Loading... Please wait...

join our newsletter


how clay-based balms work

Dry, cracked, irritated skin is a pain. Especially on hardworking hands and feet. Just when it feels as though the skin might be healing, a sudden move can break those painful cracks open again. The only thing that can help is something that can get right down in those cracks and get to work healing them up.

At Fieldworks we’ve created balms for this very problem. Here's how natural oils and bentonite clay work together to support and heal skin:

"Fixed" Oils hold onto precious essential oils to keep them from evaporating.

A balm is based in a fixed oil (we use coconut and olive oil). These “fixed” oils are too big (molecularly speaking) to easily fit through the tight junctions of the skin. So the oils sit on the surface, fitting in *around* the dry, scaly layers at the surface, and help soften up that hard skin.

So how does that help? Well, not only is a fixed oil fixed in place, but it also does a fantastic job of fixing other ingredients to it. In the case of our balms, the fixed oils hold on to precious, extremely volatile essential oils. If they weren’t held in place by the fixed oil, they'd simply fly off into the atmosphere making your room smell great…but not imparting to your weary skin the help it needs. Nice for your nose, not so great for your poor, cracked skin.

But because our balms’ oil base keeps these volatile essential oils hanging around on your skin, the essential oils have the opportunity to slip into it (OR through the tight junctions of the skin). The volatile essential oils are so small (molecularly speaking), they have no trouble doing just that. This is important, because the essential oils are doing the really hard work helping your skin heal itself up.

Calendula is for aiding healing of skin inflammation and/or cry cracking skin.
Arnica has a long history of use to aid circulation and help with pain and swelling.
Ginger is great for warming, supporting circulation and soothing pain.
Capsaicin (Chili Pepper Extract): ditto.
Black pepper: ditto, too.
Rosemary supports circulation.
Frankincense: antiseptic (great with cracked, open skin) and protective, encourages the growth of new skin cells.
Myrrh: antiseptic, antimicrobial, protective, increases circulation.
Helichrysum: antimicrobial, encourages blood flow, anti-inflammatory, encourages the production of new skin cells.


Why there's bentonite clay in Fieldworks balms:

Simple: Nobody likes a greasy palm. We’ve added bentonite clay to our balms for the significant healing benefits found in clay, and we found that the clay also works to absorb the fixed oil, leaving a silky finish to our balms while providing even longer benefits as the skin slowly soaks up the oils from the clay! In a way, the balms are acting as little clay poultices, delivering the goods and reducing that slick feel you might get from a greasy salve (or cream, or lotion, or unguent).

So our balms are doing triple duty:

1. They soften the skin, so it doesn’t crack open again with the slightest movement.

2. They deliver hard-working essential oils deep into the skin to help heal it.

3. Thanks to the clay, you’re hands aren’t slippery, which means you can hold on to anything you pick up.

Now don’t you feel better already?

Related items:

  • Why clay — it’s a key part of the base formula for all our balms and cleansers.Here’s why.
  • Dirt v. Skin: the science of the dirty hand.… and why some grime seems to imbed itself into your skin, no matter how hard you scrub and no matter what nasty chemicals you try.