Thursday, August 13, 2009

Building a mineral make-up foundation: An opaque base

So you've made a translucent base, but you want something a little more opaque to cover more of what you consider your imperfections. (And yes, I know the colour in the picture is not going to be a great foundation for most people. It is doubleplus ungreat for my pale with lots of red skin. I made this in a mineral make up class a few years ago, and it was a most unpleasing colour. An example of what not to do!)

We can use whitening agents like titanium dioxide and zinc oxide to increase the coverage or whitening of our foundations. We can change the ratio of things like untreated sericite mica - which is almost invisible - to include more treated sericite mica. And we can include calcium carbonate to increase the coverage and help with oil absorption.

I'm adding Micronaspheres because I like the silky sensation they add to a foundation. We're adding titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, and calcium carbonate, all of which will increase drag in the recipe, so I'm adding the Micronaspheres to increase the slip and glide. Feel free to leave them out or add something else that is going to be transparent or slightly whitening that will add more slip.

I've also added Dry-flo (modified corn starch) to this recipe because I like the increase in slip it offers, and it feels nice and silky on my skin. Feel free to leave it out if you can't find it, or include rice, corn, or tapioca powder in its place. (And as you'll remember from yesterday, including starches like Dry-flo can reduce the shelf life of your powder to about 6 months. But you'll love this so much, you'll use it up in no time!)

Whiteness or opacity: To make a colour lighter, to cover up imperfections.
Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are great whiteners to increase from light to medium or heavy coverage. Calcium carbonate and Dry-flo both offer light to medium coverage.

Translucency: The base itself is almost invisible once applied.
Sericite mica and Micronaspheres are almost invisible on your skin.

Skin protection
Allantoin is an approved skin protectant that will help with wind burn, redness, and chapped skin (more here on this topic). It's also a humectant, which will draw moisture from the atmosphere to your skin. Zinc oxide helps with chafing and soothing inflamed skin. The silk powder is also a humectant.

Slip: The product feels nice going on and staying on.
This product is a slippery bonanza with the sericite mica, micronaspheres, Dry-flo, and silk powder all offering a lovely slip and glide to compensate for the reduction from the zinc oxide, calcium carbonate, and titanium dioxide.

Adhesion: The product remains on your skin.
The micronaspheres and sericite mica help the product stay on throughout the day.

Absorbency: Your colour will remain true throughout the day and not morph into something due to environmental stresses or skin oils.
Sericite mica, micronaspheres, calcium carbonate, and Dry-flo all contribute to the awesome absorbency of this foundation. Each of these ingredients absorbs well, so putting them together ensures your colour stays true and your skin remains un-shiny.

Light scattering properties: To give your skin a dewy glow.
Micronaspheres, sericite mica, and Dry-flo all offer properties to offer a light shine without excessive sparkliness, and the titanium dioxide scatters light very well.

As a note, if you don't have the ingredients for these recipes, then feel free to substitute or increase other ingredients. I'll be formulating a few foundation base recipes in the near future with variations using ingredients like bismuth oxychloride, magnesium stearate, and boron nitride (or boron "glow).

ORIGINAL RECIPE FOR FINISHING POWDER - light coverage (by volume, not weight)
3 tbsp treated serecite mica
1 tsp micronospheres
3/16 tsp or 6 scoops calcium carbonate or kaolin clay (for oil control, optional)
3/16 tsp or 6 scoops powdered silk
1/16 tsp or 2 scoops allantoin

Finished amount: 52.5 ml (dry powder)

3 tbsp treated sericite mica
1 tsp micronospheres
1 tsp dry-flo (modified starch)
1/2 tsp zinc oxide
1/2 tsp titanium dioxide
6 scoops calcium carbonate
6 scoops silk powder
2 scoops allantoin

If you want something with even more coverage, increase either the zinc oxide or titanium dioxide to 1 tsp and see how you like it. If you want even more, then increase each to 1 tsp.

Again, you're going to want to try your colour blending at 2 to 5% for very pale skin to up to 20% for darker skin.

This foundation is designed for someone with normal to oily skin. If you have dry skin, remove the calcium carbonate and use sericite treated with magnesium myristate.


Anonymous said...

Although this post discussed "lightening" the foundation, do you have any suggestions for substitutes for TO to avoid the "ashy" look it creates on darker tones? Can I just use more Zinc oxide? or does ZO produce the same effects?

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

There are a lot of ways to lighten up a foundation - I suggest clicking on the label "MMU" in the labels list (look to your right and look down and you'll see the list) and look for the posts on various ingredients. You'll have to go through them to see what works for your skin type.

BelladonnaBlack said...

Howdy Swift,

I love your blog, I have learned more here than I have in a number of craft and cosmetic making courses.

Started dabbling in MMU and I have a Q? Most mineral makeup has Zinc or Titanium, however on my dark brown skin those ingredients leave a definite zombie cast.

No matter how many MU artists put stuff on my face and smile and tell me I look wonderful, I still look dead ashy. Are there any ingredients out there that have similar properties with out the white cast? Someone suggested clays but do they have the same sticktoitiveness?

Thanks in Advance

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi BelladonnaBlack! If you look at the section called "links to lists", I have a mineral make up section that contains tons of posts on ingredients you can use in our products, and I'm sure you'll find something there that servces the same purpose. It's about trial and error - find something you like, then try it! Let us know how you get along!

Christina Marie said...

Hi! I'm trying to find Micronaspheres, but they don't seem to be sold anywhere. I even checked, but when I click the link on their site that should lead me to where I can purchase it, it just leads me back to the main screen. I hope this isn't a dumb question, I just don't know why I can't seem to find it anywhere. Thanks!!

Aline Huntly said...

Hi Susan, I love your blog :)

Can you tell me how Natrasorb differs from Dry-Flo?


Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Aline! Check out the post on each ingredient to learn more!
Dry Flo AF
Dry Flo TS
Natrasorb Bath

luekenj said...

I'd like to know where to find some of these foodish ingredients? I'd like to simplify this and make it but still be effective as a foundation. Thanks!

Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice*, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Starch, Pigmented Extracts of: Prunus Persica (Peach) Fruit, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Fruit, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa Bean) and Lycium Chinese (Goji Berry) Fruit, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai Berry) Fruit Oil, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Sodium Ascorbate (Vitamin C), Extracts of: Cerifera Cera (Candelilla Wax), Organic Camellia Sinensis (Ferment White Tea) Leaf*, Coffea Arabica (Coffee Cherry) Seed, Aristotelia Chilensis (Maqui Berry), Vitis Vinifera (Muscadine Grape) Skin, Garcinia Mangostana (Mangosteen) Peel, Malpighia Punicifolia (Acerola) Fruit, Sambucus Canadensis (Elderberry), Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed, Lonicera Caprifolium (Japanese Honeysuckle) Active Ingredients: 15% Titanium Dioxide, 10% Zinc Oxide * Certified Organic"

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi luekenj! What is really important in that product to make it work as a foundation? And what is this? I don't see an emulsifier, but I see oil soluble and water soluble ingredients. I'm very confused by this product.

leese said...

Susan, it's a foundation. I googled the ingredients bc I, too, was interested.

dani mel said...

Hello I am a fan of your blog I was wondering if you have any experience with micronized pearl powder and silk powder. I have a simple mineral makeup base that is just zinc oxide, yellow oxide, ultramarine pink and pink clay. I have normal skin and was hoping it would give slip, a lightweight feel and slight pore blurring effect of silica minus drying effects.

leese said...

Dani mel, you can type these product names into the search bar and read about them. There are multiple powders one can add to a mineral makeup specifically for dryer skin or oilier skin. Read TKB Trading's powders too that they sell for further descriptions of their specific purposes.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

HI Dani! Thank you for your kindwords! I have used silk powder, as you can see in the post. I dont' know what you mean by pearl powder, so I'm afraid I can't answer that question. Do you have a link for it?