Let’s Talk About Mica

One of the reasons I have chosen to pursue a career with Beautycounter is the mission that we are working towards. The laws regulating the personal care industry are severely outdated. As in, the last major legislation over the beauty industry to date was made in 1938. More than just safer, high-performing products, Beautycounter works to regulate ingredients in personal care products as well as reveal the truth behind the mica industry.

You may not be too familiar with mica, but I bet you come into contact with it every day. It’s in so many products: that luster in your eyeshadow, the paint on your walls, & the electronics you use daily, just to name a few.

But do you know where that mica has been and who has had to labor over it?

Mica can be found all over the world. It is mined through various extraction methods and both informal and formal mining operations. Informal mines are often illegal mines, and formal mines frequently use forced labor in their production. Not all mining is created fairly, which is why the Beautycounter team has been traveling the world all year conducting on-the-ground audits of its supply chain.

Mica Source Map

It’s not enough to just use products that are safe for you and your body and your family. The mica industry is tied to so much corruption and child labor that even if a product is safe for you, it may be harming the well-being of a child on the other side of the world.

So here I am yet again extremely thankful for Beautycounter and what they are doing to change the status quo. Every mica supplier that Beautycounter uses has been audited via phone in 2019 with the goal of being audited in-person by the end of 2020.

Watch this short documentary to learn more:

How You Can Play A Role In Shifting the Mica Industry

You may also like: My Quick & Easy Makeup Look

Mica in Makeup


This technology platform was founded at MIT and is helping us map our entire supply chain. This gives us visibility to exactly where our mica is sourced—mine by mine, day by day. In a super-secretive industry, this information isn’t easy to come by. We’re looking forward to being able to share information about which mines were used to create your favorite highlighter and eyeshadow. Stay tuned for a fully traceable supply chain.

Mica hands

Domestic Suppliers

While mica is a globally sourced material, we strongly prefer to source domestically. We work closely with our supplier in Hartwell, Georgia to ensure that they’re using industry-leading practices for sustainable mining and processing. For our additional suppliers, we’re working to further secure and trace their mica through our partnership with Sourcemap and on-the-ground audits.


What’s Next for Beautycounter?

As a company dedicated to safety, we believe that we have to go beyond the formulations we create and also ensure the safety of the many people and communities that bring our products to life. This mica journey is complicated, messy and we don’t always have all the answers. But what we know to be true is that: we’re all interconnected, the communities most impacted by this work should be at the center of the solutions, and change is possible. To get this right will take time, but we’re here for the long haul. Follow our journey and support and shop brands committed to being a part of the solution.

mica eyeshadow palette

How will you be part of this movement? Did you know this about the mica industry? I’d love to hear your thoughts.
XO, Sam

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