BEAUTY CARE

L’Oreal USA honors women in science

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK L’Oreal USA recently honored the 2008 recipients of the L’Oreal USA Fellowships For Women in Science at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

The women were recognized on May 22 for conducting innovative and breakthrough research across a range of disciplines, including neuroscience, oceanography and aerospace engineering. The Fellows represent the next generation of women scientific role models, following in the footsteps of chemist and physicist Marie Curie, and Elizabeth Blackwell, who, in 1849, became the first woman to graduate from medical school.

Recipients each receive $40,000 to be used toward independent scientific research. The Fellowship also offers professional development workshops for awardees and helps Fellows build networks with women leaders in corporate, academic, governmental and scientific fields.

The 2008 L’Oreal USA Fellows are:

  • Dr. Sara Aton, University of Pennsylvania, who is a neuroscientist researching how the sleeping brain consolidates learning and memory.
  • Dr. Ania Bleszynski-Jayich, Yale University, who is a physicist investigating the persistent current principle of quantum mechanics.
  • Dr. Laura Lapham, Florida State University, who is a chemical oceanographer conducting research that may lead to new discoveries around the use of methane hydrates as a potential energy source.
  • Dr. Srivdevi Vedula Sarma, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who is a computational neuroscientist using technology to improve the deep brain stimulation technique to treat Parkinson’s disease.
  • Dr. Sandra Ugrina, University of Maryland, who is an aerospace engineer developing techniques to help improve the aerodynamic efficiency of materials and reduce fuel consumption.

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Burt’s Bees gets energy-saving conveyor belt system

BY Antoinette Alexander

RALEIGH, N.C. Burt’s Bees, a maker of natural personal care products, has tapped Tompkins Associates to implement a new sensor-activated Motorized Drive Roller Conveyor to improve efficiency and save energy.

According to Tompkins, the company has increased efficiency and elevated its energy savings. Energy usage is expected to decrease by as much as 40 percent to 60 percent.

“The environment is a priority for Burt’s Bees, and as we continue to grow, we are ensuring that we remain true to our commitment to the greater good in all we do,” stated Tony Quartararo, executive vice president of supply chain at Burt’s Bees. “With our new, more efficient operations and equipment, we are able to reduce the amount of energy we use and reduce costs at the same time. It’s a win/win situation.”

The company leased a 144,000-square-foot distribution center in Morrisville, N.C., and implemented new material handling equipment. The Tompkins Warehouse Control System, which includes a system backup and event logging, was also installed for better new material handling equipment control.

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Mintel: beauty manufacturers tapping into public desire for ethical cosmetics

BY Antoinette Alexander

CHICAGO Beauty manufacturers are riding the natural and ethical wave with new launches that focus on the environment, animal safety and human rights, suggests recent research from Mintel Global.

According to the data from the Mintel Global New Products Database Cosmetic Research, more than 2,800 ethical cosmetic and skin care products were launched in the United States last year. In just the first five months of 2008, more than 1,800 new ethical beauty products have appeared on retail shelves.

“Beauty manufacturers have tapped into natural and ethical claims as a way to differentiate their products,” stated Nica Lewis, senior analyst at Mintel. “With ‘green living’ a hot issue for many Americans, companies have begun to highlight their use of natural ingredients and environmentally friendly packaging.”

The report found that cruelty-free is the most widely made ethical claim in new U.S. beauty products. In 2007, nearly 1,600 beauty and personal care products were introduced with a “cruelty-free” claim. In Mintel’s consumer research, 2-in-5 American women said they look for beauty products that were not tested on animals.

The organic trend in food has fueled the inclusion of natural contents in beauty products. The research found that 35 percent of American women surveyed cited natural ingredients as influential to their purchase decisions.

In addition, 12 percent of women cited recycled packaging as important to their beauty purchasing decision.

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