Wednesday, September 17, 2014

One ingredient, five products: Gels - making an after shave gel

After shave products are all about the astringency and soothing of newly shaved skin, so let's take a look making a gel type product!

I'm basing my product on this post from the cucumber extract series from a few weeks ago. Click here to find why I used each ingredient, and click here to see the after shave spray with minimally processed ingredients.

I'm adding a bit of water soluble olive oil to the mix as an emollient, and we'll add a bit more panthenol to the mix to offer more wound healing and skin barrier repair. Feel free to substitute the distilled water for aloe vera or other hydrosols. (Check how your carbomer works with electrolytes to make sure it can handle more aloe vera!)

As another note, make sure you are using distilled water in this recipe as it won't be heated and held.

51.4% distilled water
20% witch hazel
10% peppermint hydrosol
5% water soluble oil or ester
5% liquid cucumber extract or 0.5% powdered extract (add 4.5% distilled water)
2% sodium PCA
2% hydrolyzed silk protein
2% panthenol
1.2% carbomer
0.9% triethanolamine (TEA)
0.5% chamomile extract
0.5% liquid Germall Plus (or preservative of choice)

Dissolve the powdered chamomile extract or other powdered extract in a bit of distilled water water, then add to the rest of the ingredients. Mix in the carbomer and allow it to become wetted. Wait 5 minutes or the requisite period of time for your carbomer, then add the TEA or 18% lye solution. Stir well. Bottle. Make sure it's a bottle you can squish because it's hard to get gel into a container!

This product would be suitable for an after shave for all parts of your body, but use your common sense and try a small spot to see how you will react as every body's different!

As an aside, I really like this as a toner for my oily skin as a moisturizing product. I have added a bit of bamboo extract to my latest version at 5% (remove 5% from the distilled water amount) as I wanted something a little more astringent and anti-irritating. I am planning to use horsetail extract at 5% the next time I make it, and I might consider using honey matte at 5% in the cool down phase after that if it's still not as matte feeling as I'd like.

Join me tomorrow for more fun formulating with gels!

Other posts in this series:
One ingredient, five products: Gels
One ingredient, five products: Gels - making an aloe vera gel
One ingredient, five products: Gels - making an eye gel
One ingredient, five products: Gels - making a gelled toner (part one)
One ingredient, five products: Gels - making a gelled toner (part two)
One ingredient, five products: Gels - making a gelled toner (part three)


Lisa Marie Layman said...

Hi Susan, I've been fascinated by your series on gels and am learning so much with the information you so generously share, thank you! I can't wait to give gel-making a whirl.
While looking at carbomers on the Lotioncrafter website, I noticed their Sodium Carbomer - Preneutralized Carbomer and am wondering what your opinion might be about this product. Would this be a viable option to the carbomer/TEA combo? What might be the benefits/drawbacks to using a one step carbomer?
Thanks in advance for your response.

Anonymous said...

Hi Susan
Try putting the gel into a clear sandwich/freezer bag then tying it up and snip off a small piece of one corner. This makes it easy to squeeze into a bottle or jar. I have also used a 50ml syringe to the same effect.

Ella said...

I'm having so much with gels lately and thats all because of you, Susan :) I will try this one too, for my dad, and i was wondering if i could use aloe vera gel? I haven't used it before so i don't know how thick it is and if it's appropriate for a product like this...what about lubrajel? I only used it as in lotions and have no idea if it will do anything else that other ingredients already do...
Thank you for being such an inspiration ;)

Ella said...

Oh god...i just read what i wrote...
i am having FUN with gels and about aloe vera...i was wondering if i could use it as a base-instead of making one with carbomer? Sori for the previous word mess... :)

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Ella. Just wondering what the INCI for the gel might be. I wonder if it has carbomer in it? If it is a thicker gel, I can't see why you couldn't use it as the base. Just make sure you're putting in preservative for the additional liquids.

Hi Lisa. Yes, you can use the preneutralized carbomer from Lotioncrafter as your gel here. There aren't really any drawbacks that jump up at me!

Ella said...

I did it! My first product in shaving series. I`ll review that and hopefully encouraged someone. I really wasn`t sure what to expect or how aftershaves feel or what do they do (i am a waxing girl and my man just trims his beard-never goes all the way:). I wanted to do this for my dad.
The first thing was the lack of carbomer-the most important ingredient of making a gel (at least if you are doing it Swift style). Another ingredient, unavaible in our country-water soluble oils. Well, another thing i learned from you, Susan, is that i can make my own! I used polysorbate 80 and i used sunflower oil, mixed it at 1:1 ratio.
(my boyfriend likes to say: necessity is the mother of all invention. that is so true)
So this is what i used:
60% aloe vera gel
20% witch hazel hydrosol
10% peppermint hydrosol
4% of my personal "polysun" blend of water soluble oil
2% silk proteins
2% panthenol
0.5% green tea extract
0.5% xanthan gum
1% preservative (Cosgard)
First i mixed xanthan with hidrosols, to make hidrosol gel and combined it with aloe vera gel (mix of aloe and hidrosols was too runny). Next i added sunflower oil and polysorbate mixture (it was transparent, but when i mixed it into gels it became slightly milk-ish). I stirred well, add silk proteins, panthenol, green tea exract and preservative.
I used a pump bottle-it`s practical and men like that:)No spilling all over the place.
It turned out all right. It feels great on skin, not greasy but very moisturizing and soothing.
I will have too see hov it works out in the long run, but for now...thumbs up! :)
I know this is far from your recipe but i really wanted to make aftershave GEL :)

Sânziene şi Mătrăgună said...

Ha! Another review here!

I actually have used preneutralized carbomer (so no TEA for me here). Na Carbomer hates electrolites, so no Na *anything* for me , Aloe included. However, I have used 5% panthenol and 2% water soluble shea butter from Lotioncrafter's.

I used a cobalt blue pigment I have from Aroma Zone, and I LOVE what came out!

It's a very thick blue gel, which I can see on my legs (so I am sure not to miss any skin patch :P). The fragrance I used is a combo of FO and EO (blye cypress and a powdery one from Aroma Zone). so, final recipe:

20% witch hazel
10% peppermint hydrosol
5% panthenol
2% hydrolized silk protein
1.5% Na Carbomer
.5% liquid germall plus
1% FO + EO
water up to 100%

I love it, even though my husband was not willing to try it :)

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Sanziene! That looks lovely. Why woulnd't your husband try it?

Sânziene şi Mătrăgună said...

*sigh* - because he only wants to use Dove soap, Nivea After shave and Head & Shoulders shampoo :)

I am struggling to make him try something new - and I was surprised when he asked me today for a moisturizer for his legs. and face. This is once in a year event!

Anyway, I forgot to say in the recipe that I added a "drop" of this blue lovely pigment:

Sânziene şi Mătrăgună said...

** and I also forgot to add the 2% Water soluble Shea in the recipe above. I mentioned it in the comment and I totally forgot about it!