Talc or baby powder has been around for years. It’s an incredibly common household product and has been famed for its many uses such as dry shampoo, setting powder and even for chafing thighs. We here at BeYou HQ, used baby powder for years to fight off the chafing burn which left our skin feeling even drier and sorer than it did before. After hearing rumours that baby powder isn’t actually that good to human health we decided to look into it a little further and this is what we found out.
What is baby powder?
Baby powder is made from a clay mineral known as talc which is why it is also known as talcum powder. We know right, it’s so original. Baby powder usually contains cornstarch or arrowroot powder as well as talc. It's now used in a huge variety of products that you really wouldn’t expect. You can find it in paper, plastic, paint, rubber, food, electric cables, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and ceramics just to name a few. So why on earth would you need to feed your skin with stuff that’s used in electrical cabling?! That’s what made us think, is it really safe?
Is talc safe?
Talc may be pretty common but that doesn’t mean that it’s safe. We were shocked to find out that there have been nearly 6600 lawsuits against the brand Johnson & Johnson who are known for their baby powder. Before the 70s, J&J often advertised their baby powder to women for feminine hygiene purposes. Of course, we all know now that the humble vagina is smart enough to clean itself and products that are supposed to help ‘clean’ it can actually be pretty harmful.
This is exactly the same for baby powder. There have been several studies on the effects of talcum powder after using it for feminine hygiene which have shown that there may be a link between talc and ovarian cancer. Erm, but how?! Although talcum powder is supposed to be used externally, when used around the vulva it can travel inside the vagina and reach a woman’s womb and ovaries. Well, that’s just scary.
Also, the good bacteria that your vagina uses to balance your pH lives within the fluids that your vagina produces. Talc or baby powder is an astringent powder meaning it dries out anything it comes into contact with, including your you-know-what. When talc comes into contact with these fluids it dries them out stopping your vagina from cleaning itself properly. And if there is one thing we know about vaginas, it’s that they can be a lil’ temperamental. Taking away the good bacteria can cause infections such as thrush which is inconvenient at the best of times.
Why you shouldn’t use baby powder for chafing…