There are so many guides out there about mineral makeup! I have been reading about it and would like to tell what I have learned.
There are so many ingredients that can be put into mineral makeup. Some are good and some are not so good. There is also a lot of bad hype about certain ingredients that is simply not true. We must educate ourselves so we know what products are good for us and those that are bad.
Another note about ingredients. Mineral makeup doesn't generally contain what people like to call "fillers". I have not seen an ingredient in my research that does not have some form of use in each product. So, I don't consider anything listed here to be a filler, except cornstarch.
Titanium Dioxide: This is a major ingredient in many mineral makeups. It offers sun protection, reflects light (only surpassed by diamonds), has high coverage, and helps adhere makeup to your skin. This product is the first choice for many powerful sunscreens.
Zinc Oxide: Another major ingredient in mineral makeup. It also offers sun protection. Zinc oxide can calm irritated skin and helps with certain skin conditions such as rosacea. You'll get high coverage and adhesion with this in your mineral makeup.
Serecite Mica: Some companies use mica in their foundation ingredients. Serecite mica is a common one to use because of it's low luster. It reflects light and reduces the appearance of enlarged pores and fine lines. It is translucent and offers medium adhesion to your mineral makeup. It's also used in mineral eyeshadows. I have heard of *rare* instances of people having reactions to mica powder in their makeup. You can find many formulators out there that do not use mica in their foundations and/or other makeup.
Magnesium Stearate: This ingredient provides average coverage, consistency, texture, opacity, and high adhesion. Magnesium is a naturally occurring metal and stearic acid is derived from vegetable oil.
Bismuth Oxychloride: This ingredient offers luminosity and sheen to your makeup. It does not settle into fine lines or wrinkles, but can cause a "shiny" look on some people. It also offers superior coverage and a smooth texture and appearance. One thing about Bismuth Oxychloride is that many people have reported breakouts or skin irritation from products using this ingredient. This is an ingredient that I personally avoid.
Talc: Suprise! Suprise! Talc IS a mineral (Magnesium Silicate Hydroxide). It is also much safer nowadays due to refining processes. A number of harmful trace minerals are removed from the talc. The talc used today has been milled and processed to be safe for use in cosmetics and pharmaceutical products. If your makeup contains "French Velvet Talc" then it has been through a process called delamination (a splitting or separation into layers.). French Velvet Talc is specially developed to impart exceptional silkiness and improved translucency. It has excellent covering power. According to Wikipedia: Several studies have established preliminary links between talc and pulmonary issues, ovarian cancer, and lung. This is a major concern considering talc's widespread commercial and household use. However, no conclusive study has yet been made to determine either the toxicity and/or carcinogenic nature of talc and the long history of safe use suggest that these concerns are unfounded.
Silica: This is a wonderful ingredient in my opinion! Silica is absorbent and used for oil control in products. It has great light scattering properties that reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It has successfully been used in hypoallergenic and allergy tested formulations. It can also help keep your makeup on longer. Be on the watch for amorphous hydrated silica. This particular silica may be contaminated with small amounts of crystalline quartz. The crystalline quartz in this silica is considered to be carcinogenic. Check with the formulator of your makeup to make sure they do not use crystalline/amorphous hydrated silica!
Kaolin Clay: This ingredient is also known as China clay. This is a pure clay that offers medium coverage, high absorption, great adhesion, and a creamy texture. It reduces shine on the skin as well.
Cornstarch: I do not prefer products with cornstarch in them. If your makeup product has cornstarch in it then it DOES have an expiration date. Cornstarch is a vegetable starch and has a shelf life. It does not offer good adhesion and does not protect you from UV rays. This is a main ingredient in many mineral veils. Health experts say powders made with cornstarch are safe. I have heard of some folks who have experienced irritation with it. If you prefer cornstarch then make sure the products you purchase have an expiration date on them.
Rice Powder: Rice powder is a GREAT oil absorber. This is a good alternative to cornstarch in mineral veils. Since it is not vegetable derived, it has an indefinite shelf life provided that it is kept in an airtight container. The oil absorption in rice powder is slow so it can be good for some dry skin types. This gives your skin a porcelain, shine free finish. This is a not-so-well-kept-anymore Japanese secret!
100% Pure Silk: You don't see this in many mineral products. Silk is a natural moisturizer, entraps oil, and offers relief for sunburn, windburn, and other burns. It is considered to be an ancient aid to dry skin. This product leaves your face feeling silky smooth, literally!
Boron Nitride: This is an ingredient that said to have anti-bacterial properties. It's also oil absorbing, glides on smoothly, and offers good makeup adherence. Some companies use this in their "glows" and "veils".
Allantoin: This ingredient is a skin protectant. Allantoin promotes healthy skin. It is postulated that Allantoin cleanses away necrotic tissue, speeding up the growth of new, healthy tissue. Since Allantoin stimulates new and healthy tissue growth, healing epithelization may take place. I've used makeups with this product and I love it!
Iron Oxides: Cosmetic grade iron oxides are oxidized to remove heavy metals that may be harmful. They produce beautiful earthy colors and are great in foundations.
Ultramarine Colors: Some ultramarine colors are used to cool down foundations. Please note that in the United States, most ultramarine colors are not approved for use on lips. Remember that if you are putting your foundation on your lips and it has ultramarines in it. They are also used for eye and cheek colors.
Oils and Fragrances: Some companies add oils and fragrances to their mineral makeups. This would give it a shelf life so be aware if your makeup contains these. They are not necessary, but some people enjoy the benefits that some oils/fragrances give. Some people are allergic to different oils so read your ingredients label!
Please, please, please read your labels. Choose products with ingredients that you think are the best for you and your skin type. This is a personal choice! My personal preference is a mineral makeup with french talc, titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, silk, allantoin, magnesium stearate, iron oxide, and silica. I enjoy rice powder mineral veils and love the glows that contain Boron Nitride. I have researched this to the best of my ability and if an ingredient is misrepresented, please message me and I will look into it!
Thanks so much for reading my guide!