Whether it's blush, eyeshadow, bronzer, highlight, or in this case, setting powders, there are loads of unknown toxins included. Getting to set your look may come with a great cost. Straight from the FDA, they composed that Talc is a mineral composed from silicone, magnesium, hydrogen, and oxygen. Talc absorbs moisture and leaves behind an oil-free finish that many love, but because of the correlation to asbestos, another silicone mineral compound, researchers are worried. Even though products with known Talc go through tests to look for Asbestos, small traces of it may still go undetected.
Potential Dangers of Talc
Talc is a common mineral ingredient used in a variety of personal care products from baby powder to cosmetics. This mineral is used for many purposes including absorbing moisture, softening a formula, and more. Talc and the silicate mineral, asbestos, are mined in the earth in extremely close proximity. Asbestos is a known carcinogen when inhaled, and can cause cancer in the lungs. Because asbestos is naturally found close to talc, the talc can become contaminated with the asbestos causing the talc to then become carcinogenic. While talcum powder itself has not been proven to be carcinogenic alone, it has proven to increase inflammation.
A 2014 study was done sampling 50 samples of a cosmetic talcum powder and the effects it had on women. The results were horrifying as all 50 samples showed signs of asbestos fiber. A woman who used a specific brand of talcum powder and died of mesothelioma was autopsied. Asbestos fibers were found in her lungs and lymph node tissue. It is important when looking at facial powders to look for talc-free options, but more importantly to certify the talc is not contaminated with asbestos.
Another study conducted on individuals in Broni, Italy who were said to be exposed to asbestos between 1932-1993. These studies showed a great correlation between their cause of death and what they were exposed to. Proving that constant contact with asbestos can trigger illnesses such as mesothelioma. Individuals around the globe have also suffered this as a result of their exposure to the toxin.
Several large cosmetics brands have been recently sued regarding cancer causing claims in their powder products, leading many to start searching for alternatives.
When searching for an alternative, look for powder bases such as bamboo silica and ethically sourced Mica. Bamboo silica is a powder ingredient that mattifies and blurs the surface of the skin. Not only does this ingredient set makeup well, but also assists in antibacterial properties which is helpful for acne prone skin. Bamboo silica can also help calm the skin and protect against harmful free radicals and some UV rays.
Mica is another good alternative as long as you can verify that it is ethically sourced. Traditional sourcing of mica has historically been reported to be unethical due to many child labor violations in countries such as India and Madagascar. It is also estimated that roughly 25% of mica comes from illegal mines. Look for brands that are a part of the Responsible Mica Initiative.
With all this information, there may be confusion on what powders that are formulated with natural and organic ingredients are actually worth the money. No need to worry, we have listed the best. Including powders that you and your skin are sure to love!
To set your finished makeup creation or to reduce excess shine, setting powders are top on the market, especially during the current summer months. However, finding a talc-free powder option is key. It's important to be knowledgeable on what ingredients are in your everyday cosmetics and choose brands that are transparent. Below is our list of vetted talc-free setting powders:
Cloud Set Setting Powder | Kosas Cosmetics
Starting off strong and with a favorite, the Kosas Cosmetics Cloud Set Setting Powder. Along with their best selling concealer, Kosas has created a clean and safer powder option. This setting powder is not only talc-free, however it’s formulated with Earth based ingredients to help set and take away shine. Bamboo Stem to reduce shine. Passion Fruit Leaf to smooth out the skin's surface. Finally Chinese Peony, to aid in minimizing the look of pores. Including being vegan, cruelty-free, and formulated without silicones, talc, parabens, mineral oil, and fragrance, This clean and safe powder option is available to ten shades through the Kosas official website and Sephora. We love Kosas!
Superpowder: Loose Brightening Powder | Well People
Well People believe in a clean commitment to their consumers. Their Loose Brightening Powder is no exception. Powered by plants and EWG certified, and formulated with natural ingredients to assist in the skin's health and wellbeing. Broccoli Seed Oil for hydration. Pomegranate Seed Oil to rejuvenate. Mango Seed to soothe the skin, and Algae to brighten the skin's complexion. Free from toxins such as parabens, formaldehyde, silicone, coal tar, and lead to to name a few. Available at Ulta and their online site, Well Peoples toxin free setting powder is going to be added to our list of bests!
Bamboo Blur Mattifying Setting Powder | 100% PURE
Nothing can beat 100% Pure cosmetics! They have created their own 100% pure setting powder that is formulated with bamboo silica. This ingredient takes away excess oil, removes, and reflects light for a soft finished look. Created with cocoa and fruit pigments to achieve the three colors available. This powder may be used alone or with your favorite foundation. Cruelty-free, plant powder based, gluten-free, and made in the U.S.A, this 100% Pure setting powder is an amazing organic alternative. We hope you try it out too!
Saie Airset | Radiant Loose Setting Powder
Until just recently, Saie Beauty has become one of the most popular clean brands. Saie’s Airset Radiant Loose Setting Powder is an amazing talc-free powder alternative. This setting powder uses ethically sourced Mica, a great substitute in many setting powders, to achieve glowy skin without the cakey feel. Fragrance-free, Paraben-free, and cruelty-free, Saie has done it again with a clean and natural alternative.
Hyaluronic Acid Face Setting Powder | By Terry
Powered by Hyaluronic Acid, this setting powder from the brand, By Terry, absorbs excess oil. While working to minimize shine, the Hyaluronic Acid helps keep and lock in moisture on the skin. This powder also assists in the following:
- Blurring imperfection
- Minimize pores
- Even out ones skin tone
- Blurs fine lines
Formulated without talc and based in the U.K, this award winning product is one to watch.
Invisible Blurring Loose Setting Powder | Honest Beauty
Easy to apply and blurs any imperfections, Honest Beauty’s Translucent Setting Powder works to combat shine while not looking cakey. Honest to a perfect name for a brand that believes in being transparent with their customers. Talc-free, Cruelty-free, Vegan, and tested by Dermatologist. The reviews speak for themselves! This product is available at Target, Ulta, and their official website, Honest by Jessica Alba is not only accessible but safe. We love that!
Mineral Veil Pressed Translucent Finishing Powder | bareMinerals
Bare Minerals is the leading brand when it comes to clean and naturally sourced beauty. Mineral Veil Translucent Powder has been a favorite for years by many across the world. Talc-free and formulated with mineral based pigments, this powder works to:
- Set makeup
- Minimize to look of pores and fine lines
- Assisting in removing excess oil
- Giving an airbrushed finish to makeup
- Works well on its own, or with your favorite Bare Minerals foundation.
Free from parabens, formaldehyde, and synthetic fragrance. There is a reason this powder has been a favorite and continues to be!
With all the available organic and safe alternatives, we love that there's brands that support transparency with talc and toxin free setting powders. By giving the individual the option to choose an organic product, leading a safer beauty life is possible.