The Dangers of Talc and What You Can Do About It

When we were preparing to welcome our first child into this world...our nursery definitely had baby powder. I mean, how else to you prevent rashes and get that baby bum smell so sweet?

But as we had more children the dangers of talc...especially for babies because of how easy it is to inhale it...became on our radar.

Even in 2009, the Huffington post wrote an article on it titled "Talcum Powder: The Hidden Dangers" which talks about how ladies using body powder containing talc had increased their risk of ovarian cancer by threefold. Holy crap. I used body powder when I was a teenager...where was all this safety information then?

Then you learn that it is related to asbestos?!  (source) and (source)

Time to change some things.

But what products contain talc or talcum powder?

Well, this is when it gets tricky.

In cosmetics, companies aren't always required to tell you what is in them. Proprietary formulas are what they are called. Even if you called and expressed concern and wanted to know...they probably wouldn't tell you.

You may find talc in: baby powders, feminine powders, foot powders, sports powders (like for your hands), tailors chalk, detergent powders, crayons, deodorants....even in table salt (to prevent caking) (source)

That is a lot of stuff.

So how do we avoid this ingredient that seems to be everywhere? *Side note, I went to the grocery store and looked at a ton of products on the shelves and even though this seems like a HUGE thing...there is still talc everywhere.

Body Powder:

A quick blend of bentonite clay and baking soda or arrowroot powder can easily replace and powder you may need. Our Sweet Cheeks Powder may be something that interests you.

We covered deodorants in our post "Shh, I Don't Wear Deodorant" with a great recipe and tutorial.

Detergents:

I am HUGE fan of soap nuts for laundry. They can be composted once used and come in a cloth bag...that can be reused. Country Save detergent was our go-to before we started using soap nuts but it is getting hard and harder to find.

Of course, just skip the dryer sheets. They are just full of toxins anyways. Use dryers balls...or be like us and just line dry everything (we don't have a dryer).

Crayons:

It seems like the studies reporting on asbestos in crayons (remember, talc and asbestos are related) sparking a reformulating among crayon companies HOWEVER beeswax crayons are still natural go-to for crayons. Our beeswax crayons have last incredibly long despite 4 young children using them...so before you balk at the price, remember they are high quality and will last a long time.

There is also the debate as to whether talc in crayons are any risk at all because they aren't inhaled....while I understand that point of view, crayon on inevitably put into mouths of children.

So there you have it. If you haven't click the source links about, I recommend you do so to read more than I could possibly address here....which is why I put them there.