Monday, July 6, 2015

Six ingredient lotions: Evening primrose, oats & chamomile hand and body lotion

What six ingredient lotion could we make specifically for dry skin? What things could we include to make sure that dry skin is getting all the hydration and moisturization it can? Because dry skin suffers from lower hydration levels and an impaired barrier mechanism, we need humectants to draw water to our skin and occlusives to trap it in.

I know I have to include glycerin in the mix as it's a great humectant that offers a lot for a small amount. You can use other humectants if you wish, but this is my go to humectant when I'm making lotions!

When it comes to oils for dry skin, I want something that contains a lot of linoleic acid or gamma-linoleic acid. Sunflowersoybeansesame, or rice bran, or wheat germ oils are great choices, but these can feel a bit greasy on your skin. (I don't want to suggest grapeseed oil or hempseed oil as they have very short shelf lives - 3 months - but they are also high in linoleic acid.) Vitamin E is very good for dry skin, so my suggestions would be wheat germ or soybean oil as my first choices for dry skin, but these are both greasier feeling oils than sesame and rice bran, for instance.

You could choose a high gamma-linoleic acid oil, like evening primrose or borage oil to help with dry skin, or consider using cranberry oil or rosehip oil, although the latter is known to aggravate acne. These exotic oils will feel less greasy than the carrier oils (for various reasons), but they are definitely more expensive!

I think I'll choose evening primrose as it has a ton of gamma-linoleic acid and is less expensive than borage. It's also a less greasy feeling oil.

What about my occlusives? We have three choices - dimethicone, cocoa butter, and allantoin. If I'm going for a less greasy feeling lotion, is cocoa butter a good choice? It'll thicken up the product nicely and offer an occlusive barrier, but it will definitely make it feel greasier. If I don't want it to feel greasy, then my other choices are dimethicone or allantoin. I really like dimethicone. It is a non-greasy feeling silicone that offers occlusion and reduces the soaping effect or whitening effect of the lotion on my skin. At 2% in the cool down phase, it offers these great features along with moisturizing. I think I'll go with dimethicone for this product. (I'll show you a version with cocoa butter tomorrow when we modify this into a body butter...)

What emulsifier should we use? I like Polawax, but if we're talking less greasy feeling, Ritamulse SCG or Incroquat BTMS-50 might be better choices. Lotionpro 165 would be awesome as well, leaving us with a lighter feeling lotion than the other two emulsifiers. Hmm, what to do here? I think I'll go with Polawax today because it's the easiest emulsifier to use, then we could modify it to use other emulsifiers in another post...)

I think I'm going to add some powdered chamomile extract to this product as it's been shown to reduce transepidermal water loss for up to 48 hours, which is pretty amazing for something we'll add at up to 0.5% in the cool down phase. It's an inexpensive ingredient that offers amazingly cool results, so I think it's a no-brainer to include it for dry skin!

What else? What about a protein? They can film form and penetrate our skin to offer more moisturizing, which is kinda the goal for dry skin. We could use something like hydrolyzed silk protein, which will penetrate our skin, or we could use something like hydrolyzed oat protein, which will form a film on the top of the skin. As I don't have any silk protein at home right now, I think I'll use the hydrolyzed oat protein.

What kind of lotion do we want to make? I'm going to choose something that has a lower water amount than I would normally use for a body lotion as I don't have any thickeners in the mix. I think I'll use the thick cream recipe with 60% water and leave out the butters.

Let's begin!

60.5% water
3% glycerin or other humectant of choice
2% hydrolyzed oat protein

24% evening primrose
6.5% Polawax

0.5 to 1% preservative
1% fragrance or essential oil blend
2% dimethicone
0.5% powdered chamomile extract

Use the general lotion making instructions for this product. When you add the powdered chamomile extract, hold a little water back from the heated water phase - say 5 grams or so - to dissolve it before adding. 

If you want to leave things out or change the oil, have at it! You can always substitute one oil for another in any recipe, you can substitute some of the oil for a combination of oils, or you can substitute the dimethicone for another oil if you don't want to use it. 

Join me tomorrow as we turn this body lotion into a six ingredient body butter with a few small changes! 

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