Mineral cosmetics have their fans and their detractors – in high places. Many top makeup artists in the movie industry feel that on a hot and humid day, traditional makeup can begin to feel heavy and uncomfortable and that an alternative is needed. They feel that mineral cosmetics help your skin breathe. Other experts feel that mineral cosmetics have a peculiar problem in that they tend to get into your pores and aggravate dry skin. If you're black, you may find that it's very hard to find these products for your skin color as well. Personally, I believe that the best cosmetics on the market are Korean skincare products , but thats an argument for another time.

Of course, it isn't unusual at all for any kind of new cosmetic product to divide people up like this. Women always disagree on what makes for the best kind of cosmetic product. When it comes to mineral cosmetics though, the debate isn't about how satisfying the products are. With these products, they're talking about how safe they are.

It was the cosmetics firm Bare Essentials that started the whole mineral trend – back in the 70s. They claimed that cosmetics made from pure minerals pulverized to a fine powder were more natural and better for the skin. The mineral trend has since really taken off since, and the market is worth a half billion dollars a year. 

Experts though wonder what all the fuss is about. If mineral cosmetics use materials like titanium dioxide, mica and zinc oxide, those are used in regular cosmetics as well. There is this sneaky suspicion that people have that mineral cosmetics could just be marketing hype – old wine in a new bottle. There's also the accusation made often that the ingredients that go into these products aren't pure minerals at all. The minerals have to be synthesized and formulated in the lab like any other mainstream product.

The good thing about mineral cosmetics is that they don't contain preservatives or chemical dyes. They don't contain mineral oil either. If you have sensitive, allergy-prone skin or skin that's prone to acne, these don't hurt you as much as a regular cosmetics might. 

Some people though will actually find that mineral cosmetics can trigger reactions in them that normal products don't. These products contain minerals crushed down to microscopic particle sizes. When particles get this small, they can actually penetrate your skin. In some people, these can cause special kinds of allergies.

When it is pointed out to makers of mineral cosmetics that the minerals they use are found in mainstream cosmetics as well, they do have a very good answer – their products use them in higher quantities. For instance, titanium dioxide is a natural and powerful sunscreen and skin protector. Zinc oxide is great for soothing the skin. To have these in large quantities in your cosmetics could be good.

As always, you need to pick what works for you.