Crayon manufacturingis a simple process, but one which is still relatively labor intensive. Wax crayons begin as wax and colored powders called pigments. At the crayon factory, mixing machines stir the powdered pigmentinto melted wax. The hot colored wax is then poured on to a mold table where the liquid color flows into crayon-shaped holes.
After the colored wax hardens into crayons, a machine wraps each stick in a paper wrapper that matches the color of the crayon. Crayons were invented less than a century ago and came only in black. Storekeepers used them to mark prices. Today, crayons come in 72 different colors.
Over the past 10 years, extra ingredients have been added to crayons. One of the most popular is glitter, small pieces of reflective material that make the crayon-produced work shine as it catches and reflects random beams of light. Perfumesand other scents can also be added to the mix.
Are crayons toxic? Crayons are generally made from wax and coloring. The ingredients are considered non-toxic and most cases will not need medical attention. However, if a crayon is eaten, it may cause an upset stomach. Additionally, crayons can be a choking hazard, just like any toy that can fit into a child’s mouth.
Is it safe to put crayons on your lips? Just because a crayon is not toxic if a child accidentally ingests it, does not automatically mean it is safe to use on the lips over time. Also, crayons are not intended to be ingested or used on the lips, so crayon manufacturers have no need to use approved FDA colorants for lip products.
Content for this question contributed by Penky Pelkofer, resident of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA