Which recipe should we choose? Conditioners can be made with up to 10% conditioning agent - Incroquat BTMS-50, Incroquat BTMS-25, Rita BTMS-225, or cetrimonium bromide - water, and preservative, but we will want something that contains more ingredients that we can customize to our hair type! I think we'll go with the basic liquid conditioner recipes found in this post and work our way up to making a more intense conditioner with higher levels of the cationic quaternary compounds and an oil or butter.
EQUIPMENT YOU'LL NEED
- a scale that can weigh 1 gram (available at supply stores or places like London Drugs in the culinary aisle)
- 2 heat proof containers - one for your oil phase, one for your water phase - Pyrex jugs are good for this purpose, and a 2 - two cup Pyrex jugs would be ideal.
- a double boiler (make one up on the stove with a pot with warm water)
- a thermometer (a candy thermometer works really well here)
- spoons (metal ones...)
- mixer (with beater attachments) or a stick blender
- a notebook and pen/pencil. Print out the lotion recipe and make extensive notes while you craft!
HEATED OIL PHASE
7% Incroquat BTMS-50 or other cationic quaternary compound of choice
HEATED WATER PHASE
COOL DOWN PHASE
0.5% liquid Germall plus or 1% Germaben II or preservative of choice
SUPPLIES YOU'LL NEED FOR THE INITIAL PROJECT
- a cationic quaternary compound - Incroquat BTMS-50, Incroquat BTMS-25, Rita BTMS-225, cetrimonium bromide, and so on. I don't recommend using Incroquat CR as the primary ingredient in a conditioner as it's more of a cream rinse ingredient than a conditioning ingredient.
- a preservative - we don't make things around here without a preservative.
- a jar or bottle - for the basic conditioner, you'll want to use a bottle. For anything with a butter or oil in it, you might want to consider a jar.
- a jug of distilled water - we like to use distilled water to reduce contamination.
- a fatty alcohol - cetyl, cetearyl, or behenyl alcohol to add more moisturizing. I recommend using this if you have dry hair. Normal and oily hair don't necessarily need more moisturizing.
- an oil or butter - if you want more moisturizing, you might like to include an oil. Any oil, including ones from the grocery store, will do. Coconut oil is the best choice and it's really inexpensive.
- a hydrolyzed protein - I suggest hydrolyzed silk protein for dry and very dry hair, but not for frizzy hair. Find one you think you'll like - hydrolyzed oat protein is nice - and use that at 2% in the heated water phase.
- a humectant - if you have frizzy hair, don't bother with a humectant as you'll just make things worse. If you have dry hair, definitely get a good humectant in there. I suggest glycerin as it's inexpensive or something like honeyquat because it offers conditioning as well.
- panthenol - it's been shown to be awesome in our hair care products to help form films and offer moisturizing. (It's optional.)
- silicones - dimethicone and cyclomethicone are good additions to our products to help with reduction of frizzies, creating a barrier for water loss, and increasing shine. If you don't want to use silicones, leave them out or find a silicone replacement. (Check out this post for ideas for replacements.)
We are going to start with the basic recipe. I know you want to get to the modifying as soon as you can, but you really need to know how the basic conditioner feels to be able to modify it. Please please please take my advice here - if you start with a hundred different ingredients, how do you know what is doing what?
And if all goes well, I should have a video to accompany this project!
Now you know what we plan to make, please post whatever questions you might have in this thread and we'll address them next week on September 11th, then we'll make our basic conditioner on September 18th. You let me know how it went and I'll post your comments and suggestions for September 25th, then we'll start with the variations on October 2nd!
If you really can't wait, here's a bunch of information on the ingredients, process, and a ton of recipes!