Monday, May 26, 2014

Creating a facial cleanser: A foaming rice protein based cleanser

When I get new ingredients, I like to shake things up and try making something I've made before with the ingredient to see how it changes the way the product feels. I have a few new ingredients from the Formulator Sample Shop*, and I thought I'd try them in my low surfactant foaming cleanser recipe. I always suggest trying a new ingredient one at a time because this way we can get a sense of what feels different. If you change a whole lotta things, you'll end up not knowing what did what, and that's a waste of your money and energy!

What new ingredients did I get? I got an ingredient called ProRevive Blemish Balm Complex and foaming rice protein.

I admit I'm a big fan of foaming oat protein and foaming silk protein, so the idea of making a facial cleanser using foaming rice protein sounded awesome to me! What's the deal with this ingredient? Foaming rice protein has an INCI of Sodium Cocoyl Hydrolyzed Rice Protein and can be used at 1% to 10% in your product. It is a water soluble ingredient that foams and lathers like our normal surfactants, and offers skin conditioning properties. It's considered a gentle to mild surfactant.

Could it be used as the only surfactant in a product? Definitely. But I like to combine it with cocamidopropyl betaine to increase the viscosity and increase the mildness.
The Blemish Balm complex has an INCI of Lactobacillus/Salix Alba Bark Ferment Filtrate, which is willow bark extract, that can be used at 1% to 10% in the cooling phase of your product. It is supposed to help generate new collagen, enhance cellular renewal, behave as a humectant to draw water to your skin to increase hydration, and behave as an anti-microbial. I can't find out much about the generation of new collagen and behaving as a humectant, other than the company's own materials and testing, but I can say that there's a lot out there about how willow bark can help with acne and enhance cell renewal. This sounds like something I would like to use in place of the willow bark extract (liquid) I normally use, so let's try it at 2% in the product.

Can you use another version of willow bark extract, say the powder or a liquid here? Sure! Why not? Just use it at the suggested rate. I think the liquid I had suggested up to 5% and the powder was up to 0.5%, but it's best to talk to your supplier to find out what they suggest for the particular brand they carry.

37.5% distilled water
20% chamomile hydrosol
15% witch hazel (without alcohol)
11% foaming rice protein
4% cocamidopropyl betaine
5% honey matte
5% water soluble calendula extract
2% ProRevive blemish balm complex
0.5% liquid Germall Plus (or preferred water soluble preservative)

Mix all the ingredients in a container well. Pour into a foamer bottle. You're done.

As a note, this recipe if made exactly as I have done it has a pH of 6.48. If you want to lower it, I found that 0.3% citric acid into a 100 gram batch of this product brough the pH down to 4.93, which is turning out to be a good pH for my skin. Your experience will vary. You don't have to reduce it - it's a little closer to 7 than I like, but it won't hurt your skin or do bad things - but you can if you have the ability to test pH.

I know, I know, I didn't heat and hold this recipe. But having said that, all the ingredients in this product are preserved, so I am not worried about contamination. Make sure if you don't heat and hold, you are using distilled water only! 

I did change something from the last recipe in that I left the decyl glucoside out. I wanted to see what would happen if I used only the foaming rice protein as the surfactant. And I left out the liquid apple extract as I didn't have any.

So what do I think of this recipe? I really like it. I find my skin doesn't feel dry or tight afterwards (which is an indication that the surfactants haven't washed off well). I've also found that it doesn't feel greasy, which shows something is working! I'm not the biggest fan of the smell of chamomile, but I really like that it reduces redness, so I endure. It doesn't foam as much as the version that contained decyl glucoside, which is an indication that you wouldn't want to make a body wash or something with the foaming rice - besides, it's not the cheapest surfactant you've ever used - but it foams enough to spread over my face, which is a good thing. In short, I'm a fan of this product!

What should you do if you don't have some of the ingredients in this recipe? Substitute them for something you have! Check out the links in the related posts below to see some ideas for substitution. There are so many ways to make a foaming facial cleanser and so many different surfactants you could use. Get out there and try a few things to see what you like. Just 'cause I like it doesn't mean you will!

*Disclaimer: The Formulator Sample Shop sent me a whole bunch of really interesting ingredients for free, and I've been playing with them in the workshop. I have made it really clear to them - and they accept - that I will share my honest opinion of these ingredients with you, my awesome readers. I will not say something is great if it isn't, and I'm not getting any payment except for these free ingredients. I just want to let you know this. I will tell you when I get something for free - everything else is purchased with my wages. 

Related posts:
Facial cleansers: Creating a low surfactant foaming cleanser (foaming silk)
What the heck is this and what can I do with it? Foaming silk
Modifying the low surfactant foaming cleanser with foaming oat
Modifying the low surfactant foaming cleanser: Substituting surfactants
Modifying the low surfactant foaming cleanser: Substituting hydrosols
Modifying the low surfactant foraming cleanser: A few sample recipes with substitutions


Chris said...

Yay Susan im glad to see your posting new formulas. For a while I thought you might have given up but I'm glad to see your back in action

Leanne R said...

Hi Susan,
I was wondering if it is possible to combine elements of a home-crafted facial cleanser with a pre-made base? I found a base that I really like, containing (among other things) sodium cocoamphoacetate (an amphoteric surfactant), decyl glucoside (non-ionic), cocomide MIPA (nonionic) sucrose cocoate (for re-fatting) and botanical extracts. It's preserved with Optiphen. Since there are no anionic surfactants, though, it's not cleansing/de-greasing enough for me, so I'd like to add some AS40 and some sulfosuccinate. Can you just stir these in? I would think this would throw off the surfactant ratios, as well as resulting in an "under-preserved" product. Would it be OK to make my own batch of cleanser using only these two anionic surfactants (preserved appropriately), and then mix the premade with the homemade at a 60/40 or 70/30 ratio? I really like the base, but can't find sodium cocoamphoacetate here in Canada, so I can't start the entire batch from scratch. Very interested in your thoughts. Many thanks!

Harmonynme said...

Susan, I'm reviewing the posts on the Blemish Balm Complex and Honey Matte, both of which I'm interested in working with. Though I love your recipes with them, I'm curious as to why you'd create a wash off product with these EXTREMELY expensive actives. If I were just formulating for myself, and a rich uncle left me in their will, I'd love to use many of the new actives; proteins together to my hearts content in washes- but I must think in terms of formulating in large batches for my products. Therefore, isn't more economical, to use these actives on a leave -on product, such a serum, or, cream? It's not rhetorical, I'm just asking your opinion. Perhaps these actives are just as effective in cleanser sat the same percentage as they would be in a leave on -what are your thoughts?

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Chris. I had a period this year when I wasn't feeling very creative or inspired. I'm not sure why - I think I was just too busy to think about more than what I needed to do each day - but it's over, which makes me happy!

Hi Leanne. Sorry I missed your post. Remember that when you add things, you have to compensate with more preservative to make sure it stays good! You can heat it slightly - no more than 45˚C so you don't ruin the preservative - to make it easier to mix in the surfactants. I would suggest doing no more than 20% additional surfactants as you already have surfactants in the product.

Having said that, you can use cocamidopropyl betaine in place of the sodium cocoamphoacetate and something like PEG-7 glyceryl cocoate in place of the cocamide MIPA. Just a thought...

Hi Harmonynme. I'm fortunate in that I don't pay for these extracts, so I admit that I'm not as aware of the price as I should be when I'm playing in the workshop. Having said that, I would continue to use the honey matte in the cleanser because I love the way my skin feels afterwards and throughout the day. I don't use a lotion-based moisturizer, so I put my actives in my cleanser and my toner. Since I forget to use a toner on a regular basis, I tend to put more stuff in the cleanser than most people might. And it does work in there.

As for the blemish balm complex, I would reserve that for my toner or moisturizer given that I could use willow bark to do the same thing. It's not to say it's not a great ingredient, but if you use moisturizer, it might be a better choice in that.

Leanne R said...

Thank you so much,

Adding a touch of surfactant and the appropriate amount of preservative sounds much easier than making a separate batch and blending the two.
Thanks for the suggestions on replacements, as I have one, and can get the other. I'll be making my own once I run out!