Archive for May, 2010

Congratulations to our Winners!

 

 

Congratulations

The lucky winners of our 2 sets of double tickets to our Garden Party Fundraiser are:

Sharon Young and Beryl Morgan

Simply arrive, your tickets will be waiting at the door.

We look forward to see you on Saturday!

Hayleigh Nicholas
Creative Director
Recycled Inc
083 263 0419
http://www.recycledinc.wordpress.com

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Word of the Day – Sodium Hydroxide / Lye / Caustic Soda

Goodness me, you need to read this WotD (Word of the Day) – this ingredient is listed in Johnson’s Baby aqueous lotion…

Sodium hydroxide (NaOH), also known as lye and caustic soda, is a caustic metallic base. It is used in many industries, mostly as a strong chemical base in the manufacture of pulp and paper, textiles, drinking water, soaps and detergents and as a drain cleaner. Worldwide production in 1998 was around 45 million tonnes.  Sodium hydroxide is a common base in chemical laboratories.

Pure sodium hydroxide is a white solid; available in pellets, flakes, granules and as a 50% saturated solution. It is hygroscopic and readily absorbs water from the air, so it should be stored in an airtight container. It is very soluble in water with liberation of heat. It also dissolves in ethanol and methanol, though it exhibits lower solubility in these solvents than does potassium hydroxide.

Molten sodium hydroxide is also a strong base, but the high temperature required limits applications. It is insoluble in ether and other non-polar solvents. A sodium hydroxide solution will leave a yellow stain on fabric and paper.

 Uses:

Soap production

Sodium hydroxide is traditionally used in soap making (cold process soap, saponification).It was made in the nineteenth century for a hard surface rather than liquid product because it was easier to store and transship.

Cleaning agent

Sodium hydroxide is frequently used as an industrial cleaning agent where it is often called “caustic”. It is added to water, heated, and then used to clean the process equipment, storage tanks, etc. It can dissolve grease, oils, fats and protein based deposits. The sodium hydroxide solution can also be added surfactants to stabilize dissolved substances to prevent redeposition. A sodium hydroxide soak solution is used as a powerful degreaser on stainless and glass bakeware. It is also a common ingredient in oven cleaners.

A common use of Sodium Hydroxide is in the production of Parts washer detergents. Parts washer detergents based on Sodium Hydroxide are some of the most aggressive parts washer cleaning chemicals. The Sodium Hydroxide based detergent include surfactants, rust inhibitors and defoamers.

A parts washer heats water and the detergent in a closed cabinet and then sprays the heated sodium hydroxide and hot water at pressure against dirty parts for degreasing applications.

Sodium Hydroxide used in this manner replaced many solvent based systems in the early 1990s when triclor was outlawed. Water and Sodium Hydroxide detergent based parts washers are considered to be an environmental improvement over the solvent based cleaning methods.

Tissue digestion

This is a process that was used with farm animals at one time. This process involves the placing of a carcass into a sealed chamber, which then puts the carcass in a mixture of sodium hydroxide and water, which breaks chemical bonds keeping the body intact.

This eventually turns the body into a coffee-like liquid, and the only solid that remains are bone hulls, which could be crushed between one’s fingertips. Sodium hydroxide is frequently used in the process of decomposing roadkill dumped in landfills by animal disposal contractors.

Sodium hydroxide has also been used by criminals to dispose of their victims’ bodies.

Food preparation

Food uses of sodium hydroxide include washing or chemical peeling of fruits and vegetables, chocolate and cocoa processing, caramel coloring production, poultry scalding, soft drink processing, and thickening ice cream. Olives are often soaked in sodium hydroxide to soften them, while pretzels and German lye rolls are glazed with a sodium hydroxide solution before baking to make them crisp. Due to the difficulty in obtaining food grade sodium hydroxide in small quantities for home use, Sodium carbonate is often used in place of sodium hydroxide.

  • The Scandinavian delicacy known as lutefisk (from lutfisk, “lye fish”).
  • Hominy is dried maize (corn) kernels reconstituted by soaking in lye-water. These expand considerably in size and may be further processed by frying to make corn nuts or by drying and grinding to make grits. Nixtamal is similar, but uses calcium hydroxide instead of sodium hydroxide.
  • Sodium hydroxide is also the chemical that causes gelling of egg whites in the production of Century eggs.
  • German pretzels are poached in a boiling sodium carbonate solution or cold sodium hydroxide solution before baking, which contributes to their unique crust.
  • Most yellow coloured Chinese noodles are made with lye-water but are commonly mistaken for containing egg. 
  • Domestic uses 

    Sodium hydroxide is used in the home as a drain cleaning agent for clearing clogged drains. It is distributed as a dry crystal or as a thick liquid gel. The chemical mechanism employed is the conversion of grease to a form of soap.

    Soap is water-soluble, and can be dissolved by flushing with water. This conversion occurs far more rapidly at high temperatures, so commercial drain cleaners may also contain chemicals that react with water to generate heat. Sodium hydroxide also decomposes complex molecules such as the protein that composes hair.

    Such drain cleaners (and their acidic versions) are highly caustic and should be handled with care.

    Sodium hydroxide has been used as a relaxer to straighten hair. However, because of the high incidence and intensity of chemical burns, chemical relaxer manufacturers have now switched to other alkaline chemicals. Sodium hydroxide relaxers are still available, but they are used mostly by professionals.

    Safety 

    Solid sodium hydroxide or solutions of sodium hydroxide will cause chemical burns, permanent injury or scarring if it contacts unprotected human or animal tissue. It will cause blindness if it contacts with the eye. Protective equipment such as rubber gloves, safety clothing and eye protection should always be used when handling the material or its solutions. 

    Dissolution of sodium hydroxide is highly exothermic, and the resulting heat may cause heat burns or ignite flammables. It also produces heat when reacted with acids. It is corrosive to glass and some metals. Keep away from aluminum.

    source:  http://en.wikipedia.org

     After reading all of this I am quiet certain I will not let any product containing Sodium Hydroxide anywhere near my house!  Educate and read product labels, you will be shocked to find out how many products contain this harsh chemical!

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    Word of the Day – Propylparaben

    Propylparaben, the propyl ester of p-hydroxybenzoic acid, occurs as a natural substance found in many plants and some insects, although it is manufactured synthetically for use in cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and foods. It is a preservative typically found in many water-based cosmetics, such as creams, lotions, shampoos and bath products.

    Other names
    propyl paraben;
    propyl p-hydroxybenzoate;
    propyl parahydroxybenzoate;
    nipasol;
    E number E216

    Parabens are a class of chemicals widely used as preservatives in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. Parabens are effective preservatives in many types of formulas. These compounds, and their salts, are used primarily for their bactericidal and fungicidal properties.

    They can be found in shampoos, commercial moisturizers, shaving gels, personal lubricants, topical/parenteral pharmaceuticals, spray tanning solution and toothpaste. They are also used as food additives.

    Their efficacy as preservatives, in combination with their low cost, their long history of safe use and the inefficacy of natural alternatives like grapefruit seed extract (GSE), probably explains why parabens are so commonplace. They are becoming increasingly controversial, however, and some organizations which adhere to the precautionary principle object to their everyday use.

    source: http://en.wikipedia.org/

    Cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and foods can all spoil if they do not contain a preservative. Consequently, propylparaben has become the preservative of choice, especially for cosmetics that are water-based – like moisturizers, shampoos, shower cleansers, conditioners, and sunscreens. It is even used in lipsticks, foundations, mascaras, and eye shadows – sometimes at levels approaching 25%. On its own, there are recommendations for how much propylparaben should be found in a particular product.

    The problem arises when a product contains multiple parabens – such as propylparaben and methylparaben – then, there are not any recommendations for an individual user.

    In the pharmaceutical industry, propylparaben is a common preservative for certain drugs. As a result, it is administered to humans in several ways: injections, orally, or through suppositories. However, it is almost always in concentrations of less than 1%.

    The dangers of propylparaben are yet to be specifically identified. However, studies have been conducted that have created fear in some consumers. For example, a group of British researchers tested breast lump tissue samples that were taken from women who had cancerous breast tumors. The researchers found traces of parabens in the lumps of all 20 women. This has caused some people to wonder whether the parabens caused the cancer.

    Other examples that cause concern include a September 2008 study of 20 girls between the ages of 14 and 19. The girls used multiple cosmetics products every day – from moisturizers to deodorants to make-up. In that study, propylparaben was found in every girl. The fear is that parabens mimic estrogen in the body and thereby increase a woman’s risk for breast cancer. Yet, there is no evidence that parabens cause cancer and further research must be conducted.

    Since there is increased awareness and concern, some cosmetics manufacturers, specifically those that are organic in nature, are looking for ways to prevent their products from spoiling or for inhibiting microbial growth.

    Shorter shelf lives and new formulas are all being explored by some manufacturers, as well. Until more research is conducted, the safest bet is to limit the amount of parabens that is absorbed into the body.

    source: http://www.wisegeek.com

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    Garden Party Fundraiser!

    Join our garden party in aid of CANSA East London

    Garden Party Flyer

    Date:  Saturday, 29th May 2010

    Time:  11am to 13pm (Auction 12pm)

    Venue: Kennaway Hotel, Quigney, East London

     Tickets are R30.00 per person – coffee/tea, muffin & biscuits on arrival.  Auction of donated Teddy Bears and other donations starts at 12pm.  Sweets, treats, tea and coffee on sale.

    Arts and crafts on sale.  Bio-Baba nappy display.

    Contact: Hayleigh @ Recycled Inc

    Cell:  083 263 0419

    Blog:  www.recycledinc.wordpress.com

    Email:  recycledinc@gmail.com

     

    Please note the change of venue!!!

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    Word of the Day – Methylparaben

    Methylparaben is an anti-irritant agent and water-soluble anti-microbial. It is an anti-fungal and very commonly used as a preservative for cosmetics, drugs and food items.

    It functions as a preservative as well as a bacteriostatic agent. Methylparaben is extracted from the benzoic acid that is derived from benzoin tree gum. It is considered both to be a phenol as well as an ester. A lot of times, methylparaben is used in skincare and beauty projects for rejuvenation purposes.

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      Function

    1. Methylparaben is often used as an anti-fungal agent in foods. It operates to protect food items from Drosophila, which are often referred to as fruit flies or vinegar flies. Methylparaben functions to slow down the growth of fruit flies during both the larval and pupal periods.

      Considerations

    2. Methylparaben is considered to be a safe substance. It is easily absorbed through both the skin as well as through the gastrointestinal tract. It quickly is excreted and eliminated without any building up inside of the body. It is non-toxic by parenteral and oral consumption. It works well with sensitive skin types and is gentle and non-irritating.

      Warning

    3. Even though methylparaben is a safe substance, there have been incidences of allergic reactions to it reported. Because of this, people with allergies to methylparaben should try to avoid any food items, cleansers or any other type of product that might contain methylparaben.

      Identification

    4. So technically speaking, what is methylparaben? It is a chemical and its full name is methyl p-hydroxybenzoate. It is created by p-hydroxybenzoic acid’s methanol esterification while sulfuric acid is present. Methylparaben is distilled after esterification (the chemical process for producing esters).

    source:  http://www.ehow.com

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    Our Craft Session

    We hosted a craft session on Saturday with a few friends helping out to finish paintings and a few even made some lovely Mother’s Day beads!

    Thank you again to all my wonderful friends and supporters for their help, we couldn’t do any of this without you!

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    Weekend Experiments – Baby Soap Solution

    This week we are experimenting with a recipe I found on lovelylaities.co.za.  Reading the labels of “Baby Soap” is scary.  Although my boys are 17 months and 3 years old, I am no longer buying commercial baby soaps for them.  The few that are left over from their baby showers, etc have been used for liquid hand soap. 

    Babies should not be washed with any cleaners until they are several weeks old as their skin is so sensitive.  After that, they should only be washed with baby soap solutions as conventional soaps (even Dove soap) are too strong for their skin.

    Try this as an alternative. (It’s great for your skin too, particularly if you suffer from acne or other skin problems!)

    40ml (2 tablespoons) rosewater

    60ml (¼ cup) distilled water

    ¼ teaspoon vegetable glycerin

    Mix the ingredients in a 100ml bottle and shake well. Leave for 4 days to synergize, shaking occasionally. Filter the mixture through coffee filter paper. Store in a dark coloured glass bottle and shake well before use.

    To use, dip a piece of cotton wool in warm water and squeeze out well. Flatten and then sprinkle with the washing water. For a variation, or if you know your baby is not sensitive to essential oils, add up to 6 drops of your favourite essential oil before shaking.

    Tea tree makes a great addition if your baby has nappy rash, but be sure to check that your baby isn’t sensitive to it on another part of their body before you use it on any rash. Alternatively, add some honey to the mix before shaking.

    source:  http://lovelylaities.co.za 

    The ingredients can be found at most grocery suppliers or chemists, I’m not one for buying water, so I’m going to use boiled tank water.  Let’s see if it makes any difference, rub-a-dub-tub!

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