If you are into crafting and DIY projects or makeup and beauty, there’s a chance you’ve used mica powder or at least heard of mica powder. If you’d like to know a bit more about it and what you can use it for, then keep reading because I’m going to explain what mica powder is and offer some suggestions for what you could use it for.
What Is Mica Powder?
Mica is a silicate mineral that has been used for centuries with some of the earliest uses seen in cave paintings back in the prehistoric era. It is naturally occurring and mined all over the planet. It is most commonly mined in course crystal-like granite or other igneous rocks known as pegmatites. There are a couple dozen types of the mica group with the most popular being muscovite.
It’s used for all sorts of applications including electrical condensers, in heating elements, in joint compounds for drywall, as an insulator in certain materials, in some lustrous wallpapers, shingles, in some fertilizers, and mineral makeups.
Is Mica Powder Safe?
While mica isn’t harmful in general, the powdery dust form can cause lasting harmful effects if it’s inhaled in large quantities like in manufacturing/industrial plants. As with anything natural or not, some people may have an allergy to mica. Despite this, mica is used in many cosmetics and skin care products to give it color and/or a luminescent quality.
It is considered the better option for use on skin above products containing dyes and lakes, which are more likely to cause irritation. Mica is also used in some food decoration products and is safe to consume.
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Mica Powder Uses
Scrapbooking, paper design, card making, art journals and more. You can mix some metallic or pearlescent mica powder with a bit of water and stand back and lightly spritz the paper. Let it dry and as the light hits it at different angles, you will have a slightly shimmery background!
Another way to use it is like you would use glitter; apply something as an adhesive like glue or ink and then sprinkle mica powder on top of it before it dries and tap off any excess.
Whether you are working with acrylics, oils, lacquers, decoupage or glazes you can mix in some mica powder to add a little texture, depth, and luminescence to your projects.
Mica has been used by Native Americans for many years in pottery work. They would mix it with the clay directly or sometimes brush it on as a paste to decorate the pottery work and if you work with clay, you can still mix mica in to add a little shimmer to your designs.
If you dabble in soap making or have wanted to, you can use mica powder to add color pigment to a transparent soap melt and mix them together to pour into your soap molds.
Thinking about making some of your own cosmetics? Majority of the cosmetics lines out there contain mica. Whether you are mixing a highlighter, bronzer, blush, powder, eyeshadow or any other beauty product you can safely add mica powder to achieve the effect you are going for.
One of my personal faves is a DIY face/body highlighter. I create a creamy highlighter by mixing some almond oil or grapeseed oil into some mica powder, stirring it drop by drop until I reach the cream consistency I prefer. I feel the creamy texture helps it spread easily and stay on longer.
So if you haven’t tried using mica powders in your DIY projects, hopefully this will give you some ideas on where you can start.
Do you use mica powder for something that I didn’t mention here? I’d love to hear about it…leave me a comment.
Until next time,