The Do's and Don'ts of Mineral Make-ups

When it comes to mineral make-ups, "Mineral" doesn't always equal natural.


The hype is all around,and now, mainstream makeup companies have caught the wave and are touting minerals in their products, too. But before you go grabbing for the first “Mineral” makeup you find, make sure to check the ingredients first. Just because the label says mineral, doesn’t mean the product doesn’t contain potentially dangerous fillers. To help you make sure you’re getting the best ingredients in your makeup, we’ve put together a checklist.
 
DO’s
>> Find The Label:
 
I know it sounds ridiculous, but have you tried to look at makeup ingredients in the store before? It’s all but impossible to locate and identify the ingredients in your favorite lipstick. Sometimes the ingredients are clearly stated on the back of the packaging, and other times you have to peel back a label to reveal it’s true colors.

>> MICA:
 
This razor-thin rock gives powders a shimmery glow that helps reflect light and reduce the appearance of wrinkles. It’s also why mineral foundations are buildable, the thin layers provide customizable coverage.

>> ZINC OXIDE:
 
Not only a natural sunscreen, zinc oxide also kills bacteria and
works as an anti-inflammatory, making it a good acne-fighter.

>> SILK POWDER:
 
Crushed silk cocoons give powder foundations a light-on-the-skin
feel and provide healing amino acids.

>> LAUROYL LYSINE:
 
This amino acid is derived from coconuts and used in mineral
makeup to provide a silky finish.

>> VEGETABLE OILS:
 
These natural alternatives replace the traditional polymers used
to keep makeup colors on your skin, and also help the pigments in mascara stick to lashes. For example, sweet almond and sunflower oils nourish your lips and keep them well-hydrated without the scary side effects.

>> NATURAL WAXES:
 
These include—but are not limited to—waxes derived from
bees and plants. They act just like the vegetable oils and work like a polymer to keep your makeup on your skin and lips.

>> ULTRAMARINE:
 
In it’s natural form, this ingredient is a mineral-derived (think
lapis lazuli) pigment that is used as a color additive in cosmetics. The Enviornmental
Working Group (EWG) has also given this ingredient a “thumbs up.”
 
DONT’S
>> DITCH THE FD&C AND/OR D&C COLORS:
Commonly made from coal-tar derivatives, evidence suggests that some of the colors damage the nervous system and cause cell mutations. Also, those who eschew animal cruelty should know these colors often get tested for their carcinogenic properties on animals first, according to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

>> FLUS H THE FRAGRANCE:
 
Phthalates are commonly used in makeups to add
fragrance. Instead look for essential oils or phthalates-free labeling.

>> LEAVE THE LEAD:
 
A recent test by the EWG found detectable amounts of lead
in more than 60 percent of the lipsticks it tested. Whether introduced during the
manufacturing process or in the mining of iron oxides, lead doesn’t appear on any
lipstick labels, so buyer beware.

>> SCRAP THE MINERAL OIL:
 
This petroleum-derived ingredient gives you the
shine you want, but it also clogs pores and doesn’t allow the skin to breathe. Recent
studies have also linked mineral oil to an increase in skin cancer–related tumors.

>> NO TO NANO:
 
Some companies believe that nano-sized dioxides and oxides are
more easily absorbed into the skin than the micronized versions. Some critics suggest
that the nanoparticles may actually produce free radicals that can damage the DNA of skin cells, but so far no studies have shown any evidence of that. Several mineral makeup companies, however, have opted not to adopt the technology until more evidence of its safety is proven.

>> PULL THE PARABENS:
 
Parabens like to rear their nasty little heads in just about
every beauty and bath product known to man. These shelf-life extenders and hormone disrupters are showing up in human tissue and urine, and are best avoided in all of your makeup choices.

>> TOSS THE TALC:
 
When you’re looking for mineral foundations or powders (or even eyeshadow), watch out for Talc. Many companies add this toxic substance
as a filler, and—like it or not—talc is considered a mineral.
 
USE YOUR JUDGEMENT
>> Bismuth oxychloride:
 
Some women react adversely to this otherwise safe mineral salt, so those with special skin concerns should avoid this ingredient. If you use a mineral foundation with this ingredient and find your skin gets itchy, it’s probably due to this ingredient. Dermatologists warn that bismuth oxychloride can aggravate acne, rosacea, and eczema.

>> Titanium dioxide:
 
Experts have raised a red flag regarding loose titanium dioxide:
The microscopic mineral can be easily inhaled and may potentially damage the lungs. Liquid and pressed minerals minimize that potential (and still provide titanium dioxide’s natural sun-shielding ability), but you can also find titanium dioxide–free makeup lines.
 
Editor’s Picks:
Mineral makeup companies
Afterglow Cosmetics- afterglowcosmetics.com
Aubrey Organics-  aubrey-organics.com
Cowgirl Dirt-  cowgirldirt.com
Dechant-  dechantsheerminerals.com
Dr. Hauschka-  drhauschka.com
Everyday Minerals-  everydayminerals.com
jane iredale-   www.janeiredale.com
Larénim-  www.larenim.com