Life Update and More Shampoo Chemistry

I’ve kind of been ignoring the blog lately…my life has gotten busy, although I’ve still found time to enter CBC’s lolnano contest.

I finally became a member of the ACS! The accompanying C&EN subscription brings my number of magazine subscriptions in the past two months up to two (Runner’s World being the other). When you start getting your own magazine subscriptions, you know you’re getting old…unless, of course, that magazine is Nintendo Power.

Now for some chemistry…sort of. I was looking up selenium sulphide for some shampoo research and came across this tidbit from Wikipedia:

“In the 2001 film Evolution, selenium sulphide, as the active ingredient in Head & Shoulders anti-dandruff shampoo (It should be noted that Head & Shoulders actually uses zinc pyrithione and only uses selenium sulphide on its intensive treatment formula), is used to fight the alien menace, on the faulty logic that because arsenic is poisonous to carbon-based humans, selenium must be poisonous to the nitrogen-based aliens, due to their respective positions in the periodic table. However, selenium itself is toxic to humans.”

Not a bad idea. Hell, we could make millions selling the aliens phosphorus transistors, silicon foil, zinc wire, and magnesium argon salt…oh wait…

Love the Hollywood chemistry plug though.



  1. Yup, pretty toxic. And also totally brickdust (elemental Se).
    There aren’t so many entries in the lolnano contest. Maybe we should give it another week…


  2. I don’t care how toxic Se is. It is cool just by being a chalcogen. Sweet, stinky chalcogens. Te is my favorite, if I have to choose.

    Our local ACS section is having a ‘chemistry of beer’ talk at the local microbrewery this week. Unfortunately, I can’t drink beer and take vicodin, so I’m out. But perhaps you should encourage the local section to have such a talk, and invite in some expert to talk…


  3. As far as heteroatoms go…I’ve never had a successful project here that didn’t have a bit of nitrogen somewhere. Oh, yeah, and silicon. I know there are other solubilizing groups out there, but nothing beats trialkylsilylethynyl.


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