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Bentonite powder manufacturing

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Bentonite powder application

Bentonite powder is used in a large number of different cosmetic products, such as paste masks, skin care and cleansing preparations, eyeliners, foundations, and others. In 1998, bentonite was reported to be used in 78 different cosmetics in the USA, usually at concentrations between 1% and 10%, but reaching 80% in some paste masks (CIREP, 2003). Bentonite has been approved for use as a “Generally regarded as safe” (GRAS) food additive in the USA (US FDA, 2004).


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Processing methods used in the production of sodium-activated bentonite depend on the deposit and its geographical location. They could include several of the following:

• Selective mining.

• Field laying and rotavation. This is a process used in hot, dry climates where the bentonite is spread out and rotavated with the addition of sodium carbonate.

• Crushing to 50 mm maximum size at the production plant.

• Extrusion. In wet climates, where field laying is not possible, a blend of raw bentonite and sodium carbonate is extruded to promote activation.

• Drying by rotary louvre drier to optimum moisture contents in the range 11 to 22 % of dry weight.

• Milling to a particle size that promotes good powder flow but does not diminish clay performance. Generally, powders with 95 % of particles less than 150 microns (dry sieve basis) are used