight edge because of its antimicrobial properties. Think of the concept of salt fish. The dry, preserved food doesn’t have to be refrigerated because bacteria does not grow as well in a high-salinity environment. The same applies to skin. The ingredient helps kill and stave off bacteria. Salt has absorbent properties and is, therefore, a good ingredient to look for if you wish to relieve congestion in your pores.
When you combine salt’s absorbent and antibacterial effects, salt-infused skincare could be helpful for those with acne. Not only does salt help absorb impurities, but it also soaks up sebum to help control and balance your skin’s oil levels. Cleansing your face with a salt-infused product isn’t the only way to put salt’s blemish-busting powers to the test. Toners work well, too. If you already have products labelled as balancing in your skin-care routine, chances are, they may have good old sodium chloride or seawater on their ingredients list.
It may seem as if salt only takes away nasties, but it can also give skin some goodies like hydration and nourishment. Minerals from salts, such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium, help moisturise and firm skin.
The takeaway: Salt is surprisingly sneaky (and unexpectedly effective) in skin-care products. After all, if you read the label closely, you’ll know that there’s always a little bit of salt to spice things up. And when it’s been doing your skin favours all this time, why not make it the hero of the show?