Monday, January 17, 2011

When to add your ingredients, part 2

In the first part (which you can read here) we took a look at including our ingredients in the heated or cool down phase. In this part, we'll take a look at including our ingredients in the right order.

I've been using Amaze XT quite a bit lately as I research further the effects of thickeners on our products and the resulting skin feel, and I've learned that you must add it when the manufacturer recommends you add it or you'll see an epic fail!

Here you see two identical recipes for a facial wash with LSB (from the Iron Chemist challenge), both of which use Amaze XT to thicken the mixtures. The container on the left is a successful face wash that thickened nicely. The jug on the right contains a face wash that could be used in a foamer, it's just that thin. Both recipes used identical ingredients but used different processes.

In the failed product, I added all the heated phase together (including surfactants), heated and held, then added the Amaze XT. In the successful product, I added the heated phase (except the surfactants), heated and held, then added the Amaze XT. I mixed in the gelling agent, then added my surfactants and mixed them in by hand. Success!

The only difference between the two products was the timing of the Amaze XT. As you can see from the failed batch, using a mixer on a surfactant product is a bad idea and creates a ton of foam.

So what have we learned? I've learned to add the Amaze XT after the heating (when the mixture reaches 70˚C) and before the surfactants! (The funny thing is that I knew this, but forgot it in my haste to make the product!) So it's important to know the order in which it's suggested to use the ingredients as well as during what phase!

1 comment:

Christina Kessler said...

Oh, wow, thanks for pointing out the mixer/surfactant incompatibility! I almost definitely would have done this!

I'm not planning on using that thickener, so I hope I don't run into something similar with a different ingredient.