Sunday, June 21, 2009

Gels: Aloe vera

Adding aloe vera to gels can be tricky because gels don't tend to like ingredients filled with lovely salts and electrolytes. We like a good challenge, so let's figure out how to make an aloe vera gel with cationic polymers and moisturizers!

For the aloe vera gel, we'd ideally like a ton of aloe vera to soothe burned or annoyed skin...but this is going to end in tears as the gel goes all liquidy over a short period of time. So how do we make a lovely aloe vera gel?

Well, we're going to include aloe vera, but at a lower amount, then compensate by throwing in other wonderful things that make your skin feel nice, like witch hazel (cooling feeling) and lavender hydrosol (soothing). We're adding our hydrolyzed proteins to offer film forming and moisturizing without oils and we're adding the cationic polymer as a film former, conditioner, humectant, and moisturizer. Finally, I'm adding some chamomile extract - it's optional, but 0.5% goes a long way in soothing inflamed skin, so if you can add it, it's a good thing.

You can add fragrance or essential oil to this, but I would suggest waiting until the second time you make it to do this. Primarily because it can make your gel go all white on you, but also because I think this recipe is really nice without it.

Make up your gel as follows...
242 grams of water
3 grams ultrez 20
4 grams of 18% lye solution
1.25 grams preservative (Liquid Germall Plus)

Put the gel flakes into the water and stir well to wet the flakes. Let sit for 3 to 5 minutes (5 minutes is preferable) then add your 18% lye solution and preservative. Stir until thickened.

60% gel
15% aloe vera liquid
10% witch hazel
10% lavender hydrosol
2% cationic polymer like honeyquat, condition-eze 7
2% hydrolyzed protein
0.5% chamomile extract (optional)
0.5% fragrance or essential oil (optional)
Colour, if desired.

Put all the ingredients into a container and mix until well blended. You'll want to dissolve the chamomile extract in a tiny bit of water, alcohol, or propylene glycol before adding to this mixture.

Join me tomorrow for formulating with gels to make a thickened toner!


jasmine said...

aloe vera in general has a lot of benefits. its useful in many problems in many ways. i read this article on Aloe Vera n its really good.. try it.. it could help..

Aloe Vera

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the formula. I have 1 question: Is aloe vera liquid available or from aloe vera tree?

Pier said...

I am from Quebec. I read lot of your posts and love it. I also bought many ingredients trying to make some of your recipe as the Body lotion for aging skin. Works quite good but didn't like the odour. Might be the carrot EO. Next time I will choose another EO.
I also use Aloe Vera liquid every morning.
I will like to make that gel but excuse my ignorance. I am French. Is that a gel shower that we can use to replace any soap ?
Thanks a lot for all those informations so well done.

Pier said...

Forgot to ask :
As the Ultrez 20 is a bit expensive (8,10 for 2 oz in Voyageur), is there other recipe where I can use it ?

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Pier. No, this is an aloe vera gel good for helping with sunburns, for instance. It isn't a cleansing product. For that you would need to have a surfactant that foams and cleans. If you want a body wash recipe, check out the section of recipes called surfactant based products and see what is there.

As for using the Ultrez 20, look up the label "gels" or do a search for Ultrez 20 on the blog as I have quite a few recipes.

Pier said...

Thanks a lot Susan for having taking time to respond. I am so mixed up with all those names, gels, gel shower, body wash, etc... In French a gel shower is a cleaning product as well as a soap.

I find your recipe for a body wash
and will make this one. There are 2 surfactants on that recipe. This recipe and the body lotion for aging skin plus the one of foot cream for really damaged feet are the 3 recipes I will try to make.
Thanks again, you are incredibly wonderful and having so much connaissances.
I might also try to make a shampoo recipe for dog if I find the products.

Clive said...

I found that hydrolysed protein (I used Gluadin W-40 Benz, a wheat protein) reduced the gel thickness - made it more watery - at 2% or more. In an anti-acne gel, I found that thyme extract could really mess up the gel, max usage was 3% extract in the gel. I wish I knew the reason, because Ultrez-20 is supposed to be "good with electrolytes".