Wednesday, July 7, 2010

An aside...Using cationic quaternary compounds in solid scrub bars

I love solid scrub bars! They're easy to make, they're easy to take travelling, and they make great presents! They don't require a lot of packaging, except for a lovely cellophane bag and possibly a ribbon, a label, a tag, or whatever cute things you can think of to make it special.

We use cationic quaternary compounds in scrub bars because they're substantive to our skin and leave behind a lovely conditioned feeling. As well, they behave as emulsifiers so we can get those oils out of the bar and onto our skin.

You can use cetrimonium bromide, BTMS-25, BTMS-50, and Incroquat CR in any of these recipes. Each can behave as a conditioning agent and emulsifier. If you've bought BTMS-25 and don't like it in your conditioner, use it here. Or if it turns out you have far too much Incroquat CR for cream rinses, use it in this scrub!

50% cocoa butter
20% mango, shea or other butter
3% cetyl alcohol
4% Incroquat BTMS, cetrimonium bromide, or Incroquat CR
3% sodium lactate (as a bar hardener, not a humectant)
14% oils of choice
2% cyclomethicone
2% dimethicone
1% fragrance oil
1% Vitamin E

If you look at the other recipes, you'll notice I have wax in there. I've been making them without wax lately and I like that feeling better, so I've taken it out and added 2% to the oils amount. 

Weigh the cocoa, other butter, cetyl alcohol, Incroquat BTMS, and oils into a Pyrex jug and put into a double boiler until it melts. Heat and hold for 20 minutes at 70˚C. Remove from the heat, then add the sodium lactate, cyclomethicone, dimethicone, fragrance oil, and Vitamin E. Stir well.

Add your scrubby bits after you've stirred well. I like to use about 65% sugar, but you can go up to 100% sugar, salt, loofah, etc. You'll have to try it to see what you like. I have found more than 50% pumice is not great for my skin, but you might enjoy it!

If you don't like silicones, then replace them with silicone replacements or more light oils.

If you're interested in seeing why I'm using these ingredients, or want to learn more about tweaking these bars, here are a few posts...
Join me tomorrow for fun formulating body butters with our cationic quaternary compounds as emulsifiers!


DuhBe said...

First off - thank you SO much for your blog.

Second (my question...)
I made a scrub bar with a similar recipe and I LOVE how it feels, but it melts very quickly and I can only get a few baths out of a 4 oz bar. Not cool. My one major difference was I used 120% white sugar plus 25% baking soda as the "scrubbies."

Is my fast melter due to the excess of powder dissolving too quickly? Or is there something I can do with my formula to harden things up (like upping the cetyl or adding/subbing stearic instead?)

Lissa said...

I know this isn't the right place to post but I love a light spayable lotion. Even with my super dry skin I can use a spay lotion before drying off after a shower/bath and not have to reapply lotin until late afternoon. Will have to try your version.
You Rock!

Lissa said...

Ooops forgot to add - this post reminded me how much i like a scrubby bar a' la CathyMb. Will have to whip some up this week.

Thanks again for your wonderful blog.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi DuhBe. Thanks for the kind words. As I don't know your recipe, it's hard to pinpoint one thing, but if you have more scrubby bits that will dissolve, your bar will dissolve faster. You can add a bar hardener - more cetyl, more stearic, adding sodium lactate, more BTMS or CR - or you could reduce the scrubbies. Sodium lactate might be the best choice if you like how your bar feels, but I don't think you'll make a huge difference because it won't prevent the scrubbies from dissolving!

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Lissa. I've mentioned before how this bar was inspired by CathyMB - if I could nominate her for an Order of Canada award, I'd do it. She has been a major inspiration for me as I love making bars of all types...less packaging equals fewer bottles and less money out of my pocket!

I am doing a few posts in the next week or so on oil based body sprays - after bath type stuff - but here are a few posts for a light sprayable lotion (you can modify a facial moisturizer nicely for this purpose)...
Light cationic sprayable lotion

Sprayable cationic lotion for the summer

Various facial moisturizer recipes - take out the cetyl alcohol to make it sprayable.

Beard conditioner - makes a great sprayable lotion!