Re: Is Talc bad in face powders?I see this thread is several months old, but in case anyone comes stumbling across here like I did doing a google search, I want to warn against simplistic websites like the one posted here in this thread which has a very simplified FAQ as to the danger of talcum powder (you'll have to look back for it, sorry I can't post links yet)
Not that it should be ignored, but that website has a biased POV. The problem is many cancer research sites already have an idea of what is "bad" and knowingly or unknowingly gravitate towards the studies that support them. For example many groups are eager to tout the damages extreme sun exposure can cause and recommend sunscreen, but spend no time studying how chemicals in sunscreen can be more harmful, nor trying to understand why a generation that grew up on sunscreen is still getting skin cancer.
That faq uses some scare tactics: for example, "processing . . . does not separate minute fibers which are very similar to asbestos." does not really tell us much. Which asbestos fibers is it similar to? And just how much does that mean on it's own, not processed as asbestos? Poppy seeds, codeine, and heroin all come from the same plant, but no one would claim a poppy seed muffin to be as bad for your body as doing heroin, nor would most people deny the medical value of using regulated codeine in certain medical situations.
And by saying :"Talc is toxic." It doesn't tell us the toxicity level. Lots of things are toxic. Soy is toxic. Too much soy can be hugely bad for you. In small amounts it can be healthy. What matters is the toxicity level. How much of something causes a problem.
I'm not saying talc is completely problem-free either. For my son, I know I used cornstarch powder rather than talc, for diaper changing. Better safe than sorry, especially since dumping powder onto the diaper area lets a lot more puff into the air and it is the breathing in that is dangerous. For many women, talc in pressed, or even loose powder may or may not be a problem. With pressed, and even with loose, we use a brush or pad and rub the mixture (not pure unmixed talc) onto skin, it doesn't puff into the air in the same way as squeezing or shaking a baby powder bottle.
as to whether it causes breakouts, that probably depends on the individual. But as a carcinogen, it probably comes down to moderation. To go back to the sun, we need sun. for one we absorb vitamin D differently from the sun than from dairy or vitamin pills, and there have also been studies that show getting some regular sunlight can prevent depression episodes. But too much of a good thing, and we damage our skin with it.
ETA: I did some more googling and actually have found some studies that doubt it is naturally a carcinogenic even as an inhalant! The study that resulted in animals getting tumors involved forcing rats to inhale the talc for 6 hours a day at a much higher density than makeup and powder uses. It is quite likely that they got cancer because the test overloaded the bodies natural ability to regulate. Remember when they sold us that caffeine was a dangerous carcinogenic because rats got cancer when given caffeine? Then come to find out, the doses were so high it would be like a human consuming multiple boxcars full of coffee a day? moderation, is most often the key to being healthy.