Q&A: Which preservative works best with alkaline liquid soap? Let’s talk about the chemistry of soap, pH, and preservatives!

In the June Q&A, smc asked, Preservatives for liquid soap. I’m playing with liquid soap make, and due to the high percentage of water I’ll need a preservative. What preservatives work well in a high pH environment and doesn’t have a horrible scent? Thanks.  As a quick note before we start, I have pages where…...

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Q&A quickie: What can I substitute for BHT in an anhydrous facial oil?

In the June Q&A, Amy asked, I’ve got a question for ya! I’m duping Elf’s nourishing facial oil, it’s a fairly straight forward dupe. My question is about the BHT, is it really necessary? I’m thinking that they added to extend the life of the oils, but would something like rosemary oleoresin be a more…...

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Q&A: What the heck is coconut acid? #alltheingredients

In the June Q&A, Andrea asked, Another question about ingredients: in the list below what the heck is coconut acid?  A proprietary and moisturizing blend of sodium cocoyl isethionate, stearic acid, coconut acid, water/aqua/eau, coco glucoside, sodium isethionate, argania spinosa (argan) kernel oil, panthenol (pro-vitamin b5), camellia sinensis (green tea) leaf extracts, humectants, sucrose cocoate, glycerin,…...

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Q&A: Using vinegar in shampoo bars? Can we store surfactants and actives in the fridge? Substituting powdered surfactants in shampoo bars? Thickening aloe vera with Xanthan Gum?

I thought I’d answer a few quick questions in this post! If you’re a $5 or higher subscriber, visit the monthly Q&A to share your thoughts! USING VINEGAR IN SHAMPOO BARS? I’ve had someone ask me about why someone would be using vinegar in a shampoo bar and the short answer is that they’re using…...

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Q&A: What can I use instead of Lauryl Alcohol in this manufacturer’s formula?

In the May Q&A post, Liza asked, Is there anything I could use (that is available in Canada) as an alternative to Lauryl Alcohol at 2.5% in this Stepan conditioner formula? Great question! When I’m thinking about making a substitution, I go through a bit of a process. One, I need to know what this…...

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Q&A: Making and using citric acid and 18% sodium hydroxide solutions?

In the May Q&A, Sarah commented, I have some questions!!! 1) Regarding changing pH; can I make and bottle a 50% citric acid solution and an 18% sodium hydroxide solution or do I need to make it fresh each time? 2) If bottling, does it need a preservative with the extreme acidity/alkalinity? 3) How long will each last…...

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Discussion: Have you used floral waxes? Share your thoughts!

In the April 2019 Q&A, Marina asked: Do you have any experience/information for using floral waxes in skin care products? I have some jasmine and mimosa waxes, so I want to try using them in crafting. I see recommended usage of below 10% on most places and listed properties are similar as typical waxes (film-forming,…...

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Categories Q&A

Q&A: Into which phase would I put n-acetyl glucosamine? Is there a limit to the size of the cool down phase?

In the March Q&A, Olja asked, My question is about NAG (N-acetyl glucosamine). To which phase do you put it. If you put it to the cool down phase, do you dissolve it prior? Can you dissolve it in a glicerite extract (which also contains some water) and than put it in the lotion? Moreover, if using…...

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Q&A: Can we exceed the suggested usage rate in a solid shampoo or body cleanser?

In the March Q&A, kuni asked, I have been making shampoo bar and conditioner bar for my family and they have been very happy with their hair, thanks to Susan on her wonderful shampoo bar ebook and articles. Lately my daughter (13 years old) has been asking me to make her face wash and whether its…...

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Q&A quickies! What do you use to colour your hair care bars? How can I preserve D’orientine well? Can we use Olivem 300 in place of polysorbate 80 in blooming bath oil? How do I eliminate bubbles in my lotion?

Sorry for falling behind on answering questions. I’m working on a ton of things for the blog right now, and this fell by the wayside. Let’s catch up on what you’ve been asking!  In the February Q&A, Donna asked: I’d like to put a color in my shampoo and conditioner bars to help differentiate between the…...

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