Minerals makeup has been the subject of something of a cosmetics revolution in recent years, with most major makeup brands now supplying their own range of mineral foundation and mineral eyeshadow. The rise in popularity of minerals makeup may well be due to claims by manufacturers that minerals products not only look fabulous, but have associated skin care benefits.
What is Minerals Makeup?
Minerals makeup is made from rocks which are finely ground to give it the appearance and texture of a fine powder. The makeup is brushed directly onto the skin. True minerals makeup should contain no additives, perfumes, irritants or fillers. It is generally made by mixing finely ground minerals with water to form a thick paste. Manufacturing processes can differ from this point but in their article in The Times on minerals makeup, Joanna McGarry and Francesca White describe a process which is deployed by manufacturers (including Mac) in which the paste is then baked on terracotta tiles in the sun for 24 hours. Later, colour can be added using iron oxide which is also a natural product. Mineral makeups have also been known to cause skin irritations and conditions, these may include eczema & psoriasis so be careful.
Minerals cosmetics retail at prices ranging from £10 to upwards of £50. Products are available from traditional cosmetics suppliers and specialist manufacturers such as Bare Escentuals (responsible for the Bare Minerals range), Jane Iredale and Afterglow.
What are the Benefits of Bare Minerals Cosmetics?
Minerals cosmetics are claimed to benefit the skin because they are constituted from natural products which are extracted directly from the earth and are less likely to irritate the skin. The specific benefits are:
- Minerals makeup is non-comedogenic, meaning that it won’t clog pores and allows skin to breathe more easily. On that basis, minerals makeup is claimed to benefit sufferers of acne and rosacea, and it should be less likely to induce allergic skin responses.
- The two key ingredients found in most bare minerals cosmetic products are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. Both are natural ingredients which are considered to have anti-inflammatory properties, which could have a calming effect on conditions such as rosacea and acne.
- Titanium dioxide and zinc oxide are natural ingredients which are found in most sunscreen products and minerals makeup should therefore provide some degree of protection against the harmful effects of the sun’s rays.
- Minerals cosmetics are said to give a luminous glow which can’t be obtained from more traditional makeup.This may be due to the fine powder texture of most of the products, which is less inclined to melt in the heat like liquid cosmetics (liquid versions of minerals products are available, but manufacturers have tended to avoid them owing to the need to add preservatives to a liquid).
- As pure minerals makeup contains no fillers or added powders, it should be less likely to settle into fine lines or skin creases.
- Joanna McGarry and Francesca White’s Times article carries an interview with Susan Posnick, who has her own range of minerals cosmetics. She claims that “the minerals respond to the warmth of the body to create a second skin that makes your complexion fresh and luminous”.
- Bare Escentuals, the company behind the well known Bare Essentials brand of minerals makeup and one of the best selling brands of mineral foundation in the United States, has even claimed that its mineral cosmetics are so pure that its customers can sleep while wearing their products. It is difficult to imagine any manufacturer of traditional cosmetics making such a claim; nightly removal of traditional makeup is generally advised.
Notwithstanding these benefits and the undoubted popularity of minerals makeup, there are some notable drawbacks to using these products. However, minerals cosmetics are an exciting development in the cosmetics field and may well be worthy of consideration by anyone suffering from skin problems caused by blocked pores.