When is comes to ‘Cosmetic chemistry’ I think about .... what it is made up of: colour, preservatives, natural ingredients and what is best for the consumer. The latest edition of the Cosmetics Toiletries and Fragrance Association (CTFA) Dictionary lists more than 10,000 raw materials. Every year, hundreds of new ingredients are added to the list of those that have been used for centuries. Some materials used today can be traced to 11,000 B.C.E. in the animal drawings from the caves of Altimira. The usual cosmetics include: Make up, skincare products, sunscreen, soaps and fragrances’ etc more recently is cosmetic surgery e.g botox injected into the skin. As long as society continues to puts a huge emphasis on physical appearance, cosmetic chemistry will continue to bloom.
THE DISCOVERY ITSELF
Cosmetics have been found in early history and even from the Old Testament in the bible. As early as 10,000 BCE, men and women used scented oils and ointments to clean and soften their skin and mask body odor. Dyes and paints were used to color the skin, body and hair. They rouged their lips and cheeks, stained their nails with henna, and lined their eyes and eyebrows heavily with kohl. Kohl was a dark-colored powder made of crushed antimony, burnt almonds, lead, oxidized copper, ochre, ash, malachite, chrysocolla (a blue-green copper ore) or any combination thereof. (Cohen) It was applied with a small stick. The upper and lower eyelids were painted in a line that extended to the sides of the face for an almond looking effect.
The appearance of skin care formulation dates to around 3000 B.C.E. in ancient Egypt. Most concoctions were prepared from natural materials. Cleopatra is said to have bathed in donkeys' milk to keep her skin smooth and supple. One naturally occurring material used by the ancients was red ochre, or iron oxide. Lumps of red ore were formed when iron oxidized or rusted. The red iron oxide was found in burial tombs in ceremonial lip tints and rouge preparations. It was also used to draw the ancient cave pictures of animals, as seen in Altimira, and is still used in many makeup formulations
Figure 1. Phosphatidylcholine
Antioxidants came to public eye in the 1990s, when scientists began to understand that free radical damage was involved in the early stages of artery-clogging atherosclerosis and may contribute to cancer, vision loss, and a host of other chronic conditions. Some studies showed that people with low intakes of antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables were at greater risk for developing these chronic conditions than were people who ate plenty of these fruits and vegetables. Clinical trials began testing the impact of single substances, especially beta-carotene and vitamin E, as used to reduce the occurrence of heart disease, cancer, etc.
THE CHEMISTRY OF COSMETICS
Chemistry is used in cosmetics for: colour - To produce the rainbow of shades on today's makeup racks, chemists derive dyes and pigments from a variety of compounds. Coal tar, chromium oxide, aluminium powder, manganese, iron oxide, and mica flakes are just a few examples of mineral ingredients that cosmetic chemists use to add colour to the consumers’ faces. Other pigments and dyes, such as beet powder, come from plants. Those derived from animals include carmine, a crimson pigment made from the ground-up, dried bodies of a cacti-eating bug called the cochineal insect. Chemistry is used in cosmetics for: bases - The type of base used depends on where the product is supposed to be applied. For example, in lipsticks, about half the weight of the product is accounted for by a thick, insoluble mixture of waxes and castor bean oil that will not dissolve when a woman licks her lips or drinks a beverage. A lipstick base must balance the properties of the oil ingredients with those of wax. The oil in the lipstick makes it viscous (thick and sticky), so that the color clings to the lips. The waxes are...