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You Asked

Why are some Sunscreens Labelled as “Reef-Safe”?

30 Jun 2022

“Reef-Safe” on the label intends to inform the consumer that the product does not contain ingredients that may harm coral reefs. That claim, though, must be viewed with a degree of skepticism.

What does SPF in Sunscreen really mean?

23 Jun 2022

With all the options out there, choosing the right product can be difficult. Stores are packed with many options, branded with anything from “Ultra-Sport” to “Hydrating”, but each and every label...

How do erasers work?

10 Jun 2022

These days we are accustomed to pressing the delete key and a word on the screen disappears, ready to be replaced by a few keystrokes. But that doesn't mean pencils and erasers have disappeared. On...

Does honey have any value as a preservative?

26 May 2022

Yes, in a limited way. Honey is a concentrated solution of various sugars in water. The main sugars are fructose and glucose with smaller amounts of sucrose (table sugar) also present. Of course,...

Is there a legitimate medical use for camphor?

31 Mar 2022

It wasn't so long ago that mothers would treat their children's colds by hanging little bags of camphor around their necks. The strong medicinal smell probably had some effect in opening up...

What is “khat” and why are we warned about it?

18 Mar 2022

Cathinone’s molecular structure resembles amphetamine which accounts for its mild stimulant effect. Historically, cathinone has not cause much concern, at least not until clandestine chemists began...

What are adjuvants in vaccines?

11 Mar 2022

In 1926, Alexander Thomas Glenny, a British immunologist, discovered that noted that vaccinated guinea pigs had a better response when the jab caused a local inflammation at the site of the...

Should we worry about benzene in personal care spray products?

25 Feb 2022

Probably not, but such products should not contain benzene and can be formulated without this contaminant. The issue arises because a number of products, including some deodorants, sunscreens,...

Is there a difference between real snow and "artificial snow"?

17 Feb 2022

Snow-making machines actually make tiny beads of ice, each one about one ten-thousandth of an inch in diameter. Water is sprayed from a hose together with compressed air. The air is needed because...

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