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Checking out The Beauty Brains

When we were preparing for our webcast last month I had a very fun time exploring all of the fabulous women in science blogs. As Pat noted, because of the positive response to the webcast we’re working on a tool for FairerScience related to using women in science blogs to help increase girls’ interest in science.

During my immersion in the world of science blogging I came across a site called The Beauty Brains. As a side note, does anyone else think of the cartoon "Pinky and the Brain" when they hear the name of the website? Just me? Ok, moving on…

Here’s how the site describes itself: “The Beauty Brains are a group of cosmetic scientists who understand what the chemicals used in cosmetics really do, how products are tested, and what all the advertising means.” The main contributors are listed as Left Brain, Right Brain, Sarah Bellum, and Mid Brain. They also sell “booty from the beauty brains,” including a thong (I think I’ll pass) and a t-shirt that proclaims “Don’t confuse beauty with beautiful” (that one I liked). One major turn-off was some of the advertising links on the right side of the screen, I’m not going to link to them but some of them were a little troubling.

Despite some misgivings about the ads, I think the actual site content is pretty cool. They do a lot of debunking of the claims made by cosmetic and hair and skin care companies and explain the science behind why some products work and some don’t. It’s also a fun approach to connecting science to everyday life. They have forums where readers can discuss other topics and the blog sometimes posts product reviews from forum members. I’m all for sites that increase consumer awareness and shed some light on some of the shady scientific claims you see in advertising and marketing.

As someone who doesn’t wear make-up often but has a startlingly large collection of make-up, skin-care and body-care products, and shower gels I enjoyed reading through the posts and learning more about the industry and the science behind it all.