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How to Make Mineral Powder Foundation

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Mineral Powder vs. Liquid Foundation

Traditionally in the summers I wear mineral powder foundation. That's because my face usually gets oily or sweaty and shiny when the weather is warm. In the winters, I always use liquid foundation for the opposite reason.

Saving Money on Mineral Powder Foundation 

I used to use and love Mary Kay's mineral powder foundation. I still love it, but I was looking for a less expensive alternative. So I bought another pretty decent brand, but they didn't have many color choices. Basically light, medium, and dark. I bought the medium and it was a tad dark and did not look very natural on my skin. I was planning on buying the light one and then mixing it together, which I'm sure many people do. However I decided to doctor it with some ingredients I had at home.

Altering the Color of the Mineral Powder Foundation 

Because I have been dabbling a little in making soaps and lotions, I happened to have some titanium dioxide, zinc, and mineral oxide pigments on hand. So I started adding some zinc and titanium dioxide to the powder foundation to lighten it up a bit. The foundation was also too reddish, so I added green mineral pigment (chromium green oxide). Since it was my first time doing it, I knew it would be a challenge, and it was.

I had done some research and found that it works well to mix the powder foundation in a small blender (like Magic Bullet) or mortar and pestle. I opted for the mortar and pestle, since it seemed like it would be easier. Well, I learned a few things. One, I had to go out and buy a face mask because breathing all the powders while I was mixing and testing it was making me sneeze and my nose run like crazy. Two, I learned that you have to mix the mineral pigment very well. Apparently I hadn't mixed the green well and kept adding more, only to find big chunks of it hidden in the powder. And my mineral foundation mixture turned an ugly grayish color.

So to save it, I added some yellow and red oxides and lightened it up a bit more. Then I put it back in the sifter jar that I had originally bought it in (from Artistry). Once I started using it, I noticed it was still too dark and gray looking. I had to dump it all back into the mortar and mix more yellow and red oxides and titanium dioxide into it.

Adding Oil Control to the Mineral Powder Foundation 

After using it again, I noticed that it was not taking the shine off my T-zone. So I dumped it back out into the mortar. I added a little silica powder from my Mally's Skin Finisher jar. Silica is supposed to be good at soaking up oil. And that did the trick. No more annoying shine. 

Still Not Perfect 

But I still feel like my new creation is missing something. I'm thinking it might be missing some serecite mica to give it a little transparency and luminosity. The powder currently seems a little flat or dull and a bit cakey. It seems to accencuate the wrinkles on my forehead.

So I placed an order for some serecite mica. And I hope it will do the trick. I will keep you posted as to how I like it once I add that.

Ingredients to Make Mineral Powder Foundation 

I am confident that I will master this art of making powder foundation. As expensive as it is in the stores and hard to find a perfect match for my skin tone, it is worth it to me to do this. Plus, I have all the ingredients already. Why not?

Next time, once this batch is gone, I will make the mineral powder foundation from scratch. Most likely using the following ingredients:

Titanium Dioxide (a natural sunscreen and adds opacity to the makeup)

Zinc Oxide (another type of natural sunscreen and adds opacity to the makeup)

Sericite Mica (adds transparency and luminosity to the makeup so it won't be so cakey and dull looking)

Brown, Yellow, and Red Iron Oxides (mineral pigments, use in very small amounts because they are potent colors)

Chromium Oxide Green (mineral pigment that I need because I have a very olive skin tone)

Silica (for oil control; I use Mally Beauty Poreless Perfection Skin Finisher, which is mostly silica powder)

Jojoba or Grapeseed Oil (for moisturization, but not sure if I really even need this added oil in the summer)

Alternative Ingredients

Since I started doing this, I have also seen articles and Youtube videos where people use edible cooking powders to make face powder. I don't think they could achieve as much coverage as you can get with titanium dioxide, but hard to say since I haven't tried it. And it would definitely not have sunscreen.

I've heard of people using cornstarch or rice powder as the base, cocoa powder, tumeric, and cinnamon as colorants. Some have used kaolin or bentonite clay as the base, instead. Which would provide better coverage and sun protection than corn starch.

But I think once I run out of my mineral oxide pigments, I would definitely try cocoa powder, tumeric, and cinnamon. Not sure about cinnamon, but I know cocoa and tumeric are good for your skin. I might be willing to try bentonite or kaolin clay as the base, and a little corn starch for shine control.

Liquid Foundation for Next Project

I still love liquid foundation because if it is moisturizing enough, it can double as a moisturizer and makeup. That way I can skip a step. I usually just dust a light coat of Malley's Skin Finisher onto my T-zone after applying liquid foundation.

So my next challenge is to make liquid foundation. It is similar to making powder foundation, only there is the lotion involved. I am in the throes of trying to find a good facial moisturizer to suit my acne prone yet aging skin. Once I find that, I will mix all the same ingredients into it (titanium dioxide, zinc, mineral pigment oxides, mica, etc.) to achieve liquid foundation. I might even add salicylic acid to it. But I'll let you know how that turns out when I try it.

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