Did you know that cosmetic companies employ teams of specialized chemists to develop and test each new line of make up, perfume, lotion, or soap? Here's a project that lets you be the cosmetic chemist. It shows you how to manufacture your own lip gloss right in your kitchen using a short list of simple ingredients. Check it out and then apply some creative cosmetic science in your own experiment.

The goal of this project is to apply basic chemistry to create your own homemade cosmetics.

This is a project that lets you be the cosmetic chemist. It shows you how to manufacture your own lip gloss right in your kitchen using a short list of simple ingredients. Check out the project video to see how two curious chemistry students, Jazi and Danielle, applied some creative science to make and test several different types of lip gloss. Then read on to see how you can do your own experiments and follow up with some "consumer" testing to see which of your products is most popular. Believe it or not, the glamorous world of cosmetics and beauty products is really based on some serious science. Cosmetic companies employ teams of specialized chemists to develop and test each new line of make up, perfumes, lotions, and soaps. Their research leads to top-secret formulas that are carefully analyzed for safety, stability, and customer appeal. Like Jazi and Danielle in the video, you can follow the recipes as they are written, but you can also play with the formulas to change the proportions of one or two ingredients or swap out others to create very different types and flavors of gloss. For example, Jazi and Danielle found that a little less beeswax than the recipe called for improved their lip gloss by making it softer, but if they left out too much wax the gloss became runny. A change in fragrance or color also seemed to make a difference in the preference of the gloss testers. In this project, you have a chance to be creative. See what variations you can come up with for your lip gloss formulas. Then you might have a better idea of how to adjust your own formulas. For instance, most basic recipes for homemade lip gloss require some type of oil or butter to soften the lips (an emollient), some type of wax to thicken the gloss, and some ingredient that adds flavor or a pleasant smell. In your research, you'll discover additional examples of chemical ingredients like solvents, emulsifiers, surfactants, and antioxidants that are used in most commercial cosmetics. Once you create and try out your lip gloss samples yourself, you will ask volunteers in your neighborhood to use the lip glosses and rate them. See if you can predict ahead of time which recipe will end up being the most popular. After you analyze the results you'll discover just how accurate your cosmetic instincts are. And who knows, maybe what you learn about cosmetic chemistry will eventually lead to your creation becoming the next "hot" sales item at the cosmetic counters!

Terms, Concepts and Questions to Start Background Research
To do this project, you should do research that enables you to understand the following terms and concepts:


Solids, liquids, solutions

liquids. and solutions? How are solvents important in solutions? Are they also important in mixtures? What solvents are frequently used in cosmetics? What are emulsifiers? How do they work and why are they used in cosmetics? What are emollients and why are they used in cosmetics? What are stabilizers? Name a few stabilizers most often found in cosmetics. What is vitamin E? Why is it added to many items including cosmetics? Materials and Equipment To do this experiment. you will need the following materials and equipment: y Ingredients for three lip glosses: (see recipes below) o o o o o o o o o y y y y y y y y Beeswax Cocoa butter Shea butter Petroleum jelly Aloe vera gel Vitamin E liquid Peppermint oil Sweet almond oil Coconut oil Pyrex® glass measuring cups (microwavable) or small cooking pan Small plastic containers with lids for your gloss samples Microwave or hot plate/stove with a double boiler pan Popsicle sticks or wooden stirrers Cotton swabs (Q-tips®) or flat edge toothpicks Tissues Food scale that measures ounces Measuring spoons . waxes Emulsifiers Emollients Surfactants Stabilizers Antioxidants Vitamin E Questions y y y y y y What are the differences between solids.y y y y y y y y Mixtures and solvents Oils.

Cocoa Mint Lip Balm 1. y If you are using a stove or hot plate. Label the containers "A". 7. Stir well. studies involving human subjects require prior approval. vanilla C. 1. For ISEF-affiliated science fairs. 8. in the video Jazi and Danielle used three categories in their test: look. Safety note: In your informed consent form. beeswax B. If they do. "B". Let the samples cool and seal with a tight lid. Helpful Hint: You may spill a bit of gloss mixture outside the containers even if you are careful in pouring. Use low to medium heat on the stove or a short time in the microwave. 3. Melt together the basic ingredients of each recipe. petroleum jelly 2 Tbsp. Carefully remove from heat using a pot holder and add the appropriate flavorings or vitamin E. Vanilla Lip Gloss 3 Tbsp. work carefully and use pot holder or hand protectors to prevent burns. They asked each tester to state their favorite gloss (A. Almond Honey Lip Balm Heat and melt while stirring: 8 oz.5 oz. You can do the . If this happens. 5. it is better to NOT have them volunteer for your experiment.0 oz. You can use either a double boiler pan on a stove or a glass pyrex measuring bowl with a lip in a microwave. ask each participant if they have any allergies or sensitivities to makeup or lip sticks.5 oz. check out the Science Buddies resource Sample Size: How Many Survey Participants Do I Need?. checking the mixture every 15 to 30 seconds. 4. Experimental Procedure Safety note: y Be sure you have your safety goggles and apron or lab coat on before you start your experiments.5 oz. Notes on using volunteers: To see how many volunteer subjects you need.y y y y y y Notepad and pens/pencils Hand mirror Safety goggles Pot holders/hand protectors Apron or lab coat Minimum 10 volunteers to serve as "testers" a. b. feel (texture). Decide how you will ask your testers to evaluate your lip glosses. see Projects Involving Human Subjects. coconut oil 2 Tbsp. honey 1 drop vitamin E liquid 3±5 drops peppermint oil 2. aloe vera gel ½ tsp. Stir well and carefully pour into clean containers. shea butter 1. y Keep your work space clean as you mix and heat your ingredients to prevent any spills or fire. sweet almond oil 2. and taste. wait for the mixture to cool and harden and then you can wipe the containers with a clean cloth. 6. or "C". B. beeswax 1. For example. Assemble the ingredients for the three lip gloss recipes: A. cocoa butter Remove from heat. For more information. stir in: 1 tsp. or C) for each category.

Remember. B. Variations y Create your own recipe for a lip gloss. smell. Make careful observations of your glosses each day and watch for signs of spoiling. After your testing is completed.same or try a numbering system (i. This method will give you a more quantitative way to tally the responses. For help with data analysis and setting up tables.e. or taste? 4. Record your observations and note how long each sample remains stable. You could include your "private line" lip gloss in your testers' evaluation to see how your lip gloss compares to the standard lip glosses. Be sure the lid is securely fastened on each sample. Record each tester's responses for all three lip glosses in your notebook. Are there similar ingredients in your glosses? Are there any differences between "natural" and standard brand lip glosses? Research the typical shelf life of cosmetics. Be sure each tester uses a clean cotton swab or toothpick for each lip gloss. Explain your experiment and ask them to try your samples and give you some quick feedback according to your evaluation categories. or C for each category (look. Assemble your testers or arrange to bring your samples to each tester. How do the ingredients in your lip glosses compare to the ingredients found in store-bought glosses? . 10. Use cotton swabs or toothpicks to apply samples. If you asked the testers to rank the samples 1±5 for look. with 5 as the best lip gloss) to evaluate each sample lip gloss in each category. 9. or lotions to see how many of them know or follow the recommended guidelines of the manufacturers. Were there any differences between the three glosses for preference in look. 3. etc. feel. Which lip gloss ranked as the all-around favorite? If so.. Analyze the "shelf life" or stability of your lip glosses. After they have tried all three lip glosses. texture. soaps. feel. and taste). a hypothesis is an educated guess. 12. see Data Analysis & Graphs. blending the ingredients of the recipes. 11. changes in color. Evaluate each lip gloss yourself before running the tests with testers. and taste. 13. You'll need to make sure you understand the Terms and Questions listed in the beginning of this science fair project in order to make your hypothesis. Note: Keep your samples free of contamination. 1±5. Use your knowledge of the function of cosmetic ingredients to try to make your new recipe complete. did this match your prediction? Were you surprised at the results? 5. 2. Analyze Your Data 1. ask each tester to state which gloss is their allaround favorite. y o o o Research the preservatives and stabilizers used in commercial lip glosses or cosmetics. total the numbers for each sample for each category. feel. The resources listed in the Bibliography can help you get started. y Identify the function(s) of each of your ingredients in your lip gloss recipes. Ask your friends and family how long they usually keep their make up. leave your samples out at room temperature. Use the same categories that your testers will use. Try varying the proportions of the listed ingredients in any of the three recipes above. or adding new flavorings or fragrances. Compile the responses from all your testers. Make a hypothesis (prediction) about which gloss you think will be most popular to your testers and why. Make a bar graph showing how many testers chose sample A.

There likely will be more ingredients in the commercial lip gloss. y Create your own hand lotions. y y . see Chemistry Project Ideas. Try making hand lotions from recipes on the web and repeat the same testing procedure as you did for lip glosses. and then repeat this experiment using various soap formulas. Find out how to make basic soaps. Make a list of those ingredients and find out the function of each. Compare the ingredients of lip glosses and lotions in the homemade recipes to those listed on the containers of commercial lip glosses and lotions. Compare the ingredients of lip glosses and soaps in the homemade recipes to those listed on the packaging of commercial lip glosses and soaps. How many ingredients are used in both? How many ingredients are specific to either lip glosses or soaps? Can you explain why? For more science project ideas in this area of science. How many ingredients are used in both? How many ingredients are specific to either lip glosses or soaps? Can you explain what these ingredients are used for? Make your own soaps.