So you've made your first body butter but you want to tweak it further. (This is why I suggest using one oil at a time when you start so you can identify what you love and what you want to change!) Do you want a lighter or heavier oil? Do you want fewer butters or more? Do you need more humectants? Do you want it more glide-y or more sink-in-able?
Let's look over the recipe again and see where we can tweak it...
RECIPE FOR A BODY BUTTER
60% water - some hydrosols or aloe might be nice in here. I'd go with 10% aloe for all skin types, and 10% lavender hydrosol for soothing annoyed skin.
2% sodium lactate or glycerin - let's go with the sodium lactate instead of glycerin here. Remember not to go above 3% as it can be photosensitizing and exfoliating.
10% oils - tweak your oils - choose lighter, heavier, medium-ier oils.
15% shea butter - try mango butter (a bit drier) or avocado butter (very dry and heavy). I should be checking the HLB for this to see if I need to change the emulsifier, but since I'm using BTMS, Polawax, or emulsifying wax NF (which are complete emulsification systems), I'm not going to worry about that today.
6% emulsifier - no changes here, although you could use 6% BTMS for a more powdery feeling
3% cetyl alcohol - I wouldn't change this either because it makes it glid-y
2% IPM - addition. You could add IPM to the oil phase to make the lotion sink into your skin a little quicker.
0.5 to 1% preservative - ESSENTIAL, no change
1% fragrance or essential oil blend - lovely, no change
2% cyclomethicone - addition - this will give your lotion a silky feeling that will dry a little powdery.
2% dimethicone - addition - this will add glide to your lotion and acts as a protective barrier from the elements. This is a great addition to a lotion in a climate with wind chapping, lots of cold, and low humidity.
How do we incorporate these ingredients into our recipe? Our total is more than 100%!!!
I'm going to be honest here...I usually add these ingredients and get 106% and live with it (so a single batch at 1% = 1 gram is going to be 106 grams), but we really should compensate in some way. You could remove 6% water, which is going to give you a thicker cream, or you could remove some oils (say 2%) and some butter (say 4%) to total 100%. Or you can re-calculate this recipe - so the water would be 56.6% of the recipe - but this is going to be difficult to make if you don't have a scale that can go to 0.01 grams. I'm going to suggest something that is bad practice and I'm slightly ashamed of it...but just add the ingredients and make a 106 gram batch for now. If you aren't messing with the recipe so it's now 150% instead of 100%, then you'll have to recalculate (divide the previous amount - say 60% water - by the new amount - say 150 - to get the new percentage.)
OUR MODIFIED BODY BUTTER RECIPE
10% aloe vera liquid
10% lavender or rose hydrosol
2% sodium lactate
15% butter of choice
6% BTMS, Polawax OR Emulsifying wax NF
3% cetyl alcohol
COOL DOWN PHASE
0.5 to 1% preservative
1% fragrance or essential oil blend
1. Weigh out your water phase in a heat proof container and put into a double boiler.
2. Weigh out your oil phase in a heat proof container and put into your double boiler.
3. When both containers have reached 70C, weigh out your water again (and add more hot water to compensate for any evaporation), then add it to your oil container.
4. Blend with a hand mixer or stick blender for at least 3 minutes. Repeat this process as often as you would like until the temperature reaches 45C.
5. Let cool to 45C, then add your cool down phase ingredients. Mix well with your hand mixer or stick blender, then let cool.
6. When the mixture has cooled to room temperature (a few hours), spoon into a jar and let set before using.
Remember to label your jar with the new version of the ingredients you've used to see if you like the additions. Make sure you keep notes on all the changes you've made. If you're obsessive like me, you can try this recipe with just one new ingredient at a time to see if you can feel the changes you've made.
Tune in tomorrow...why? Because we're going to review what we've learned so far!