Day 19 - The Science of Surfactants
Welcome to Day 19 of the 30 Days to Become a Better Cosmetic Chemist series
This 30 day challenge is all about giving you lessons and basic exercises that will improve your abilities as a cosmetic chemist.
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In this episode
In today’s program we’re going to cover the basic science of one of the most important types of raw materials used in cosmetics…surfactants.
In this episode you’ll find:
- Definition of surfactants
- History of the developments of surfactants
- Why surfactants are used in cosmetics
- How surfactants work
- Four types of cosmetic surfactants
- When to use the different types of surfactants
Try a classic experiment to demonstrate the effect of a surfactant in water. It is the old pepper, water, soap experiment. To do this experiment you need to get some black pepper, a dish of water, a toothpick and a body wash, shampoo, or bar soap.
But doing the experiment is not the only part of today’s challenge. The real challenge is to see if you can figure out a way to explain what is going on. Answer a few questions. For example, why does the pepper stay on the surface of the water? And why does it move away when you expose it to a surfactant? First, explain it in a way that makes sense to you. Then see if you can come up with a way to explain it to a 10-year-old. When you’ve got that go to the show notes for today’s program and leave your explanation.