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The $72M cancer case that’s making everyone question talcum powder

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Photo: Austin Kirk/Flickr

You douse yourself with baby powder before every run and after every shower, thinking you’re doing your body a favor—but could you be doing more harm than good?

That’s a question that may be running through many peoples’ minds, on the heels of one family’s legal victory over Johnson & Johnson.

Earlier this week, a jury awarded $72 million in damages to the family of a woman who died from ovarian cancer, which she claimed was caused by using Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder and Shower to Shower products for 35 years, CBS News reports.

Talc is a naturally occurring mineral that’s commonly used in beauty products, and it has also been connected to certain types of cancers. The American Cancer Society says research on the potential link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer is mixed, and stresses that the talc in products from 35 years ago is vastly different than what’s in products today—namely that cancer-causing asbestos is no longer in the bottles and compacts that line your bathroom shelves.

Consider this a reminder that what you put on your skin has a major impact on your internal health. We’d love to know: Are you more concerned now about talc and baby powder? What products do you use? Tell us in the Comments!

Suddenly replaying every single time you’ve used baby powder in your life? (Guilty.) Give yourself a break, with this guided self-love meditation