Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Talc Body Powder – Friend or Foe?

By now you already know I’m addicted to deodorant. However, what you probably don’t know is that I have a habit of using “baby powder” all the time too. I use powder the most after showering because it's great for soaking up any extra moisture my towel missed. Plus, I think powdering my underarms creates the perfect dry “base” for applying deodorant. As I was dosing myself with powder the other day, I began to wonder what the "magic" ingredients were in the bottle. When I read the label on the back, it simply said talc & fragrance. Wow, for once there isn’t a giant list of ingredients written in unpronounceable Latin words! Automatically I thought to myself, talc is a natural mineral, so clearly it can’t be bad for me, right? WRONG.

It turns out that talc, the same mineral used for writing on chalkboards, is an enemy to our body’s largest organ – our skin. Several scientific studies have established preliminary links between talc and pulmonary issues, lung cancer, skin cancer, and ovarian cancer! OMG I’ve been using talc powder since I was a baby! Apparently talc is known to contain traces of asbestos too. Gross. Now I understand why this is a major concern to consumers and people in the beauty industry. Talc is used widely for commercial purposes, and often in its powder form for cosmetics. Reports have shown that talc powder causes tumors in rats forced to inhale it, even though it contained no asbestos-like fibers. First of all, animal testing is a NO NO in my book, but the fact that talc powder can cause tumors in any living organism is horrific!

Welcome talc…to my list of enemies. I think it’s time everyone gives talc the boot, and opts for a healthier alternative. Obviously everybody wants a high quality product, but you’d love it even more if it was affordable right?! Well Bath and Body Naturals, based in Green Bay, Wisconsin, offers exactly that. Affordable bath products made from the highest quality forms of natural ingredients. The owner, Paula Van Dyck, has been creating her natural bath products for 15 years now, and has NEVER tested her formulas on animals.

Check out the 6oz natural body powder (talc free) priced at only $4.30! This silky, talc free powder works just as well as the “enemy” to eliminate friction while keeping your skin cool and comfortable.

Chose from a variety of fragrances like gardenia, rose, jasmine, lavender, and unscented.

The base for each blend includes corn starch, arrowroot powder, clay & oat starch. Curious to know why these natural ingredients work so well? Here’s a quick breakdown for you:

Cornstarch: Is a healthy alternative to talc because it’s absorbent, soft & gentle. Cornstarch is produced through the milling of corn to extract the starch, which is then processed and dried to a fine powder.

Arrow Root Powder: Its natural qualities are almost identical to talcum – it has an absorbent, fine texture. Arrowroot is starch flour made from the root of the manoic plant. It's fine texture and pure white color makes it a natural additive for body powder.

Kaolin Clay: Has a high mineral content which lightly draws out impurities and toxins. It’s good for all skin types (sensitive or dry, young and old).

Oat starch: Has the combined attributes of talc & anti-irritating attributes of oats. It soothes the skin & gives the powder a good flow.

The big lesson I’ve learned is that it counts to think twice before rubbing something into your skin. What you think is safe, may really not be.

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