The Green Crafts Blog

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Prehistoric Treasures: Amber Inclusions

Large Diphtera in  AmberLarge Diphtera in AmberAmong all hobbies and collectibles amber inclusions are definitely one of the most fascinating and educative. The thrill of keeping in your hand a frozen in time creature as old as 20 to 50 millions of years — is simply unimaginable. Amber is a true bridge in time — between primeval and modern times, and gives us prehistoric species exactly as they were caught millions of years ago.

How to recognize genuine amber?

Amber is a natural polymer made over many millions of years from the resin of prehistoric pine trees. It is unique and beautiful and can be quite expensive when the pieces are exquisite, or contain rare organic inclusions – insects or plants, which are extinct for a long, long time.

What is Amber?

Amber is a natural, prehistoric polymer – amazing, mysterious and beautiful. The amber of today was formed millions of years ago from the pine trees resin, which hardened and fossilized over thousands of millennia. This resin was secreted by the amber trees Pinus succinifera in reaction to tree wounds and pest invasions, in order to heal and protect itself. The resin promoted regeneration of the tree tissue and had antimicrobial and antifungi properties.

Formaldehyde

Formaldehyde (methanal, methyl aldehyde or methylene oxide) is a chemical compound with the formula CH2O. Formaldehyde is a colorless, strong-smelling pungent gas. Aqueous solutions of formaldehyde are referred to as formalin. Formalin consists of an aqueous solution of formaldehyde, usually containing about 37% formaldehyde and 12-15% of methanol. Formalin is best known as an embalming fluid in anatomy labs and morgues.

What Chemicals, Additives and Contaminants Are Found in Children's Toys?

Kids spend a lot of time playing with toys that are made of all types of different materials. Toys often contain paint, glue and other chemicals. Some of these chemicals are harmless, but some are not. Because a child's health is sensitive to what it's exposed to in its environment, it's important to know what to look out for when buying toys, and what types of things to avoid.

Additives in soaps, shampoos, cosmetics and skin care: safe or harmful?

When you look at the ingredient list of your soap or shampoo, you might notice a number of mysterious ingredients that you can't even pronounce. Why are there so many additives in these products? Some have their uses, but others we could go without. And not all of them are 100% safe. In this article, we take a closer look at the chemicals in soaps and skin care products.

The 100 uses of lemons

Are there actually 100 uses for lemons? Probably! Lemons have plenty of uses at home. They're great at disinfecting and freshening the air, while giving a pleasant and natural aroma. Below we've compiled a list of some of the most interesting uses for lemon juice and rinds. If you know of more, let us know!

How to make a wax seal?

If you’ve ever been fascinated by calligraphy, stationary and the old times, then you might already be familiar with wax seals. Applied to paper, parchment or envelopes, they represent mystery and aristocratic elegance.

But wax seals were not only about style – over the centuries they had a very practical purpose. They were used to authenticate documents and to certify that they were not tampered with. Indeed, the impression

Are school supplies safe for kids?

Recently, the Environmental Protection Agency of Denmark conducted a study of the toxicity of a class of products that is close to children: school supplies. The levels of toxic chemicals -- notably phthalates -- were measured in different school items, such as erases, bags and pencil cases. The goal was to determine whether phtalate levels were high enough to be harmful.

Beeswax candles qualities

Beeswax is the true marvel of nature – full of aroma of honey, pollen and propolis (if only not bleached and distilled to remove them). These ingredients are heavier than beeswax itself and therefore do not soak up into the wick and do not burn in the flame. Instead, they remain in the warm paddle of the liquid wax and evaporate slowly – contributing to the health benefits that are widely evidenced for honey and propolis.

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