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The Beauty Glossary: K is for Kaolin

The Beauty Glossary: K is for Kaolin
SkinStore Editors
Writer and expert7 years ago
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Our Beauty Glossary is your definitive guide to every important beauty term ever. From A – Z, we’ll regularly fill you in on beauty ingredients, personalities, products and treatments, so you know exactly who or what to look out for in the beauty space.


Kaolin (also know as China clay, hectorite or magnesium silicate) is a naturally occurring soft clay. In cosmetics, kaolin helps to cleanse and exfoliate dead skin cells and debris from the surface. It adds absorbency, texture and bulk to cleansers.

Kaolin is an active ingredient usually found in thick skincare products such as mask. It's a natural, white mineral that goes beyond pottery. Because it's of a safe nature and has great absorbency and soothing properties, it's quite the popular ingredient in formulas designed to purify.

Kaolin works well in serums and other blends intended to control oil production and shine. Less for dry skin types, it does a great job for combination and sensitive skin types and will seriously aid in clearing pores and soaking up excess moisture without causing flakiness or overly dry patches.

If you experience cakiness with your base, try cosmetic powders containing kaolin. So many foundations and powders can prompt the skin to produce more oil but kaolin products help to fend off this issue and keep skin looking fresh and matte.

The Bottom Line

Kaolin wages war on acne and breakout-prone skin by improving the skin's balance and decreasing levels of pore-clogging oils, dirt and toxins. General skin inflammation, caused by the usual environmental factors can also be addressed with kaolin cleansers. Kaolin increases circulation to the impacted areas of skin, helping to stimulate healing and to reduce irritation. Using a cleanser that contains kaolin prior to applying makeup can help to control oil production and prevent unwanted shine.

Kaolin can be found in the following SkinStore products:


    Remember to check our blog regularly as we update our Beauty Glossary with the beauty terms you need to know about.

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    SkinStore Editors
    Writer and expert
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    Our team of beauty experts cover everything from skincare to makeup, picking out the most effective products from the best brands and latest trends. Stay up to date on everything beauty with the SkinStore blog, and find all your essentials in one place.