Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Body wash!

Body wash can be moisturizing and cleansing at the same time, if you choose the right ingredients.

What do you want in a body wash?
  • mild to good cleansing abilities
  • fluffy lather
  • good foam
  • a nice fragrance!
What do we have to fit our requirements?
  • Amphosol CG is an amphoteric, so it will thicken our body wash and make it milder
  • Bioterge AS-40 offers good flash foam
  • BSB is a gentle cleanser - or - LSB as it is gentle and has a sulfosuccinate in it, which is a good degreaser
  • SLeS has rich lather and good cleansing
  • Plantapon is a mild cleanser
Which ones should we choose?
  • Amphosol CG is a definite. As an amphoteric, it will add mildness and viscosity to the mix.
  • BSB or LSB is a nice gentle cleanser, so we'll want that.
  • Bioterge AS-40 or SLeS will offer the cleansing and lather. (Click here to learn more about C14-16 olefin sulfonate aka Bioterge AS-40). 
  • I'm not using Plantapon as I haven't played with it enough to know about its pH.
Okay, so we have the surfactants in place. And we know we're going to add water and preservative (Germall Plus at 0.5%), so what's next?

What other qualities do we want?
  • Moisturizing - you could add oil, but this reduces the lather, so hydrolyzed proteins will help here. I like to add hydrolyzed oat protein at 2%, but you could use any other hydrolyzed protein. I also like to add a conditioning agent to a body wash, so I'm going with Condition-eze 7 at 2 to 3%.
  • Skin soothing ingredients - Panthenol is great for your skin, so let's add that at 2%. And aloe vera is great, so I'll add that at 5% (plus, surfactants thicken with salt and aloe vera contains a goodly amount of salt, so it adds to the viscosity!)
  • Foam boosting - Glycerin is great for bubbles and it's a good humectant, so let's add that at 3 to 5%.
An aside, it must seem like I'm obsessed with thickening things. I am. You can leave a surfactant mix as is, but most of the time it is going to be quite thin and runny. This isn't a bad thing, but we've come to expect our shampoos, bubble baths, and body washes to be a little thick, so this is where we meet Crothix, our surfactant mixture thickener.

Available in pastilles or liquid form, I prefer the liquid form every time. Crothix is a thickener, and adding it to your surfactant mix will thicken it nicely...but Crothix is a testy creature and oftentimes what you did last time won't work this time. It is dependent upon the temperature (it will reach final thickness at room temperature) and on your fragrance oil (one might seize it up, another turns it into water!) So always use Crothix at the end of everything, when your body wash has reached room temperature and well after you've added your fragrance or essential oil and preservative. As a secondary note, I always include Crothix as it mitigates irritation, so it is good for sensitive skin.

So here's our body wash recipe...
37.5% water
15% Amphosol CG (coco betaine)
15% Bioterge AS-40 or SLeS
15% BSB or LSB
5% aloe vera
3% glycerin
3% Condition-eze 7
2% cromoist or other hydrolyzed protein
2% panthenol
1% fragrance or essential oil
1% liquid Crothix
0.5% preservative
Colouring, if wanted

In a container, mix the surfactants together well, then add the water. (You can heat the water slightly to make it easier to mix). When the surfactants are mixed together, add the rest of the ingredients - EXCEPT THE CROTHIX - and blend well. Try not to get a ton of bubbles at the top. Let it rest until the mixture is clear of the bubbles and check the viscosity. If you are happy with it, bottle it! If you want it thicker, start at 0.5% liquid Crothix and stir well, ensuring you have blended it completely. If you still want it thicker, add another 0.5% Crothix. You can go up to 2% Crothix if you wish.

You can choose to colour your body wash if you like. I like to, so I use colours I bought at the supply shop for this purpose. Don't use much - you just want a hint of colour!

The cavalcade of surfactant-y fun continues tomorrow with BUBBLE BATH!


jolambert said...

hi working on body wash. made following ingreds. and my boys would like it thicker crothix manufacture recommend up to 8% or do you know of a method of thickening? thanks for all your inspiration and help! jo

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Jo! I love Some information on Crothix. I suggest using it at 1 to 2% in the liquid form. That is usually thick enough!

Or you could try EZ Pearl or glycol distearate if you want a pearly look. It's a little harder to use as you have to melt it, but it does look pretty cool.

I'd go with the Crothix as my first choice of thickening, though!

Have fun. Let us know how it turns out!

Anonymous said...

Hi Susan:
I want to know, What percentage of surfactant should have the body wash as active?

My best regard

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Sorry, I don't understand your question. Are you referring to the surfactant amount or active amount of the surfactants? Can you please clarify this?

Anonymous said...

The way you've structured this post is so educational and interesting.

Many Thanks


Heather said...

I just found your blog! I am really enjoying your topics. I have dabbled a bit with liquid soap but have yet to make a successful batch thick. Lathers well but who wants water consistency?!

Anyhoo, I have two questions for you. Do you have a natural body wash recipe you could recommend. And is there something natural to thicken it with? I've tried borax (too harsh and didn't work for me), Salt (Again didn't really thicken) & Xanthan Gum, That only seperates.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Heather. I don't do natural products (as you read more of my blog, you'll see this referred to time and time again), so I can't recommend a recipe. If you're referring to liquid soap as a body wash, I don't make soap of any kind, although I hope to in 2012.

The problem with liquid soap is the alkalinity - its pH will be higher than 8, so most thickeners won't work with it. You can't thicken a liquid soap with salt - as far as I know - and I don't know how borax would thicken a product? It has a pH of 9.4, so it's great for making something more alkaline, and most thickeners won't work with alkaline products, so you're back to square one again.

If you want to make products with syndets or synthetic detergents, look up surfactants to the right hand side of the blog!

What's pH?
Adjusting the pH of our products
Xanthan gum

Anonymous said...

I cannot find Condition-eze. Is there a suitable substitute?

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Anonymous. You could use any of the cationic polymers as a substitute, or just leave it out. I find the cationic polymers make a lovely addition to body cleansers for moisturizing and conditioning our skin.

Christian Jackson said...

Hi, I'm new to this arena, and i want to try the recipe you listed, i just have a question. The percentages of ingredients you listed, how do i know how much of the ingredient to put in. What are these percentages based on? I'm confused. Please help. Thanks.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Christine. I'm not sure if I'm answering your question, but if you take a look at the FAQ, you'll see a section called calculations, which will explain what the percentages mean and how to turn those into weighted measurements you can use to make products. Or do you mean how I decide how much of each ingredient should go into the product - the suggested usage rates, for instance. If that's the case, I suggest reading the individual ingredient listings on the right hand side of the blog or read the surfactants page in the links to lists sections. I also address the question in the FAQ

Lise Houle said...

I was so happy to find your recipe for Body Wash so I ordered the ingredients I didn't have and decided to make just 8oz to see how this would work. The BSB I got was a solid, I only had AS90 and that's a powder. I mixed the amphosol and AS90, which made a paste then I added the water which made chunks (and bubbles!) Looking at the flakes of BSB, I decided to slowly melt them to liquify and added everything else. My body wash is more like a body cream but it sudses up fine so I'll wait a few days to see if it will settle and liquify, but I'm wondering how you mixed in your BSB or if my product was different and yours was liquid? BTW, just an FYI, when I cleaned up my bowl and spatulas, my rings came out sparkling like brand new, thanks!

Erica Echternach said...

Hi Susan,
I tried this using SLSA, CocaBetaine,Decyl Glucoside and substituting the Condition-eze 7 with Conditioning Honey. I loved it except for it was somewhat gummy and sticky in my hands. Did I do something wrong or do you have any suggestions?
BTW, I LOVE YOUR BLOG!! Thank you so much for the amazing formulations and information!!

Leanne R said...

Hi Susan,
Thanks so much for your myriad of recipes!!!
I have a lot of experience making cold process soap and lotion, butI want to venture into body wash creating, so I don't have to lug bars of soap to the swimming pool on my "lap" days. Perhaps this is a dumb question, but do you have to heat/hold the water (and additives, such as aloe, glycerin, etc.) portion of body wash, as you do in lotion making? I know part of heat/hold in lotion making is to ensure proper emulsification, but you have also discussed how it helps ensure the water is not contaminated with "cooties" :)
Do you heat/hold with any body wash recipes?
Thanks for your help,

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Leanne! Great question! I've answered this in today's Weekend Wonderings. The short answer is no, you don't need to heat and hold. The long answer is what I wrote in the link!

Let us know how your experiments turn out!

eugenie brown said...

love your blog,love it so much I bought your e-book on hair care awhile back just now trying to put together the ingredient for a dry hair and dandruff shampoo my first