2012-01-26: Green Cosmetics and Serious Chemistry, Dr. T. Joseph Lin

Section Dinner Meeting

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

Stevens Steakhouse
5332 Stevens Place
Los Angeles, CA 90040

Green Cosmetics and Serious Chemistry
T. Joseph Lin, PhD, TJL Associates

Check-in: 6:00 pm
Dinner: 7:00 pm
Presentation: 8:00 pm

Abstract: Cosmetics increase attractiveness by concealing flaws or enhancing skin coloring. They are not required to actually make skin healthier or more youthful. In fact, according to FDA’s definition, cosmetics must not affect skin structure or function. In the 1970s, consumerists accused the cosmetic industry of selling frivolous, unsafe products, harmful to the environment. Some of these claims held truth, as scientists had started to suspect certain cosmetic colors to be carcinogenic, leading to FDA ban.

Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) were once considered safe as a refrigerant, and also as a propellant for aerosols, like hair sprays. In 1974, Prof. Rowland of UC Irvine, speculated that some CFCs might react with ozone in the stratosphere under intense sunlight to cause ozone depletion. As evidence of CFC’s damaging effects accumulated, FDA banned their cosmetic use in 1978. In the 1980s, animal rights activists boycotted cosmetic companies using the Draize eye irritation test, which they considered cruel to rabbits. The cosmetics industry was forced to find a non-animal alternative to this reliable test.

To assure cosmetics safety, companies started making “hypoallergenic/dermatologist tested” claims on their skincare products. This was the first appearance of drug-like cosmetics in the US. As this segment grew in the1980s, the industry entered the “Age of Serious Cosmetics,” implying that cosmetics no longer just hid skin imperfections; they could actually make skin healthier and more youthful. Cosmetics were becoming more like drugs, and the term, “Cosmeceuticals,” was born. The popularity of organic food has driven the market for organic cosmetics. “Green” cosmetics are perceived as safer and more effective than traditional cosmetics containing many “chemicals.” However, formulation of green cosmetics presents a huge challenge to formulation chemists as they are forced to use unfamiliar natural ingredients instead of effective chemicals. The problem is worse for emulsion-based cosmetics.

Global warming is changing the standards of “green cosmetics,” and cosmetics will become more “serious.” Europe is already considering labeling of carbon footprint for cosmetics, and the game of replacing “chemicals” with green-sounding INCI names will not be sufficient. The cosmetic industry will need help from “serious” green chemistry and engineering. In the 1970s, I pioneered Low Energy Emulsification (LEE) to reduce energy use in making cosmetic emulsions. The principle described in my book, “Manufacturing Cosmetic Emulsions: Pragmatic Troubleshooting and Energy Conservation,” is that by focusing energy application only where and when needed, it is often possible to reduce consumption by over 50%, without reducing product quality. I call this “Less Is More” processing, because less energy input means less energy to be removed later, shortening the batch cooling time. I have used LEE to solve various processing problems and improve product quality of emulsions. Examples will be presented to demonstrate the basic principles of LEE and Less Is More.

Biography: Dr. Lin was born in Taiwan in 1932 and came to the U.S. in 1953 to study chemical engineering. He received a B.S. from the University of California, Berkeley in 1957, and an M.S. from the University of Washington in 1959. While working for Beauty Counselors, Inc. in Detroit, he earned a Ph.D. from Wayne State University in 1963. After a stint at Rohm & Haas Co., Dr. Lin joined Max Factor’s Hollywood R&D Lab as Head of the Emulsion Laboratory in 1965. He has been working as a consultant for the past 40 years, specializing in emulsion technology and process engineering. Dr. Lin has been a member of ACS, AIChE and SCC (Society of Cosmetic Chemists) for nearly 50 years. He has presented many papers at SCC and IFSCC (International Federation of Societies of Cosmetic Chemists) meetings and has received several awards for his presentations. In 2001, Dr. Lin received SCC’s highest honor, the Maison deNavarre Medal Award, in recognition of his contributions to scientific research, including his pioneering work on Low-Energy Emulsification (LEE). His book, “ Manufacturing Cosmetic Emulsions: Pragmatic Troubleshooting and Energy Conservation,” was published by Allured Books in 2009. A Japanese edition of this book was published by Fragrance Journal in 2010.

Cost: There is a choice for dinner of Prime Rib or King Salmon. The cost is $31 including salad, dessert, tax, tip and wine with dinner. Vegetarian entrée available upon request.

Reservations: Please call Nancy Paradiso in the Section Office at 310 327-1216 or email office@scalacs.org by Monday, January 23, 2012.

Directions: To access Google maps from their website, go to http://www.stevenssteakhouse.com/home/driving_directions. From the 5 Freeway. Northbound, exit Atlantic South. Make a right turn off exit. Stay in the middle lane and go under the bridge. Stay in the left lane and Stevens will be on your right. From the 5 Freeway. Southbound, exit Atlantic-Eastern Avenue. The restaurant is straight ahead off the exit. From the 710 Long Beach Freeway. North, exit Atlantic North. Continue north on Atlantic. Pass Washington Blvd., go 3 lights. The next street is Stevens Place. Turn right to Stevens. There is free parking in the rear of the building.