Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Shampoo: A conditioning shampoo for oily hair

How do we modify a conditioning shampoo to be more suitable for oily hair?

What's the goal for an oily hair shampoo? To remove the sebum and other stuff in your hair without stripping it. We could use some really harsh detergents to accomplish this goal - SLS, for instance - but this will only cause the oil to come back quicker, so we want to remove enough oil to make our hair look and smell nice without stripping it dry.

So we want to use mild cleansers suitable for oily hair, which include the sulfosuccinates or C14-16 olefin sulfonate. (We won't be changing the cocamidopropyl betaine as it is awesome for all hair types and increases mildness and thickening.) We don't want to increase the oils, so you won't want to put water soluble oils in this mix, but dimethicone can make our hair feel conditioned and nice.

As a quick aside, jojoba oil actually penetrates into our skin through hair strands, so if you're a really really oily girl, it might actually help remove the sebum from your scalp and make it feel cleaner. Try it at something like 3% to start in your shampoo. You don't need to worry too much about emulsifying it - most detergent type surfactants are really good solubilizers so the low amount of jojoba oil will remain in suspension. If you want to use more, try a 1:1 ratio of polysorbate 80 or other solubilizer with the jojoba oil and mix well. This will have an impact on your your foam and lather, but it won't make it less cleansing. 

If you're a frizzy haired girl, you'll want to use high molecular weight proteins - like Cromoist, which is oat protein. If you have straight hair, use any weight protein you like. Lower molecular weight proteins like silk are good for moisturizing from within, so you might consider that.

I'm not sure if I've mentioned my favourite essential oil blend for oily hair, so I'll do it now. I have found that 2% of an equal parts blend of rosemary, cedarwood, sage, and lemon or lime is great for my oily hair (this is anecdotal; sorry, no links here!) and it makes my hair smell amazing. Consider adding something like this to a shampoo or conditioner.

And don't forget your extracts! Rosemary is a great ingredient to include in products for oily hair. You can add it as a hydrosol (my favourite way) at up to 10% or you can add it at 0.5% in the powdered form. If you have seriously oily hair, you might want to consider using something like witch hazel in your product at up to 10% for the astringency. Grapeseed extract is also good for increasing astringency.

A few other hydrosols to consider would be clary sage, orange or neroli, or lavender. I like peppermint in a shampoo to give me a nice scent and slight tingly feeling, but you can choose something you like. (Although if you're using 2% essential oil in your product, you won't smell the hydrosol!)

Okay, so what do we do with all this information? We make an oily hair shampoo, of course!

15% C14-16 olefin sulfonate
15% DLS mild
26% water
10% aloe vera or witch hazel
10% lovely hydrosol like orange blossom, peppermint, or rosemary
10% Amphosol CG
3% glycerin
2% hydrolyzed protein (silk for non-frizzy hair, Cromoist for frizzy hair)
2% panthenol
2% dimethicone or condition-eze 7
2% essential oil blend
(optional) 0.5% extract - grapeseed or rosemary
up to 2% Crothix
0.5% Germall Plus or 1.0% Germaben II
Colour, if desired

Note: Feel free to leave out the aloe vera and hydrosol and use all water!

Use the general instructions for shampoo making for this recipe.

Wow, this isn't really all that different from the normal hair shampoo we made yesterday! We use pretty much the same ingredients - our film formers, proteins, dimethicone, panthenol, and humectants - and we use them in just about the same proportions. 

And there's the secret to shampoo making (insert dramatic chord here)! As we saw in the series on body and facial cleansers, if you find a basic recipe you like, you can tweak it to your heart's content by changing the type of ingredients used and keeping the proportions the same. By switching the surfactants to those suitable for oily hair, we've made a product more suitable for those of us who want to chase away the greasies! 

So let's take a look at a conditioning shampoo suitable for dry hair tomorrow! 


Naomi said...

Do you make your own hydrosols?

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

No, I don't have the equipment!

Naomi said...

Susan, regarding hydrosols, does heating and holding affect the hydrosols negatively? I've seen hydrosols included in the "heat" phase, but does prolonged heating kill the botanical properties? If the hydrosol is made from distillation process, does it need to be held for contamination or just heated for temperature with the distilled water?

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

I always include my hydrosols in the heat and hold portion of any product making, and as far as I can tell, it doesn't negatively affect the beneficial properties. Because I use hydrosols from my suppliers, which are preserved, I don't worry about contamination of my containers when they are newly opened.

As for those that are distilled and unpreserved, you most definitely want to heat and hold them for the 20 minutes at 70˚C to ensure you eliminate all possible routes of contamination. If they are distilled and preserved, then you'll have to make your own decision on that based on how much your trust your supplier or distiller.

Tara said...

Do you know how to make "dry shampoos". Are these even effective?
I don't know if already asked this question, but I can't find where I might have posted it if I already have!

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Tara. Stay tuned for recipes for dry shampoo next week. In summary - they work. I use mine regularly and love it! You want to include ingredients that will absorb oil and brush out easily.

Ali Aden said...

ĶHi Susan
i really thank you how explaining everything very wel.but shampoo formula is 10 to 15% surfactant and you use more than that for instance oily shampoo formula you used 40%.
And the surfactants are not 100% e.g coco betaine is 33%. Please help me to understand that.

Best regards
Ali Aden

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Ali. I'm sorry I don't understand your question. I use more surfactants in my products as I want them to be concentrated. I'm not following guidelines for commercial formulas. Are you asking me if the cocamidopropyl betaine I'm using is 33% active? I'm not sure what this question is all about.

Elise said...

I was wondering if there is a difference between Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate and Sodium C14-16 Alpha Olefin Sulfonate. I've seen both floating around lately.

Jaslyn Begni said...

Hi Susan,

I'm trying to make a Dreadlock Shampoo for oily hair (not everyday use). The requirements are different from somebody that has to comb their hair and should not contain any PEG, PPG, sulphates or Anything that is a ‘moisturizer, lubricant, emollient, humectant, or conditioner’ as it will build up as residue and also unlock the hair. (advice from a dreadlock site)

Would this formulation work:


15% C14-16 olefin sulfonate
15% DLS Mild
10% cocamidopropyl betaine (?)
44.5% water
10% witch hazel
2% panthenol
up to 3% Salt (not Crothix as it's a PEG)
0.5% Germall Plus

Will the salt work as a thickener with those surfactants? I like the sound of them as they are stable in hard water.
I would like the shampoo to be cleansing, foaming, gentle on the scalp, easily rinsed out but without drying the hair out too much as no commercial conditioners are used on dreadlocks.

Conditioner is Aloe Vera, lemon juice and water.

I'm making this for my son and I need something that mimics a commercial shampoo as close as possible. He doesn't like change and would rather die than use an ACV Rinse... the suggestion is still a standing joke in our house!

Any comments or suggestions would greatly help.


Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Jaslyn! Check out <a href='http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1020026/surfactantchart.pdf">this surfactant chart</a> to see if they thicken with salt. Or check out the entries in the surfactant section of the blog to learn more about each one.

If he isn't using a proper conditioner, I'd reduce the surfactants greatly to maybe a total of 20%. This will make it thinner, though. I like this combination of surfactants - they're my favourite combination, actually - for oily hair. I guess I'm wondering about the idea of not using any conditioning ingredients at all. Even a teeny bit.

Just wondering...isn't the lemon juice affecting the colour of his hair?

Srjnm said...

I don't know what I did wrong here. It looked like a good formula. So I bottled it. But eventually it looked like it separated? There is white thick foam floating on top.

40% water
40% mix of surfactants (coco glucoside, DLS mild, SLSA, cocamid betain)
5% Aloe Vera juice
3% Jojoba/Polysorbat 80 (50/50) ratio
2% glycerine
2% panthanol
2% Dimethicone
1% bubble wash thickener (PEG-150 Pentaerythrityl Tetrastearate (and) PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides (and) Water)
2% essential oils
.5% Rosemary extract
.5% Germal Plus

Any ideas? Thanks.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Srjnm! I've tried to answer your question as today's Weekend Wonderings. The short answer is that I think these are bubbles coming out of the mixture.