You may have heard a rumor going around that there could be bat poop in your mascara, but is there any truth to it?
Obviously not. The bat poop mascara myth is exactly that; a widespread myth that has absolutely no basis in reality. But where did the idea first come from?
Mascara is made with bat poop – fact or fiction?
The idea that mascara is made of bat poop is pure fiction. No cosmetics company is going to include poop in a product designed to be applied to your eyes, for obvious health and safety reasons. The dark tint in mascara is typically achieved with the use of a carbon black or iron oxide pigment, rather than bat excrement.
Why does the bat poop mascara myth exist?
The bat poop mascara rumor most likely originated from a simple, terminology-based misunderstanding.
Many cosmetic products (including mascara) contain guanine, a crystalline material is used to reduce the clear or transparent appearance of products.
Bat poop is called guano so, given the similarity of the two words, you can see where the confusion came from. What’s more, guanine is found in bat guano, but the guanine used in the beauty industry is actually obtained from fish scales. So, there may not be guano in mascara, but there are fish-based products in there which is, honestly, only slightly less icky.
Do any other types of make-up contain bat poop?
Bat poop is not used in any other types of make-up. However, this doesn’t mean the beauty industry is entirely poop-free.
One example is Geisha facials (AKA bird poop facials) which involve the application of dried and powdered Nightingale droppings to the skin. This ancient Japanese beauty technique is thought to brighten and soften the facial complexion and is becoming steadily more popular in the West.
Other slightly-disturbing beauty trends to try include blood facials (involving the injection of your own blood plasma to life and rejuvenate the skin), and snail slime treatments, which involve the use of gastropod mucus.
Internet rumors have many people asking an unlikely question – ‘does mascara have bat poop in it?’ The answer, thankfully, is a resounding ‘no.’ Bat poop is not currently used in any area of the beauty industry.
Mascara is one of many cosmetic products that contain a colorant called guanine. This crystalline material is found in bat poop, but the stuff used in mascara is actually derived from fish scales. Adding to the confusion is the fact that the proper name for bat poop is guano, which sounds pretty similar to guanine.
Fortunately, the two are not the same, so there is no need to worry about poop in your mascara. If you do want poop on your face, you can treat yourself to a Geisha facial for the bargain price of approximately $200.