I know we all know the main use for talcum powder aka baby powder : to keep wet/sweaty areas dry. But googling quickly can get scary, what is it made up of and how did it become such a common house hold beauty product?
So what is talc/talcum? “Doesn’t sound like any rock or mineral that I really know of.”
Talcum powder otherwise known as French Chalk (oo fancy) is a finely grained powder of magnesium silicate. It may have zinc oxide added to it to make it look more white. The magnesium silicate has great absorbing powers, it is naturally decomposed by acids (like the acids in sweat and our natural acid mantle of our skin) that leaves a soluble salt (which kills bacteria) and a insoluble silica. This is why it leaves a lightly slippery smooth feeling on your skin when dusted on.
When I google “talcum powder” why does Cancer come up!?”
“Research studies on the use of talc on the genital, or perineal, area and the risk of ovarian cancer have had mixed results. Some studies show an increased risk, while others do not. Some research suggests that in the past certain sources of talcum powder may have been contaminated with asbestos or may have contained asbestiform fibres, which are fibres that have similar properties as asbestos. Health Canada now ensures that talcum powder does not contain asbestos. Talcum powders made with cornstarch do not increase the risk of ovarian cancer.” –Read more at the Canadian Cancer Society
One study by Dr Daniel Cramer: found that out of 215 women with ovarian cancer 6% of them had used talcum powder for use on or near their privates, creating a 3.28x more greater chance of a talc grain becoming ingrained within causing cancer.
And obviously as you can look at any baby powder bottle you have in your house, it will have a warning “keep away from children’s mouth and nose”… because it really doesn’t need to take several studies to tell you that breathing in a fine dusted powder will wreck your lungs.
But still abestos free Talcum powder is in almost all beauty products to either use as a base powder, a water absorptive, or a smoothing powder finish. What else can it do?
I have some quick tricks for all of you ladies!
2. Talc can thicken your eyelashes.
Dust them with talcum powder before you apply mascara. The powder acts as a primer which gives you fuller, longer-looking lashes.
3. Use talc instead of dry shampoo.
Sprinkle some talcum powder underneath the top layer of hair at your roots to absorb excess oil.
If you have dark hair, mix the powder with cocoa powder and for red hair, mix in some cinnamon. Gently brush through to evenly distribute the product evenly and no-one will ever know!
4. For silky smooth legs.
After exfoliating, apply talcum powder to the area of skin you’ll be waxing before you begin. It will absorb any excess oil on the skin’s surface so the wax will be able to grab your hairs better. Better still, your skin will be soothed by the cooling effect of the powder.