Displaying episodes 1 - 30 of 132 in total

Do anti-aging products work?

The ads are everywhere. Trying to convince us to buy something to prevent or undo the wrinkles and skin damage that comes with aging. But can those products really do anything for us? Is it even chemistry? Or is it all just a bunch of hooey? Let's find out.

What’s the future of antihistamines?

Could histamine and antihistamines do more than just affect our allergies? Actually yes. Today we discuss new and recent research in the world of histamine, and believe us, there's some really cool stuff.

Chemistry at Home: Lifesavers in the Dark

Here's another bonus episode dedicated to teaching a specific chemistry experiment you can do at home. This month, we see what happens when we crack Lifesaver mints in the dark. Trust us, it should raise your eyebrows.

Why are seasonal allergies the worst?

Most of us know the feeling. But what are we actually experiencing when we experience allergies? How does being around plants and pollen make us all sniffly? Why does this beautiful season have such a dark side? Let's find out.

What color is grass at night? (and other questions)

In this month's bonus episode, Melissa and Jam respond to comments and questions about color changing markers, electron energy level analogies, forensics, grass, chocolate, and more!

Why and how do Jellyfish sting?

What's the chemistry of a jellyfish sting? Why do they feel so different from other stings? And what can we even do when we get stung? And what about the popular urine theory, does that help anything? Let's find out!

How do Venus flytraps trap flies?

Venus flytraps: The plants that have fascinated and freaked many of us out since we were kids. How do they do what they do? Most plants just kinda sit there and soak up water and sunlight, but not Venus flytraps. How do they sense flies? How do they trap them? How do they eat them? Oh also, is it chemistry? Let's find out.

What is the smell of fresh cut grass?

What is that iconic smell? The smell that screams spring and summer? The smell so distinct, and yet so mysterious. Why does freshly cut grass have that smell? Why is it so strong? Could it be chemistry?

Why does american chocolate taste different?

Now it's time to dive into one of chocolate's biggest mysteries. Which, depending on where you live, has been something you've wondered for a long time, or you've never even known it was a mystery. Why is chocolate different in the United States? Is it on purpose? If so why? Is there a benefit? Is it because companies in the U.S. are cheapskates? Or is it because they're innovative? Let's find out!

Chemistry at Home: Chocolate and Gum

Here's another bonus episode dedicated to teaching a specific chemistry experiment you can do at home. This month, we see what happens when we combine chocolate and gum. Yep, you read that right. And yes, it's a little gross.

Why does chocolate get that white film on it?

You know how when you were a kid, you'd sometimes find some old, forgotten halloween chocolate? But the chocolate would look a little white, and if you risked eating it, it would taste weird? Well we're not ashamed to say we've experienced this even as adults, but this time we're taking a close look at this strange mystery. Why does it happen? How long does it take? Why does it affect both the look and the taste? Let's find out.

Bonus: Do dead leaves smell like tea? (and other questions)

In this month's bonus episode, Melissa and Jam respond to comments and questions about leaves, labs you can do at home, electrophilic aromatic substitution reactions, pancakes, easter candy, and more!

What is chocolate and why is it delicious?

Well you've probably never heard of chocolate, and you've almost certainly never eaten it. But if you had you might wonder, what the heck is this? How do they make it? And why does it taste so gosh darn good?

Why is cilantro so polarizing?

It's of the most puzzling (and heartbreaking) mysteries. Why does cilantro taste so good to some of us, but taste so bad to others of us? Is it in our heads? Or is there a chemical explanation for it? If so, what is it? And can it be fixed?

What is ebonized wood?

This question comes from a word-working listener of ours. Ebonized wood is a process that turns wood black... without burning it! But how? What's the chemistry behind it? Is it cool? Yes, yes it is cool.

Chemistry at Home: Crayons

Here's another bonus episode dedicated to teaching a specific chemistry experiment you can do at home. This month, we see what happens when we combine crayons, paper, and water.

How do color changing markers change color?

Remember those markers that would *magically* change colors when you marked over them with the right marker? Well while it seems very magical, it's actually chemistry! What a surprise. So how does it work? What's going on at the molecular level? Is it still as cool as it seemed when we were kids? Yes.

Bonus: Does gunpowder explode? (and other questions)

In this month's bonus episode, Melissa and Jam respond to comments and questions about gunpowder, our wellbeing, food colors, hair colors, merch, and more!

What is jam?

Jams, jellies, preserves, marmalade. So many kinds of fruit spreads, but how are they made? How do they go from fruit to gooey spread? How are they delicious? What the chemistry here, and how has it been going on long before we understood it?

What and why is maple syrup?

We all know that maple syrup is one of Canada's most popular gifts to the world, but what really is it? Why do maple trees (and other trees) even have sap? And is there any chance that there's cool surprising chemistry things going on in there? Well you'll have to listen to find out.

Why do plants die in freezing weather?

Well here in Texas, we just suffered through an intense freeze. And many a plant became a casualty of the cold, but why? What's going on at the molecular level that causes freezing temperatures to be bad for many plants? And is talking about this even chemistry? Let's find out.

What are muscles and their cramps?

Wait, muscles are biology right? Well they're also chemistry. And guess what, muscle soreness and cramps are also chemistry. And believe it or not, the mystery of muscle soreness is much bigger than you might expect. Check it out!

Extra Special Bonus: Time Warp!

In this month's bonus episode, we share a special old Q&R that we've had in our back pocket for almost a year! Enjoy!

How do bath bombs fizz?

This might be one of the best chances to both listen to AND experience chemistry at the same time. Grab a bath bomb, fill up the tub, and let's find out how these friendly bombs work. How do they fizz up? How do they suddenly smell? Where do the colors come from? Can they make bath scientifically better? Let's hop in.

Chemistry at Home: Vinegar and Baking Soda (with Stephanie Ryan Ph.D.)

We have a very special guest this month, Stephanie Ryan Ph.D. aka @letslearnaboutscience (on Instagram)! Stephanie leads us through some cool experiments you can do at home using vinegar and baking soda. Be sure to check Stephanie out on Instagram, and look for her book "Let's Learn About Chemistry" wherever you buy your books!

How do sunglasses protect us?

Wow sunglasses sure are cool. What's the coolest thing about them? Is it how cool they make us look and feel? Or is it the chemistry inside them? We'll let you decide, but we think you'll be surprised to find out how significant a role chemistry plays in the making of your shades.

Why do things fade in the sun?

The sun. It's nice, it's warm, it helps things grow, it helps us see, it helps us exist in the first place. But it's also a massive burning molten ball of radiation and ultraviolet rays. So how does our mysterious yellow friend fade the poor items we leave outside? Let's find out. Don't hurt us, yellow friend.

What is a dryer sheet?

Dryer sheets. They smell good. They make our clothes soft. They get rid of static. But how? How is one little sheet allowed to solve that many problems? What are they made of? Are they bad or good or neither?

Chemistry at Home: Pennies

Here's another bonus episode dedicated to teaching a specific chemistry experiment you can do at home. This month, we see what happens when we combine salt, vinegar, and pennies?

Is glass a liquid?

Glass. The more you look at it, the more clear it becomes that it holds some serious mysteries. So what really is glass? Is it a liquid? How is it different from typical solids? Does it flow and ooze over time? Is that why old windows are thicker at the bottom? Let's find out!

© For Your Life 2021, All rights reserved.