Des 40A Section 5
6 December 2018
Tarte Lipstick Raw Materials
Cosmetics are involved in our daily life and been used to enhance our beauty. Tarte is a brand which states that it is an eco-chic, cruelty-free cosmetics without the bad stuff like parabens, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate, triclosan, gluten, and other harmful ingredients. It is necessary to know where the materials of the product come from and if each material and the package are environmentally friendly. It helps us to understand not only the ingredients that the lipstick made of but also the materials that the package made of. In order to better understand the life cycle of this specific product, Tarte lipstick, we will clarify the raw materials of it, including the primary materials and the secondary materials. Tarte lipstick has been marked as cruelty-free cosmetics. It is important to explore the raw materials of it during the process of the production, determine where they have come from, and if the product is as environmentally friendly as the company advertises.
In terms of the raw materials, the best way to gain information about the ingredients of the product is going to the Tarte official website, as well as contacting customer service. Based on that, the major primary materials are wax, butter, oil, and Marine plant extracts, etc. The wax that Tarte lipstick is made of is microcrystalline wax, candelilla wax, and carnauba wax. Kumar introduces the deoiling process for making microcrystalline wax. Originally, microcrystalline wax has been obtained from Bombay high crude oil tank sludges. It was originally from Indian origin, through the distillation of the tank sludge process, experts can remove lighter fractions, viz. naphtha, kerosene, and gas oil fractions. Following with sulfuric acid-clay treatment of the residual portion of the tank sludge, to obtain microcrystalline wax (262). The Bombay high crude oil is from earth has been seen as primary materials. According to Barrientos, Nuria, et al., Candelilla wax is a natural vegetable wax obtained by boiling the leaves of the candelilla shrub and stems with diluted sulfuric acid, and the resulting ‘cerote’ is skimmed from the surface and further processed (126). The leaves of candelilla shrub are from candelilla shrubs which are originally from northern Mexico. As has been noted, the Tarte lipstick is also made of carnauba wax. The major differences between candelilla wax and carnauba wax are the high hydrocarbon content. Prime yellow carnauba wax is a mixture of main esters, wax acids and alcohols (Rietschel, Robert L., et al. 756). To track the primary source, the carnauba wax is extracted from South American palm trees and is a solid that becomes fluid when rubbed in a circular motion (Chowdhury, 1). The carnauba wax has been used to make cosmetics, lipsticks, furniture, shoe and floor waxes, candles, etc..
In order to help retain skin elasticity and protects against degeneration, Tarte lipstick is made of butter such as Butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter. Shea butter is derived from the nut of the shea tree which was originally found in Africa. Shea nuts are traditionally collected once a year by women, from beneath wild managed trees maintained in agroforestry parklands typical of the region (Glew 73). Shea Kernels are made from boiling, drying and De-husking the Shea Nut. Then it is roasted, milling boiled, kneaded, filtered, and packaged to transport to next process which is virgin (crude) the Shea Butter. After refining the virgin butter, it is formulated with other ingredients and packaging into a final product. Considering the shea butter by itself, it could be seen as environmentally friendly materials, but it does not mean that the other formulating processes or transportation process would also be sustainable. However, based on the research, as can be seen, Tarte lipstick is made of natural ingredients. As we all know, trees are sustainable even it takes decade years to grow. Additionally, the shea butter is made from shea trees, we can assume that Tarte lipstick is environmentally friendly, considering the ingredients only.
Tarte lipstick is also made of fats and oils. The fats and oils that have been used over the centuries and are considered "classical" by the cosmetic chemist include coconut and olive (Berdick 406). According to the Tarte official website, the lipstick contains coconut oil. Coconut oil belongs to lauric oils which is a group of vegetable oils. Most coconut oils generally contain from 46% to 49% lauric acid which is the fattiest acid in this group. Generally, coconut oil is obtained from coconut which is grown in about 93 countries, including the Philippines, Indonesia, India, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Mexico and some of the islands in Oceania. Currently, 90% of global supply comes from Asia. Coconut oil is primarily made from dry coconut and has been used for making cosmetics since immemorial times (Bouaid, et al. 142). Indeed, coconut oil has been used to make cosmetics for a long history. Coconut as the raw material which the coconut oil is obtained from is grown on coconut trees. In other words, Tarte lipstick uses coconut oil as the materials is sustainable. Besides coconut oil, Tarte lipstick also made of olive oil. Several research studies on the squalene concentration in the olive oil have shown that this hydrocarbon represents over 50% of the unsaponifiable fraction and up to 90% of the total hydrocarbons content thereof (Popa, Ovidiu, et al. 2). Olive oil is obtained from olive and has been used in the cosmetics industry, as well as the food industry. Other than the raw materials of the lipstick itself, it is also important to know the package of it.
The raw material of the package is plastic which is considered as secondary material. The lipstick has a removable part with a lead that is arranged in a plastic case. By rotating the casing, The plastic socket can arrange the lipstick and push it up. As I noted, Tarte uses natural ingredients and substances to make the lipstick itself. However, the package of the lipstick is not considered as environmentally friendly. According to PlasticsEurope, Plastic materials are extremely versatile and are used in a countless number of applications, but dominate in packaging, followed by building and construction, automotive, electrical and electronic sectors, and other sectors such as medical and leisure (PlasticsEurope 2009). Plastic products are made from plastic polymers to which additives are added to enable processing and/or to give certain desired properties for a specific application (OECD 2004). Indeed, plastic materials are used so broadly because of the cheap price and lightweight. It is usually considered as the preferred packaging raw materials. The container of Tarte lipstick is made of plastics. According to Lithner, Delilah, et al., the plastic products were selected to be made of (1) plastic types with the largest global annual production, that is, PP, polyethylene (e.g., HDPE) and PVC, or (2) plastic types composed of hazardous monomers, for instance, PVC, ABS, and epoxy. PVC fits into both criteria (1764). Plastics are used to be found in natural substances such as plants or trees. Today, most of the plastics are synthetic plastics. Xu, Yang, et al. provide a method to synthetically make plastics, using one-step pyrolysis of waste biomass and brominated flame retarded (BFR) plastic was proposed to prepare brominated biochars (Br-biochars) for elemental mercury (Hg0) removal from coal-fired flue gas (911). As we can see, the process of making plastic tells us that plastic, as a secondary material, is made from the synthesis process, using coal and flue gas as the primary materials. As we know, gas and coal are unsustainable materials, it takes thousands of years to renew them. Many waste disposal problems have resulted from the widespread utilization of non-biodegradable plastics in products and packaging (Tharanathan 547). Consequently, the package of Tarte lipstick is not considered as an environmentally friendly product.
Generally, Tarte lipstick is made of organic ingredients except for the plastic case. The raw materials that the lipstick is made of such as wax, butter, oil, and Marine plant extracts, etc., fit the statement that the company advised. Most of the substances that the lipstick made of are from nature, mostly, trees. Additionally, trees are considered as renewable since it takes a decade of years to grow. Indeed, the seeds of the trees usually take a season to renew, therefore, the ingridients that Tarte lipstick uses are proved as natural. However, the plastic case would cause environmental problems. Even though there are some certain ways to recycle plastic products, we can not fully believe that the majority of people would follow the recycling instruction. Tarte lipstick can take this as an opportunity to improve their product, as well as to advertise their brand authority. To grow as an environmentally friendly company, Tarte should take responsibility regarding sustainability, considering use some other sustainable material to make their lipstick case.
Barrientos, Nuria, et al. “Contact Cheilitis Caused by Candelilla Wax Contained in Lipstick.” Contact Dermatitis, vol. 69, no. 2, 2013, pp. 126–127.
Berdick, Murray. “The Role of Fats and Oils in Cosmetics.” Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society, vol. 49, no. 7, 1972, pp. 406–408.
Bouaid, et al. “Enzymatic Butanolysis of Coconut Oil. Biorefinery Approach.” Fuel, vol. 209, 2017, pp. 141–149.
Chowdhury, M. M. U. “Allergic Contact Dermatitis from Prime Yellow Carnauba Wax and Coathylene in Mascara.” Contact Dermatitis, vol. 46, no. 4, 2002, p. 244.
Glew, and Lovett. “Life Cycle Analysis of Shea Butter Use in Cosmetics: from Parklands to Product, Low Carbon Opportunities.” Journal of Cleaner Production, vol. 68, no. C, 2014, pp. 73–80.
Kumar, S., and K. M. Agrawal. “The Deep Deoiling of Microcrystalline Waxes by Solvent Percolation.” Petroleum Science and Technology, vol. 32, no. 3, 2014, pp. 261–266.
Lithner, Delilah, et al. “Comparative Acute Toxicity of Leachates from Plastic Products Made of Polypropylene, Polyethylene, PVC, Acrylonitrile–Butadiene–Styrene, and Epoxy to Daphnia Magna.” Environmental Science and Pollution Research, vol. 19, no. 5, 2012, pp. 1763–1772.
OECD (2004) Emission Scenario Document on Plastic Additives. Series on Emission Scenario Documents, No. 3. OECD Environmental Health and Safety Publications. Environment Directorate, Paris
PlasticsEurope (2009) Compelling facts about plastics. An analysis of European plastics production, demand, and recovery for 2008. Plastics Europe, Brussels. PlasticsEurope http://www.plasticseurope.org/Documents/Document/20100225141556-Brochure_UK_F actsFigures_2009_22sept_6_Final-20090930-001-EN-v1.pdf Accessed 1 March 2011
Popa, Ovidiu, et al. “Methods for Obtaining and Determination of Squalene from Natural Sources.” BioMed Research International, vol. 2015, 2015, p. 367202.
Rietschel, Robert L., et al. Fisher's Contact Dermatitis. 6th ed. / Robert L. Rietschel, Joseph F. Fowler Jr.. ed., BC Decker, 2008.
Tharanathan, RN, and N Saroja. “Hydrocolloid-Based Packaging Films - Alternate to Synthetic Plastics.” Journal Of Scientific &Amp; Industrial Research, vol. 60, no. 7, 2001, pp. 547–559.
Wilkes, R.A., and L. Aristilde. “Degradation and Metabolism of Synthetic Plastics and Associated Products by Pseudomonas Sp.: Capabilities and Challenges.” Journal of Applied Microbiology, vol. 123, no. 3, 2017, pp. 582–593.
Xu, Yang, et al. “Development of Waste-Derived Sorbents from Biomass and Brominated Flame Retarded Plastic for Elemental Mercury Removal from Coal-Fired Flue Gas.” Chemical Engineering Journal, vol. 350, 2018, pp. 911–919.
Des 40A Section 5
6 December 2018
Embodied energy of tarte’s lip sticks
The production of modern day cosmetics entails more than just the ingredients used to formulate a specific beauty preparation, and when examined carefully, may actually have a significant impact on our environment. Through looking process of making lipstick, we can know many fossil fuels have been used. The burning of fossil fuels in the processing of the material used for creating cosmetics may results in air pollution. The history of cosmetics or make up started in ancient Egypt. Viewing Egyptian wall paintings, it is evident that this culture made use of eyeliner. Laps lazuli was the natural raw material the Egyptians used for this ancient cosmetic. In today's society, cosmetics containing ingredients which may negatively affect human skin are considered a serious health problem. Many cosmetic companies have, for this reason, started to list the ingredients they use to make their products and to assure consumers that using the products is safe.
tarte is one of the companies to consider the health of the users' skin and produces cosmetics using organic substances. Although tarte's products are designed so that they have no negative affect on human skin, investigating the embodied energy used for creating tarte lipstick, reveals that many fossil fuels have been used in the process. This part of the production begins to involve the problem of environmental pollution. Unfortunately, when I interviewed with tarte representatives, I was told that they were unable to give specific information about the process of making the lipstick. To obtain information about the ingredients one must refer to the tarte website. Thus, most of what I write is based on my research on the website, rather than information from the company representatives.
Color Splash lipstick by tarte is one of their most popular items and is very highly rated. On the official site, the product is advertised to "drench your lips in luscious, long wearing pigment with this vegan lipstick with a comfortable, weightless wear that lasts for 12 hours” (Color splash lipstick.) This product is vegan friendly lipstick, which is always formulated without paragons, mineral oil, phthalates, triclosan, sodium laurel sulfate and gluten. This lipstick contains over 60 kinds of ingredients. In addition, there are 22 color shades divided into three categories, with each category having different ingredients for coloring. The high quality of tarte's lipstick is achieved by including three principal ingredients: marine plant extracts (algae), shea butter and olive oil.
In this lipstick, marine plant extracts (algae) is said to have the power of "help reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles while smoothing and softening the skin” (Color splash lipstick.) In interviewing with tarte, we learned that the algae they use comes from France. There are two seas which border France, the Bay of Biscay and the Mediterranean Sea. Since the Mediterranean Sea is the more abundant producer of this age, it is most likely the source of the marine plant material used in tarte's cosmetics. For cropping algae, mainly fishing boats are used and fuel consumption depends on the area they crop. There is one port in Marseilles on the Mediterranean Sea from which the marine material is exported to New York where the cosmetics are produced. According to Port.com, the sea distance from Marseilles to New York is 4293 nautical miles. The trip takes approximately 8 days at a speed of 24 knots which is average for cargo ships. For my assumption, I’m using a 5000 TEU containership.When calculated, tarte's merchandise ships which use 5000 TEU, fuel consumption per day comes to 1200 tons.
In tarte's lipstick, shea butter is claimed to be "a natural skin emollient," that it helps to "retain skin elasticity and protects against degeneration” (Color splash lipstick.) The source of shea butter is the African shea tree which grows naturally in the wild in Western
Africa. It is by extracting the fat from the shea tree nuts that the shea butter is produced. Shea butter is processed by hand by local women. In Africa, women's positions are still lower than that of men and the making of shea butter is a significant source of income for these women. Kernels of shea are extracted and washed, then dried and divided by quality. Then they are crushed and milled into a paste. Water is added to the paste and kneaded to emulsify the oil. then they must boil the emulsified oil to separate it from the shea residue and allow the oil to cool and solidify. In Western Africa, the largest port is Abidjan on the Ivory coast. From Abidjan to New York by sea is 5953 nautical miles and it takes approximately 10 days at 24 knots. Fossil fuel consumption is calculated to be 1500 tons to deliver the product to New York.
Olive oil in tarte's lipsticks are reported to be "rich in antioxidants to help soothe and restore lips” (Color splash lipstick.) Spain is the country which produces 54.3% of the world's olive oil (as of 2014) leading me to assume that tarte's olive oil is coming from Spain. In order to extract the oil form olive fruitlets, the fruitlets are pressed out by electric press machines. For an example, I chose "automatic oil pressure machine 6YL-68A." This model can produce 50 kilograms of olive oil per hour. The process requires 5.5KW of electricity. The sea distance from the port of Algeciras Bay, the largest port in Spain to the Port of New York, is 3515 nautical mile and it takes 6 days at a speed of 24 knots. Approximately 900 tons of fuel are needed to deliver the olive oil to the tarte plant in New York where it will be combined with the other ingredients to produce cosmetics.
Before the lipstick manufacturing process begins, the marine plant extracts from France needs to be converted from primary raw materials to secondary raw materials. The algae contains many different chemical components including proteins, vitamins and saccharides as well as unnecessary components such as metabolites and lipids. The unnecessary components can be removed using "super critical carbon dioxide extraction technique." These processes are complicated and varied. One of the most economic, simplest and the most widely used method is "TLC" (thin-layer chromatography). The extraction process has several steps including "preparation for cultivation as upstream process," "cultivation in photobioreactors,” "cell harvesting, rehydration and hot water extraction, centrifugation, and ultrafiltration" followed by "formulation, preservation, and conditioning”(Kim and Chojnacka.) For accomplishing these processes, complex machinery is required. The photobioreactor, for example, is necessary in order to cultivate the algae/ marine plant extracts. However, I was unable to discover information regarding the amount of energy used in this process.
For manufacturing cosmetics, most functions are powered by machinery and are highly automated. There are two main phases to creating lipstick: mixing and molding. First all the ingredients for the lipsticks themselves are melted and mixed. Then a solvent solution and oils are blended with the color pigment mix. The mixed liquids go through a roller mill in order to make sure that the product is smooth. In this process, air, the oil and pigment should be blended evenly, so again, use of machinery is required. When all these ingredients are thoroughly mixed, the product is added to hot wax to ensure the correct color and thickness are obtained. For the molding process, the product must maintain a liquid state at a certain temperature and agitated. For examples, of the machinery, I looked at "30-Liter Lipstick Heat Mixing Tank, New Design Lipstick Dissolving Tank, double Jacket Tank for Lipstick Melting" by Guangzhou Factory. For the main engine power, 1.5KW of electricity is required and max loading capacity is 30 liters. So to make one tarte lipstick which weighs 12 mg, 0.6W are used in the process.
After all the mixing is completed and the product is free of air, the liquid is poured into tubes. During the molding process, multiple batches are generally worked through a melter which stirs the mass and maintains its liquidity. Again, the liquid must be kept at the proper temperature to sustain the melting and mixing during agitation. The liquid is poured into metal or plastic molds. The mold shape fits exactly with the tube. Lipstick is filled upside down because the bottom of the tube is at the top of the mold. The molding machine I chose to analyze is LSR-2000 designed by Leiden. It contains 160 cavities and can make up to 2000 tubes of lipstick per hour. Power used is 23.5KW, so in this molding process, 11.75 W are needed to produce one lipstick.
tarte lipsticks are sold in many retain stores such as Sephora, Macy's and Ultra Beauty here in the United States. I expect that these are delivered by long haul trucks from the factory to the stores. Depending on the model of truck and the type of fossil fuel used and the distance between the factory and the various stores, energy consumption varies. If, for example, diesel fuel is used, 1 liter of diesel fuel weighs 835 grams and 86.2% of diesel is carbon, or 720 grams per liter. Also, 1920 grams of oxygen are necessary to combust the carbon to CO2. In total. 2640 grams of CO2 per liter of diesel fuel are used. tarte delivers their products Internationally as well. They use DHL Express for this service. DHL commonly contracts with Boeing for the air cargo delivery. A Boeing 747 uses approximately one gallon of fuel every second. If tarte ships an order to Canada, it takes 8 hours from New York airport to Vancouver airport. Thus, some 28,800 gallons of fuel are required for tarte (along with other cargo and passengers) to travel from New York to Vancouver.
After customers finish using their lipstick, the containers can be recycled. tarte's lipstick containers are made of plastic, so the first step is the collection of all the discarded plastic materials. To reach the recycling/garbage treatment plant, again trucks powered by fossil fuels are used. The quantity of gasoline is again completely reliant upon the type of vehicle and the distance traveled. After all the varieties of plastic are gathered at the treatment center, they must be sorted and categorized by their resin type. This process is done by hand, using sensors and injectors. The pieces are then washed and sliced into flakes. The flakes are then melted and combined. The renewed plastic material will be formed into new products. Garbage power plant use electricity. There are 71 garbage power plants in the United States. According to 2016 data, approximately 14 billion kilowatt hours of electricity were generated to burn 30 million tons of garbage. Approximately one quarter of all garbage in the U.S. is plastic, so 3 billion kilowatt hours of electricity are used annually for recycling plastic in this country.
Through my research, I discovered that a large quantity of fossil fuels are used to produce tarte's lipstick. However not only tarte, but other cosmetic companies use similar quantities of energy in their processing and shipping. Recently, because of a heightened awareness of the need to protect our environment from pollution and from resource depletion, people have started considering the broader environmental effects of production of cosmetics and other goods as well as the direct effects the products such as make-up have on our bodies. From the perspective of a company, Tarte has already started to consider the environmental consequences of their production processes. On the official website, tarte announced "good-for-you, naturally delivered ingredients have been central to tarte since we started in 2000. But what's just as important is our mission to give back to the environment. We're not just a cruelty-free company - we also place a priority on sustainability and
health” (tarte gives back.) CEO Maureen Kelly believes "it is important to work with cooperatives in the rain forest.” tarte supports the cultivation of the great ocean ecosystem and has introduced a new cosmetic series called "Rainforest of the Sea" to their staff and their customers. In order to save some of the endangered marine animals, tarte has joined forces by partnering with The Sea Turtle Conservancy, supporting the protection of these beautiful creatures. The degradation of our environment is one of the big issues for our society today.
It is time for every company, cosmetic, or any organization that participates in the use of fossil fuels or the depletion of natural resources that are essential to life on earth, to turn the collective thinking towards less wasteful and more sustainable use of energy.
“Biomass Explained Waste-to-Enrgy (Municipal Solid Waste).” eia Independent Statistic &
Analysis U.S. Energy Information Administration. 22 August 2018. 30 November 2018
“Color splash lipstick.” tarte. 30 November 2018 <https://tartecosmetics.com/en_TH/ makeup/lips/lipstick-liners/color-splash-lipstick/935.html?cgid=makeup-lips-
“How much fuel does an international plane use for trip?” 30 November 2018<https://
Kaufman, Emma. “Labor.” TARTE COSMETICS-FACTORS OF PRODUCTION. 30 November 2018 <https://tartecosmeticsfactorsofproduction.wordpress.com/labor/>
“Lipstick.” “How products are Made” 30 November 2018 <http://www.madehow.com/ Volume-1/Lipstick.html>
“LSR-2000(Lipstick Molding Machine).” Make Up & Skin Care Lipstick. 30 November 2018 <http://www.leidex.co.kr/eng/product/view.asp? idx=37&category=13&search_type=0&search_word=&page_size=20&page=1>
Moudio Rebecca.“Shea butter nourishes opportunities for African women” Africa Rnenewal online. August 2013. 30 November 2018<https://www.un.org/africarenewal/ magazine/august-2013/shea-butter-nourishes-opportunities-african-women>
Rodrigue, Jean-paul and Claude Comtois, Brain Slack. “Fuel Consumption by containership Size and Speed.” The Geography of Transport System 4th edition. 30 November 2018<https://transportgeography.org/?page_id=5955>
“Sea route & distance.” ports.com. 30 November 2018<http://ports.com/sea-route/port-of- new-york,united-states/port-of-marseille,france/#/? a=0&b=0&c=Port%20of%20Marseille,%20France&d=Port%20of%20New%20York, %20United%20States>
Se-Kwon, Kim, and Katarzyan Chojnacka “Marine Algae Extracts: Processes, Products, and Applications ” 30 November 2018 <https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/book/ 10.1002/9783527679577>
“SHEA BUTTER PRODUCTION PROCESS.” Ojoba Collective Ethical & Sustainable African Plant Oils. 30 November 2018<http://www.ojobacollective.com/about-shea- butter/>
“tarte gives back.” tarte. 30 November 2018 <https://tartecosmetics.com/en_TH/explore/ about-us/tarte-gives-back/>
Yip.M. and P. Madl “Plastic Recycling” Waste Management 30 November 2018 <https:// biophysics.sbg.ac.at/waste/plastic.htm>
Yuming Machinery Co. “Guangzhou Factory 30-Liter Lipstick Heat Mixing Tank,New DesignLipstick Dissolving Tank,Double Jacket Tank for Lipstick Melting.”
Alibaba.com. 30 November 2018 <https://www.alibaba.com/product-detail/ Guangzhou-Factory-30-Liter-Lipstick-Heat_60735852444.html? spm=a2700.7724857.normalList.41.46a01651Tu0dYh>
“6YL-68A.” Automatic Screw Oil Press Introduction. 30 November 2018 <https://www.oil- press-machine.com/oil-press-machines/automatic-screw-oil-press.html>
DES 40A Section 5
6 December 2018
Tarte Lipstick: Waste/Emission
People from Sumerian civilization considered to be the earliest users of lipsticks. They used natural substances such as fruits, henna, clay rust, and even insects for their beauty products. On the other hand, Mesopotamian women were more fancier than the Sumerian, they used ground precious jewels to add color and shimmer to their lips. Without knowledge, some of them were using harmful substances such as lead and a mixture bromine mannite and iodine which could result in serious diseases or even death. Since ancient time, the development of lipsticks never stops. Nowadays, people are starting to get more and more conscious about the environment and try to stay away from the chemicals as much as they could. The majority of cosmetic companies today are using natural formulas for their products. Tarte is a well known cosmetic brand that uses natural ingredients in its products. According to Tarte’s website, the color splash lipstick is a “vegan friendly” and “cruelty free product”. Although Tarte lipstick is aiming for zero waste, which considered to be an eco-friendly product with its natural based ingredients; however the use of plastic containers, the energy from process of making raw materials, and the use of transportations to export and import the goods are the major wastes and emission that most people do not recognize ho harmful it is to the environment.
Although, 90% of a Tarte color splash lipstick is made from natural ingredients and it is being said to be an eco-friendly product, but most people do not realized there are a lot of waste and emission that comes from import and export the raw material. The primary raw materials of Tarte lipsticks included marine plant extracts such as algae, shea butter, and coconut oil. According to Tarte company, the lipsticks are made in the United States but other materials like algae comes from French polynesia and shea butter comes from Africa. The secondary material is called Polyethylene which is the plastic that is being used to make lipstick containers. I was not able to find where did Tarte company import the plastics from, however the use of plastic is occur around the world.
Process of Making Materials
The first raw material is marine plant extracts (algae) which comes from French Polynesia, according to one of the Tarte’s company representative. Before mixing everything in, the algae needs to be extracted and converted into a secondary material to be another mixture. I was not able to find the actual process of extracting the algae but I assume that after they got the algae, they had to wash the algae before use. I believe that they had to use some kinds of machinery to clean it and after that compress the algae to be finer materials before mixing it with other substance.
The second raw material is shea butter which comes from Western Africa. The source of it comes from African shea trees. The beginning process of it is to get the shea nuts from the tree and then extract the fat from it. According to Olaniyan and Oje, “the traditional method of shea extraction from shea kernel involves roasting, wet milling, mixing with water, cooking and clarification prior to fat extraction.” All of these process will need to include the use of machineries to be able to produce for mass production. Most machine power is generated by burning of fossil fuel which resulting in air pollution. The machine that use to crust the shea nuts into fine powder is powered by 8 hp diesel engine (Olaniyan, et al). After the product is made, it is then shipped out to manufacturing centers into making the next process.
The third raw material is coconut oil. I was not able to find where exactly they got the coconut oil from, however, I found that in general coconut is grown in about ninety-three countries. The most important areas of cultivation and export countries are the Philippines, Indonesia, India Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Mexico and some of the islands in Oceania (Bouaid, et al 142). Coconut oil comes from coconut kernel, the white meaty part of the coconut. According to Lucy Bee, during extraction of coconut oil, a very high heat is used which is typically 90C or 194F. After the product it made, it is then shipped out to factories in order to make lipstick.
The last secondary material is Polyethylene, the plastic containers of the products. The blue Tarte lipstick container is made from polyethylene, which considered to be the most common plastic in the world. According to American Chemistry Council site, “the manufactured or synthetic plastics are often designed to mimic the properties of natural materials.” Instead of having to cut down trees, plastic is being used worldwide as containers to protect the products. Polyethylene is formed by manipulating a natural gas for example methane, ethane, propane mix or by changing crude oil into gasoline using catalytic cracking. “The plastic is melted by the mechanical work of the screw and the heat from the extruder wall,” according to the American Chemistry Council website. After the plastic is made it is then mold into containers and sent out to the factories for packaging processing. In order to mass produce the containers, the company must also use advance machineries for this.
Tarte is one of the biggest cosmetic companies in the U.S, the manufacturers ship the product out to more than one hundred ninety countries worldwide thus the emission is most likely comes from transportations. Tarte’s manufacturing centers are located in the United States and all around the world. The emission mainly comes from transporting and distributing the goods. As mentioned earlier, the algae comes from the French polynesia. In order to get the algae, the labors will need to use the fishing boats to travel in the sea. The burning of fossil fuel to get the boats working is polluting the air and the oil from boats is going in the ocean and polluting the water and causing harm to the environment.
According to EPA, twenty-seven percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions come from transportation. Trucks, ships, trains, and planes are used for major transportation for import and export of the goods. Burning fossil fuels like gasoline and diesel releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere which is very toxic to the planet. The buildup of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases such as methane, nitrous oxide, and hydrofluorocarbons from the transportation is causing the Earth’s atmosphere to be warmer which results in changes to the climate. Emission is also comes from transporting goods for example travel to get the materials to make products. Not only transportation, the energy consumption in the factories is also a part of the emissions.
There is lots of energy being used to make the products. When making the products, they used machines to do most of the work, so the amount of energy that is being used when producing the product is the waste. In factories, in order to get the machine working, they have to use electricity. As mentioned earlier in the process of extracting the shea butter, the 8 hp diesel engine is being used in this process. The diesel engine has no spark plugs and gets its ignition by compressing the air. The air to fuel mixture is rich in fuel in order to achieve this. By compressing the air fuel mixture in the combustion chamber this will cause the mixture to ignite when its reaches the right compression (Reşitoglu, et al 16). This creates enough temperature for the engine to run efficiently when the fuel is injected into the cylinder. This method has a major flaw were low temperature mixture does not ignite and causes a harmful emissions called hydrocarbon. Hydrocarbons are toxic, bad for the environment and even cause cancer.
Today, natural ingredients cosmetic products are widely used because natural substances are not harmful to human and it cuts down on allergic reactions from the products, however we know that the little plastic lipstick tubes are toxic to the environment. Although beautiful cosmetic packaging catches the eye of the consumers, it makes people want to buy that product, but the process of doing it is actually harmful to the environment. It is impossible for these plastic containers to decompose, and there is little evidence that the plastics can decompose. The amount of plastic keeps rising and they end up in the landfills everyday. Plastics are everywhere around us. People do not recycle small plastic containers like lipsticks. After they are done using, they just throw it away and buy more. Which ends up adding more waste to the landfills. This is a mass produced product and the majority of the public are using the product so they have to use transportation to export and import the products. The emission coming from transportation is putting more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere causing air pollution. As well as burning fossil fuels for energy use also polluted the air.
Bee, Lucy. “How Coconut Oil Is Made - All You Need to Know.” Lucy Bee Blog, 17 Aug. 2018,
Bouaid, Abderahum, et al. “Enzymatic Butanolysis of Coconut Oil. Biorenery Approach.”
Computers & Education, Pergamon.
Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. “Polyethylene.” Encyclopædia Britannica,
Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 1 Nov. 2017, www.britannica.com/science/polyethylene. “Carbon Pollution from Transportation.” EPA,Environmental Protection Agency, 17 July 2017,
Cecilia. “OI Engine, an Innovation Management Software Built on Design Thinking.”
OpenIDEO - How Might We Get Products to People without Generating Plastic Waste? - Don't Be Plastic!, 28 June 2017, challenges.openideo.com/challenge/circular-design/ideas/don-t-be-plastic.
Olaniyan, A.M, and K Oje. “Process Conditions Governing Mechanical Expression of Shea Butter from Crushed Shea Kernel under Uni-Axial Compression.” International Journal of Engineering Research in Africa, vol. 10-10, 2013, pp. 37–48., doi:10.4028/www.scientific.net/JERA.10.37.
Reşitoğlu, İbrahim Aslan, et al. “The Pollutant Emissions from Diesel-Engine Vehicles and Exhaust Aftertreatment Systems.” SpringerLink,Springer, 11 June 2014, link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10098-014-0793-9.
Sengupta, Avipsha, and Avipsha Sengupta. “A Complete History And Evolution Of Lipsticks: Interesting Facts.” STYLECRAZE,IncnutIncnut, 12 Oct. 2017, www.stylecraze.com/articles/a-complete-history-of-lipstick/#gref.
Tarte History | Tarte Cosmetics, tartecosmetics.com/en_US/tarte-about-us-history.html.