Introduction: DIY Mineral Makeup

Picture of DIY Mineral Makeup

Mineral makeup is more than just a new beauty trend - it offers health benefits for skin as well. And now you can make it at home!

It's made of all natural, finely ground minerals from the earth, without many of the chemicals, dyes, and preservatives found in traditional makeup.

I have VERY sensitive skin, and have had trouble in the past with commercial makeup (even store-bought mineral makeup!) being too heavily fragrances, or containing irritants like bismuth oxychloride.

This formula eliminates classic irritants so that it's kinder to the skin.

Since it contains titanium dioxide which has anti-inflammatory properties, it also has a calming effect on the skin, particularly important if you suffer from inflammatory problems such as rosacea or acne.

AND I've added micronized zinc oxide to give it an SPF rating, helping to further protect skin from damage and wrinkles.

By making your own at home, you can control not only the purity of the ingredients you use, you can also create a custom color, matched exactly to your own skin tone!

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
Some of these materials may seem hard to come by, but fret not! I was able to find most on Amazon.  They even offer a starter kit with everything you need! 
Whether you're having a Mineral Makeup Party and making a bunch with friends, or you're ready to make bigger batches, it's cheaper to buy in bulk.  Here's what you'll want:

Makes approximately (3)-30 gram jars (3 oz)

Scoochmaroo is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Step 2: Mix Dry Ingredients

Picture of Mix Dry Ingredients
In the mortar or grinder, combine:

  • 8 tsp Micronized Titanium Dioxide
  • 3 tsp Sericite Mica
  • 4 tsp Zinc Oxide
  • 1 tsp Magnesium Stearate
  • 1/2 - 1 tsp Yellow Iron Oxide
  • 1/16 tsp Brown Iron Oxide
  • Pinch of Red Iron Oxide

Take time smashing it up with your pestle/grinder. It won't seem like it's doing much at first, but slowly you'll start to see your color emerge. Continue smashing until it looks uniform.

Step 3: Mix in Wet Ingredients

Picture of Mix in Wet Ingredients
Add the following to the mixture:

  • 1/4 tsp Jojoba Oil
  • 5 drops Vitamin E Oil
  • 4-8 drops any essential oil

Smash again, making sure to distribute the liquids evenly. They'll appear to just get swallowed up by the minerals, but remember that they need to be worked around until you have a uniform mixture.

  • Now add 1 tsp. Sericite Mica for a nice matte finish.


Change the tint by adding more of any of the iron oxides.
Add more titanium dioxide, zinc oxide or sericite mica if you desire a lighter overall shade.
Make note of your additions/changes so that you can duplicate when necessary.

Step 4: Transfer

Picture of Transfer

Time to transfer your miracle mixture into a usable container!

Using a funnel, transfer foundation powder into a 30 gr sifter jar for easy application.
Take it everywhere and brag to your friends about how you made your own proprietary blend.


Werewolf slyer (author)2016-08-05

Too much ingredeants@!!!!!!!

LisaC98 (author)2016-07-09

I love this site. Very helpful to those who want to DIY :)

EllynR (author)2014-12-13

Just as a precaution to all: "Titanium dioxide in inhalable forms is designated as a possible carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). As a result, there is concern about TiO2 in loose powders, but not in creams such as sunscreens."

furrball2 (author)EllynR2016-02-23

To avoid this, one could mix a bit of the powder into their moisturizer and create a creamy mineral foundation. :)

MelissaG34 (author)2015-11-11

Really interesting. Don't know to be honest if I would have the drive to spend the time doing all of this though haha. I use Mineralissima ( mineral makeup right now & love that.

MyPremierGal (author)2013-12-21

Question: Has anyone tried using some alternatives, such as arrow root, cocoa....... or for the oil-perhaps Grapeseed or Apricot Kernal oil? ❤

kulsoomatiq (author)MyPremierGal2015-10-30

corn stratch is also called arrow root

swedelady13 (author)MyPremierGal2015-01-29

I made a batch using arrow root, cocoa, and turmeric. Worked it up in a blade type coffee grinder. Added some powder blusher to adjust color and some powdered highlighter to reflect light, and it works great. Cost me nothing. Now I want to experiment further using a kit. I paid $30 for mineral makeup from Lancome a few years ago, and it is such a small amount. I apply moisturizer to my face first, then the mineral powder.

aclark-pannier (author)2015-04-22

How do you keep it from caking/creasing?

linda.andersson.75436 (author)2014-12-18

This is a very interesting article, will home made mineral makeup in the long run be cheaper than store bought?
It's not easy to have rosacea and try and find mineral makeup from animal friendly companies when you got a limited budget :(

canucksgirl (author)2012-08-05

Okay.... I am super happy about this ible right now, you have no idea!

I tried the mineral makeup in the store (because I love the results), but my skin hated it. So awesome to have a recipe that my skin might actually agree with! Yay! Thank you! :D

scoochmaroo (author)canucksgirl2012-08-05

You inspired me to update the links. Now you can order a mini-kit to try out too! (hoping you can get it in CAN. . . .)

swati.ram.5 (author)scoochmaroo2014-11-09

any tips for medium complexion Indian skin?

canucksgirl (author)scoochmaroo2012-08-05

Cool! I re-downloaded the pdf. Can't wait to get started and will definitely look into the mini-kit. Thanks again. :-)

lisa.carmichael6871 (author)2014-09-26

Clear Skin Minerals on Etsy

jmerrill4 (author)2014-06-13

thank you!! I love this makeup! I skipped the mica and magnesium stearate, I replaced them with kaolin clay and arrow root powder. I tripled the pigments and still had to add some cacao powder to get the right shade. It covers better than any foundation and you don't need any concealer! also wears extremely well to the point of being waterproof.

lstollen (author)2013-05-19

Wow! This is amazing my prayers have been answered!

rookie1 (author)2009-06-10

Great instructable. I don't wear make up because of allergies to the things they put in. My biggest problem is with mascara. My lashes are very fine and thin and if I use even the stuff that is supposed to be hypoallergenic My lashes end up looking like porcupine quills because my eyelids swell up. Could this be used as mascara? Being close to the eyes, I really want to be sure of it. I remember seeing old movies with lash darkeners in blocks. Water was applied to the brush and then the brush was wiped on the block. Again, great instructable.

HollyMann (author)rookie12013-01-26

Not sure if you found a solution for this yet..but I have switched over almost 100% to organic products and bought mascara from Whole Foods - the brand is: Mineral Fusion. I like it - haven't had any problems. The other safe makeup I've bought is Gabriel cosmetics. Either way- I love this instructable and having the freedom to make your own is awesome!! I wish I would have seen this sooner..but it helps a lot anyway. When I have time in the future ..I'll be doing this!

MaidMirawyn (author)rookie12012-09-20

I don't know if you're still looking for a mascara solution, but I stumbled across this recently on My Plastic Free Life: Lash Paint from Twink Beauty. I plan to order it myself soon, since I figure my current mascara is about due to be replaced.

MaidMirawyn (author)MaidMirawyn2012-09-20

I forgot the ingredient list for the lash paint:

purified water, aloe vera, candelilla wax, acacia gum, iron oxides, vitamin e, vitamin c, grapefruit seed extract, and potassium sorbate

Sounds pretty safe to me; safer than a mainstream mascara, at any rate.

scoochmaroo (author)rookie12009-06-10

Yeah, I've seen mascara like that, but I doubt it was very hypoallergenic. I'll look into finding a recipe that might be delicate enough for your eyes, but no, I wouldn't recommend using this stuff on your lashes.

Barefoot_Herbalist88 (author)2012-12-04

Here are some websites to help you out in your search for herbal things & essential oils. (remedies, etc) (essential oils) (clays & loose herbs) (essential oils & Other "green" products)

Southernsideboard (author)2012-09-04

I followed the makeup recipe above except i used arrowroot instead of the magnesium sterate. It is too heavy and light in color. Any ideas on making it lighter feeling and a little more brown?

choochboop (author)2012-07-25

couldn't you use things like nutmeg,cinnamon & cocoa for color?

scoochmaroo (author)choochboop2012-07-25

Yes! Cinnamon can make your skin feel tingly if you add too much, but it's not harmful at all.

Tanya harris (author)2012-05-15

Just a small Tip: I use a face cream as a primer before i apply my mineral make-up it helps to keep my make-up where i put it.

miafrieda (author)2012-01-01

Great to know that I can also find these things in BA. I also live in Argentina, and I'm constantly hating this country and thinking why proper natural and organic skincare and makeup can't be found here and that only big old brands like L'Oreal or Lancome rule this country. I know those comments are from 2009, but have any of you or any in here found really the ingredients? Where did you found them? What about the oils? I never had luck finding good oils and essential oils here, and raw, organic, natural stuff, like essential oils, clays, herbs and stuff like that. Argentinean Patagonia is also the second producer or rosehip oil after Chile and I couldn't even find a good, organic certified oil here! Not to talk about essential oils, impossible. Any information will be appreciated!

bethany4287 (author)miafrieda2012-02-07 has a lot of ingredients for making your own makeup and lotion etc.

Hi, I just happened to find this page looking for a recipe to make mineral makeup. I order a lot of color/base ingredients from - they are not the only ones who sell raw materials, but they have the widest selection I have ever seen! There are a lot of indie makeup sellers who find their ingredients here, which is how I discovered them. Look for the dry ingredients under the "makeup" tab and the oils/waxes under the Lipstick tab. Hope that helps!

jjo1 (author)2011-12-03

I'm about to make my first mineral makeup. I have the particle filter for my face. that's a HUGE thing you all should get. Breathing in ANY fine partles is bad for your lungs.

Contrary to what others may think, all products you put on your skin do NOT get into your bloodstream. The molecule has to be small enough. FEW products have molecules that small. Some of the more dangerous ones are dimethicone and cyclomethicone.

Good carriers are seabuckthorn seed oil and DMSO.

Think about it, if everything went thru, we would all be pretty sick. The top of the skin has an acid mantle on it, to prevent bacteria and such from getting in.

LOL I just saw doxsys' comment.

You can purchase ingredients from Presperse, from, lots of different suppliers. has a HUGE going out of business sale going on right now.

tcalvin (author)2011-11-25

The materials are available at fairly cheap, they even have a kit that makes eye shadows and several years worth mineral makeup for under 50 bucks.

thernandez12 (author)2011-11-13

It's a good idea to skip the magnesium stearate which Bare Minerals has omitted from their recipe, too. It can cause bad allergic reactions and in general age the skin. Just google it & you will see. I was wondering why my Bare Minerals which I first bought in 2009 was drying me out and I called the company and they said to replace with their new formula. I went on to make it myself since they are $26 a jar!!!

I have not used this recipe with jojoba because some people are allergic and have found that I don't need it. The Magic Bullet grinder works great for getting these ingredients to a silky consistency and you can find all of your ingredients at They have the best prices and can point you in the right direction with their descriptions. They have many different Sericite Micas with descriptions on which are great for foundation and others that work best for shadows...Some Sericite has carnauba wax infused so it's better for shadow and others are infused with other inorganic material that helps foundation have a great "slip".

It's best to get your jars from Qosmedix if buying in large quantity or eBay/etsy if only needing a few. I hope this helps!

Gottwinkies (author)2010-06-08

I KNOW I am late in my comments, but I only found this a few weeks ago. Thanks for this instructable. I made a batch of this last night. Had to wait for my supplies, but worth it. I made a few changges from scoochmaroo's recipe, though (added Tapioca starch powder, rutilated T/O instead of micronized) I managed to get the color right for me....fair skin lots of freckles, lol. I got so many compliments at work today! color matched great and the coverage stayed ALL day. I more like the idea that if it doesn't turn out or I react to the scents in it, I havent spent $15+ on one more "beauty" item that I need to toss. I can twek my recipe and try again :0) Thanks again!

scoochmaroo (author)Gottwinkies2010-06-09

Tapioca starch powder? That's awesome!

Gottwinkies (author)scoochmaroo2011-08-06

Note to self...Too much Tapioca starch is a BAD move, LOL.....It makes the makeup NOT stick to your skin! But easily fixed by upping the other ingredients and testing as you go :)

Gottwinkies (author)Gottwinkies2010-06-09

Ya! I found another site called and they had different items for fillers, and after doing a bit of research, I decided that I wanted to try the tapioca starch. It is VERY fluffy and mixes well with the items, plus I could use it in creams, which I have already done :0) Good alternative for talc, from what I read....I got my minerals at but a few things at the other site, since their mineral supply was pretty limited.

Gottwinkies (author)2011-08-06

Scoochmaroo has listed some sites and I found another one listed in my comments below. was the best one that I found overall, but that is just my opinion. I made this after spending $60 but I bought some extras, too, and you should be able to make more make-up than you can ever use! I made one batch and it has been a year, and the batch wasn't big at all-less than 1 cup total. I used some leftover storebought make-up for a short period and went right back to this. From the author's recipe, I cheapend up the ingredients a little, as diffferent forms of the same ingredient can vary alot in price, but for example, one pound of sericite mica was like $21...and I think that was the biggest cost. Best bet, know you are going to use the supplies for something else (lip gloss?), or see if someone wants to split costs with you.

askybbpapabull (author)2011-08-06

where do i get the materials??

aknittel herman (author)2011-07-28

i am a little late on this, but just wondering, approx. how much did it cost to purchase all the ingredients and how much makeup did you get from them? i am looking for makeup without the toxins that doesn't cost me an arm and a leg as i am on a very tight (graduate student and parent!) budget. thanks!

Minke (author)2010-05-13

I know that I'm a year late with my comment, lol but I thought I would give this a shot anyway...

First of all I would like to thank you for this Instructable. I have sensative skin and I am also concerned for my health and I had spent good money on Bare Minerals only to have it be one of the worst things I've ever put onto my skin! I had a horrible reaction to it but anyway...

If I were to make blush (rouge) would I just follow this Instructable but use a blush-type color instead of the flesh-type colors? And what about eyeshadow? The eyes are a whole different story than the face so I wasn't sure if the process would be the same or similar to the foundation process.

scoochmaroo (author)Minke2010-05-17

Before you try this recipe at all, it would be good to figure out what was causing a reaction with you.  The ingredients in this are very similar to Bare Minerals, only with a few things left out.  However, if it turns out what you're allergic to is not one of the ingredients still left! 

This is what I recommend (though a dermatologist would know better):
Do a small allergy test by applying each of the ingredients to the skin on the inside of your elbow.  It's a good idea to make a chart for yourself so you'll know which is which.  After 24 hours, you'll know if any of them is going to cause you a problem.

If not, then yes, go with some blush-colored pigments (there are plenty to choose from!) and have fun.  Best of luck to you!

KittyF (author)scoochmaroo2011-05-30

Another diy'er on instructibles says that you test each ingredient at aprox the same concentration as you would use it, not pure.

Minke (author)scoochmaroo2010-05-17

Thanks, that's a really good idea! I don't have the money to see a dermatologist (although I really do need to see one) so I'll probably end up doing the tests on my arm. :)

scoochmaroo (author)Minke2010-05-17

Here's a secret I recently discovered.
I went without health insurance for a long time, because I couldn't afford it.  Now I still have to limit who I can see because of office visit costs.  I did go to see a dermatologist recently, who asked me why I hadn't been to one sooner.  I told him I had no insurance and couldn't afford it.  He said, next time, you just come in, we'll work something out.  Now, granted, he's a very generous man, but I've also had dentists and general practitioners tell me the same thing.  My grandfather was an internist, and used to trade his services for baked goods.  These people are out there, and it's worth asking!  You never know what someone will do to help a fellow person in need.  

Minke (author)scoochmaroo2010-05-17

Thanks for the advice. I have health insurance and it's pretty good but there will be these random things that I really need that they won't cover for some reason.

Silver Buttons (author)2009-05-04

I didn't know it was possible to make your own powdered makeup. Very useful to know for anyone who has allergies or just doesn't want to use store-bought makeup that might be harmful to the skin. I wonder, could this recipe have other pigments added to make eye shade in different colors? Maybe add a bit more oil to give it more sticking power on the eyelids.

MichelleW (author)Silver Buttons2010-04-27
I found a site that has instructions on making eye shadow. The ingredients are
Powdered Base
1g magnesium stearate
2g cornflour
3g talc
5 drops jojoba oil
Powdered cosmetic colours suitable for eyes such as Micas, Oxides, Pigments and Ultramarines
I havent tried it, but it looks good. wed site is

let us know if you like it.
Minke (author)MichelleW2010-05-13

I wouldn't put talc on me, it's a common irritant is very dangerous:

Totally! I didn't buy the colors to make cool eyeshadow shades, but they're readily available, and the recipe is similar. You can use the same stuff to make rouge as well!

About This Instructable




Bio: Former Living & Food editor here at Instructables, now running! Follow me @sousvidely
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