History of Lip Gloss

Lip gloss was first invented in 1932 by Max Factor, who was a pioneer in the world of makeup. The other cosmetic products invented by him include lipstick and mascara wand. The reason behind the launch of lip gloss was exclusively cinematic. He doubled the ‘oomph’ quotient of actresses by making their lips shiny and glossy in the movies.

Fun Facts:

  • LipSmacker, the first flavored lipgloss, was presented in 1973.
  • Egyptians invented lipstick over 4000 years ago!
  • Lips appear red due to the amount of tiny blood vessels underneath them.
  • Saliva has enzymes that break down food and do the same when they come in contact with lips. Thus, drying your lips out.

Make Your Own Lip Gloss


1.5 oz Beeswax Pearls (available at craft stores)

1 oz Cocoa butter

1.5 oz Mango Butter

.5 oz Almond Oil

.5 oz Jojoba Oil

1 Teaspoon Coconut Oil

1-2 Teaspoons Peppermint Essential Oil

5-10 Drops Rosemary Oil Extract

Lip Balm Containers


Here’s How:

There are 6 teaspoons in a fluid ounce. To convert fluid ounces to teaspoons, multiply the fluid ounce value by 6.

1. Melt the beeswax pearls in a small saucepan on the lowest heat setting.

2. Once melted, add the butters and remelt. Add the essential oils and heat through.

3. Remove from heat and add the flavored oils (peppermint, coconut, rosemary) to your liking.

4. Place in small lip balm containers.

In this activity you’ll get to make your own homemade bath bombs and explore how changing the ratio of the ingredients affects how much the bath bomb fizzes when it comes into contact with water. Then you can use your perfected method to make some bath bombs as a gift for Valentine’s Day!

Lava Lamps

Lava Lamps are Groovy

The Lava Lamp is still cool after over half a century.  Invented by Edward Craven Walker in 1963, these now famous relics became a 60’s symbol of anything mind-altering or psychedelic.   Unlike other lamps, these strange fixtures produced little light and they appealed to people who wanted to hang out and chill in the shadows.

From a science perspective, a lava lamp is a liquid motion lamp that combines two (or more) liquids that are insoluble in one another. For example, oil and water will not dissolve in each other.  In other words, oil and water don’t mix.  In order to make a good lava lamp, you normally need two liquids that are much closer in density than oil and water are.   As a result, lava lamps usually use water for one liquid and then a mix of mineral oil, paraffin wax, and carbon tetrachloride for the other.

To get the liquids flowing in the lamp in a funky manner, you apply heat to the bottom of the mixture using an incandescent light bulb.  As the heavier liquid absorbs the heat, it expands and becomes less dense.  The now lighter liquid rises to the top where it quickly cools, becomes more dense, and sinks back down to the bottom. This mesmerizing cyclical motion repeats until the plug is pulled.

In this STEM Challenge, your initial task is to build a mini-lava lamp that uses Alka-Seltzer, rather than a light bulb, to power the motion of the lamp. Once constructed, your design task is to improve the groove of your Lava lamp – find at least one way that you make it hipper than it was before.