Winter has come upon us here in Alaska, and my skin is so dry! Today I need to make up some moisturizer for myself, so I thought I’d bring you all along to see what my process is when coming up with a formula.
The first thing I always do is check my supplies. What oils and butters do I have on hand, and what needs to be used before it becomes rancid? Looking through my stash, I see so many possibilities! I landed on Handcrafted Shea Butter first because it’s just so good! Did you know Shea Butter contains Allantoin, which is an ingredient the FDA has approved as a barrier ingredient to temporarily prevent and protect chafed, chapped, cracked, or windburned skin? We always advise makers to steer away from making claims in their sales and labeling, but it’s good to know what properties an ingredient brings to the table. Shea Butter also has regenerating, anti-inflammatory, and softening properties, thanks to the high amount of oleic acid. And it’s easily absorbed by the skin. No wonder Shea Butter is so popular!
Since Shea Butter has such a greasy feel, I’m looking at dry-feel oils to round out this formula. I have a bottle of Macadamia Nut Oil that needs to be used. Fortunately, it’s a wonderful dry-feel oil with great properties! Like Shea Butter, Macadamia Nut Oil contains a good amount of oleic acid, plus palmitoleic acid. Palmitoleic acid is a building block in the skin that helps prevent damage from burns or wounds. One thing Macadamia Oil lacks, though, is Vitamin E, so I will add a bit of Vitamin E Natural to my formulation.
I’m adding Oat Oil for the wonderful skin-loving properties it brings to the blend. Oat Oil is rich in oleic and linoleic fatty acids along with antioxidants, glycolipids, and high levels of ceramides. Ceramides are a long chain of lipid molecules that are praised for their moisture-retention capabilities. The great thing about Oat Oil is that a little bit goes a long way!
Let’s put together the formula. I’m adding a good amount of Glycerin as a humectant, Conditioning Emulsifier to make a velvety emulsion, and some Stearic Acid to make sure this body butter has plenty of body!
Macadamia Shea Body Butter
100-gram Test Batch
64 grams Water
10.24 ounces Water
Weigh water, Macadamia Nut Oil, Shea Butter, Glycerin, Conditioning Emulsifier, Stearic Acid, and Oat Oil into a microwave-safe container. Heat in 30-second bursts until all ingredients have melted; stir after each heating. Use an immersion blender to mix well and create the emulsion. Check the temperature of the ingredients. You’ll want it to reach at least 160ºF to be sure all the stearic acid has melted.
Once the emulsion is stable and temperature is verified, allow the mixture to cool, stirring every so often to help it cool. Once it has reached 120ºF, add the Vitamin E Natural, Liquid Germall Plus, and fragrance. Stir well to combine.
Scoop the finished body butter into wide-mouth jars and cool completely before putting the lid on the jars.
I used Toasted Coconut Fragrance Oil in this body butter.
After cooling, the body butter had a lot more stiffness than I’d anticipated. Chalk it up to all the steariines in the Shea Butter and the added stearic acid.
It goes on smooth and rubs in easily, but it leaves behind a waxiness that doesn’t thrill me. I was aiming for something less heavy. On the plus side, it’s a long-lasting moisturizer! I washed dishes a few hours after applying the body butter, and my hands did not feel all dried out after I was finished; definitely want to keep that aspect of the formula.
Back to the drawing board for some tweaks to the recipe. Join me tomorrow to see what I changed!