Making a deodorant (click here if you want more than a summary)...
A clear gel stick is generally made by using sodium stearate and a glycol. Sometimes you'll see glycerin, sometimes propylene glycol, and sometimes a combination of these humectants with alcohol as the base, but you'll almost always find sodium stearate or another sodium salt of a fatty acid.
Why sodium stearate? Sodium stearate is an anionic surfactant that is the sodium salt of a fatty acid, in this case stearic acid (C18:0). It is produced through the saponification process when a triglyceride comes in contact with sodium hydroxide (or lye), leaving us with 3 moles of sodium stearate and one mole of glycerin. And yes, it is considered a type of soap and is one of the main compounds we find in soap!
We need a polyol, which is an alcohol containing multiple hydroxyl groups. We can use glycerin or any of the glycols (propylene, di-propylene, hexylene, or butylene glycol) to create the clear stick with the sodium stearate. You can use alcohol as well, but you'll need to include one of these polyols with it. (The sticks with alcohol or witch hazel will offer a cooling effect, so there's a bonus to using those liquids.) Some deodorant sticks also contain water, generally to help melt the sodium stearate.
What else do we want to include? Well, you can pretty much any water soluble ingredient you want. I like to add proteins, aloe vera, and water soluble esters, like the PEG- or PPG esters. The esters offer slip and glide as well as detackification, which is a huge issue when you're using a humectant to make a deodorant. The last thing we want is something we have to drag along our sensitive underarm area every morning! You can include cyclomethicone to increase the slip and glide (generally around 3%) and you could include some botanical ingredients if you include a preservative. You can include things like cationic polymers to add a little moisturizing and to increase the mildness as well.
So now that we know what we need for a deodorant - sodium stearate and a glycol - let's see what's in this ingredient list! (And thanks so much for posting this list, soapilyeverafter, because the ingredient list on the website is completely out of whack when it comes to listing the ingredients in order! It's almost backwards! I guess they are highlighting what they want you to see, which are the extracts and botanical ingredients!)
Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Aloe Juice, Water): Aloe vera is a great moisturizing ingredient that can film form and soothe skin. It's a great addition to a deodorant, especially if you're someone who shaves regularly.
Zea Mays (Corn) Starch: This acts as a binder and will feel very nice on your skin, silky and dry.
Sodium Stearate (Coconut Derived): Vital for this recipe, it will work with the propanediol to create the clear stick deodorant. It's generally used at 6% to 8%.
Silica: This is probably fumed silica, which is used as a viscosity enhancer and dessicant. If you take a look at what happened with my glycerin and water deodorant, which is to say that it started to melt at room temperature because of all the water evaporating, it makes sense to use this ingredient! It's generally used around 5% or so. (Click here for a data sheet.)
Carrageenan (Seaweed Derived): A thickener used to make a more gel like consistency. It also contains a lot of polysaccharides, so it will create a film on your skin and offer soothing.
Stearyl Behenate (Coconut Derived): This is an ester that offers dry emolliency and skin conditioning. We can replace this with another dry ester or something like cetearyl alcohol if you want to make this slightly waxier feeling.
Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon Peel Oil): This is an essential oil. Probably for the fragrance but it could be to reduce oiliness.
Inulin (Artichoke Derived): Inulin is a polysaccharide that can behave as an emulsifier, stabilizer, and surfactant. (It's also a source of fibre you can find in those powdered Crystal Light beverages I like so much!)
Saccharomyces Ferment: This could be one of many different members of the family Saccharomyces, a type of fungi. It's sold under the name Deo-plex (click here for data sheet) and is used to break down odour causing compounds in deodorants and other products. I can't find out how much to use of this ingredient from the data sheets.
Alpha-Glucan Oligosaccharide (Sugar Derived): This is an emollient that has water binding properties.
Yeast Beta Glucan: Anti-inflammatory and wound healing. Click on the link for far more information.
Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract: This could be used for its astringent properties or because it offers anti-oxidant, anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-oxidant, anti-irritant, and anti-bacterial properties. It is used as a natural preservative, and contains naturally occurring parabens.
Usnea Barbata (Lichen) Extract: May be used as a deodorant with anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.
Valeriana Officinalis Root Extract (Valerian): This can be found as an essential oil and might be used as a fragrance here.
Hydrastis Canadensis (Goldenseal) Extract: Reported to have anti-bacterial and anti-septic qualities. It's listed for cosmetic use as an odour masking ingredient.
Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract: Used a lot for anti-bacterial products.
Lycium Barbarum Fruit Extract (Goji Berry): Officially listed as being an anti-oxidant in cosmetic products.
Botanical Fragrance Blend: Makes it smell pretty!
We know what we have here! It's a deodorant made with sodium stearate and a polyol to create a clear stick deodorant. The corn starch (which can be replaced with Dry-Flo) is used to make it feel drier when we sweat, and the silica is used as a dessicant to keep the product from gathering too much water. The extracts are used to prevent odours and smell pretty. And the stearyl behenate is used as a a dry emollient.
I'm basing this recipe on this one for an alcohol and propylene glycol deodorant and the glycerin and water deodorant. I'm using Dry-Flo (modified corn starch, for more information click and scroll down) instead of regular corn starch as it is much finer and easier to use. (You can use regular corn starch if you want.) And I'll include the fumed silica as well in the duplication, although I have no idea where to find it. I'm not including carageenan as that stuff is hard to find and a pain to use, and I'm really not sure what it brings to the product that the other ingredients with polysaccharides can't bring. I'm using benehyl alcohol instead of stearate behenate as I have no idea where to find that. Oh, and I don't know where to find Deoplex, so you'll have to find something to work as a deodorizer. (Wow, this isn't going to be close to the original at this rate!)
Personally, I'd suggest making up a deodorant and adding 6% Dry-Flo to the cool down phase, substituting the propanediol for the propylene glycol, and adding some extracts rather than trying this recipe as I have no idea if it's going to work. Click here for some ideas on things to add to deodorants.
POSSIBLE DUPLICATION FOR THE HEALTHY DEODORANT
HEATED WATER PHASE
53% aloe vera liquid
HEATED OIL PHASE
6% sodium stearate
3% behenyl alcohol or another fatty alcohol
COOL DOWN PHASE
5% fumed silica
6% Dry-Flo or corn starch
1% tea tree oil
0.5% honeysuckle extract
Heat the two heated phases separately in a double boiler until the oil phase has melted and the water phase has reached about 60˚C. Combine the two and stir very well. Add the fumed silica and corn starch when the mixture reaches 55˚C. Add the tea tree oil, preservative, and honeysuckle extract (click here on how to dissolve it in water) and mix well. Pour into deodorant containers and wait until set.
As I mentioned above, I have no idea if this recipe will feel the same as the product we're duplicating as I don't have the original and I don't have the ingredients they use. I really do recommend using an alcohol and propylene glycol/propanediol deodorant instead because the water version just evaporates like crazy!
Here are my recipes for deodorants...
Alcohol and propylene glycol based deodorant
Some information on Tinosan as an anti-bacterial ingredient and preservative
Glycerin based deodorant (warning: I hated this one!)
Dipropylene glycol and witch hazel deodorant
A few thoughts on additions to deodorants
Lotion bar deodorants
I know of only one place to get sodium stearate at the moment - Creations from Eden in Edmonton, Alberta.
Do you have a product in mind that you'd like to duplicate? If so, click here and make a comment in this post. Please include the proper name for the product, an accurate ingredient list, and a link to where I can find it with the ingredient list!
Join me tomorrow as we have more fun with duplicating products!