Before we get started on our product, let's discuss ingredients for lipstick. The most important consideration when making lipstick is the colorant - the types you can use, what they are and safety considerations.
Titanium Dioxide—Titanium dioxide is a mined mineral, famous for its natural SPF factor. It is an inert, flat oxide that provides for opacity in lipsticks and foundations. If used too heavily, it will leave your skin pale and chalky. It has natural UVA and UVB protection. Because of its fine grind, it allows the skin to breathe and have a healthy exchange with the environment. In lipstick, it helps to add color to the lips because it provide opacity. Sheer glosses will have little to no titanium dioxide in them.
Iron Oxides—Iron oxides, commonly called pigments, were once mined. Since the 1970s, the FDA has demanded they be lab-created for cosmetic use because iron oxides in nature are often attached to toxic metals like lead, arsenic, mercury, antimony, and selenium. Their purity and safety from naturally occurring sources can’t be guaranteed. The lab-created pigments have the same molecular structure and same quality of color, just a different creation process and a purer, safer end product. Only synthetically prepared iron oxides are approved for use in cosmetics in this country. (Johnson, S.T. & Wordell, C.J. "Homeopathic and herbal medicine: Considerations for formulary evaluation," Formulary, 32, 1167, Nov. 1997.) To achieve vibrant and beautiful colors, iron oxides are prepared in the lab using iron salts, which are then oxidized using a controlled water process. Iron oxides are safe, pure, and vibrant. Not all oxides and pigments are approved for use on lips. You'll need to research with your vendor if the micas you have are lip safe. Click here to see the list of lip and eye shadow safe Bramble Berry colors.
The good thing about using pigments in makeup is that they are stable. They are also cost effective; at $3-$6 per ounce, you're looking at a very cheap, per pound price, for color.Natural Colorants—There is no legal definition for a natural colorant. FDA classifies colorants as either those requiring certification and those not requiring certification. "Exempt colorants are inherently neither more nor less safe than certified colorants," concludes an article in the Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology. We may consider them as less hazardous because we perceive them as "natural." But "like all color additives, they are fabricated products." Historically, bugs were ground up for colorant. Cochineal (the boiled and ground nymphs of the Coccidae, or scale insects) were crushed by the Aztecs and Mayans for a nice red color. Today, potential customers get squeamish about that so we skip the bugs.
Some popular natural colorants to use are:
Yellow - Annatto, Saffron, Turmeric, Carthamin
Green - Chlorophyll
Brown - Cocoa beans (pods, shells, stems), cocoa powder, fermented tea
Red - Paprika (may be irritating)
Purple - Alkanet Root
The list goes on of course.
Tomorrow's blog post will discuss equipment needed and specific base ingredients.