Monday, June 9, 2014

Caprol Micro Express is no more! What to do?

It's come to my attention that the manufacturer of Caprol Micro Express has discontinued its manufacture and there are only a few gallons left at Lotioncrafter, so let us see what we can figure out as a replacement.

As a quick note, Jen at Lotiocrafter could formulate CME for those who might want to buy it from her. Would this interest you? Pleae comment on this post so she can get an idea of the interest in this! 

When I'm thinking about substituting ingredients I ask myself a few questions. What does this ingredient do? What is it that I like about this ingredient? What does it bring to the product?

Caprol Micro Express is a solubilizer, which is to say it helps us integrate oil soluble ingredients into water soluble products. People use it in room sprays to solubilize the fragrance or essential oils into the water or in other sprays for the same reason. It also behaves as an emollient or moisturizing ingredient that we can add to a water soluble product without fear of separation.

If it's all about the solubilizing of ingredients to create a clear product, I encourage you to try using PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil in its place. I have found it creates the clearest, least sticky feeling sprays compared to the other ingredients. The picture to your left shows the clarity of the experiments I ran with this solubilizer. Click below to see the full details.

Related posts:
PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil: Yuzu fragrance oil and peppermint essential oil
PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil: Blalsck amber lavender and Clementine cupcake fragrance oils

If you want some emolliency, you could try Cromollient SCE (INCI: Di-PPG-2 myeth-10 adipate), as it is both a solubilizer and emollient. I haven't done a ton of experimenting with this ingredient, so I can't guarantee it'll make clear solutions.

You could use caprylyl/capryl glucoside, but you won't necessarily get a clear product and you won't get the emolliency. You could, however, add the emolliency to the mix by adding an oil of some kind. You'll have to add enough solubilizer to solubilize that extra oil. Or you could add a water soluble ester like PEG-7 olivate or water soluble shea. (I've found this to be a really sticky feeling solubilizer on my skin...)

You could use polysorbate 20 or polysorbate 80, but they tend to be sticky and you might not get the clear product you want. To get the emolliency, you could add some oil to the mix, and you'll have to add enough solubilizer to solubilize the extra oil. Or you could add a water soluble ester like PEG-7 olivate or water soluble shea. (I've found this to be a sticky feeling solubilizer on my skin...)

There are a few of my thoughts. What do you think?

Related posts:
Solubilizers: A comparison
Making fragrance sprays with caprylyl/capryl glucoside


Matilda said...

Thanks Susan, for addressing this issue. As I'd explained, I've had a hard time finding PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil. I believe in one of your posts you'd noted that Voyageur had it, but they are very far away from me. Ideally, I would like my spray to be clear AND non-sticky, and you're right, polysorbate 20 hasn't fixed that problem.

If anyone knows where to find PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil in SE USA, please help!

Thanks again for your blog!

Tyler said...

I'm considering Resassol VPF. It's similar to PEG40 Hydrogenated Castor...minus the PEG. The added benefit is that it's not a paste. It's a low visocity liquid.

Polyglyceryl-4 Caprate
Decyl Glucoside
Sodium Lauryl Glutamate

Karen Sorensen said...

Leslie said...

I really like Caprol Micro Expess. I use it in my facial cleanser (your recipe Foamy Facial Cleanser with CPE Polyglucose/Lactylate Blend. I also sometimes use it when a recipe calls for an water soluble ester like PEG 7 olivate, which I usually don't have on hand.Anyway, I would buy more of it but don't use a huge amount either.

Love your blog! Leslie

Anonymous said...

I would absolutely be interested in a Lotioncrafter version of CME from Jen! I just bought some of her remaining stock, this stuff is perfect for fragrance sprays. I love it, and I would love to use it in other products if I was sure I could get more of it.


Vanessa said...

I was looking forward to trying CME based on Tina's (who just posted) recommendation. I'd definitely buy some at least to try it out and if I like it as much as Tina does, I'd keep buying it.

Kelli Spears said...

Thank you for letting us all know about this Susan.
I would definitely buy it if Jen at Lotioncrafters starts formulating it. I really do like this ingredient and have bought it from there more than one time.
For those of you looking for PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil you can check
I have purchased it from them in the past. They also have a large selection of other ingredients and their customer service is great.

Anonymous said...

Yes yes! I would be interested!!

Laura Bisel

Seeta Nyary said...

I would also be interested in Jen's version. Cheers Seeta

monniej said...

Would this be suitable for a oil in water emulsion hair mist? thank you!

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Monniej! This is a non-ionic or neutrally charged ingredient. You want to use something that is positively charged for your hair. You could add it as an emollient, I guess.