Jul 07.15

10 Things You Might Not Know About Calamine

LUSH Facts >> Tips and Tricks

10 facts about calamine

If ever there was a must-have skin care survival ingredient, it's calamine.

Calamine powder is one of the most reassuring, nurturing ingredients in our medicine cabinet. There are versatile uses and benefits to calamine powder, which forms the base for calamine lotions, as well as many different LUSH solutions for many skin discomforts.

 1. Calamine has been invoked for soothing and calming irritation of all sorts for hundreds of years. Itself not naturally occurring, the blend of powders that create calamine can vary from recipe to recipe. LUSH’s calamine is mainly zinc oxide (ZnO), a white powder, tinged with iron oxides to produce a pretty, light pink powder. Used in LUSH formulas, calamine powder adds a calming touch, as well as a characteristic blush to some classic skin care savers.

2. Zinc oxide, the basis of calamine powder, is fairly common in medicinal ointments, diaper rash creams and sunscreens. It’s favored for its smooth consistency, which can set atop skin acting as a fine protective film against the effects of the sun’s rays and other environmental residues.  

Fresh Farmacy uses soothing calamine powder

3. Skin that’s producing too much oil can seek relief the matte finish left behind by calamine. Both Fresh Farmacy facial soap and Dreamwash shower smoothie blend the powder with gentle lathering agents for anti-inflammatory relief while absorbing excessive oils on face and body. A gentle way to nurture skin back to better behavior, they relieve skin’s irritation and offer some anti-bacterial muscle from lavender and tea tree essential oils.

Dreamwash is incredibly soothing for sore, irritated skin

4. Bug bites and generally irritated skin also get relief from our range of calamine products. Both Fresh Farmacy and Dreamwash also combine calamine with chamomile and rose to reduce redness and itchiness. Calamine offers a topical cooling action on the skin while the essential oils help calm inflammation. These are handy products for all using after any summer adventuring in places full of mosquitoes and poison ivy.

Made with fresh blueberries and calamine, Catastrophe Cosmetic is skin calming and soothing

5. When skin is really suffering, only the most cooling and inflammation reducing mix will do. Enter Catastrophe Cosmetic, a Fresh Face Mask to offer a restorative solution to skin in crisis. Taking antioxidant ingredients from both land and sea, fresh seaweed and blueberries join forces with the classic calming mask base of calamine and rosewater to gently treat the skin. Created for the face, but useful anywhere skin is suffering.

Cooling, hydrating and mineral-rich, Aqua Marina is made with calamine powder.

6. Suffering from a sunburn? Reach for a soothing calamine cleanser. Aqua Marina offers mineral-rich relief of blended seaweed gel and aloe vera gel for cooling hydration to achy skin. The dewiness of the ingredients are balanced by calamine’s chalky microfilm consistency, which makes the mix a spreadable solid and contributes to the cool-down factor as it finely coats the skin.

7. Sometimes, a body needs full submersion relief, and in that case, Happy Blooming is the bath melt to choose. Use one, two or all three wedges of the calamine and passion fruit bar to increase its density level. Skin feels blooming good afterwards. Tucson LUSH customer uicornred tells us why it’s her lifesaver:

“I absolutely LOVE this product. My 4 year old son has awful contact dermatitis from his allergies and he's constantly itching, so I decided to try this bath melt being that it is calamine based to see if it would offer him some relief.... after soaking for 5 minutes he completely stopped itching and we've been using it just about every other day ever since! I love LUSH products for myself so I was so happy to find that they helped my son too! I recommend this for anyone with sensitive and/or dry skin. It makes your skin feel comfortable again.”

Happy Blooming soothes itchy, irritated skin with calamine.

8. Calamine lotion is a staple in many medicine cabinets, but can also be made in small fresh batches when needed, if ingredients are on hand, that is! If you're a do-it-yourself kind of person these two recipes for homemade calamine lotion on the blog, Nourishing Joy will have you whipping up a fresh batch for yourself.  

9. By now it’s clear there is a theme to our calamine-based products, they'll get your skin feeling happy again! LUSH has always relied on calamine, and in the Retro range (on-line only) will help every Bare Naked Lady feel comfortable In The Nude. LUSH Retro changes up our offerings on a regular basis, so check into our Retro section periodically to see what we’ve conjured up from our past, in fresh exclusive batches.

Hopefully we’ve scratched your itch for info on calamine. It’s an incredibly useful ingredient here at LUSH and has a signature pink, calming presence in our skin care range. While it may drum up some uncomfortable memories of having chicken pox or poison ivy or some other malady of childhood, there’s also the association of relief and comfort from this very nurturing ingredient.