Thursday, January 16, 2014

Emulsifiers: Lotionpro 165 in a body butter

One of the things Jen from Lotioncrafter advertises on her blog about this emulsifier is its ability to create a light, fluffy body butter (Body Butter Bliss recipe), so it was only natural to try using it in a body butter that contained quite a lot of shea butter to see how it would work.

I started with my basic body butter recipe, then I tweaked it to contain some ingredients I had in my workshop that would be suitable for a mid-winter body butter intended to offer some serious moisturizing and hydrating.

38% distilled water
10% chamomile hydrosol
5% water soluble calendula extract
2% glycerin
2% multigrain complex (hydrolysed protein)
2% sodium lactate
0.5% allantoin

13% shea butter
8% pumpkin seed oil
5% Lotionpro 165
3% cetyl alcohol
2% IPM

2% cyclomethicone
2% dimethicone
2% panthenol
2% quaternized rice (cationic polymer)
1% fragrance or essential oil
0.5% liquid Germall Plus (or preservative of choice at suggested usage rates)

Use the general lotion making instructions to create this product.

Why did I use these ingredients? Remember that I'm a big fan of the idea of choosing your ingredients with your goals in mind. So what's the goal of a mid-winter body butter? We want something that feels thicker and richer than a normal lotion, so we'll use a butter, like shea or mango, as the main oil in the product to provide that thick, rich feeling. I like my products to feel a bit greasier, so I'll make a shea butter body butter. You can choose mango butter for a drier feeling product. I want something that will hydrate my skin, so I want to include loads of humectants, and I want something to condition and moisturize. I would like something that would help if I get some chapping from the wind or the cold as well.

I'm a big fan of occlusives, so I thought I'd use allantoin in the heated water phase and dimethicone in the cool down phase to provide that barrier from the outside world because we all know winter isn't the best friend of our skin! I love humectants, those wonderful ingredients that draw water from the atmosphere to our skin, and I thought a combination of sodium lactate - one that we shouldn't use at over 2.5% as it can make us sun sensitive, and we still get sun around here in the winter - and glycerin would offer all those wonderful qualities we want in a humectant without being sticky.

I really like calendula extract as it offers anti-inflammatory properties, soothes inflamed and chapped skin. You could increase one of the hydrosols or extracts that offer similar properties. Make sure the liquid calendula extract you get is water soluble. If you want to use oil soluble calendula, you can substitute it for some of the pumpkin seed oil or shea butter.

You can use any hydrolyzed proteins you want to act as film formers and moisturizers. I chose the multigrain complex from Formulator Sample Shop (outside link) with quinoa, rice, and amaranth proteins as it is advertised as gluten free, and one of my testers has celiac disease and I'm not sure she would be sensitive to wheat or oat protein in a topical product. You can use any of the other hydrolyzed proteins in its place.

In the oil phase, I'm using pumpkin seed oil because it's my new Saturday night thing - you can tell I'm in love with this oil, eh? - as I find that it offers a good balance of fatty acids, Vitamin E, phytosterols, and polyphenols. If you don't have any, try substituting sesame seed oil or rice bran oil as they are very similar in chemical composition and skin feel. Or choose any other oil you want. Remember, when you change the oil, you change the skin feel. If you want something that feels lighter, consider fractionated coconut oil. If you want something heavier, choose something like avocado or olive oil.

If you're interested in learning more about oils, may I suggest either reading the Newbie Tuesday series on the skin feel of our oils or the formulating lotions posts on substituting them in our products?

As I mentioned earlier, I like shea butter because it offers a rich and greasy feeling to the product. If you want something drier, try using mango butter or something like babassu oil instead. You could use coconut oil, but it won't be as thick as something with a proper butter. I've never tried this recipe with cocoa butter, but I guess you could use that, too.

I'm including cetyl alcohol in this product as a way of thickening up the body butter and as a stabilizer for the Lotionpro 165. (I've been reading about how fatty alcohols stabilize our lotions lately and it's really interesting! Look for it shortly when I start writing more about liquid crystal emulsifiers!) You could substitute behenyl alcohol for a drier and powderier feeling body butter or cetearyl alcohol for a waxier feeling product. You could use stearic acid for a much thicker feeling product.

I like to include 2% IPM in most of my greasier feeling lotions as it will make it feel less greasy. I know this sounds weird, especially as someone who extolls the virtues of greasier feeling lotion when I can, but there's something that 2% IPM brings to a lotion that makes it feel less greasy in a good way. I don't like the powdery feeling that an emulsifier like BTMS-50 can bring to a product when it reduces greasines, and IPM doesn't offer that.

In the cool down phase, you know I had to include panthenol as a humectant and as an ingredient to help with wound healing and skin's barrier repair mechanisms. I've included cyclomethicone as an ingredient to increase the slip and glide of the product while offering some reduction in greasiness and a feeling of powderiness, but not too much powderiness. And I've included a cationic polymer to offer conditioning to the product. My skin could always use more conditioning! If you don't have this ingredient, leave it out and increase the water phase by 2%.

What do I think of this product? Look how fluffy it is! It feels really fluffy when you take it out of the container, and it feels really fluffy when you put it on your skin. I can't believe that something with 13% shea butter is this fluffy! It takes a few days to come to the final viscosity, but it was like this not 24 hours after making it and it remained that way. It feels less greasy than the versions I've made with Polawax and less stiff. It doesn't feel as heavy on my skin as the other versions were either, but the slightly greasy layer is still on my skin a few hours later. In short, this is a really fluffy body butter that offers moisturizing and hydrating without a waxy layer I've come to associate with body butters. It's really changed the way I see body butters! (I know, right?)

I'm really shocked at how fluffy this product is, to be honest. If you want something that feels more like your traditional greasy and heavier body butter, you'll probably want to use 20% shea butter instead of the oil and butter combination. But even then, it'll probably be fluffy. (Talk about a first world problem, eh? My body butter is too fluffy and light! Sigh...)

Can you make this body butter with another emulsifier? Of course you can! Just remember the rules about the emulsifier you choose. If you want to use Polawax, remember that we use it at 25% of the oil phase, which is 30%. If you want to use BTMS-50, you could probably just substitute that emulsifier directly 1:1 with the Lotionpro. If you want to use Ritamulse SCG, remember that it can't handle more than 25% oils, so you'll want to drop the oil phase by 5% - I suggest removing some of the liquid oils instead of the shea butter because isn't the butter the point of the recipe? - and using 8% emulsifier. Or just click here and choose one of the variations you find!

Could you make this simpler?  Sure! Join me tomorrow for a slightly simpler version of this extremely fluffy body butter!

Please note: I am not affiliated with any company selling bath and body supplies or products. I bought the Lotionpro 165 from Lotioncrafter with my wages. I received ingredients from the Formulator Sample Shop for free. When I write about those ingredients, I am sharing my honest opinion with you! 


Anonymous said...

I love lotion pro emulsifier for body butter. I won't use anything else anymore. I have been the body bliss recipe it's wonderful and have tweaked to add a few extra in it. I have noticed I look the texture better if I let it set up for a few weeks. It's got a better texture and that little break when you dip your finger in.


Anonymous said...

If anyone has any European suppliers that stock Lotionpro 165, let us know!

Mychelle said...

I've played with this one a lot and really like it a lot.This emulsifier can take several days to a week to set up, so bear that in mind when working with it.

Busk Family said...

I am a newbie to your blog, but very thankful as I have been searching for a comprehensive, knowledgeable source online to learn about lotion making. Thank you!!

mzjaxine said...

So I have a question that you may have answered somewhere in your blog but I can't seem to find it. My question is about co emulsifiers. I have e wax and I know at 30% oil I want to add about 8.5% ewax. But I would also like to add btms as some added conditioning and emulsion and I know that should be at 5% if it was the sole emulsifier. So what percent should I have the ewax and the btms if I plan on having 30% oil phase. And also I have some cetyl alcohol as my thickener and I made a hair cream with it and it had bad soaping effects and I read what you wrote about either use silicone or change emulsifier. And in your comments someone said that cetyl had something to due with it. My question is what percent of c.a. should I use to avoid this affect or should I follow the half the emulsion fiber rule. Thank you sorry this is spool long winded just curious and wanna know before I make my lotion.

Paige B said...

Hi Susan! I had a small amount of Lotionpro 165 but hadn't used it until this post got me started. I love love LOVE thick, rich, body butters and this emulsifier works great, so I thought I'd give you my review.

I have normal skin for the most part, that will tend to dry on occasion. I live in Northern California right now (going to grad school), but I'm a Southern Ontario girl (Prince Edward County shoutout!). When it comes to body products, I like thick, stiff body butters, but without a really greasy feel. My recipe with Lotionpro is as follows:

Heated Water (57%)
41% distilled water or mix of water and hydrosol
2% glycerin
2% sodium lactate
1% sodium pca
2% colloidal oats, venasilk, oenosilk, or silk protein etc.
8% aloe gel
1% allantoin

Heated Oil (34%)
5% shea butter
5% cocoa butter
5% other soft butter (jojoba, avocado, mango, or more shea depending on what I have or the feel I want)
3% coconut oil
3% avocado or sunflower oil
3% kukui nut oil (added at the end of the heating process to protect the more sensitive oil)
2% IPM
5% Lotionpro 165
2% cetyl alcohol
1% stearic acid (because I like a stiff butter)

Cool Down (9%)
3% distilled water or WS extract
2% panthenol
2% green tea extract (powder or liquid)
1% fragrance
0.5% germall plus
0.3% T-95 Vit E
0.2% ROE

I haven't used 'cones in part because I didn't have any yet, but largely because I try to avoid too many more processed ingredients. I think I have an aversion because I'm a curly girl and they don't work for my hair, but I'm coming around to thinking I might try some out. I recently got some WS raspberry dimethicone from The Herbarie that is ostensibly for hair products, but I might try in a skin care item at some point. I tend to make products heavy in oil and definitely have trouble trying not to cram too many different goodies into a single recipe. I also will vary this recipe a bit depending on what I had on hand in terms of extracts, hydrosols or proteins.

This body butter is really great! Very easy to make, emulsifies very well and makes a nice, thick, rich product. It's not as stiff as recipes I have made with BTMS/ewax/polawax; it is definitely fluffier! In terms of feel, I find it's not quite as greasy feeling as ewax/polawax, but not as dry as BTMS. I usually add some colour in the form of a teeny sprinkle of oxide and/or mica plus a small scoop of fine cosmetic clay like rose, french green, or illite. The clay adds colour, but also some slip, dryness and a luxury feel. If it's really too greasy, you can also add a bit of dry-flo tapioca powder, but I haven't tried that.

Paige B said...

mzjaxine: I don't know if you got your answer, but I played around with mixing BTMS and ewax a bit because I use BTMS 25 and found it didn't make really stable emulsions reliably. I did equivalent mixes by mixing BTMS, polysorbate 60 and cetyl acohol. I've only done the equivalent of 35% BTMS:65% ewax and 50:50, but both have worked very well. For 35:65, calculate 25% of the oil phase (lets assume that is 7%). Your mixed emulsifier is 71.4% BTMS 25, 13% PS-60, and 15.6% cetyl alcohol - so the amount of BTMS for example would be 7% x 0.714 or about 5%. For 50:50, the total amount of emulsifier in your recipe is about 28.75% of your oils, then the mixture is 87.5% BTMS, 8.8% PS-60, and 3.8% cetyl alcohol. You would add additional cetyl alcohol (or stearic or cetearyl or behenyl etc.) for thickening in your recipe.
I figured this out in a rather convoluted way...I knew people mixed BTMS 50 and ewax (or polawax), but I not only didn't have BTMS 50, but didn't want the butylene glycol. So...I figured out how much Behentrimonium Methosulfate, cetyl alcohol, and PS60 would be in a 35:65 (or 50:50) mix of BTMS 50 and ewax (based on ewax being 20% PS-60 and 80% cetearyl I believe). I assumed that cetearyl alcohol was approximately 50:50 cetyl and stearyl...THEN I figured how much BTMS 25 would give me the same amount of Behentrimonium Methosulfate, how much PS 60 I needed, how much cetyl that would equal and how much cetyl to add to make the mix right...then subtracted the amount of stearyl that was extra from any stearic acid I would add as a thickener....yeah, convoluted, but it worked quite well. Let me know if you try it.

Munimula said...

Hello Susan!
First off, I have to thank you for all your help and advice. I purchased your e-book on lotion formulation about six months ago and have been having fun ever since. It may sound funny, but this process has helped me endure a rough year, so thank you!
Anywho, my question is about body butter:
I have been making the anhydrous, non-water version, but find them to be very greasy. I have tried various combinations of many hard butters, Avocado, cocoa, mango, shea, added coconut oil (and sometimes palm kernel flakes), and dryer oils, like meadowfoam. I have read your recommendation to add IPM and will eventually try this, but have not yet. I tried adding tapioca powder with not the result of drier feel that I really wanted. After melting the butters/oils, I put them in the freezer then whip them up with a hand mixer. Nice, but, greasy. However, my friends and family do love them.
Can I try making an emulsified version with lots of butter and then put it in the freezer and whip it? What kind of result might I get? (Or, has this been done and I just have not seen it?) How would I accomplish a more whipped consistency that remains after putting in the jars? I appreciate your advice.
Thank you!
Carol K.

Paige B said...

Carol K: Why not make a body butter? You'll use less of your more expensive ingredients (butters and oils) and truthfully, make a more effective moisturizer (as Susan says, you need water to add moisture to your skin!), plus they are much, much less greasy - especially if you use an emulsifier like BTMS. If it's about using a preservative, there are lots and lots of more "natural" (unprocessed? herbal?) preservatives out there (FSS and LotionCrafter in particular). I've made butters with nearly 40% oils and butters and they turn out super thick and luxurious. Of note: LotionPro 165 doesn't contain thickeners, so you probably need to add one if you want a really thick product. Susan has talked all about other emulsifiers and how dry they feel and how thick the product is. Also, I've used stearic acid and cetearyl alcohol and I've found it best to use at least some cetyl alcohol in your thickeners, especially if you don't use silicones. The reason being that as you rub it in, the butters with only stearic or cetearyl seem to roll up and "pill" on the skin, rather than form a thin, even layer.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Carol! Anything that contains only oils, like a whipped butter, is going to feel greasy. There's really no way to make it feel less greasy because by definition an oil only product feels greasy. As for making an emulsified version, I have dozens of recipes on this blog about making emulsified body butters. In fact, you are commenting on one of those recipes now! Don't put it in the freezer. Make the recipe exactly as written and you will have a less greasy feeling product than a whipped butter. You can get a more whippy consistency in an emulsified body butter by whipping it more. You will have to play with the recipe to see how whippy it can get, but some of them can get quite whippy!

Check out the newbie section of the blog for a step by step process for making emulsified body butters.

Hi Paige! Thanks for your comment! That was great advice!

Munimula said...

Paige and Susan,
Thank you for your replies! (Long story but I did not see your replies until today.) I am so excited to have received your great advice. The emulsified body butter is now my next project with your suggestions. Looking very forward to the result!
Carol K.