In this post, Anonymous asks: Hey Susan, This probably is a very weird question, but I was wondering, just for curiosity's sake, what would happen if you made a change in a lotion recipe, say added extra of an ingredient in the oil phase but didnt reduce the percentage in the water phase (so the recipe didnt equal 100% anymore) what would happen? I've never done it, nor am I planning to, I was just curious if it was that important you reduce 1% if adding 1% somewhere else and what would the result be if it happened? Thanks!
The answer to this might shock you, so hold on...Nothing. Nothing would happen. You'd have a recipe that has a total of 103% or a 105%, but it wouldn't be a ruined recipe. I admit that I have quite a few recipes that total more than 100% for various reasons. Perhaps I wanted to add 2% fragrance oil to something like a sugar scrub or I realized I wanted to add 3% cationic polymer in my conditioner, I can just add it in and accept that my recipe isn't exactly 100%.
There are very good reasons for making our recipe total 100%, the main one being that it's easier to ensure a product has the right amount of each ingredient, and I encourage you to strive to have your recipes total 100%.
Having said this, I don't think it's a good idea to increase your oil phase with reckless abandonment. If you increase an oil - for instance, going from 5% rice bran oil to 9% rice bran oil - you need to increase your emulsifier to ensure the lotion will emulsify properly. If you're using Polawax, you'd want to increase it by 1%, so now you'd have an increase in 5% in the oil phase. Now you have a lotion that works out to 105%. The lotion will work at 105%, as long as you increase the emulsifier!
Thanks for the great question, Anonymous!
Calculating percentages in products
Making larger batches of products - how to double or triple that recipe!
Why we weigh our ingredients.
How to convert recipes from percentages to weight
Using Polawax and that 25% rule