Wednesday, May 25, 2016

One ingredient, five products: Stearic acid - a hand lotion

If you've never used stearic acid in a lotion before, this is the lotion recipe I recommend as a great starting point. It's a small variation on the basic lotion you'll find in the newbie section of the blog, but it's a great way to learn what stearic acid brings to your product. As I mentioned yesterday, stearic acid will thicken your lotion more than cetyl alcohol, and it can feel a bit draggy on your skin. I know that doesn't seem like a selling point, but a hand lotion made with stearic acid feels a bit more occlusive and a bit more long-lasting than one without it or with a fatty alcohol.

For a hand lotion, I like to use less greasy oils. I'm normally a greasy lotion girl, but I don't necessarily want to get oily marks on my keyboard or iPhone after using it. (I will get some no matter what because lotions are inherently oily, but I want to reduce that feeling.) I'm using a less greasy feeling oil like hazelnut oil, macadamia nut oil, or evening primrose oil as the oil in this recipe. Fractionated coconut oil is always a great, extra light feeling oil that you could use in this recipe. 

When it comes to butters, my first choice is always mango butter. However, I have a slight addiction to babassu oil these days. It goes on greasy, but turns silky and dry in about 15 seconds. It's a great addition to this hand product! I'll use that in this recipe, but you could use any butter and still make something awesome. 

There's a joke that I'm getting paid off by the Babassu Advisory Council because I talk about it so much. I'm really not! I just love the stuff. It's a lot like coconut oil, but it has a less greasy and silky feeling finish! 

A quick side note: Remember, you can substitute any oil for any oil and any butter for any butter in any recipe on my blog and in the e-books. In fact, you can substitute any oil or butter for any oil or butter in just about every recipe you find! (Click this link from the FAQ to learn more!) When you do that, however, you can end up changing the skin feel, viscosity, colour, and so on. Not the biggest deal in the world, but for this recipe, if you use a more greasy feeling butter or oil, you may get a more greasy feeling product. 

For the emulsifier, you can use Polawax or Incroquat BTMS-50. If you wish to use generic e-wax, you want to increase the amount to 7%. If you want to use Ritamulse SCG, increase the emulsifier to 8% and make sure you don't accidentally go over 25% total oils, butters, stearic acid, essential/fragrance oil, and other oil soluble things as it could ruin the lotion. 

The lotions made with Incroquat BTMS-50 and Ritamulse SCG will be thicker than those made with Polawax. That's just the nature of those emulsifiers! 

Please note, this recipe does not work with BTMS-225, which has an INCI of Behentrimonium Methosulfate (and) Cetearyl Alcohol. Check what you have before you order it from your supplier or use it in this recipe! 

I'm adding glycerin at 3% as a humectant and 0.5% allantoin as a barrier protectant ingredient that can help with cracked, chapped, or wind burned skin. As usual, if you don't have these ingredients, feel free to leave them out and just add 3.5% water to make up the difference. 

I'm adding dimethicone to the cool down phase as I am a little worried there'll be a soaping effect with the product. Again, it's not a huge deal to have that effect and I like dimethicone, so it's win-win! 

66% water
3% glycerin 
0.5% allantoin

13% evening primrose oil 
5% babassu oil 
3% stearic acid
6% emulsifier (BTMS or Polawax)

2% dimethicone
1% fragrance or essential oil
0.5% to 1% preservative
(This doesn't total 100% because of the difference in preservatives!)

Please use the basic lotion making instructions found in this post. If you want more detailed instructions, please check out this post on beginner lotion making

You can change a lot in this recipe, if you wish. Add some proteins at 2% in the heated water phase. Add a hydrosol or aloe vera at 10% in the heated water phase in place of 10% distilled water. Try 2% beeswax in place of 2% of the oil for a longer lasting lotion. 

What do I think of this lotion? I think it has just the right amount of greasiness and silkiness for my tastes. It's a little thicker than my normal version with cetyl alcohol, but I feel it stays on longer. There was a tiny soaping effect, so I might try 3% dimethicone in the next batch, but I'm really not that worried about it.

Other posts in this series:
One ingredient, five products: Stearic acid
One ingredient, five products: Stearic acid - a hand lotion
One ingredient, five products: Stearic acid - foot cream

Related posts:

Join me tomorrow as we make a thicker cream using stearic acid! 


Alana said...

Where did you buy the pump and container you use in this blog post? Thanks!

Ahmed Alaa said...

can we skip the e-wax and use an alkali like TEA or potassium hydroxide to saponify stearic acid to get the emulsifier.. and if we gonna use an alkali which's better and why? .. thank you <3

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

HI Ahmed! If you click on the "stearic acid" bolded in the post above, I talk about this type of emulsifier and how you can learn to use it with another link. Follow those links and your curiosity, and you'll learn as much as you want to know!

Hi Alana! I'm sorry to say but it's a one-off sample I have. I don't really know where to get them, but I can ask the person from whom I received the sample and see what she thinks!

A Fajardo said...

Hi Susan, if in case I only have "greasy oils/butter", can I add IPM for skin to easily absorb? Or does IPM help to lessen greasy feeling?

JaniceAdams said...

Hi Susan, I made this recipe today,it turned out very nice so thought I would let you know! I tweaked it a little and because I didn't have Evening Primrose I used Macadamia Nut Oil per your suggestion in the post. Below is what I did.

Water Phase
63% water
3% glycerin
0.5% allantoin

13% Macadamia Nut oil
5% babassu oil
2.5% stearic acid
.5% IMP
6% emulsifier (BTMS or Polawax)

3% Dimethicone
2% Cyclomethicone--to decrease the foaminess I was getting
.5% Green Tea extract
.5% Chamomile extract
0.5% to 1% preservative

Thank you so much, it really is very nice.


alia said...

oliwax 5
olivEmuls 3
olive oil 5
silcolive 2
quinoa protein 2
rice protein 2
baobab protein 2
silk amino acids 2
keratin protein 2
phytenso 2 (soy phospholipid complex)-a natural relaxer from lucas meyercosmetics
EO 1
preservative 0.5
water to 100

this is my recipe for hair cream/ lotion
is it correct
i cant afford experimenting with the ingredients
plz give me suggestions
plus i am making it 100 % natural

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Alia. Sure, go ahead and try it. If you read the posts I've written on hair conditioners, you want a positively charged or cationic ingredient in there to adsorb to the hair strand. A hair lotion won't do much for your hair other than moisturize it for a while until it's rinsed off. A lotion with a positively charged ingredient will adsorb to your hair and condition it. This lotion will moisturize okay, but not graet. You have far too much protein in there. Again, have you read anything from the hair care section?

This is still not a relevant post. You're making a hair lotion and this is a post on hand lotion. I really encourage you to find something more relevant to your question when you post. Otherwise, all I've written is pointless and wasting the little time I have as no one will ever find this if they are looking for a hair lotion.