Chemistry Thursday: The difference between solubilizers and emulsifiers redux

In this post on solubilizers, someone asked: I still don’t get the difference between a solubilizer and a emulsifier. If I mix propylene glycol (in substitution for the surfactant), cetyl alcohol or stearic acid in water, will I be getting a lotion?  The quick answer is no because there’s nothing in your question that is...

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Recipe round-up: Make-up removers

I thought you might like a few recipes for make-up remover for some post-Hallowe’en clean up, so here are a few that might interest you! (The surfactant and oil based ones will work for waterproof make-up.) Surfactant based make-up removerOil based make-up removerWater based make-up removerPossible duplication of a creamy cleanserSurfactant based cleansing toweletteLotion based...

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Categories MMU

Why the heck did I buy this and what can I do with it? Wednesday: Sea kelp ferment

In the original why the heck did I buy this and what can I do with it thread, Catherine asks: I love your blog–what the heck can I do with Sea Kelp Ferment (INCI Lactobacillus/Kelp Ferment Filtrate)? I have been using it 100% on my face occasionally overnight (it is kind of sticky) and along my hairline...

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Extract: Marshmallow and mallow extract

We actually have two different species of plants here, although they sound the same and have similar functions in our skin and hair care products. Let’s take a look at one, then the other. MARSHMALLOW EXTRACTWhat is marshmallow extract? It’s the extract from the marshmallow root that contains a ton of polysaccharides and offers mucilaginous...

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Your daily dose of science!

I thought I’d share a few awesome science posts I’ve found over the last few days… An enthusiast’s primer on study types. Curious what is means when something is a cohort study or what a good before and after study should be? Take a look at this post on Skeptoid! This is a great analysis...

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Oils: Cherry kernel oil

I just found this in Voyageur and thought I’d try it out in my products as sweet cherry just sounds so lovely, doesn’t it? So what’s the deal? How does it feel on our skin? What does it bring to a product? Cherry kernel oil contains a balance of fatty acids with about 46.0% oleic...

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Weekend Wonderings: Adding the oil phase to the water phase in a stream? Can I use a solubilizer to mix salicylic acid into water? Should aloe vera have bits floating in it? And how can some companies not use preservatives?

DOES IT MATTER HOW WE ADD THE OIL AND WATER PHASE OF A LOTION TOGETHER?In this post on pumpkin seed oil, eeting asks: After heat and hold, does it matter how quickly u add the water phase to the oil phase? It is recommended with Polawax that the liquid be added in a slow steady stream. But...

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Weekend Wonderings: Do we need preservatives in anhydrous products? How do we use glycerin as a silicone substitute? And how to do I add water soluble things to anti-frizz sprays?

DO WE NEED PRESERVATIVES IN ANHYDROUS PRODUCTS?In this Newbie Tuesday post on lotion bars, AZ asks: Do we need to add any preservative to them? Or all oil only creations do not need preservatives? No, we don’t need to add preservatives to oil only products. We add preservatives to water containing products because the beasties...

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

…in the Barclay-Nichols’s household. (Don’t hit me!) It’s might seem like Christmas is a huge 61 days away, but when you’re a crafter, you have to start early! I don’t think it’s helpful for me to start posting recipes on December 1st because you need time to try out these products, see how the fragrances...

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Pumpkin seed oil: Making sugar scrub bars

I’ve been going on and on about pumpkin seed oil as it’s my new favourite oil, one that has a nice balance of linoleic acid and oleic acid, phytosterols, polyphenols, and Vitamin E. It’s also an appropriate time of year to be using the seeds from this gourd in our products because it seems like...

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