Recently, the company that I have been buying facewash from since I was 18 years old, ran out of the product I use. Rather than settle for something else, I did a wee bit of research online and found a recipe to try.
The whole experience reminded me of a unit that I ran with my Year 10 class a few years ago. We had finished a unit on Acids and Bases and so they were familiar with things like the pH scale and we had looked at cleaners, toothpaste and other common household items. I had run across the resource “Lips, Lipids and Locks” in the resource room and decided to make a mini unit around it.
Firstly, the students read the book. They then had a think in groups about what kind of products they used on a regular basis and what chemicals were in them. We did a small group and whole class brainstorm about the types of cosmetics they could reasonably make.
They then did some research about recipes, decided on a recipe to use and came up with a “shopping list” of ingredients. Once we had gone through the ingredients, there were things that we couldn’t get either because of cost or because it wasn’t available in a timely manner. This meant the students had to go back and look at alternatives.
Finally, we spent some time making and testing out their products. Once each group had a product, it was presentation day. The students presented their products to the class along with their ingredients, why their ingredients worked and also if they had to use alternatives, what alternatives they used and why they worked. They had to talk about why they had chosen one recipe over the others available. They also had to analyse their final product and talk about what they would do differently next time, what they liked/disliked.
There was not enough time for them to go through multiple production runs and refine the products which I think would have been a good learning exercise as well. I think this would have helped them understand what kind of research and development goes into creating the products they use.
All in all, I feel like they were engaged as they were making things that they thought were relevant. They also were developing their research skills and problem solving abilities. Finally they were communicating what they learnt to the wider group.
Back to my own experiment with facewash, with a small tweak it turns out I’m on to a winner. It was quick and easy and works well. If you’re interested in the recipe, here it is:
1/3 cup oat flour – oats have saponin giving them mild cleansing properties, they are also moisturising
2/3 cup almond meal – almond meal is used to exfoliate, it is high in B and E vitamins and it is also very moisturising
2 Tablespoons of honey – honey is an antimicrobial and also contains antioxidants
A few drops of melted cocoa butter – moisturising
Squish all ingredients together and store in an airtight container. To use, mix a pea size amount with water in hand and apply.