Mineral Makeup
(5 Reasons to Switch)

Fess up, Nature Girl: You want healthy skin, but nothing quite completes your look
like a little blush and eye shadow. You’re wary, though, of drugstore cosmetics—
what’s in that stuff, anyway? Relax. With makeup made from pure minerals, you
can present a face to the world that’s both natural and stylish.

January 2008

1. It Lets Your Skin Breathe

For a lot of women, regular makeup can lead to ugly breakouts faster than you can say “foundation.” That’s because skin can be very picky about what you slather onto it—anything that’s too heavy can block pores and lead to pimple development. (Yick!) Mineral makeup is whisper-light, making it a popular option among many women with sensitive skin. This lightness also means that you can—we’re not saying should, mind you—occasionally wear your minerals to bed (on those late nights when you’re just too pooped for a beauty routine) without paying a price the next morning.

2. It Feels Better Than Regular Makeup

There’s more than a germ of truth in that old expression “Putting on the war paint”—some makeup formulations can leave you feeling like you’ve just been attacked by an oil slick. A lot of women are finding that without the mineral oils, talc and various other weighty ingredients found in any number of traditional beauty products, mineral makeup does not create an uncomfortable mask-like or greasy feel, even if you’ve been wearing it for a while. (Why would you want to apply something to your face that you just can’t wait to get rid of as soon as you get home?) And mineral-based products are especially helpful if your complexion is oily to begin with.

3. It’s Just Better for Your Health

While skin presents a pretty formidable barrier to the outside world, it isn’t totally impervious to impurities. Actually you can, and do, absorb a considerable amount of stuff through your skin, and that can include the chemical ingredients found in regular makeup (alcohol, dyes, fragrances, fillers—yikes). Mineral makeup contains mostly finely pulverized minerals and natural coloring agents. Zinc, a common ingredient, helps soothe red, inflamed skin and provides protection (along with titanium dioxide) against the sun’s UV rays. Some mineral makeup brands do include tiny amounts of preservatives, as explained in reason number...

4. It Helps You Avoid Infections

One of the lesser-known—and definitely unappealing—aspects of regular makeup is that it can practically become a petri dish for microorganisms such as bacteria, mold and yeast. (Go ahead—you’re allowed to shudder at the thought.) Minerals are by their nature inorganic, and so are a lot less likely to breed such disgusting little critters. Of course, that assumes you’re following such beauty hygiene basics as washing your hands before working on your face, using clean brushes (which are the best way to apply minerals) and maintaining a reasonably sanitary cosmetics storage area.

5. It Allows You To Look Your Best

You’re thinking, “Nice to know that mineral makeup won’t trash my skin. But does it do what makeup is supposed to do in the first place, which is to make me look my absolutely irresistible best?” The answer, fortunately, is yes ma’am. Minerals are known for refracting light; this gives your face a delightful glow while making crow’s feet, fine lines and wrinkles less noticeable. Many brands supply a complete line of products—including blush, bronzer, concealer, eye color and foundation—which allows you to achieve a full range of skin effects. (Hint: Mineral makeup is best applied in very sheer layers.)

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