By: Skin Care Ox

Written By: Diane Elizabeth K. // First Published: 05/07/2020

The Clean Dirt by May Lindstrom is a unique luxury organic exfoliation treatment which promises big results. This brightening exfoliant powder transforms into an active mousse with just a touch of water. With just a few minutes of use each week, the Clean Dirt promises to brighten, soften, and smooth uneven skin tone. Is the Clean Dirt exfoliant really that effective? Is it as strong as a fruit acid peel or an exfoliating mask? Is the Clean Dirt a good choice for people with acne? What about sensitive skin types?

There is a lot of hype around May Lindstrom products, so we indulged in the Clean Dirt first-hand in an attempt to separate fact from fan-fiction. Typically, we like to review products for two weeks; however, the Clean Dirt can only be used a few times per week. Thus, we extended our trial of the Clean Dirt to just over 3 weeks using the product 2/3 times per week.  In addition to using the product as directed, our team also researched the ingredients used in the Clean Dirt and analyzed over 145 real online customer reviews.

At the end of our trial, the Clean Dirt earned an overall Review Score of an “A+.” The Clean Dirt is truly a unique exfoliant. So unique, in fact, that it took our team of reviewers a few tries to get the texture of the mousse just right. Once that little hiccup was out of the way, the Clean Dirt ended up being one of the best organic exfoliants that we’ve tested. Truth be told, we simply could not think of a quicker and more effective exfoliating treatment that also doesn’t contain harsh acids (like many fruit acid peels). While the Clean Dirt does have a strong spicy scent (think cinnamon and clove), a slightly abrasive texture, and a warm, tingling sensation, it is not harsh in the slightest. Within less than a minute of activating the tingly mousse and massaging it to the skin, you’re done. Repeat that a few times per week to see brighter and visibly smoother skin. Needless to say, we’re hooked.

Below, you’ll find a complete summary of our in-depth three week review of May Lindstrom’s Clean Dirt organic brightening exfoliant treatment. Our reviews are organized into three categories: The Clean Ingredient Score (is the product made with clean ingredients?), Product Design & Effectiveness Score (does it actually work?), and the Online Customer Review Score (what is everyone else saying?). Combined, this review should provide everything you need to decide if the Clean Dirt is right for you. Enjoy!


Product Name: The Clean Dirt

Product Description: An aromatic organic exfoliating powder that transforms into an active brightening mousse with the addition of water. Size: 6.76 oz Packaging: Thick black glass bottle Consistency: Powder Scent: Cinnamon/Spices Samples Available: No

Price: 70

Currency: USD

Availability: InStock

  • Clean Ingredient Score
  • Product Design & Effectiveness Score
  • Online Customer Review Score

Where to Buy?


May Lindstrom’s Clean Dirt organic brightening exfoliant powder has earned our highest Clean Ingredient Score of an “A+” for its 100% natural and organic formula. The Clean Dirt’s formula is comprised of 15 ingredients of which 9 are certified organic, one is certified fair trade and raw, and 4 are natural clays and leavens (the remaining ingredient is l-absorbic acid, a natural isolate of vitamin C). The formula does not contain an additional preservative system due to the naturally anti-microbial and preservative properties of the product’s active ingredients. The Clean Dirt is a vegan-friendly exfoliant. Additionally, the Clean Dirt contains no GMO ingredient, no fillers, and nothing artificial.

Clean Ingredient Summary


Top Clean Ingredients

  • L-Absorbic Acid/Vitamin C: A natural, water-soluble form of the Vitamin C molecule that has been isolated from the other compounds naturally found in whole Vitamin C. Considered the best form of topical Vitamin C when formulated correctly.
  • Turmeric: Belonging to the same family as ginger, turmeric root is a curry-colored spice most often used in skin care for its powerful anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, brightening, and antibiotic properties.
  • Ginger: Belonging to the same family as turmeric, ginger root has been used as an herbal remedy for thousands of years. Ginger is often included in skin care because of its natural “spicy” fragrance, as well as its ability to aid in detoxification. Ginger also has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-microbial benefits.
  • Kaolin White Clay: Kaolin clay is a gentler version of traditional mineral clays used in skin care (such as bentonite clay). As such, kaolin is more suitable for those with sensitive skin. Kaolin is most often used in skin care for its ability to absorb excess oil, clear pores, exfoliate dead skin, soothe irritation, and overall cleansing properties.
  • Red Moroccan Rhassoul Clay: Rhassoul clay naturally contains a high percentage of earth minerals (calcium, magnesium, potassium, silica, and many more) which gives the clay a negative ionic charge. This charge makes rhassoul clay one of the best clays for detoxification because it can draw out dirt, oil, and other congestion from deep within the pores.

Preservatives Used:

  • None: Naturally preservative free powder.

Concerning Ingredients
  • Eugenol: A natural compound of certain essential oils. While natural versions of eugenol have some benefits, synthetic versions can possibly lead to skin irritation or allergic reactions (hence the EWG rating). Due to a change in labeling regulations in the EU, manufacturers are required to list eugenol on ingredient labels even if it only exists in the product as a natural constituent of essential oils contained within the product. (source | source)
All Ingredients

Ingredients as of: 05/04/2020

white kaolin clay, red moroccan rhassoul clay, red alaea sea salt, l-absorbic acid Natural | Vitamin C | EWG Score: 1 , sodium bicarbonate, *marshmallow root, *pink rose, *calendula flower, *ceylon cinnamon, *nutmeg, *clove, *turmeric, *ginger, *vanilla planifolia bean, **raw cacao, + eugenol Natural | Fragrance | EWG Score: 3 . *indicates certified organic ingredient **indicates certified fair-trade ingredient +indicates natural component of essential oil


May Lindstrom’s Clean Dirt brightening exfoliant treatment has earned a Product Design & Effectiveness Score of an “A+”. Our team trialed the Clean Dirt for three weeks alongside May Lindstrom’s Blue Cocoon Balm and The Jasmine Garden facial mist.

On first impressions, the Clean Dirt is beautifully packaged in a convenient glass jar with a small threaded top. This packaging makes it easy to dispense an appropriate amount of the product without creating waste or contamination. We love that the bottle also comes stamped with date that the product was made (indicating its freshness). The Clean Dirt is generously filled with 6.76 oz of product, which is more than enough to last several months with periodic use.

Upon opening, there is no denying the signature scent of the Clean Dirt. It has a dark, spicy, cozy scent reminiscent of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, and chocolate. (One reviewer noted that the scent is very similar to May Lindstrom’s Problem Solver facial mask.) Working with the Clean Dirt is a little tricky at first depending on your expectations. The product contains baking soda; thus, it foams up and activates upon contact with water. It took our reviewers a few tries to get the texture just right: add too much water, and the product is too thin–add too little water, and the product is too thick. The ideal texture is something reminiscent of a lightweight mousse (which we achieved with a 2 parts mask, 1 part water ratio like 1 tsp mask + 1/2 tsp water). Once the ideal texture is achieved, applying the Clean Dirt is a breeze. Simply apply the mousse all over your skin, massage for less than a minute, and rinse off. The mask as a slightly warm, pleasant, tingling sensation upon application that goes away after rinsing. Our reviewers found the process to be short, simple, and easy to work into their skin care routines. Many of our reviewers chose to use the Clean Dirt while in the shower for even easier use.

When it comes to effectiveness, we found the Clean Dirt to be a powerful exfoliation treatment. In just a few minutes each week, the Clean Dirt was able to show similar results as masks and peels which need to be worn for 20-30 minutes. At the end of our three week trial, the majority of our reviewers reported having “brighter,” “clearer,” and “more even” skin. This includes everything from a reduction in the appearance of dark spots to an overall brighter complexion. The Clean Dirt has all of the power of an AHA/BHA peel without the harsh acids and the pore clearing power of a clay mask without the long wait time. Overall, all skin types rated the Clean Dirt positively. Oily/Combo skin types said that it did a good job at clearing their pores without stripping the skin. For drier skin types, it was just enough exfoliation to remove dead skin without creating more dryness. While the Clean Dirt was generally well tolerated by sensitive skin types, a few very sensitive skin reviewers noted that the texture of the mousse was too abrasive (although some reviewers remedied this by massaging very gently or letting the product sit for a few minutes in lieu of massaging).

Product Effectiveness Summary

Works Best For: All skin types.

Official Usage Instructions: Activate one true teaspoon powder with just shy of equal parts water to form a soft mousse. Massage gently into damp skin with the pads of your fingertips. Rinse in the shower for ease, facing into the water and letting the stream re-hydrate and wash the formula away easily. Continue your massage for another minute after the grains have been rinsed clear – often, you can feel dead skin releasing at your fingertips in this step! This is where the real magic is.

Ease of Use: A little tricky to get used to at first. Takes a few tries to achieve a nice mousse-like texture with the water/powder ratio. Product is easy to apply and rinse off. Works well as a weekly treatment.

Most Notable Results

  • Strong spicy scent (cinnamon, nutmeg, clove)
  • Takes practice to get correct mousse-like texture 
  • Brightens dark spots
  • Brightens overall complexion
  • Makes skin look visibly smoother
  • Softens skin
  • Clears congested pores
  • Balances oily skin
  • Quick application & removal

Claims Not Met

  • Sensitive Skin: While this product did receive high marks from those with sensitive skin, some of our most sensitive skin reviewers found the texture of the mousse to be too abrasive for their skin.


Our team analyzed 145 online customer reviews for May Lindstrom’s Clean Dirt brightening exfoliant treatment from 7 different online retailers (including stores like Follain, Detox Market, Aillea, and Petit Vour). Across all retailers, the Clean Dirt earned an average customer review of 4.8/5 stars–earning an Online Customer Review Score of an “A”. Overall, there were very few complaints about the Clean Dirt from online customer reviews. Out of all 145 reviews that we analyzed, only 2/145 were one star reviews (one reviewer did not enjoy the process of using the product and the other experienced redness with use). A majority (122/145) of the reviewers for the Clean Dirt left a five star review. On the positive side, most reviewers agreed with our own experiences with the Clean Dirt. Reviewers left comments describing the Clean Dirt as “a gentle exfoliant,” “gets the job done,” ” and “transformative.” There were comments praising the Clean Dirt as just as powerful as their acid masks. On the critical side, there were also comments regarding the learning curve required to “get the texture right” with the exfoliant, the “gritty” nature of the mousse, and some sensitivities with frequent use. See Pros & Cons for more details.

Customer Review Summary

Reviews last evaluated: 05/05/2020

  • *Petit Vour: 4 Reviews | Average Score: 5.0 Stars
  • Beautylish: 15 Reviews | Average Score: 4.7 Stars
  • Amazingy: 19 Reviews | Average Score: 4.9 Stars


  • Pleasant spicy cinnamon scent
  • Great for most skin types
  • Gentle exfoliation
  • Brightens dark spots and overall complexion
  • Softens skin
  • Quick & easy to use
  • Little goes a long way


  • 2/145 reviewers experienced redness with use
  • Mousse texture is difficult to achieve at first
  • Texture may be too abrasive for sensitive skin types

This Product Was Made By...


website: May Lindstrom Website | year founded: 2012

May Lindstrom’s luxurious line of organic skin care products features only the best certified organic, bio-dynamic, and wild-crafted ingredients. The line is free of any harmful parabens, glycols, petroleum, sulphates, PEGs, phthalates, GMOs, silicones, and anything synthetic. May Lindstrom offers a limited collection of products, each handcrafted and packaged in micro-batches for premium freshness (for the freshest treats, order from their website directly).  Every aspect of May Lindstrom’s process is thoughtful, sustainable, and truly luxurious. Their most loved product? That honor goes to the Blue Cocoon Mask made with rare blue tansy. It is a must try for anyone suffering from acne.


This Article Was Written By...

Diane Elizabeth K., Founder at

Diane Elizabeth founded Skin Care Ox in 2016 after her personal struggle to find truly clean, natural, and organic products. Leveraging her background in biomedical engineering, scientific research + analytics, and entrepreneurship, she created Skin Care Ox to be an easy-to-use resource to find real clean beauty options. Since then, her articles have been read by over 3 Million people and have helped millions choose cleaner alternatives. She currently lives in Colorado with her husband and growing family.
Review Standards & Process

Skin Care Ox product reviews are 100% brand neutral. Skin Care Ox does not accept compensation in exchange for reviews. Additionally, there are no paid advertisements on Skin Care Ox. From time to time, brands will submit products to our team for review. Whether we procure the products ourselves or they are submitted to our team for review---our reviews remain honest and neutral.

Skin Care Ox is primarily funded through affiliate commissions. Meaning, when you purchase a product via a link from our website, we earn a small commission on the sale from the retailer (at no additional cost to you). Skin Care Ox is a member of numerous affiliate networks representing hundreds of cleans beauty brands and retailers. Because of this, no single brand or company has control over our review decisions.

Finally, every product we review undergoes our Research and Review Process. This includes faithfully trialing the products for a minimum of two weeks, rigorously researching each ingredient, and consolidating real user reviews from across the web.



The product contains only natural ingredients (non-synthetic or lab created). It does not contain anything artificial or synthetic.



The product has been formulated with 100% organically sourced and/or certified organic ingredients.



This product does not contain ingredients which have been genetically modified.



All of the ingredients contained in the product are free from gluten, wheat, and ingredients which are commonly contaminated with gluten.



The product is made without animal products or byproducts such as beeswax, honey, milk, eggs, etc.



The product has received an official organic certification from a third party organization such as the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA Certified Organic), ECOCERT, Australian Certified Organic, and others.


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