Saturday, August 11, 2012

Why did I buy that? Rita BTMS-225

I'm an ingredient junkie, so you know that when Voyageur Soap & Candle brought in Rita BTMS-225, I had to have it. What's it all about and how do we use it?

The INCI for BTMS-225 is Behentrimonium Methosulfate (and) Cetearyl Alcohol. It's a hair and skin conditioner as well as a complete emulsifier. If you're wondering where you've heard behentrimonium methosulfate before, it's the BTMS in Incroquat BTMS-50 or Incroquat BTMS-25 or Rita BTMS-225. It's a cationic quaternary compound that we can use as a hair conditioner in our products.

If this last sentence made no sense, please check out this post - conditioner: what's that then? 

Just add 1% to 10% to water with an appropriate amount of preservative and you've got yourself a nice conditioner. (We always want to include awesome hair friendly goodies to a product, but it is nice to know that we can use just it and water for something great!) I'd suggest starting off with about 5% - which will give you 1.25% behentrimonium methosulfate - and work your way to up 10%, if you wish. (We tend to use a lot more conditioner than we need!) We don't need to include a fatty alcohol to increase the substantivity of the conditioner as we have cetearyl alcohol in the product already, but you can include cetyl alcohol, behenyl alcohol, or more cetearyl alcohol if you want more moisturizing without adding oils.

You can use it as an emulsifier for lotions as well, and it offers a non-greasy feel to the product, much like Incroquat BTMS-50. I couldn't find a suggested usage rate, but I'm thinking that 5% might be a good place to start for 20% oils. It might feel a little waxier than using something like Ritamulse SCG because it contains cetearyl alcohol, which has slightly more waxier feeling than the other fatty alcohols.

Mychelle noted that she has been using it in emulsions and it makes the lotion rather thick, so perhaps she can share a bit more information with us? (Sorry, I can't find the comment as a reference!) 

It can emulsify silicones, although I couldn't get much information on this topic. Having said this, I haven't found an emulsifier yet that can't emulsify silicones, so I don't consider this to be a unique thing this ingredient offers.

Why use this instead of Incroquat BTMS-50?
1. Croda doesn't seem to have a lot of respect for the homecrafter - for instance, not allowing us to look at their data bulletins, recipes, or data sheets on their website - so finding alternatives for their ingredients isn't a bad idea.
2. Incroquat BTMS-50 contains butylene glycol, which is a humectant, which can be an issue for those of us with frizzy hair. Rita BTMS-225 does not.
3. It's cheaper than Incroquat BTMS-50. BTMS-225 is $19.85 per pound, whereas BTMS-50 is $29.75 per pound. (If you need to double the amount to get the same amount of behentrimonium methosulfate, it's not going to save you much money.)

One of the down sides of BTMS-225 is that it has 25% behentrimonium methosulfate as the active ingredient (the listing on Special4Chem says 20%, so we might have to split the difference) instead of 50% in BTMS-50. So you might need to use more to get the same results from your conditioner.

As a side note...If you're someone who wants more hydration for your hair, you will want to include a humectant in your conditioner. Glycerin is a good choice, as is honeyquat and panthenol. Don't both with sodium lactate as it'll just get washed off when you rinse.

Rita BTMS-225 comes in a flake format. Use it at 1% to 10% in the heated oil phase of your product. (You can use it at more than that, but this is the suggested usage range.) It should have a shelf life of up to two years.

If you're using it as a substitute for BTMS-50 in a hair conditioner, you'll have to use double the amount you'd use in your recipe to get the same amount of behentrimonium methosulfate. If you're using it as an emulsifier, I'm not sure what to suggest - try 5% for 20% oils and see how it works for you.

Please note: I am not in any way affiliated with Voyageur Soap & Candle. I am writing this post because I bought a new ingredient and I'm excited about it, not because they have paid me to do so. In fact, they probably don't know I'm writing this post! As an aside, they are very supportive of my youth programs, offering me big discounts and donations, which is simply awesome! 

Related posts:
All of the why did I buy that? posts!
Hair care section of the blog


Nedeia said...

Hi Susan! I am lost! is this the same as BTMS-25? I look at the INCI and it looks the same, so where's the 225 coming from? 22.5% behentrimonium methosulfate?

anyway, I had to share this with your readers (and you). I just made myself a BTMS-25 body lotion today:

heated oil phase
- 4% BTMS-25

heated water phase:
- 90% melissa hydrosol (or distilled water or whatever you like)
- 0.5% cationic guar
- a teaspoon of honey :) I know I know, I just forgot to add a humectant so I added the honey in the heated phase without measuring, but let's say that it is like 3% , so remove those 3% from the water itself :D or do not add honey at all and keep the water phase at 90%

cool down phase:
- 3% cyclomethicone
- 3% dimethicone
- 0.5% liquid germall plus

I have also added a few drops od Titanium Dioxide dispersed in castor oil and a few drops of Black Pepper EO.

The lotion is a X in 1 product: hair conditioner (if you like silicones), hand & body lotion, shaving lotion. I have put it in an airless container, its viscosity is medium-light, I like it. So if someone wants to experiment with silicones and BTMS, it can be done and the results are wonderful.

it takes some time to rub it in, it feels a bit oily, but at one point the sensation suddenly dissapears and all you feel is a smooth and silky skin. And you have dimethicone as an occlusive ingredient, and cationic guar as a film former. and honey as humectant . and all the goodness from the BTMS. And a 3 in 1 product :)

thanks, Susan, for sharing all that info!

Aljonor said...

Hi Susan:
I have BTMS which I brought from TheHerbarie a couple of months ago. I can say that its good, but I like the BTMS-50 better. I use the BTMS for my and my sons rinse off conditioner and use my BTMS-50 for my intense conditioner. When I use the BTMS-50 I do not use any humectant and I like the silky texture of the BTMS-50 of my finish product verse the BTMS.

Mychelle said...

Hey, I'm Mychelle! :) I've been using the Rita BTMS 225 for a couple of months now and I really like it. As I predominantly used BTMS-25 from Lotioncrafter before, that's what I'm comparing it too. The Rita 225 does make much thicker emulsions IME. I was using 7% BTMS-25 before and had to take it down to 3% with the 225 so I wouldn't end up with paste. I'm also finding it a little more emollient than the product I was using. At first I thought it might be my imagination, but I believe it to be a touch heavier on my hair. All that said, I am loving this product and hope to keep using it. I like that I get the same results with less (though I don't know why), that it conditions very well, and it's been very easy to work with. I can't wait to hear more about your experiments with it Susan!

Mychelle said...

To, not too. I know you're a stickler for grammar, as am I. How embarrassing. :)

Ashwinii said...

Hello susan:D I just bought a bag of BTMS 225 but it contains butylene glycol. Does this mean I bought BTMS 50?! Have I been duped? ;-;

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Ashwinii! What's the full INCI of the ingredient you bought?

Ashwinii said...

The full INCI of the ingredients are behentrimonium methosulfate, Cetyl alcohol , butylene glycol