Talk Dirty: Ecuador’s Volcanic Mud

On my recent trip to South America I discovered the locals way to beauty. Inspired by their sacred land they turn to nature for all their beauty needs.

In Banos, Ecuador I booked an appointment at the El Refugio Spa which offers the “bano de barro” (mud bath). The 40-minute therapy works by applying medicinal clay from the Amazon in a circular motion all over the body.

Volcanic Mud also known as medicinal clay has been used for thousand of years:

  • improves the appearance of skin texture
  • prevents wrinkles, stretch marks, age spots and dryness
  • natural exfoliator that clears the skin of acne problems & rosacea
  • nourishing to the body

The clay is created when volcanic ash is mixed with water. It contains a combination of minerals that include sodium, magnesium, and potassium.Mud has been used for thousand of years in civilizations that surround active volcanoes throughout Central and South America.

Light brown in color, I couldn’t wait to apply the mud to my body. There I was, covered in mud from head to toe taking selfies for the perfect Facebook shot. The most awkward part was the drying process, which comprised of me dancing to Zumba videos in front of my attendant. I’m not a shy woman, but a half-naked mud dance was a little out of my comfort zone. I did enjoy a good laugh when the attendant started laughing and dancing along with me. It was a great experience and a must when traveling to Ecuador.


Written by Stephanie Flor Edited by Karen Mowls Photos by Stephanie Flor

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