Titanium dioxide, also known as titanium(IV) oxideor titania, is the naturally occurring oxide of titanium, chemical formula TiO
When used as a pigment, it is called titanium white, Pigment White 6 (PW6), or CI 77891. Generally it is sourced from ilmenite, rutile and anatase. It has a wide range of applications, from paint to sunscreen to food colouring. When used as a food colouring, it has E number E171.
In cosmetic and skin care products, titanium dioxide is used as a pigment, sunscreen and a thickener. It is also used as a tattoo pigment and in styptic pencils. Titanium dioxide is produced in varying particle sizes, oil and water dispersible, and in certain grades for the cosmetic industry.
Titanium dioxide is found in the majority of physical sunscreens because of its high refractive index, its strong UV light absorbing capabilities and its resistance to discolouration under ultraviolet light. This advantage enhances its stability and ability to protect the skin from ultraviolet light. Nano-scaled (particle size of 30–40 nm) titanium dioxide particles are primarily used in sun screen lotion because they scatter visible light less than titanium dioxide pigments while still providing UV protection. Sunscreens designed for infants or people with sensitive skin are often based on titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide, as these mineral UV blockers are believed to cause less skin irritation than other UV absorbing chemicals.
Titanium dioxide is listed as a safe pigment, with no known adverse effects when used in cosmetics, and approved by the FDA when 99% pure. It is not listed as a carcinogen, mutagen, teratogen, comedogen, toxin or as a trigger for contact dermatitis in any other safety regulatory publications beside the NIOSH (Antczak, 2001; Physical & Theoretical Chemical Laboratory, Oxford University respectively), with the exception of the recent IARC designation. It is reasonable to conclude then, that titanium dioxide is not a cancer-causing substance unless exposure is beyond safe limits during manufacturing using this substance. It is considered safe for use in foods, drugs, paints and cosmetics. This does not end the debate, however, as controversy over the safety of one unique form of titanium dioxide still exists.
Source: wikipedia & organicmakeup.ca