Try out these 10 surprising everyday uses for talcum powder

Dig out that tub from the back of your bathroom cabinet – there’s a lot more you can do with talc than you think…

Long associated with kids’ bath times or a visit round your grandmother’s house, talcum powder has been a bathroom staple for generations.

But how many of us actually use it between the ages of 10 and 75? Some of these brilliant uses for the sweet-smelling stuff - particularly during this long, hot summer - will have you rummaging in the back of the cupboard in no time.

[Read more: 11 ways to keep you and your home cool during the heatwave]

1. Talc can soothe dry skin and treat eczema

Talcum powder can work like a moisturiser to help soothe extra-dry skin. If you have areas of irritated skin, rub a bit of talcum powder in to calm it.

Consultant Dermatologist Dr Justine Hextall says: “If you find that eczema prone areas of skin get hot and sweaty throughout the day and are making the irritation worse, use a mild medicated talcum powder to calm the affected skin, particularly concentrating on skin folds and the groin area to prevent a sore flare up. The zinc and allantoin in the Mildly Medicated product will help to soothe the symptoms and therefore prevent scratching.”

Keep it on hand throughout the summer and winter months when your skin tends to get really dried out.

2. Talc can thicken your eyelashes

Dust them with talcum powder before you apply mascara. The powder acts as a primer which gives you fuller, longer-looking lashes.

3. Use talc to set your make-up

Talc can absorb and remove facial oils, acting as a primer to help set your makeup for the day or night and prevent you from looking too shiny. Talcum powder can also be mixed with a powder or bronzer that is a bit too dark to lighten it up.


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4. Talc can prevent chafing

During this hot weather - or before you begin exercising - try dusting some talcum powder between your thighs to prevent chafing. It will help to eliminate friction when you run so your skin will stay smooth and pain-free avoiding the risk of a rash.

5. Use talc to wipe away sand

When you're on holiday or popping to the beach for a day, there's nothing more frustrating than applying sun cream to parts of your skin covered in sand - so sprinkle some talc on areas that have sand stuck to you and wipe off.

The sweat, oil and water that’s causing the sand to stick will be absorbed by the powder meaning the sand can be easily wiped off your skin. Better still, you’ll know your car and house won’t turn into a sandy mess either.

6. Use talc instead of dry shampoo

Sprinkle some talcum powder underneath the top layer of hair at your roots to absorb excess oil.

If you have dark hair, mix the powder with cocoa powder and for red hair, mix in some cinnamon. Gently brush through to evenly distribute the product evenly and no-one will ever know.

7. Use talc to cool your sheets

On a hot summer’s night, sprinkle some talcum powder on your bed sheets before heading off to sleep and you’ll feel cool and dry all night long.

8. For silky smooth legs

After exfoliating, apply talcum powder to the area of skin you’ll be waxing before you begin. It will absorb any excess oil on the skin’s surface so the wax will be able to grab your hairs better. Better still, your skin will be soothed by the cooling effect of the powder.

9. Talc helps to freshen up your wardrobe

If your wardrobe is smelling a bit musty – guess what? You can freshen it up with talcum powder.

Sprinkle a small amount of talc into a jar or dish and leave it in your wardrobe. The moisture removing properties of the powder will keep it free from that musty smell. You can also you can use it to freshen up your carpets as well. Sprinkle a light covering on your carpets, let it sit for about 15 minutes and then hoover up – this works wonders for removing tough smells, such as pets or cigarettes.

[Read more: 8 surprising uses for clear nail varnish around the house]

10. Use talc to stop shoes from smelling

If you or someone in your house has smelly shoes, talcum powder works wonders to eliminate the smell in your hallway.

Simply sprinkle a light dusting of talcum powder inside the shoe and leave them overnight. In the morning, shake out the baby powder and you’re good to go. Try this tip with your trainers before you go to the gym too, and the powder will absorb any sweat leaving your shoes smelling fresher.

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