I’ve been talking about the problems with talc and ways to detox your makeup for years now. It’s time for an update! In an attempt to claim bankruptcy on THIRTY-EIGHT THOUSAND lawsuits, Johnson & Johnson officially announced that their talcum powder will be pulled from shelves in 2023.
If you recall from Toxic Beauty and a 2018 in-depth investigation from Reuter’s, J&J (supposedly) knew their talc was contaminated with asbestos…and kept selling it; that the “safe” measure of asbestos in talcum powder was 0 and theirs was measurably higher. They still marketed and sold this carcinogenic powder to babies and women of color.
The good news is, they’ve transitioned to an “all cornstarch-based baby powder portfolio.”
The bad news is, when it comes to makeup, that’s super deceptive because using “talc-free powders” because (in nearly all tested cases) that causes an increase in heavy metals from the mineral-based colorants used.
Since inhaled powders (like if we are brushing it onto our faces) are absorbed at a MUCH higher rate than if simply exposed through our skin barrier, talc-free makeup isn’t all the “clean” it’s purported to be.
Common Toxins Found in Makeup
A study found Cadmium absorbed at .5% through the skin, but 60% internally – that’s a 120x increase! Nearly all makeup contains heavy metals, especially natural brands, since metals are in organic matter!
- ARSENIC is absorbed through inhalation and ingestion. Causes birth defects, and is a carcinogen: lung, skin, liver, bladder, and kidneys, GI damage, severe vomiting, diarrhea, death.
- LEAD is absorbed through inhalation and ingestion. Causes anemia, hypertension, kidney damage, miscarriages, disruption of nervous systems, brain damage, infertility, intellectual disorders.
- CADMIUM is absorbed through inhalation, ingestion and absorption through the skin – Causes anemia, birth defects, impairment of pulmonary function, renal dysfunction, bone changes, liver damage (hepatotoxicity), kidney damage (nephrotoxicity), iron deficiency, oxidative stress.
Now, think about those things being absorbed ONE HUNDRED & TWENTY times worse than skincare! The only way to know is to TEST. This is why I use Beautycounter; they test source ingredients, finished products, and batch test over time.
Why does Beautycounter not offer powder makeup?
In 2020 Beautycounter discontinued all of their powder makeup in response to consumer preferences. Even though they were the only brand to test every batch of talc to ensure it was asbestos-free, the average customer did not understand the differences with many brands marketing talc-free. They are currently developing next-generation powders that will lead the industry in both performance and safety.
BE AWARE: Testing show the level of heavy metals spike when talc is removed from powder formulas, especially for more richly pigmented shades. Because Beautycounter tests every batch of color cosmetics for heavy metals during development and production (a total of NINE times), they are able to monitor this as they develop new formulas and shades (expected 2023).
If you are buying another brands powder makeup, please check if they test for safety and be mindful of inhalation when applying.
Switch to Safer
Finding quality cleaner cosmetics that perform like your beloved brand names is tough, but it can be done. Beautycounter has been worn on the red carpet, featured multiple times on the Today show, and is award-winning by Allure, Cosmo, etc. It performs and is safer!
I’m working on a comprehensive Safer Swap guide (replacements for Sephora’s Top 20 items); however, in the meantime, the simplest thing to detox your makeup is to replace your core items. By changing the items you use most frequently, you will lower your toxic load. This will allow your body’s own natural detoxification process to be more efficient. I especially think this is important with powders and sprays – because of how much more things we inhale impact us.
- Use Herbivore Rose Mist instead of other face sprays or mistsHydrating and Soothing Spray with Hyaluronic Acid and anti-inflammatory Organic Rose Water to Keep Skin Dewy and Fresh
- Things near mucous membrane absorb more easily, too. I LOVE this Jane Iredale Mystikol eyeliner, it is user-friendly and can replace your pencil, gel, or liquid liner! A water-resistant powder/cream eyeliner that creates a smokey eye without any mess and has all-day staying power.
- With all our frequent hand-washing, I have searched a lot for the most cost-effective clean hand soap, and this Puracy refill bag hits all the marks, including eco-friendly.
- And of course, bugs are still in full force, so check out these bug sprays which are rated the highest of all the ones I researched.
- This lip pencil has caused a lot of DMs asking for the link, I use it to line just outside my lips (Cava works well as My Lips But Better) and then fill and blend with a gloss for a plump & juicy look
- Eliminating fragrance is one of the fundamental basics of switching to safer, but that doesn’t mean you can’t smell nice! I love that Henry Rose is EWG-verified! My everyday scent is Flora Carnivora, Fog is my go-to night our aroma, and Sheep’s Clothing is great for when I want subtle and calm. They also offer trial minis!
- You can find all my other non-Beautycounter faves here!
- Lip Products are important to swap since you will literally eat (ingest) them.
- Bath and Body items are used daily so they are an important place to start swapping. Our entire house uses: Shampoo, Conditioner, Charcoal Soap, Countersun Sheer Defense SPF, Sugar Buff Body Polish, and Clean Deo(dorant)
- Daily skincare, especially swapping retinol or anti-aging products that intentionally disrupt hormones. I know switching can get costly, so you can always try with the Minis first to save money.
Detox Your Makeup
And then the one thing I HIGHLY recommend (it’s SUCH a good deal bundled at 20% off) is Flawless in 5, a bundled collection of makeup items you can customize to your preference. This is what I’ve worn nearly every day for years! My routine using these products is so simple, quick, and easy, I can even do it in the car!
You can choose:
- Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer with SPF or Tint Skin Foundation (I wear Dew Skin No. 2 and Light 210 in Skin Twin)
- Creamy Concealer (I wear Fair 1 under eyes and Light 1 to match)
- Cheeky Clean Cream Blush (I like Cider or Chai + Havannah for a bronzed glow)
- Brilliant Brow Gel (I wear Light)
- Thing Big All-in-One Mascara, which is SO good I no longer have to wear a primer. It will improve your lash health over time!
- Lastly, Lip Gloss of your choice. Customer favorites are Quartz, Blush Shimmer, Rosewood, Peony or Amber Shimmer.
You may want to add on Mattify Skin Finishing Powder if you’re used to powder makeup – this will “set” it if you’re prone to makeup slipping.
Need other suggestions or feel overwhelmed? I’m here to help! Reach out and let’s figure out how to switch to safer!
E-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Text me (yes, really, it’s Stacy) – SMS: 703-634-9992
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