Friday, June 6, 2014

Lovely Lotion Your Way

Mom's lotion

I was talking to my Mom the other day and she mentioned that she was out of lotion and asked that I get her some. This was a great opportunity to try out my new skills in the DIY cosmetics world! Mom likes sweet, floral scents so we settled on some kind of rose fragrance for her and I went to work!

One of my favorite blogs is Point of Interest, written by Susan Barclay-Nichols, a chemistry goddess to those of us who like tinkering with beauty ingredients. In her blog, Susan (aka “Swift”) explains how different chemical processes work (like emulsification, saponification, chelation, etc) as well as testing her own formulations with varying ingredients, focusing on the special properties of each ingredient that either make a creation work or fail. It was actually Susan’s blog that peaked my interest in cosmetic formulation. Well, now I’m hooked and I’ve been having fun, while learning new things, ever since!

Before making Mom’s special lotion, I had made one other true lotion out of a mixture of lecithin, distilled water, oil and a preservative. It was simple and incredibly moisturizing! For Mom’s lotion, though, I wanted something soft, feminine, light in color (my first lotion was beige, due to the lecithin) and silky. For that, I turned to Point of Interest and went to work searching for Susan’s great lotion tutorial. I followed her “Modified First Lotion Recipe with Humectants,” which is on page 12 of the tutorial. I used slightly different ingredients and wanted to bottle this lotion in an 8 ounce container. Here are the exact ingredients and measurements that I used for 8 ounces:

Water Phase
  • 154g distilled water
  • 4.5g glycerin
Oil Phase
  • 34g Soybean Oil
  • 11.3g shea butter
  • 6.8g cetyl alcohol
  • 11.3g Polawax
Cool Down Phase
  • 2.3g Fragrance or Essential Oil (I used 1 dram of SkinActives Rose fragrance oil and 1 dram of their Jasmine fragrance oil)
  • 2g Germaben II
Everything in this recipe except the cetyl alcohol, the Polawax and the Germaben II can be found at your local Whole Foods. All three of these can be found at Lotioncrafter, one of my favorite online sources for ingredients. Click on these links for more info: Germaben II, cetyl alcohol, Polawax (emulsifying wax). You can see that these ingredients are pretty inexpensive and they go a long way, allowing you to use them again in again in other lotions and cosmetic formulations. If you don’t feel like getting in the car and driving to Whole Foods for the other ingredients, Lotioncrafter has the rest of them as well!

As for the preservative, Germaben II contains parabens, which I have absolutely no problem with, but if you prefer a non-paraben preservative, Lotioncrafter has those as well (I like Optiphen). (You MUST use a preservative, even if the lotion is just for your own use!!!)

Mom's lotion2

This lotion was sooo easy to make (just follow Susan’s tutorial) and so silky and lovely! I bottled it up, made Mom a custom label and applied a self-laminating film over the label to keep it nice and fresh. Mom LOVES her new lotion and I'll make sure to keep her well supplied (as well as making my own batch)!

Mom's lotion3

Have a great weekend!!!