Weekend Wonderings: Using the FAQ and newbies’ section to get information. Is polysorbate 20 less sticky than polysorbate 80? How should polysorbate 80 smell?

Just a quick reminder that the FAQ and the Newbies’ section of the blog contain a lot of information that might interest you. I would say that fully half of the questions I see in e-mail and comments could be easily answered with a quick trip to the FAQ. I don’t get a lot of…...

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Weekend Wonderings: So many comments! (Part two)

A tip for the day: If you don’t have all the ingredients for a product on the blog, try searching for another recipe for that product. For instance, if you want to make a toner but don’t have the extract I mention, try searching for another toner recipe to see if there’s one that doesn’t…...

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Chemistry Thursday: The difference between solubilizers and emulsifiers redux

In this post on solubilizers, someone asked: I still don’t get the difference between a solubilizer and a emulsifier. If I mix propylene glycol (in substitution for the surfactant), cetyl alcohol or stearic acid in water, will I be getting a lotion?  The quick answer is no because there’s nothing in your question that is…...

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Ingredient: Solubilizers – a comparison (updated)

I spent last week testing PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil, and I thought I’d share my initial thoughts and compare it to some of the other solubilizers you might use. If you want to see what I’m referring to, click on one of these posts… Ingredient: PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil My method for testing Part 1:…...

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Ingredient: PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil – Yuzu fragrance oil and peppermint essential oil

I’ve been experimenting with PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil and my fragrance oils. We took a look at the methods I’m using to test this ingredient, and I’ve reported my results with black amber lavender and Clementine cupcake fragrance oils already. What happens when I use Yuzu fragrance oil and peppermint essential oil with this solubilizer?…...

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Chemistry Thursday: More ways to measure – molarity

In this Saturday’s Weekend Wonderings, we discussed molarity and % w/v (weight/volume), but let’s get into a little more detail. In chemistry, what is a mole? A mole is how much 6.02 x 10(23) atoms weighs. (The 23 is to the power of as in 10(2) is 10 x 10. So 10(23) is 10 x 10…...

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Ingredient: PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil – the results for Black Amber Lavender and Clementine Cupcake (part 1)

I’m quite excited to be playing with PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil, which is a new-to-me solubilizer that promises to improve foam and create clear solutions. Yesterday, I told you about the experiments I did with this solubilizer, and today we’ll take a look at some of the results! BLACK AMBER LAVENDER FRAGRANCE OIL On day 6…...

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Ingredient: PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil – my methods for testing

I finally found time to play with my PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil over my holidays, so let’s take a look at the results of my experiments! (I’ve done this kind of testing before using caprylyl/capryl glucoside. Check out the post here!) I chose four different fragrances that I hoped would cover the kinds I might…...

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Weekend Wonderings: Mixing small amounts of oil with water, separation of oils in a serum, and heating and holding the phases together

In this post on witch hazel, Anonymous asks: I am working on an insect repellent using 90% Witch hazel and 10% EO. Will the two ever blend or will it have to be shaken each time? They won’t blend and they will need to be shaken every time.  Oil and water don’t mix. To get them to…...

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Weekend wonderings: Solubilizers, herbs in shampoo bars, and modifying lip balms

In this post, Steve wrote: Thank you very much for your generosity in sharing the magical world of fragrances. I’m still doing my research and tonight have been studying the whole solubilizer thing; and if you please, I have a question.Let’s say I may making up a hypothetical formula of a mix of distilled water and…...

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