Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Newbie Tuesday on Tuesday: Adding aloe vera to your facial cleanser

Adding aloe vera can take your facial cleanser from great to freakin' awesome, so let's take a look at why we might include this ingredient to a facial cleanser!

For this series, I encouraged you to get aloe vera liquid. I generally add 10% of this wonderfui liquid to act as a film former, emollient, and anti-inflammatory. It increases mildness and can thicken your product thanks to all those electrolytes, so you may need to reduce your use of Crothix or other thickeners when you add this ingredient.

I need to be clear that we aren't using the gel here as it's thickened with a carbomer, and that can break down in a surfactant mix. You can use the gel if you want, but it is easier to incorporate the liquid.

You can aloe vera it at higher levels than 10%, but I find this is the optimal level for skin feel and thickening the product.

If you bought the aloe vera extract organic 200x from Voyageur Soap & Candle*, or if you have any of this powder that you re-hydrate, here's a tip from me on how I use it! I measure 1 gram of the powdered aloe vera and add it to 198 grams of distilled water and 1 gram liquid Germall Plus, mix well, then use in my products as if I was using aloe vera liquid. So when my recipe below calls for 10% aloe vera, I use the re-hydrated aloe vera powder liquid at 10% of the recipe.

The preservative is not optional. It never is in a water containing product, but especially with a botanical product like aloe vera! Feel free to choose from an array of suitable preservatives, like Geogard Ultra, Germaben II, Optiphen ND, and so on. (Check this chart for broad spectrum preservatives that work with water only or water soluble products.)

RE-HYDRATING ALOE VERA 200x POWDER
99% distilled water
0.5% aloe vera extract organic 200x powder
0.5% liquid Germall Plus

Put into a container. Mix well. Rejoice.

If you are using a 100x aloe vera powder, like this one from Lotioncrafter,* then you'd use 1 gram in 98.5 grams of distilled water and 0.5 grams of liquid Germall Plus to make your liquid.

A quick aside before we modify the recipe: Water is not a filler! It's important to have water in our products for a number of reasons, the least of which being that it's inexpensive to use distilled water over aloe vera or other liquids. It's also great for our skin, and it doesn't mess with the chemistry of the product the way using 100% aloe vera as our liquid might do.

As usual, if I add something to the recipe, I have to take something away so it'll total 100%. Why do I care if it totals 100%? Because it makes it easier to ensure I'm using the safe as used or recommended levels of a product. It's easier to figure out 0.5% of 100 grams for liquid Germall Plus than 0.5% of 125 grams in my head. So if you're adding 10% aloe vera liquid, we need to remove 10% from the distilled water amount to ensure our recipe balances.

FACIAL CLEANSER FOR DRY OR SENSITIVE SKIN
SURFACTANT PHASE
10% BSB
5% SLeS
10% cocamidopropyl betaine
5% glycerin
3% cationic polymer - I like polyquat 7
2% hydrolyzed protein
0.5% liquid Germall Plus

WATER PHASE
54.5% distilled water
10% aloe vera liquid

CROTHIX PHASE
up to 2% liquid Crothix

FACIAL CLEANSER FOR NORMAL SKIN
SURFACTANT PHASE
15% LSB
15% BSB
10% cocamidopropyl betaine
3% glycerin
3% cationic polymer - I like polyquat 7
2% hydrolyzed protein of choice
0.5% liquid Germall Plus

WATER PHASE
39.5% distilled water
10% aloe vera liquid

CROTHIX PHASE
up to 2% Crothix, if desired

FACIAL CLEANSER FOR OILY SKIN
SURFACTANT PHASE
15% C14-16 olefin sulfonate
15% DLS
10% cocamidopropyl betaine
3% glycerin
3% cationic polymer - I like polyquat 7
2% hydrolyzed protein
0.5% liquid Germall Plus

WATER PHASE
41.5% distilled water
10% aloe vera

CROTHIX PHASE
up to 2% liquid Crothix

Weigh the surfactant phase of the product into a container and mix. I suggest using a fork and mixing so you don't get a ton of bubbles. It's not the end of the world if it gets bubbly, but you'll have to wait a few days for the bubbles to go down.

When the product is uniform, add the water and aloe vera, then mix again until it is blended. As usual, try to avoid too many bubbles.

Add the Crothix 0.5% or 1% at a time. Mix well with the fork. It will likely fall to the bottom, so I suggest stirring from the bottom to make sure you're integrating the Crothix. If it isn't thick enough, add another 0.5% to 1%.

For oily skin, don't go over 2% as it can feel a little too moisturizing. For other skin types, you can go as high as 5% if you wish, but this will be very very moisturizing. If you can't get the visosity you want right now, it's okay. This is why we have pump bottles!

As a note, if you are allergic to aloe vera or don't want to include it, make yesterday's version of this recipe instead or just take out the 10% aloe vera and use water instead. In the follow up recipes you'll see, do the same thing! Isn't the whole point of making things to customize it to your skin type, preferred ingredients, climate, and more?

If you want to play along, here are all the posts in this series!
Newbie Tuesday: We're making facial products! 
Shopping list
Equipment list
Let's start making facial cleansers! - Your skin type
Surfactants - what are they?
Meet the surfactants
pH of our surfactants
Facial products - the base recipe

Join me tomorrow for Newbie Tuesday tomorrow and the rest of the week as we consider which botanical extracts we can include in our facial cleansers! Woo! Yes, woo indeed!

3 comments:

Ada T said...

Hello I'm new and haven't really read anything-yet. I just couldn't wait to comment. I really hope you have content for sensitive skin.
I can't wait to come back after catching up to gain more insight to your facial cleanser making challenge.

-Ada

Marcia said...

Thank you for the info. on the aloe vera. When recipes call for aloe vera and just says "aloe vera" I never know if its liquid or powdered extract.This helps!

Kath Collard said...

Woohoo excited to try the aloe Vera addition tomorrow. I have shared my previous small test batches with my daughter so am nearly out of cleanser ... which I am enjoying using. I do hope you and your mum are feeling better. Cheers. Kath