Monday, July 19, 2010

Back to basics: Balms - let's get complicated

I liked my complicated lotion bar so much, I thought I'd see if I could turn it into a balm-like product with a more whippy consistency. I did this by adding more liquids and reducing the solids.


COMPLICATED BALM FILLED WITH ESTERS AND SILICONES
20.3% beeswax
4.1% cetyl esters
24.4% shea butter
22.8% cetearyl ethylhexanoate
1.6% isopropyl palmitate
13% C12-15 alkyl benzoate
9% capric/caprylic triglycerides
1.6% dimethicone
1.6% cyclomethicone
1.6% fragrance oil

Heat everything but the dimethicone, cyclomethicone, and fragrance oil in a heatproof container in a double boiler. When it has melted, add the silicones and fragrance oil. This balm has a scoopable consistency, so you can wait until it has cooled to put it into jars or tins or you can pour it when it is still warm.

I am having a love affair with this balm. It goes on very nice, is easy to rub into my hands and finger nails - I've decided this is a cuticle balm - and smells nice (I used key lime essential oil, and it smells lovely!). Because most of these oils are esters, there's a less greasy feeling about the product.

You can use esters in the form of isopropyl myristate (IPM) to reduce the feeling of greasiness in your anhydrous products - we generally use it at 2% to 5%, but you can go higher if you want - and you can use less greasy oils in your products.

If you wanted to replicate this balm without buying a ton of esters, you could try this, a modification of the lotion bar we used in the let's get complicated lotion bar recipe to get a similar feeling and the same consistency!

LOTION BAR WITH SHEA BUTTER AND LESS GREASY FEELING OILS
20% beeswax
4% cetyl alcohol
25% shea butter
43% fractionated coconut oil
2% IPM
2% dimethicone
2% cyclomethicone
2% fragrance oils

Join me tomorrow for fun with bath bombs!

12 comments:

Meaue said...

What can be substituted for the cetearyl ethylhexanoate? That is the only ingredient I don't have.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Meaue! You can substitute another light ester or use more capric/caprylic triglycerides, more C12-15 alkyl benzoate, or something like fractionated coconut oil in its place. I used it because I was having fun trying something new - you want something light in the balm, so any of those things should do well. The cetearyl ethylhexanoate is a little on the dry side - not really dry, but more silky feeling without a lot of greasiness - so the C12-15 is probably a better substitute if you like that kind of skin feel!

Have fun formulating!

Meaue said...

Yes, I like silky so I will use 35.8% C12-15 alkyl benzoate? Most of these are new to me and I am excited to formulate with these!

Meaue said...

I finally made this balm and am loving it too! I subbed 5% IPM and the balance (17.8%) with FCO for the cetearyl ethylhexanoate... This balm is so light and lovely. Does not leave a greasy feel at all - just nice and soft. And it was fun to use ingredients I had not used before.

Meaue said...

I just have to say if anyone is contemplating making this balm, I say GO FOR IT! I am preferring this to any hand lotion I have made or used. This leaves your skin so soft and silky and seems to remain with your skin even after multiple handwashings. I don't know about winter skin, but it is just lovely for these summer months. No greasy residue and my skin feels so conditioned. Big ol' thumbs (and toes) up for this one! Thank you Susan for turning me onto these new ingredients!!

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Meaue! Thanks for your kind words. I really love this balm - it doesn't leave much greasiness behind, and I find it's still on in the morning when I wash my hands. We'll have to try it in the winter and see if it stands up the ravages of the cold.

I'm playing with more of these ingredients this week - I've made a new body wash with white willow bark, myristamine oxide, and PEG 7 glyceryl cocoate. I'm really pleased with it so far - very moisturizing without losing a ton of lather and foam! Don't you love esters?

Meaue said...

Yes, yes I do! How about a series on the emollient esters we can use in place of oil and butters. They are just so lovely. I would like to understand them better - your presentations are for laymen like me! I can read up on them, but then I'm like a perplexed dog (imagine, head cocked, one ear up one, one ear down - uerr?)

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Meaue! You're reading my mind! I'm working on a series of how to use esters as the moment - I hope to have some recipes up some time in mid-August.

I've just made a cetrimonium bromide based conditioner with the myristamine oxide. I haven't used it yet, but it's very thin. I might have to throw in some BTMS (I have the cetab without cetyl alcohol and I don't tend to include cetyl alcohol in my conditioners, but I might have to make an exception this time!) And I just made that body wash. I'm making up a body spray tomorrow morning - time permitting - as per Lissa's suggestion. And there's more fun to be had with more esters. (I just put in another order with the Personal Formulator! I need some PEG-7 olivate from the Herbarie, but I can't justify the expense!!!)

Meaue said...

Since I just placed an order with TPF, I have some time to get a new list together for your mid August recipes (argh!) Myristamine oxide is one the list, I have all the other things you have mentioned.... what else should I put on my "'sperimenting" ingredient list that TPF will have? Nothing worse than having everything but one...course I know there are always substitutions. What things will you specifically be working with? Thanks! BTW - I was going to put the PEG-7 olivate in the balm as a sub, but was thinking it was going to be too heavy feeling. I actually took that, FCO and IPM and rubbed in my skin to familiarize myself with the consistency, drag and feel. The PEG-7 olivate was a little draggy and heavy feeling, so I decided to not use that, but maybe that will be what I will want in the balm in the winter?

Kristy said...

Hi Susan,
I'm working on a balm/bar that is similar to yours below:

LOTION BAR WITH SHEA BUTTER AND LESS GREASY FEELING OILS
20% beeswax
4% cetyl alcohol
25% shea butter
43% fractionated coconut oil
2% IPM
2% dimethicone
2% cyclomethicone
2% fragrance oils

However, each time that I add dimethicone in the cool down phase, it gets cloudy and precipitates. Do you think this is due to product shelf life or too high heat? I've repeated this twice so I'm pretty sure it's the dimethicone. It's the dimethicone satin from Making Cosmetics which is a mix of high and low molecular wts. It is over a year old. I'm waiting as long as possible to add it but it has to be hot or the balm starts to cool and stiffen. I've only ever used it in emulsions before, so I wouldn't have been able to see it precipitate. Any thoughts?

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Kristy. Dimethicone isn't going bad in a year. I've had some for two years, and it's fine. There's really nothing about it that can go off, and it definitely isn't going rancid. It could be the type of dimethicone. I've made this with 350 cs and 1000 cs and I haven't had that happen. Having said this, dimethicone isn't truly oil soluble, and it could be the kind you have just doesn't want to mix.

I'm sorry this isn't working for you. I hate to say that I really don't know what to suggest, other than checking if your version can go into the product at a warmer temperature and trying that. If it doesn't work, then I think you might have to leave it out.

Kristy said...

Susan, thanks for your response. I'm going to try a different brand and see if I have any luck. Many thanks!