Sunflower oil is a great oil for a blooming or dispersing bath oil as it is light, has a decent shelf life, and is inexpensive. Oleic acid softens and moisturizes our skin while the linoleic acid helps speed up skin's barrier repair functions.
A dispersing bath oil is a liquid version of the bath melt - you bottle it, and add it to your bath as you need it. We add the emulsifier to the oils to help them disperse through the water, rather than floating in a greasy mess on top of the water. There are a few different types of solubilizing type emulsifiers you could use for this recipe - Cromollient SCE, polysorbate 80, caprylyl/capryl glucoside, Caprol Micro Express, or other liquid emulsifiers - but I'm choosing polysorbate 80 as it's inexpensive and easy for me to find at my local suppliers.
This recipe is rated E for everyone, and is fantastic for beginners and those who don't wish to use preservatives. The shelf life of this product is dependent upon the shelf life of your oils.
BASIC BATH OIL RECIPE WITH POLYSORBATE 80
78% oils of choice
20% polysorbate 80 (emulsifier)
2% fragrance or essential oil
Mix your oils together, add the polysorbate 80. Add 2% fragrance or essential oil. If you are using oils with a 6 month or less shelf life, please add 0.5% to 1% Vitamin E to the bath oil.
Cromollient SCE at 10% as your emulsifier and an additional emollient. Here's a variation on my favourite bath oil using this ingredient. You can use any combination of oils in this recipe - these are just what I like to use!
SWIFT'S BATH OIL RECIPE WITH CROMOLLIENT SCE
10% Cromollient SCE
2% fragrance or essential oil*
*Check the suggested usage rates for your essential oils before using them at 2%.
Mix the oils together, add the Cromollient SCE and fragrance oil. Pour into bottle. Rejoice!
If you're a fan of PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil, you could use in this product as well. I haven't tried it yet, but I would start with 20% PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil - doesn't this ingredient have an abbreviation??? - and 80% oils and see if it works well for you. I'd suggest 5 grams PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil to 20 grams oil of your choice and see how it works. Why start with a large batch when a small one would work as well?
Here's a neat variation on the dispersing bath oil - it's a powdered bath oil!
MOISTURIZING BATH POWDER WITH EPSOM SALTS
50% Natrasorb bath
20% carrier oils of choice
29% Epsom salts
1% fragrance or essential oil
Mix the Natrasorb bath and the carrier and fragrance oil together until it is powdery. Mix in the salts. Package and rejoice!
Bath oil and after bath moisturizers
Back to basics: Dispersing bath oils
Esters: Using Cromollient SCE in other products
Esters: Using polysorbates in your products
Other posts in this series:
One ingredient, ten products: Sunflower oil
One ingredient, ten products: Sunflower oil in body oils
Join me tomorrow for more fun formulating with sunflower oil as we make lotion bars!