Explore Practitioners 1: Wendy Neo

I went for a field trip organised by one of our classmates Rachel. The  workshop was called A Craftsman Journey: From Dream to Reality and was held at the Singapore Visitor Centre. We learnt how to customise our own moisturisers and insect repellent with the help of Theodore from Theo10, a local company that makes skincare products from all natural ingredients. 

Process (Moisturiser):

First, we started on customising our own moisturiser with different essential oils. Everyone was given a small metal container and we had to put no more than 10 drops of any essential oil that we liked (we could also mix different essential oils). The wide variety of essential oils were displayed on a rack. Each bottle came with a laminated card attached with a string, which showed the properties and benefits of each essential oil. 

Small worksite at Singapore Visitor Centre

After that, Theo would scoop a ladle of moisturiser into our metal container. The moisturiser was already pre-made, and was a mixture of jojoba, extra virgin coconut oil, aloe vera and glycerin. The aloe vera was extracted from the plant using a spray freeze dry method using liquid nitrogen. This mixture was kept warm in a glass container which was placed in a hot water bath in a big metal pot.

We then had to mix the essential oils into the moisturiser using a glass rod. This process took a while because there was only one glass rod to be shared among the whole class. But once it was mixed thoroughly, we were done creating our own customised moisturiser!

Tools (Moisturiser): 

  1. Small metal container 
  2. Essential oils 
  3. Metal pot 
  4. Glass container 
  5. Ladle 
  6. Glass rod 

Process (Insect Repellent):

Theo also guided us in making our own insect repellent. The task was to come up with a mixture of essential oils that would mask the extremely strong scent of the secret Theo10 insect repellent formula. I think there was neem oil inside the secret formula but Theo didn’t elaborate much other than that. The formula smelt a bit like fish oil or something that would go into a Vietnamese dish (I love vietnamese food btw, just don’t want to be smelling like it). 

First, everyone was given a small glass spray bottle. We then had to measure 10ml of water (contained in a styrofoam cup) with a measuring cylinder, and 2ml of the secret insect repellent formula (contained in the glass jar) using a pipette. This mixture then went into our spray bottle, making it the base of the insect repellent.

The next step was to add essential oils to the base to mask the original smell. We could add up to a 100 drops of essential oils. It was really amusing as everyone fumbled through the essential oils, trying to add the right amount and mixture of oils to create the perfect smell for our insect repellent through trial and error. There was a lot of spraying and sniffing and adding of oils in the process. 

Tools (insect repellent):

  1. Essential oils 
  2. Glass jar 
  3. Measuring cylinder
  4. Pipette
  5. Styrofoam cup 
  6. Small spray bottle 

Worksite:

As this was a workshop held in Singapore Visitor Centre, I wasn’t able to explore the proper worksite Theo10 has in their factory in Mandai. However, almost 20 of us were able to make the moisturiser and insect repellent in the small space during the workshop (as seen from picture above). This was because the base product (i.e. the moisturiser and insect repellent) was already made, all we had to do was to add in some essential oils and mix it together. 

Overall, I had a great time making the moisturisers and insect repellent. Theodore was also very knowledgable and had a lot of facts to share with us. 

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