Like the average consumers, Ebony Taylor, Xavier Smith and Rekeisha Sylvain are all used to buying household goods, such as personal care and home cleaning products, at the store.


Like the average consumers, Ebony Taylor, Xavier Smith and Rekeisha Sylvain are all used to buying household goods, such as personal care and home cleaning products, at the store.
But a recent science project in class is not only changing the way these Ewell S. Aiken Optional students are looking at many popular consumer products, but also their own shopping habits.
The students were asked to produce from scratch an environmentally-friendly product by putting together the ingredients of any of their favorite products.
"I used to use an olive oil (hair) conditioner treatment purchased from the store that cost about $5," said Ebony, 19, who chose to create her own hair treatment at a cost of 32 cents.
Ebony said it was easy. She mixed eggs, vinegar, olive oil - and voila!
"It makes your hair shinier," Ebony said, adding that she is introducing it to her family. "I mixed up, I got someone to pour it on my hair, and then I put a plastic cap on for 30 minutes and washed it off with shampoo."
Peggy Jo Middleton, the students' teacher, said she wanted a project that challenged the students, but also that had a real-life application.
"We have beauty products and cleaning products," Middleton said, pointing to a shelf that displayed a hand and foot moisturizer, a wood cleaner, cough syrup and an all-purpose cleaner. "I've used all the products," she said.
Xavier Smith, 18, drove to Shreveport determined to find some lemon oil he wanted for an all-purpose cleaner he named "Swoosh."
"The name came to me in a dream. I don't know why, it just stuck to me," he said, adding that the product ingredients include cornstarch, water and lemon oil.
"It's all natural. I wanted the lemon scent because everybody loves lemon," Smith said. "I wanted something that you can easily make at home and can clean anything," he said. His product cost 70 cents to make.
Sylvain, 19, said it was a fun project. She came up with a cough syrup that has honey and apple cider and she plans to use it when her cousins get sick. The product cost $1.37.
The students did research online and in encyclopedias to find out the recipes for the products. Part of the project also included doing a price comparison, producing a label for the product and designing an ad for their product.
The students, most of who had their products tested by Middleton, said the project proved to be an eye-opening experience, particularly because of cost.