Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Gels: Formulating an eye gel - version 1

I started writing about making gels with carbomers, but stopped because I was distracted by Ritathix DOE, PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil, and a horrible cold, plus I was waiting to hear back from my testers as well as testing it myself. So let's get back to where I was heading, which was to create a couple of really cool under eye gels.

As usual, I ask myself what I want to accomplish with a product, what my goals might be. For an eye gel I want something that offers anti-inflammatory properties, something that might reduce the look of dark circles, something that moisturizes and/or hydrates, and possibly something that will encourage cell turnover. We have to use water soluble ingredients as we don't have an emulsifier in this product. And I'd like something that isn't too strongly coloured, which means some extracts, like grapeseed extract, would be right out.

97% distilled water
1.2% carbomer of choice

0.9% TEA
1.6% panthenol
0.5% liquid Germall plus

See this post if you want more information on gels before starting.

Please do this in the order listed above. Allow the gel to be wetted before you add phase two. If you don't know what that means, please check with your suggestions for usage, following the manufacturer's or supplier's suggestions on how to make a thick gel over what is listed here.

How do I accomplish the goals I've set out above?

I thought I'd use Revital-Eyes, a cosmeceutical sent to me by the Formulator Sample Shop. (I encourage you to check out the post I've already written to learn more.) It is supposed to help with dark under eye circles, so I thought I'd include it at up to 5% in my product. You can substitute it with water soluble green tea extract or caffeine extract at the suggested usage rates. *

To film form and hydrate, I decided to use marshmallow extract, something I'm really starting to love. I have both a water soluble and oil soluble version, and you definitely want the water soluble version here. (INCI: Althea offinalis leaf/root extract (and) Aqua) You can use this version at up to 10% in the heated water phase for film forming and conditioning. Marshmallow contains polysaccharides and is muscilaginous, meaning it contains mucilage that will form a film on your skin and offer moisturizing and hydrating. It is used as an anti-inflammatory, moisturizing, and conditioning ingredient. *

To film form, help with wound healing and inflammation, and (possibly) help with fine lines and wrinkles, I chose to use beta-glucan, an ingredient I wrote about in the cosmeceuticals section of the blog. I can use this at higher levels than I would my proteins without it getting sticky, so I thought it was a good choice.* If you want to use something else, a hydrolyzed protein at up to 5% is a good idea, although that might get a little sticky.

And I thought I'd use quaternized rice - a cationic or positively charged quaternary polymer made from rice - as a conditioning and moisturizing agent. * If you don't have this specific ingredient, you can use any polyquat you might have in your workshop. I don't encourage leaving a cationic polymer out of this product because it offers the moisturizing and hydrating you really want in a product. Good substitutions would be 0.5% polyquat 44, up to 5% polyquat 7, up to 5% honeyquat, or up to 5% polyquat 10. Modify the recipe so it will add up to 100% in the end, so if you use 0.5% polyquat, you'll be adding 4.5% gel or something else to the product.

I removed 40 grams of gel and added these ingredients to it.

80% thick gel
5% Revital-eyes
5% liquid marshmallow extract
5% beta-glucan (oat extract)
5% quaternized rice

Weigh all ingredients, add the gel, and mix well. Yeah, that's pretty much it, which is why you must use distilled water! You'll notice I put my preservative at the maximum amount into the gel making part of the project. This will preserve my product enough, not to worry. If you do worry, don't add the preservative to the gel, but add it at 0.5% to 2% - whatever the recommended amount might be - into the actual eye gel recipe.

What do people think? I really like this version. I don't have dark circles under my eyes, but I like the way it moisturizes and makes my skin more feel more supple. My best friend noted that she felt it was a little heavier than the version you'll see tomorrow, but she feels it was more effective at removing the dark circles under her eyes. Cibele noted, "So far what I like about each of the gels is that they seem to dry quickly. They moisturize without being heavy. They are pretty light in texture and weight. No scent, which is good. They don't feel sticky and dry after a few minutes. I like both of them."

Join me Thursday as we make another version of this under eye gel!

Related posts:
Cosmeceutical section of the blog
Extracts section of the blog

Experiments in the workshop: Making an eye cream - part 1
Experiments in the workshop: Making an eye cream - part 2
Experiments in the workshop: Making an eye cream - part 3
Making an eye cream: Tweaking it with other emulsifiers
Making an eye cream: Using other oils

Making an anhydrous eye gel with cera bellina

*Note: As I've mentioned before, I've been sent a bunch of free ingredients by the Formulator Sample Shop and I've been playing with them in my products. Any opinions expressed here are my own and I have not been compensated in any way to try the ingredients or share my opinion with you, other than the free ingredients. If I don't like something, I'll tell you. If I do like it, I'll tell you. Either way, my only affiliation with this company is that they have sent me some free things. I get no compensation if you shop with them. 


Lise M Andersen said...

HI Susan,

I've done scads over eye gels over the years. One recurring problem is applying makeup over an eye gel. The gel can have a tendency to 'roll off' and mix with the make-up, removing both the gel and make-up. At first I thought it was the plant-based gelling agents that were to blame (and they were for a good part of the time), but I've seen carbomer gels react the same way. Even waiting a good bit of time for the gel to dry makes no difference. I revisit this from time to time, as I love the feel of applying a gel, but I'd love to hear if you have had any probs of this nature. It is mostly cream based make-up that don't do well weith gels (foundation, cream eyeshadow).

I'd love to hear your thoughts and experiences on this!

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Lise! I haven't tried using eye gels with make-up and the thought didn't occur to me that someone might do this as I generally think of using eye gels at night. The one I've made dries pretty non-sticky and clear, so I think you could use make-up on it, but would it roll off? My mom said she's used it with her make-up and it worked well, but I will have to ask my other testers.

More soon!

Cathy Ahlgren said...

I am new to you site and I am overwhelmed by the volume of information. I thought I would start with one of your e-book but I do not know where to start. Can you suggest which book is a good beginning place. Thank you.
Nurse Cathy

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Cathy. Have you looked at the newbies section? As for e-books, what topic interests you the most? Lotions, hair care, whipped butters?

Joyce Bonner said...

Hi Susan
I'm a bit confused. In your eye gel #1 version after your explanation of why you send the ingredients you did, your last statement was you removed 40 grams of gel and added the ingredients. In the actual recipe you have 80% gel which I used as 80g. The results were not good, did not combine at all, really watery, I can only assume if I used 40g it would have been the same. I used TEA with the Carbopol and it turned into a thick gel and I used the exact amt of the other ingredients. ANY SUGGESTIONS

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Joyce! You can use any amount as the 80%. So you could use 40 grams and half the recipe, use 20 grams and make 1/5th the recipe, use 8 grams and make 1/10th the recipe, and so on.

Can you please write up the exact recipe with exact names of the ingredients - for instance, did you use Ultrez 20 or another carbomer, did you use the Revital-eyes from Formulator Sample Shop, and so on - and I might be able to help further?