The material selection platform
Cosmetics Ingredients
The material selection platform
Cosmetics Ingredients


CAS Number 14807-96-6
Chem/IUPAC Name: trimagnesium;dioxido(oxo)silane;hydroxy-oxido-oxosilane
EINECS/ELINCS No: 238-877-9
COSING REF No: 38438
Talc is magnesium silicate hydroxide obtained from a naturally occurring rock ore. Talc is typically mined in open-pit operations, and cosmetic talcs are mined in Italy, France, Norway, India, Spain, China, Egypt, Japan, and the United States. Cosmetic talc is typically sterilized by heat treatment. It is known to be used as an bulking agent, opacifying agent, slip modifier amongst its many functionalities.

What is TALC used for?

Talc is used in several skin care products such as baby powders, face powders, make-up bases, deodorants, foot powder, eye shadows, blushes.
  • Skin care: It functions as an abrasive, absorbent, anticaking agent, bulking agent, opacifying agent, skin protectant, and slip modifier


Talc is obtained from naturally occurring rock ore. Crude talc ore can be sorted (beneficiated) to improve purity of commercial products by either dry or wet processing. In either case, the talc ore is crushed and ground to a fineness suitable for specific end-uses. A dilute talc/slurry water is conditioned for flotation by the addition of a frothing agent (often a low molecular weight alcohol), and the slurry is then processed through a series of cells through which air is pumped. This processing causes bubbles to form, and as the bubbles rise to the surface, the talc particles attach to the bubbles due to their organophilic nature; the non-talc impurities are hydrophilic and do not tend to attach to the bubbles. The float (or froth) is then collected. The process is repeated until the desired purity levels are obtained. The talc particles can be further processed by magnetic separation or acid washing to remove iron-bearing minerals, soluble salts, and metals. The talc is then filtered, washed, and dried.

What does TALC do in a formulation?

  • Abrasive
  • Absorbent
  • Anticaking
  • Bulking
  • Opacifying
  • Skin protecting

Safety profile

Talc may be harmful to lungs (difficulty breathing, scarring of the lungs) if one breathes in loose powder products, such as baby powder, body powder, loose face powder. It may cause ovarian cancer when using products with talc in the genital area. These products include body wipes, baby powder, body powder, diaper and rash creams, bath bombs or bubble bath products, genital antiperspirants and deodorants. The final assessment found there are no health concerns from breathing in pressed-powder products, such as pressed powder makeup, dry shampoo or foot powder contact with skin, excluding the female genital area. Talc is not harmful to the environment.

TALC Alternatives

Technical profile

Property Values
Melting Point 800°C
Solubility Practically insoluble in water, in ethanol (96%) and in dilute solutions of acids and alkali hydroxides

Commercial Selection : Grades containing solely TALC

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