Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Duplicating products: Chi Silk Infusion Hair Serum (part 2)

Let's pick up where we left off yesterday with the Chi Silk Infusion Hair Serum. If you want to make a suggestion for a product we might consider duplicating, please make a comment in this post with an accurate ingredient list and link to the product. 

What's with the mica and boron nitride? Think about the refractive index for a minute. When we use ingredients like boron nitride, mica, dimethicone, and so on, we increase our hair's shininess. The problem is that we don't know how much they're using - it's probably a titch - so I'm  leaving those ingredients out of the equation and sticking to the silicones and emollients for my shine. If you want to include boron nitride or mica in your product, make it, then add a little bit and see how you like it. I don't really want the shine of mica in my hair, so I'm not including it in this version.

We have a few problems in trying to replicate this product. First problem: Where can I get dimethiconol? I can't find it anywhere! I found it at Making Cosmetics, but you have to buy a giant pail of it, and I really just want to try it for this product. Second problem: Where can I find the ethyl ester of silk? I need to use this version of silk as this is an oil based product, and the silk I own is water based and will just float to the top of the product and sit there. Third problem: How did they incorporate panthenol, a water based ingredient, into this product? If it's an oil soluble version, where can I find it?

I don't think we can replicate this product, but we can get close-ish. We can't find three of the ingredients, and I think the dimethiconol and the silk are pretty much essential in this product, so this is going to be a problem. We can try our best to make something awesome, so let's give it a go!

As a note, some people would argue that the silk isn't essential to this product for your hair as there probably isn't a lot in there, but I would argue that it's essential for our enjoyment and perception of the product.

Cyclomethicone will be the base of this product, at about 80% to 90% or so. When considering the ester you want to use, you could choose C12-15 alkyl benzoate or ethylhexyl palmitate, which is considered a silicone replacement and offers some nice shine in our hair. The ethylhexyl palmitate is a slightly lighter feeling ester, but that really won't make a huge difference in our hair. We'll be including dimethicone, of course, for the defrizzing and shine. We don't need to include preservative in this product as it is oil based and we won't be introducing water into it but we could include a non-polar fragrance to it (although I wouldn't bother with a product like this as you already have the fragrance from your conditioner and possibly leave in conditioner, so why go through the trouble of figuring out which of your fragrance or essential oils are polar and which are not just to include it in this product?).

So we have three ingredients in this product - cyclomethicone, dimethicone, and our ester (either C12-15 alkyl benzoate or ethylhexyl palmitate). I'm going to base this recipe on my usual anti-frizz spray and replace 5% of the cyclomethicone with 5% ester.

85% cyclomethicone
10% dimethicone
5% C12-15 alkyl benzoate or ethylhexyl palmitate
(If you have dimethiconol, try using it at 5% to 10% of the cyclomethicone amount.)

I've never tried this Chi Silk Infusion Hair Serum before - those of you who have, can you comment as to how close you feel this is to the original?

Join me tomorrow as we take a look at a few "cleansing" conditioners.


tawnya said...

I have Chi Silk Infusion, and I will make the duplication this weekend to see how it compares! I will update you then! :) Oh, and p.s. is there any way to use panthenol powder, or will it not mix in?

Mychelle said...

Thank you for a great jumping off point! I hope you are feeling better. I made this up tonight but used your thicker serum recipe, as I make the spray all the time and the Chi is thicker. I used 65% cylcomethicone, 30% dimethicone (1000 cs), and 5% C12-15 alkyl benzoate. It is a lovely serum and feels amazing. I think it will do the job. The Chi product is still thicker than this, so tomorrow I will do 55% cylcomethicone, 40% dimethicone, and 5% C12-15. I'm also going to throw in a touch of gold mica, just to see what happens. The Chi product is a kind of gold color, and now I realize it might be from the mica. I will let you know how the next one turns out!

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Mychelle. I love the 1000 cs dimethicone - it's so thick and great in hair sera. Let me know how it turns out and I will update the post with your favourite version of your recipe!

Hi Tawnya. No, you can't get water soluble panthenol powder or liquid to mix well with the oil soluble ingredients in this recipe. You'd need to find one that will dissolve in oils, and I haven't found that yet.

tawnyat said...

I finally had a chance to make this duplication and I am very pleased with the outcome! This is the first shine serum I've ever made so I didn't do much modifying to it. I did 24% Dimethicone, 70% Cyclomethicone, 5.5% C12 Alkyl Benzoate, and .5% fragrance. It turned out pretty thin but worked very well! The Chi Silk Infusion is quite a bit thicker, you can put some in your palm and it won't roll off right away, but the duplication does. But as far as how good they work; I would say they are both great!
I really enjoyed duplicating this and comparing to the original, so THANKS for the idea! :)

Thu Lê said...

Hi, Susan. Thanks so much for all of informations in your blog.I love Chi Silk Infusion hair serum and want to make it following your recipe. But I don't have C12-15 alkyl benzoate. Can I substitute IPM for C12-15 alkyl benzoate?
Thanks you.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Thu! Take a look at the emollients section of the blog and look up the listings for both ingredients. See if the IPM works for you in the same way as the other ester, then make your choice!

Thu Lê said...

Thank you very much!