Surfactants: Fatty acid isethionates (like sodium cocoyl isethionate or SCI) – updated February 12, 2021

I do love the isethionates, found in the form of sodium cocoyl isethionate (SCI) or ammonium cocoyl isethionate (ACI). The sodium version comes in prills, flakes, or noodles, while the ammonium version comes in liquid form at 30% active. If you look at this picture, the M+ signifies either sodium or ammonium, both of which...

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Basic instructions for lotion making (updated August 15, 2020)

These are what I consider to be the basic instructions for making lotions for most types of emulsifiers, including Polawax, emulsifying wax, Incroquat BTMS-50, Simulsol 165/Lotionpro™ 165, and more. Always check how the emulsifier you’re using needs to be used as this method won’t work for other emulsifiers, like Olivem 1000, Montanov 68 MB, Varisoft...

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#alltheingredients: St. John’s Wort hydrosol & extract (water soluble)

We met St John’s wort infused oil in June 2020, so I thought it was time to look at other ingredients made using St John’s wort like the gorgeous hydrosol I’ve been using a lot lately. I wrote the first version of this post in March 2010! Wow!  St John’s wort is claimed to offer...

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Liquorice root extract

Liquorice root (or licorice root, if you’re American – INCI: Glycrrhiza glabra) is supposed to work as an anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, anti-irritant, demulcent, skin whitening, and wound healing ingredient when applied topically. Let’s take a look at what gives liquorice its awesome qualities. Liquorice root contains amino acids, flavonoids, phytosterols like ß-sitosterol and stigmasterol, coumarins,...

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Question: What does “coconut derived” mean?

As people refer me to things they consider to be natural products, I keep seeing the words “coconut derived” beside surfactants, fatty alcohols, fatty acids, and other ingredients that are, in fact, coconut derived. But what does this mean? Coconut oil is often the starting point for surfactants because it has a fatty acid profile...

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