Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Emulsifiers



Fats and water do not naturally mix with each other so if you want to create a cream, lotion or conditioner containing oil and water you will need an emulsifier. The majority of emulsifiers used in cosmetics are not found in nature so it's difficult to have a 100% natural product that contains oil and water. 

There are numerous emulsifiers available and many of them are derived from natural ingredients. Behentrimonium Methosulfate (BTMS) is an excellent detangler so it's often used in hair conditioners. It's normally combined with Cetearyl Alcohol for emollient and thickening properties. I have had wonderful results with BTMS after a lot of trial and error. In the wrong leave in formula BTMS can be a bit drying so it might take some experimenting until you find a formula that works well for your hair.

I have also experimented with OliveM 1000 with good results. OliveM 1000 doesn't detangle in the same way as BTMS but it's more moisturising. I often combine the two emulsifiers together to get the best of both. For my detangling conditioners I prefer to use BTMS combined with Cetrimonium Chloride as both ingredients have detangling properties. When I'm working on a thicker buttery cream I opt for OliveM 1000 as my main emulsifier.

While wearing braids I like to use liquid moisturisers instead of creamy products so I have been experimenting with emulsifiers that produce thin sprayable emulsions. I have experimented with polysorbate 20 and polysorbate 80 with ok results. More recently I have had good results with Polyglyceryl-4 Laurate. I plan to keep researching and experimenting until I find the perfect blend of emulsifiers for my liquid moisturisers. 

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