When the word pumice is mentioned, some people immediately remember that pebble used during the bath to pass on their feet. Meanwhile, others may not even know what the term is.
Despite its unusual name, this mineral can be found easily in Brazilian homes. Used to clean and exfoliate feet for centuries, pumice now has other uses.
For this reason, it can be used in the production of cosmetics, in dental treatments, in garden care and even in civil construction. But these applications don’t stop there.
And that’s exactly what you’ll discover in this article: what is pumice for? In addition, you will understand what this material really is, how it is formed, what its composition is, how to use it, where to find it and its price in the consumer market. Check out!
What is it for?
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, society has learned to use pumice in a variety of ways. We separate the main ones below, bringing more details about the function of this natural product. Check out!
Currently, the most common and popular use of pumice stone is to sand your feet. With this treatment, it is possible to eliminate dead heel cells, dry calluses and clean the pores of these regions. Thus, the foot is smoother and healthier.
But as the pumice stone has aluminum oxide, the use of this product was not limited to the health of the feet. That’s because the mineral also manages to perfectly smooth the entire skin of the body, restoring all the shine in that region. In addition, it promotes skin hydration , protecting it against dryness and reducing the appearance of wrinkles . ( 1 )
All these benefits attracted the interests of industries, which started to explore this natural material to manufacture their products. Thus, a series of cosmetics based on the properties and minerals of pumice stone appears on the market.
They are shower gels, soaps, exfoliants (facial and body) and masks that help to eliminate the subject, without damaging the skin. Therefore, it removes dead skin and leaves the epidermis fresh and revitalized. ( 1 )
But it is not just in aesthetics that the pumice stone has become a highlight, since this volcanic rock is also present in dental offices. In fact, this utility comes from ancient peoples.
“The first toothpaste appeared in Egypt about four thousand years ago. It was a material based on powdered pumice stone and vinegar, which was rubbed on the teeth with small branches of bushes.” ( 3 )
Today, this mineral is still used in the composition of some toothpastes, but dentists use it for other purposes. The main one is the polishing of the teeth , removing the bacterial plaque and smoothing the surface of this region.
In addition, pumice stone “can polish the stains that occur when your teeth react with the foods you eat and the beverages you drink.” Also acting beneficially against discoloration caused by smoking. ( 4 )
But, it is important to make it clear that the use of this volcanic material in teeth can only be done by an expert in the field. Only a dental surgeon is qualified to use this product for these purposes.
For those who don’t know, this type of stone can also become a beneficial gravel for the most diverse gardens. According to researchers, the presence of pumice in horticulture and landscaping allows for ideal drainage, improving soil aeration and promoting strong plant root growth.
Other benefits are: it maintains and distributes plant nutrients evenly, minimizes possible diseases that affect plant roots and optimizes the environment, preventing the appearance of weeds. ( 5 )
Although uncommon, there are other uses for this volcanic product, they are: filtration, fabric washing and civil construction.
How is apple-stone used?
It is only possible to use pumice at home in an aesthetic way or to compose gardens. In the first case, this stone product is used for the following treatments: to remove calluses and remove dead skin and cracks from feet , knees and elbows.
For this, just pass the stone gently in the desired region. But remember, these areas need to be moist so they don’t harm the healthy epidermis.
In addition, pumice powder can also be used, applying it to more sensitive areas such as the face. Another way to use it is through rock-based cosmetics.
For those who want to take advantage of the benefits of this natural product through the gardens , the tip is to cover the flowerbed or vase with gravel. Maintenance is simple and you don’t need to have a lot of work.
What is pumice stone?
Pumice is a volcanic rock that forms during explosive volcanic events. It originates from other rocks, such as igneous, andesite, basal, dacite or rhyolite. Therefore, it is a completely natural product and rich in different types of minerals. ( 6 )
Due to its original conditions, this element is an old acquaintance of the people who inhabit the Earth. For example, the ancient Romans already knew about pumice stone and used this material to build thermal baths and temples. ( 7 )
Currently, however, the use of this mineral has become diversified. Thanks to the properties and composition of pumice, it is used in different ways, mainly by the cosmetics industry.
Among the minerals that make up pumice, we have vitreous silica and alkali feldspar. But when it comes to the powder type of this material, some elements change the composition. ( 8 )
For this reason, silicon dioxide, potassium oxide and aluminum oxide are other substances found in this natural product. In the latter case, it can be said that this matter has the functions of cleaning, smoothing, hydrating and rejuvenating the skin. ( 1 )
It is also important to note that the powdered type of pumice stone has subdivisions. That’s because it can be thin, medium or thick. The stone variety, commonly sold, has a gray or brownish rectangular shape. ( 4 )
Pumice: where to buy and price?
Pumice can be easily found in pharmacies, supermarkets and health food stores. And the best thing is, it usually doesn’t cost more than R$ 10.
However, cosmetics made from this material can cost a little more, ranging from R$10 to R$30.