Sunday, September 22, 2013

Weekend Wonderings: Does behentrimonium methosulfate destroy proteins? Does castor oil contain ricin? Can we create a waterless cleanser? And a recipe for an oil based cleanser from Artemis!

In this post, Workshop!, Irina asks: I have read that BTMS cannot be used with proteins as it destroys proteins. What are you thoughts about this, is this true? Also, have you ever worked with peptides? Peptides said to be very fragile and do not like oils, how do you handle them?

It depends which ones you're talking about when it comes to peptides. We can get them in many different forms. If you're talking about copper peptides, you can use those at 2% in the cool down phase in products with a water phase as they're water soluble. There are ingredients we can buy that are called peptides that are derivatives of things like silk proteins, which might be what you mean? If it is, then yes, I've used silk peptides before.

I'm also making an assumption that you mean the BTMS to be behentrimonium methosulfate and not the product we know as BTMS-50 or BTMS-225 with other components in it, like cetyl or cetearyl alcohols. Behentrimonium methosulfate is what we call a cationic quaternary compound, meaning it is a positively charged thing that will adsorb to our hair strand to make our hair feel conditioned. Our hair is negatively charged, so putting a positively charged thing on our hair will cause an attraction, and it will stick to our hair strand, making it feel lubricated and moisturized.

I'm trying to think of what could ruin proteins from a cationic quaternary compound. Is it the charge? I don't think so because I found a load of information that would demonstrate that a positive charge wont' ruin a protein. Proteins can be turned into cationic polymers themselves. For instance, page 381 of the Barel Handbook (3rd edition) notes that proteins can be turned into things like Hydroxypropyl trimonium–hydrolyzed collagen or hydroxypropyl trimonium–hydrolyzed wheat protein, so a positive charge won't destroy a protein when it's converted into a positive charge! As well, you can find positively charged or cationic proteins.

Proteins can be positively, negatively, or neutrally charged with a positive charge in acidic pH levels.  (this reference and this one at Wikipedia, but I found tons more if you want me to post them here). Would this translate to a protein being in an acidic environment in a conditioner? I'm not sure, but you'd think that it would be a good thing for a positively charged protein in a pH of 6 or lower to be in a positively charged conditioner with a pH of 6 or lower. 

I can't find a ton of information on this topic, to be honest, because I think it's one of those things that is just known, that proteins work in conditioners. Proteins are regularly used in conditioners - do a search for recipes or take a look at a bottle in the shop and see how much they're used. (Check out the recipes in this data sheet for Incroquat BTMS-50.)

In doing my searches, I came upon the idea that protein is bad for our hair and that we can get over protein-ed. I'm going to do more work on this topic, but I haven't been able to find any really good studies on the topic. If you have some studies or some really good, reliable information that isn't just someone's opinion, please send it along. Nothing against opinions, but I would like to have some backing for it. 

Just curious...where did you read this? Can you send me a link?

In this post on castor oil, Stacy asks: I hope I don't sound crazy by asking this, but is there any danger whatsoever using Castor Oil in massage cream/oil mixtures? I assume that the pressing process eliminates any chance of unsafe traces of ricin the oil, but the thought is crossing my mind. Thanks for your time. 

You don't sound crazy. It's something to think about. But it's fine: Castor oil is safe.

As a note, castor seeds can kill pretty easily. It takes 6 to 20 to kill a human and up to 80 to kill a duck. Which goes to show you that these seeds are pretty deadly and ducks are fairly evil creatures. I mean, why doesn't it sound like its quack has an echo? And why do they turn every slightly large puddle into a pond? It's clear it's not a pond, ducks! Okay, I admit, I have issues with ducks...

In Formulating with oils: A body butter, Catherine writes, I had the same problem your husband has with dry itchy legs, I went to the dermatologist to ask what was going on and she said its because the water here (I'm currently living in France) is high in calcium and I have atopic skin. She recommended a soapless shower oil for me to use and it completely fixed up my dry itchy legs and arms. If you could create a recipe for a soapless soap that would be awesome. I've been trying to find one online and the most I can figure out is that it's an oil base with an emollient that helps to clean your skin and not leave your skin greasy. You should give it a try I'm sure it would be a good product for your husband to try out. 

Are you talking about something like Spectro-Jel? I've created a duplicate for it in this post, although I'd definitely substitute the polysorbate 20 with some PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil! The solublizer works to be the cleanser as it's a surfactant and can do some light cleansing. Or you could make something like this Cetaphil duplicate. If you can send me a few examples with the full ingredient list, I could try to figure something out.

I'm not duplicating by request again, but I like the idea of looking at a product and analyzing it.

In this post Glycerin is water soluble, Artemis re-visited the blog and shared a recipe she made for a rinse-off oil cleanser!

I eventually managed to find a supplier of polyglyceryl-4 oleate and, after some experimentation, came up with the following recipe:
40% Soybean oil
20% Hazelnut oil
15% Apricot kernel oil
10% Jojoba oil
1% Vitamin E
1% Lavender essential oil
1% Rosemary essential oil 
12% Polyglyceryl-4 oleate

I know that this is quite a lot of polyglyceryl-4 oleate to use, but I didn't want to risk any trace of the cleanser being left on my face. Personally, I have found it an absolute joy to use and it leaves my skin feeling fantastic- never dried out, but it doesn't become too greasy again quickly either. I hope you enjoy it too!

Thanks, Artemis! It looks great, filled with all my favourite oils. If you want to make this recipe, you'll have to find the polyglyceryl-4-oleate or try another solubilizer. Also, castor oil can be a great addition to an oil based product, so you, the readers at home, could try that in place of some of the oil.

Join me next week as we enjoy more Weekend Wonderings based on your comments. In the meantime, stay tuned for my final thoughts on testing out the PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil and some fun experimenting with a new thickener for surfactants, Ritathix, along with a little chemistry on Thursday!


Sciarretta Farms said...

Interesting. I make a conditioner with BTMS and silk protein that is heavenly and has done wonders for my hair and everyone that has tried it.

No overproteination (I think I made up a new word)yet!

LeKenda said...

Hmm, I am wondering if the source author of "BTMS= no proteins" is confusing BTMS with other sulfates as in SLS and SLeS. Some people believe that sulfates will clear away anything in its path (and I am guessing that the author is extending this thought to include proteins). It seems more like a case of speculation without research and in turn presenting it as fact for others to read. In which case, one person is passing on a lot of bad information and should be pointed to a more scientific approach in their meanderings.

In any case, I typically add proteins to my BTMS formulations and have always had wonderful results.

Alexis said...

I read a study few months ago that looked at specific amino acids (building blocks of proteins) by comparing them when applied in a conditioner base vs. an aqueous product.

Interestingly, the uptake of arginine started at solutions of pH 4 and increased as the pH rose, with pH 9 having the most uptake. A product with pH 9 is something most us don't really want....

Other amino acids with a pH between 3-7 were found to have low uptake in aqueous solution but not so in a conditioner base. The study speculated it has something to do with the interactions between the amino acids and cationic conditioners. The uptake of other amino acids was increased if arginine was in the mix.

The study could not directly identify the interactions that occurred between the amino acids and cationic conditioners because that would require some mighty, sophisticated machinery! But they were able to analyze the hair strands and found that if you want to improve your hair by adding amino acids, then a conditioner (cationic) base is the way to go.

Hair and amino acids: The interactions and the effects
(OSHIMURA, ABE, and OOTA,2007)

Aesthete said...

Hi Susan, lists Polyglyceryl-4 oleate as surfactant, emollient, skin conditioner and is also used in shampoo. I was wondering if it could be used to replace water soluble oils or dimethicone in shampoo or is it just something you could add to an existing formula to improve it?

Thank you!

Catherine said...

Hi Susan
Thank you for answering my comment and sorry for taking so long to get back to you. Here is the ingredients found in the Aderma cleansing oil:

water, glycerin, peg-7 glyceryl, cocoate, sodium laureth sulfate, propylene glycol, disodium cocoamphodiacetate, peg-40 hydrogenated castor oil, propylene glycol dicaprylate/dicaprate, decyl glucoside, disodium laureth sufosuccinate, ceteareth-60, myristyl glycol, sodium chloride, 10-Hydroxydecenoic acid, avena sativa (oat) leaf/stem extract, citric acid, disodium edta, fragrance, oenothera, biennis (evening primrose) oil, Phenoxyethanol, sodium benzoate, sorbic acid, tocopherol, yellow 5

And here is the link to the product

Thank you for taking the time to look at the ingredients for me. I guesse what I found so interesting about this product ,aside from that it works so well and I don’t know if I’ll be able to find it when I get back to Canada, is I’m curious how it can works like a soap but be an oil. When I get to Canada I’ll make sure to check out the Spectro-jel and the Cetaphil.
Oh and you totally called it with the peg-40 hydrogenated castor oil!
Catherine :)

Anonymous said...

could we substitute dimethicone for castor oil because it's thick and provide shine as well, i'll try it.