Talc

A mineral powder used as a base material for powders, make-up, and pastes that absorbs sweat and oils very well. It is also often used in baby powders. Talc should never be applied to skin with a damaged lipid barrier (e.g. wounds and burns).
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Origin
Talc

Overview

Talc is a mineral consisting of hydrous magnesium silicate. It creates a very fine white powder when milled that has many different uses in skincare (mostly as a base material for powders, make-up, and pastes that absorbs sweat and oils very well). It is also often used in baby powders.

There is an ongoing controversy about talc. There have been several cases of commercial talc powders containing significant amounts of asbestos fibers that were suspected to originate from the talc mining site. These cases have lead to an important improvement in control procedures.

Nowadays most talc batches are tested for the presence of asbestos fibers before they are sent to the manufacturer. With this in place, all talc currently used should be completely asbestos-free.

There are other health concerns for talc. In the context of skincare they can be summed up in two points: talc should never be applied to skin with a damaged lipid barrier (e.g. wounds, burns, eczematous patches) and the talc dust should never be inhaled.

If you keep this in mind, then there is no reason to be afraid of talc in your skincare products.

Science

1
Fiume, M. M. et al. Safety Assessment of Talc as Used in Cosmetics. Int J Toxicol. 2015;34(1 Suppl):66S-129S.