Papine High Students Who Created Cucumber-Based Shampoo & Lotion Is Seeking SRC Approval After Producing Products From Popular Vegetable

Papine High Students Who Created Cucumber-Based Shampoo & Lotion Is Seeking SRC Approval After Producing Products From Popular Vegetable

Imagine turning homegrown cucumbers into luxurious haircare products! Students at Papine High School in Jamaica are doing just that, showcasing their ingenuity and entrepreneurial spirit at the recent Forum for Innovations in Teaching (FIT3). Their cucumber-based shampoo, alongside other innovative creations, is not only putting the spotlight on their agricultural program but also seeking the Scientific Research Council's seal of approval for market entry.

From Excess to Excellence: The Cucumber Connection

The project began with an abundance of cucumbers thriving on the school's farm, which usually supplies the canteen. Instead of letting the surplus go to waste, a team of students – Akiem Thompson, Migu Spencer, Alex Ricketts – and their chemistry teacher, Keniesha Warren-Sterling, brainstormed ways to add value. Recognizing the potential of cucumber's skin-soothing properties, they embarked on creating a unique haircare line.

A Recipe for Innovation: From Classroom to Cosmetics

Guided by Ms. Warren-Sterling, the students meticulously transformed their vision into reality. They carefully selected the best cucumbers, embarking on an intricate process involving heating, mixing, and emulsification for the lotion and a cold-process method for the shampoo. This hands-on learning extended beyond class hours, with the team diligently experimenting and perfecting their formula late into the evenings.

Beyond Products, Empowering Potential:

This project signifies more than just innovative haircare. It reflects Papine High's commitment to fostering an entrepreneurial spirit in its students. As Department of Agriculture and Science head Denise Moore-Scott explains, "We strive to show students that agriculture is not just about production and consumption; it's about creating value-added products." This aligns with the Ministry of Education and Youth's vision of equipping students with future-ready skills and appreciating the practical applications of their academic knowledge.

Seeking the Science Seal: The Road to Market

With a market-ready product in sight, the team is now seeking the Scientific Research Council's approval. This crucial step ensures the shampoo meets safety and quality standards, paving the way for potential commercialization. The school also plans to showcase their creation at the upcoming 4-H Achievement Seminar.

Celebrating Achievements, Reimagining Education:

Papine High's success at FIT3 aligns with the forum's theme of "Celebrating Achievements and Reimagining Education for the 21st Century." Their story exemplifies the power of creative and resourceful thinking, fueled by a dedicated teacher and eager students. It's a testament to the evolving face of education, where practical application and entrepreneurial spirit go hand-in-hand with academic excellence.

More Than Just Shampoo: A Broader Impact

While the focus lies on the cucumber shampoo, it's important to acknowledge the wider context of Papine High's achievements. The school has consistently excelled in both technical and traditional academic subjects, showcasing a well-rounded approach to education. This holistic approach, as emphasized by Ms. Moore-Scott, involves using "relatable application of the curriculum" to empower students and unlock their potential.


Papine High School's journey with their cucumber-based shampoo is a story of innovation, resourcefulness, and a commitment to future-ready education. Their quest for scientific approval marks an exciting step towards market entry, and their broader achievements highlight the transformative power of connecting academic knowledge with practical application. This story serves as an inspiration for students, educators, and institutions alike, urging them to embrace innovation and empower the next generation of entrepreneurs and changemakers.