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Will Hydrating Mineral Makeup Moisturize Skin?


Hydrating Mineral Makeup, The Mysterious Ingredient

This is the latest in nifty sales gimmicks and believe it or not is creating some confusion as to whether or not this will actually moisturize the skin. 

It is in a loose sense traditional mineral makeup, which contains some bizarre ingredients, including infusing the minerals with water by way of a chemical reaction utilizing a mysterious ingredient common in this type of formula. 

Their claim of how the moisture is distributed within the minerals is not clearly defined.  But in reviewing the ingredient lists, the magical ingredient in common in every product sold as a "hydrating mineral makeup" is Sodium Polyacrylate

This ingredient is also known as waterlock and it is a polymer with the chemical formula [-CH2-CH(COONa)-], and is widely used in consumer products.  It has the ability to absorb as much as 400 to 500 times its mass in water.  There are some scientists that believe it can also absorb up to 1000 times its weight in water depending on its polymer blend or derivative status.

An example of an ingredient list for hydrating mineral makeup is found in some commercial brands and now smaller repackaged brands:

Active Ingredient: Titanium Dioxide (3.7%). Non-Medicinal/Other Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Mica, Silica Dimethicone Silylate, Butylene Glycol, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Boron Nitride, Sodium Chloride, Lauroyl Lysine, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Hydrogen Dimethicone, Viola Tricolor Extract, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Water, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf (Green Tea) Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Methicone, Sodium Polyacrylate, Potassium Sorbate, Diazolidinyl Urea. May Contain: Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, 77492, 77499).

Fun Science And How This Works In Theory

Setting aside any discussion for now on all the other dubious ingredients in this supposed mineral makeup, Sodium Polyacrylate is a derivative of the gel like substance they use in disposable diapers to help absorb quickly and to keep the baby bum nice and dry and free from diaper rash.

Sodium Polyacrylate has the similar fluffy, dry feel that is found in mineral powders which is how this chemical can be milled into the minerals.  However, noting the preservatives used in this formula are not the best for efficacy since Potassium Sorbate will do nothing to stop the growth of bacteria, but will help fight mold and fungi only. 

Diazolidinyl Urea has shown some microbial protection along with being a fungal and mold inhibitor, but some are concerned about it also being a formaldehyde releasing agent.  Water is the highlighted ingredient in brands of hydrating mineral makeup products for delivering supposed hydration and cooling effect to the face. 

However the point of fact remains, the minerals may feel cooling, but they are not hydrating at all except maybe for a few minutes since the water evaporates relatively quickly and the magic ingredient will dehydrate once again.  It is the delivery of the water through Sodium Polyacrylate that is actually cool technology provided through chemistry.

In review: for this type of hydrating mineral makeup, consumers described it as feeling like either a liquid foundation, or wet, heavy, glittery, shiny, caked, no coverage, no staying power and caused them to get acne.  Yet some women also loved the cooling sensation.  You can view the video (above) showing the fun science surrounding the ingredient Sodium Polyacrylate, because that is all this is, a simple chemical reaction.

Does Mineral Makeup Moisturize Skin?

Let's clear up the confusion caused by the illusion, a mineral powder product cannot and does not moisturize the skin in any way, shape or form.  It can however, help retain moisture against skin like our minerals do with the use of added key ingredients.  No matter the great benefits our mineral powders offer, we advise always to use an excellent silicone oil free moisturizer on the skin before applying them.  Also if you are having issues with separation of your mineral makeup from the skin or it wearing off prematurely, it may well be the moisturizer you are using or the lack of one.  A good moisturizer is the only way you'll get and keep the skin looking and feeling the best under your makeup.  That is why we created our ONATI Skincare line to work beautifully with our minerals.

Plus, this same short lived cooling sensation can be accomplished with our mineral makeup foundation containing rice powder using our "moist method" application.  Yet the results will be that they won't cake, bacteria will never be a concern, and they will not contribute to acne.  In fact, skin is soothed and will feel like velvet all day and you'll be left with nothing but a beautiful, fresh, natural looking luminous complexion.  And the best part is, with a single use moisture application, this keeps your mineral makeup fresh and free of contamination from the first day of opening your minerals until the jar is empty.

It is all about reading and understanding ingredient lists and not relying on just the name of the mineral cosmetic.  Also many other premium brands contain the same dubious ingredients listed above and are carried in Sephora, which by this industry beauty stores reputation, can give the illusion that only the safest and best products are sold.  Always turn it over and make sure you are not buying a mineral makeup knock-off loaded with synthetics and preservatives.