Question from Patreon: Is there a limit to how much carbomer can be used in a lotion?

In the November Q&A on Patreon, Sawyer asked: Are there limits to how much carbomer can be used in a oil in water face cream? It seems to be a common ingredient in face lotions, and I love the idea of a cushiony lotion, but when I try to emulsify my gelled water phase with…...

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Question from Patreon: How to use alcohol in a lotion? (part one)

On my Patreon feed page, Albert asked: If I wanted to make an after shave balm which includes some alcohol in it, my questions are: 1. In which of the 3 phases (water, oil, cool down) should I add it?2. In terms or ratios, does the alcohol count as part of the water or the oil…...

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Question: How do you decide what to make?

In this post, Sue asks: HOW do you decide what to make?! I have such trouble/fun deciding on colours fragrance additives that half the session could disapppear. How do your readers balance creative and efficiency? What a great question! I think the answer is that I don’t do it well. Sometimes I get into the workshop…...

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Question: What’s the deal with coco-caprylate caprate?

In this post, Aesthete asks: Based on your experience with Coco-Caprylate Caprate, how is it compared to C12-15 alkyl benzoate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate and dimethicone? Occlusive? Spreading? After-feel? Is it comedogenic? Great question, Aesthete! I decided to do a little test by comparing coco-caprylate caprate against fractionated coconut oil (INCI caprylic/capric triglycerides), C12-15 alkyl benzoate, and cetearyl…...

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Question: What’s my favourite facial cleanser recipe?

In this post, Lise asked: Thanks for this series on cleansers which has me all curious about your own preferred face cleanser. I ask because I have personally never had any real success using surfactant based face cleansers. (not sure if it’s sensitivity or just a dislike of the feeling of soap on my face). I…...

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Question: Can you use castille soap as a facial cleanser?

I’ve had quite a few comments or e-mails about this topic – can you use your hand made soap as a facial cleanser? – and yes, you can use castille soap as a facial cleanser. It’s lovely stuff and cleans nicely! However… Our skin has a pH between 4.7 and 5.5, and we generally formulate…...

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Question: What’s the difference on my hair between BTMS-25 and BTMS-50?

In this post for making conditioners for newbie Tuesday, canfieldfive writes: I have a long rambling question: I have the Conditioning Emulsifier from MMS (Behentrimonium Methosulfate and Cetearyl Alcohol) and the BTMS-50 (Behentrimonium Methosulfate and Cetyl Alcohol and Butylene Glycol) from Brambleberry. What will these do differently for my hair? (I plan to use Cetyl Alcohol…...

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Question: Is frizzy hair always dry hair?

In this post on making conditioner for newbie Tuesday, Rosi asks: Humectant is not good for frizzy hair, but is good for dry hair. Is there a difference? To me frizziness and dryness walk hand in hand, so how do I know and if I have both, use or not use humectant. Sorry I don’t…...

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Question: How to measure small amounts of preservative?

In this post, Ellbie asks:  Can you at some time during this Newbie series talk about a good technique for weighing your preservative? Specifically Germall Plus liquid. I have the dangest time trying to figure an accurate means of weighing this viscous liquid out. I am a tween (not really a newbie and with enough knowledge…...

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Question: Are silicones healthy for our hair or skin?

Laura wrote in this post, Hi! I found ur blog just yesterday but i’m falling in love! My question is… are silicones really sure and healthy for our hair? This is what i know: silicones occludes skin pores and cuticular layer of our hair, and don’t let him repair from the inside… isn’t real? And, also,…...

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