Moving from Mica to Herbal Powders in Our Soaps

Nov 05, 2021Caitlin Hoover

We recently came across an article about the mica mining industry that made us take a closer look at how we source the ingredients for our soaps. When we started soapmaking, we decided to use mica mineral powder in some of our soaps as we felt this was a simple way to steer clear of artificial FD&C dyes and ensure high quality ingredients (not all of our soaps contain mica, please check the ingredients list). Mica is commonly used in many cosmetic and consumer products due to its bright colors.

As it turns out, we never thought to look into the sustainability of mica mining in general. Until we came across an article stating 1/4 of mica is sourced using child labor in India and Madagascar. Our hearts sank when we read about this and prompted us to do deeper research into the sustainability and ethics of how we source mica.

Herbal powders at a market. Credit: Jason Leung from Unsplash

There is an ethical dilemma when it comes to using mica, as pointed out in the article above. On one hand, many children rely on mica mines to support themselves and their families. On the other hand, this leads to a continuing cycle of exploitation and poverty.

This brought us to a complete halt. The foundation of our small farm and soapery business is built on clear ingredient labels that consumers can trust. We pride ourselves on being all natural, ethically-sourced and sustainable.

That’s why, starting in 2022, all new soaps we make moving forward will no longer contain mica mineral powder. We will instead begin using all natural herbal powders to color our soaps (and provide excellent skin benefits)! We will continue to use natural clays, charcoal and other plant ingredients as well.

Herbal powders come with many skin benefits. They are packed full of vitamins, antioxidants, and lend therapeutic affects. Each herb carries unique properties for glowing skin. Our natural clays are gentle on the skin and cleanse away impurities.

Although switching to herbal powders may lead to some colors appearing less vibrant in our soaps, it’s a risk we are willing to take to ensure the integrity of our products. We hope our customers will support us in this decision and look forward to continually improving our products.

With Love,

Healing Moon Farm & Soapery

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