Someone suggested I put up a shopping list for the products we'll be making in this series on hair care products - I'll do my best, but these are only representative of the ingredients I choose to use in my products. (And remember, I'm not affiliated with any suppliers - other than liking some of them personally! - so these recommendations are just the things I like!) If you've been playing along with the surfactant recipes over the last few weeks, then you've probably got what you need - surfactants, thickener, proteins, panthenol, cationic polymer, silicones. If not, here are a few ideas for ingredients you might be interested in using in your hair care products..
- surfactants - get some cocamidopropyl betaine (Amphosol CG at Voyageur) and at least one surfactant for your hair type (see the note below).
- proteins - high molecular weight proteins like oat or soy, low molecular weight proteins like silk, or one that spans the range like Phytokeratin.
- panthenol - this stuff is awesome for every hair type!
- cationic polymer - honeyquat, polyquat 7, Celquat H-100, or polyquat 10 are great if you want to make conditioning shampoo. (I'm sure there are others - let me know what I've missed! Oh, cationic guar is supposed to be nice, but I've never worked with it as it can precipitate out of the solution.)
- thickeners - you have a few choices. I like liquid Crothix, cocamide DEA, and PEG-7 glyceryl cocoate. You can use salt or gel, or even some of the gums. (Click on this link for the surfactant list and choose "viscosity" for more information.)
- moisturizers - you can use something like glycol distearate to thicken and pearlize and act as a moisturizer. Dry haired girls might appreciate some water soluble oils to increase the moisturization (as an oily haired girl, I don't tend to use oils, but you might like them!)
- silicones - I make sure I have some dimethicone 1000 cs for my frizzy hair, dimethicone 350 cs for my mom (all grey) and best friend (normal), and cyclomethicone. If you can find a water soluble dimethicone (like the raspberry w/s at the Herbarie) consider this as a great additive for conditioning shampoo!
- extracts - hydrosols suitable for your hair type (for instance, rosemary or orange for oily hair, lavender for normal to dry hair, aloe vera for all hair types) and extracts you might like (rosemary, green tea, etc.)
- humectants - glycerin is a standard humectant for hair care products as it not only attracts water, but it helps thicken and increases bubbles and lather! It also won't wash out like sodium PCA or sodium lactate.
- preservatives - remember anything that contains a cationic agent will not play well with Tinosan, so this is right out for conditioners and may be out for conditioning shampoo with cationic polymers. I like to use either liquid Germall Plus or Germaben II. Optiphen ND is suitable for shampoo, and may be suitable for conditioners. (Phenonip is right out as it's oil soluble.) Choose one suitable for water soluble or low oil containing products.
- essential or fragrance oils - they smell nice, and some essential oils are awesome for our hair!
- bottles - get lots of bottles for experimentation! Disc caps for shampoo and liquid conditioner, jars for intense conditioner, misters or spray bottles for leave-in and anti-frizz sprays.
For making conditioners - early June - the only additions you need to make are either Incroquat BTMS-50 or cetrimonium bromide, cetrimonium chloride (for awesome detangling - if you can get it), and cetyl alcohol (boosts substantivity). You could get some nice oils and butters if you're the type who likes serious oils in conditioners.
If you're not sure what surfactant will work well for your hair type...consider the surfactant chart. If it works well for that skin type, it should work well for your hair type. Oily hair can benefit from sulfosuccinates (like DLS mild) and C14-16 olefin sulfonate. Dry hair can benefit from SMC or SMO taurate or a blend like BSB or baby blend concentrate. Normal hair - well, you can go either way. (Rather than link to each of these, check out the surfactant post links page!) If you're interested in making shampoo bars or SCI based products, then choose either the type with stearic acid (good for dry to normal hair) or without (normal to oily hair). And if you're in doubt, go with a nice all around gentle surfactant like SLeS or ALeS or a blend like BSB (Voyageur) or CSB foamy concentrate (the Herbarie).
I'll be going into more detail over the next weeks about surfactants and suitability, but as with any bath or body product, you'll need to experiment to see what your hair likes!
And, as usual, I'd love to hear your opinions! What's bugging you? What do you want to learn to make? What have you always wondered? What products would you like to see analyzed? What works well for your hair? Let me know what's going through your well-tressed head through your e-mails or comments!