What it is
Titanium Dioxide is a white powder derived from earthy minerals. Because of this, it may contain traces of heavy metals. However, Titanium Dioxide is chemically processed to remove these traces and even though some impurities may still be left in it, these are in such small concentrations that they don’t pose any risks to human health.
What it does
Titanium Dioxide is often used in sunscreens because it reflects and scatters UV radiation, protecting from all UVB and a considerable amount of UVA rays. In sunscreens, it can be used in concentrations up to 25%.
In addition, Titanium Dioxide gives opacity and a white color to cosmetics. When used as a colorant in beauty products in Europe, it must be called CI 77891.
It is also used in cosmetics as a thickener.
Titanium Dioxide is safe to use on the skin because it stays on top of the skin and doesn’t penetrate it. However, it can clog pores for some people.
There is concern about whether or not Titanium Dioxide can induce the formation of free radicals. But to do that, the ingredient should penetrate the skin and, as mentioned above, Titanium Dioxide remains on the skin surface. In any case, studies show that using antioxidants with Titanium Dioxide eliminates the risk of any possible free radical formation.