About Talcum Powder

  1. Home
  2. > About Talcum Powder

What is Talc?

Talc is a mineral that is composed of different elements, mainly magnesium, silicon and oxygen. Asbestos, a dangerous substance known to cause cancer, can also be found in talc naturally. When crushed, talc becomes talcum powder, a household item sold primarily to absorb moisture while reducing friction.

Talcum powder bottles on spray of powder

What Products Contain Talc?

Talc can be found in everyday items including:

  • Cosmetics (like facial powder)
  • Baby Powder
  • Deodorants
  • Dry Shampoo
  • Laundry Soaps
  • Arts and Crafts Products

How Talc Can Cause Ovarian Cancer

Women who used baby powder as part of their feminine hygiene routine may have talc particles in their ovarian tissues. Talc particles can remain in the body for years, even after talcum powder use is discontinued. The particles can cause inflammation in the ovaries that allows cancer cells to form, grow and spread.

“We the talc industry, dodged a bullet … Time to come up with more confusion!”
– Luzene executive in response to a National Toxicology Program review of talc safety concerns

Talcum Powder Facts

  • 1 in 5 women routinely use talcum powder products like baby powder for feminine hygiene purposes
  • African-American women are more likely to use talc regularly
  • Talcum powder fibers can take many years to fully dissipate inside the body
  • Talcum powder has been banned from condoms and medical gloves, and pediatricians no longer encourage parents to use baby powder made with talc on infants due to adverse health effects
  • If inhaled, talcum powder can cause acute to chronic lung irritation known as “talcosis”

Popular Talcum Powder Brands

  • Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Powder
  • Gold Bond Medicated Powder
  • Clubman Pinaud Talc
  • Shower to Shower
  • Nivea Pure Talc
  • McKesson Baby Powder