One thing to clarify at the beginning is the assumption that any discussion about tools means that you must go out and purchase new tools to make cosmetics. That is not the case. The key is to have good quality tools which can be either new or used and to take care of the tools. That means after every time you use them, you wash, dry and store them in an area where they are safe and you can reuse them. I would also recommend (and this is based on personal experience), keeping them in a place where children cannot access them.
There are a number of type of tools that you will need in order to make quality cosmetic products. I will list them out below.
Mortar and Pestle - A mortar is a small marble bowl and a pestle is a marble stick. These items are used for grinding herbs and spices.
Clean Needle - A common sewing needle that has been sterilized using boiling water. This is used to puncture capsules of vitamins in gel form that you might want to add to your cosmetics. An example of this is D-Alpha Tocopherol (Vitamin E) which is an effective skin healer and antioxidant.
Tea Infusers/Tea Balls - When you use many herb combinations, it is best to make a tea in order to combine the different herbs. Using a tea infuser or tea ball allows you to separate the liquid from the herbs. Although you can find tea infusers or tea balls made from a wide number of materials such as plastic, steel, cloth or porcelain, I recommend that you avoid using plastic ones as they may either melt or crack when they come into contact with hot water.
Scale - The scale is used to measure the ingredients for making cosmetics.
Eyedropper - This is used in those cases where only a drop or two of an essence oil is required for a particular cosmetic. Thatís due to some essence oils being extremely potent.
Kettle - The kettle is used primarily in making soaps. Please note that once you have used it for making soaps, donít ever use it again for any food cooking.
Double Boiler - Try to find a boiler made either of enamelware or stainless steel.
Flour Sifter - This is used to break down up powder clumps.
Food Processor - In order to grind seeds, grains, nuts and dried plants materials. If you donít want to use a food processor for this, some blenders or slow press juicers are also effective for this task.
Funnel - Find one of small to medium size.
Food Grater - Use an old or used one if you have one. After you use it for something like beeswax, it will be virtually impossible to use for something else without extensive cleaning.
Measuring Cups - Make sure they are heat proof.
Oven Mitts - For dealing with extremely hot items during the cosmetic making process.
Other items - Paper Coffee Filters, Stainless Steel or Enamelware Saucepan, Soap Moulds, Spatula, Standard Measuring Cups, Standard Measuring Spoons, Strainer or Sieve and a Wire Whisk.
These are the basic cosmetic tools that you will need. It might seem like a lot of tools, but you will find that most of them you might already have in your home. For things you donít have, donít go splurge on a new item, use craigslist or ebay to find second hand quality cosmetic tools to get started. In the next part of this series we will discuss cosmetic containers and what you should be focusing on when you purchase them. Until then.
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Article Added on Monday, April 19, 2010
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