Archive for the ‘humectant’ Category

Firming Facial Mask

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

make your own facial maskFirming Facial Mask

Whether you are looking to spend some quality time with the girls, or just wanting to treat yourself; using a homemade facial mask is the route to go.

Not only is making a facial mask super easy, it is also a great way to tone, firm, and even revitalize your face.  There are a variety of herbs and clays that you can use to make your very own facial masks.  Each herb or clay has its very own distinctive skin loving benefits that you can introduce into your facial masks.  The herb and clay that you select is dependent upon what you want the end results of your mask to have.

For this firming facial mask recipe, the herb that was focused on was Hibiscus.  This includes both hibiscus flowers and hibiscus flower powder.

Hibiscus is quite the amazing flower and has even been affectionately named “the botox plant”.  Used in skin and hair care for thousands of years, this amazing herb is a natural source of alpha hydroxy acids (Vitamin C).  These acids can gently exfoliate your skin while encouraging the replacement of dead and dull cells with new ones.  This herb also has anti aging properties with the capability of soothing, smoothing, and firming the skin.

As for the main ingredient for the firming facial mask, Red Moroccan clay was selected.  This clay is one of the purest forms of cosmetic clays available.  With the ability to draw out toxins and impurities, Red Moroccan clay also acts as a moisturizing agent for your skin.

To help to keep the skin moisturized vegetable glycerin is also used in this recipe.  Vegetable Glycerin  is a humectant.  What this means is that this ingredient will help to draw moisture to your skin and keep it there.

If you want to make this recipe, all ingredients can be found at Natures Garden.

Now, on to the firming facial mask recipe:
This easy homemade recipe will make 2 facial masks.  The total time the masks take to make is about 45 minutes.  Game on wrinkles!

Step 1:  In a pot, weigh out 120 grams of distilled water.  Then, place the water on the stove top and heat it until it reaches 180 degrees Fahrenheit.  Once you hit this temperature, allow the water to hold for an additional 20 minutes.

Step 2:  Weigh out 2 grams of Hibiscus flowers.  Place the dried flowers into an empty tea bag and tie it shut.  Place the tea bag into a coffee cup.

Step 3:  When the 20 minutes have elapsed, remove the water from the heat source.  Now, carefully pour the hot water into the coffee over.  Using a spoon, hold the tea bag down into the water until it is completely saturated.  Then allow the tea bag to steep for about 10 minutes or so.  Occassionally while the tea bag is steeping, use a spoon to press the tea bag.  This will ensure you have a nice and strong Hibiscus Tea.

Step 4:  In a small bowl, weigh out 23 grams of Red Moroccan clay and 3 grams of Hibiscus flower powder.  Break up any clumps you may have.  Then, gently stir these two ingredients together.

Step 5:  When your hibiscus tea is finished steeping, in a separate bowl, weigh out 18 grams of the tea.  To this add 6 grams of vegetable glycerin.  Stir.

Step 6:  Now, carefully scoop the clay/flower mixture into the tea/glycerin bowl.  With each scoop that is added, stir well to fully incorporate.  Keep adding the clay/flower mixture until it is all in the tea/glycerin.    Keep stirring this until there is no visible powder left.

Note:  If you plan on selling this mixed facial mask, you will need to add 1% optiphen preservative to the mask at a temperature that is not higher than 140F.  This will help prevent bacterial growth.  If you are making this recipe for self use, but do not plan to use all of it at one time, place the remainder in the refrigerator up to 1 week.  Throw away after 1 week if the mixture is not properly preserved.

Now, to use your firming facial mask:

Once the mixture has cooled, start applying it generously to your face.  Once the mask is completely applied, allow it to fully dry.  This drying process will take about 20 minutes to complete.  As the mask dries, you will notice a color change in the mask itself.  Your face will also begin to feel tighter.

When the mask has dried, wash it off with warm water.  Then, pat your face dry with a towel.

Please Note:  Hibiscus WILL stain your clothes/towels.  It is advisable to wear clothes and use towels that can be stained.  Also, there will be a slight stain left on your face once the mask is removed.  This stain will disappear after an additional wash or two.

Natures Garden is not responsible for the performance of any of the recipes provided on our website. Testing is your responsibility. If you plan to resell any recipes we provide, it is your responsibility to adhere to all FDA regulations. If there are ingredients listed in a recipe that Natures Garden does not sell, we cannot offer any advice on where to purchase those ingredients.

Shea Melt and Pour Soap

Saturday, February 1st, 2014

shea butter melt and pour soap It is really easy to make Shea melt and pour soap!

Melt and Pour Soap is one of the easiest and most fun ways to make a homemade product.  This type of soap making is an ideal venture for many reasons.

Melt and Pour soap projects are a great family activity to do with children; creating an enjoyable family time crafting together.
These soaps are a remarkable and memorable treat to give out as party favors, or gifts for loved ones and friends.
And, the fact that melt and pour soap is so easy to work with; no matter what your skill level you can create extraordinary works of art that are fun to wash with too.

So, regardless of the reason for making Melt and Pour Soap, one thing is for sure; you will love how the finished product leaves your skin feeling clean, soft, and supple.

Shea melt and pour soap differs from store bought brands in that it is not drying or harsh on your skin.  This soap base is detergent free, SLS free, and gluten free.  The Shea Butter melt and pour soap base is filled with superb skin loving agents like:

  • Shea butter which is ultra conditioning and nourishing.
  • Coconut oil which provides a wonderful bubble filled lather.
  • Sunflower oil, which acts as an amazing moisturizing agent for your skin.  In fact, sunflower oil also adds an even bigger element of a rich, creamy, and bubbly lather.
  • Glycerin, which works as an astonishing cleansing emulsifier.  It helps to lift dirt, oil, and impurities up and away from your skin.  This allows the everyday dirt and grime to easily be whisked away.  Plus, glycerin is also a humectant.  This means that it can actually drawl moisture from the air and pull it to the skin.

Besides all of the healthy and nourishing aspects to Shea melt and pour soap; there is also a beautiful artistic side to it too.  The adventure as to where you take your soaps is defined only by you; the crafter.  Shea melt and pour soap is fool proof.  It can be heated time and time again, without losing its integrity.

You can cater your soap to your specific like through shape, color, and scent.  You can even take your soap making skill to the next level by the addition of other skin loving attributes or additives.  Natures Garden carries all of the ingredients you need to add luxurious elements like rich cocoa butter or antioxidant packed vitamin E.  Through the addition of herbs like oatmeal, calendula flowers, rose petals, lavender flowers, paprika powder, or poppy seed, you can provide natural exfoliation.  Not only will your soap bar benefits exceed expectations, but you will also be adding a unique look, feel, and dimension to your soaps.

If we have you super excited about the possibility of making Shea soap or possibly other body products; but you still have unanswered questions, Natures Garden is here to help.  You can visit our website for free creative recipes and tips that have been tried and tested.  We also have in depth classes with step by step instruction for beginner soap makers.  And, you can always contact us via email, or connect with us on Facebook.

Shea Butter

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

Shea ButterShea Butter

An essential element to Africans for thousands of years, the benefits of Shea Butter are quickly becoming center stage in many western parts of the world.  Shea butter is a substance that naturally contains vitamins a and e.  This butter is very beneficial to skin care and medicinal industries.  It can be added to various body products such as lotions or salves for anti-inflammatory (reduce inflammation), emollient (softening or soothing skin), and humectant (retaining or keeping moisture) properties.   But, more over, Shea butter also assists with the removal of scars and stretch marks.  Shea butter can even help with skin irritations such as diaper rashes.

Shea Butter comes from the wild growing Karite tree in Africa. The Karite tree can live up to 300 years of age.  The Karite tree starts to produce seeds at 10-15 years of age.  These seeds (or nuts) parallel that of a large plum. The fruit of the Karite tree has become a priceless item to the people of Africa.  Often considered “women’s gold”, these nuts not only provide food and medicine to the people of Africa, but they are also a main source of income for many of the women who are employed by the production of Shea butter.

Shea butter can be made in various different ways:

When a Karite tree produces nuts, they are collected.  Traditionally, the nuts are then opened and roasted.  This roasting is done to ensure a constant texture in the Shea butter.  When this consistency is achieved, the butter is then removed from the nuts, kneaded, and finally is analyzed for quality.  Once it is approved, the Shea butter, which has a ivory or cream like color, is then exported out of Africa.

Another way to get Shea butter is the crushing and boiling of the nuts.  Since the Shea butter is really a fatty substance, it will float to the top of the water.  The Shea butter is then skimmed out of the water and then it naturally solidifies.  Once it is in a solid form, it is checked for quality and exported.

Shea butter can also be extracted by the cold pressing method.   

Shea butter can also be filtered.  This form of Shea butter involves a process of clay filtering which allows for a smoother texture.  This clay filtering method allows for the removal of any shell particles that may still be in the Shea Butter.

Physically speaking Shea butter is a great substance to apply raw (right on the skin).  Its butter like consistency readily melts (from the heat of our bodies), and is absorbed into the skin.  Shea butter is invaluable to both the medicinal and cosmetic industries. 

Medical Uses:

Some of the key components as to why Shea butter is beneficial to the medical industry are that Shea butter is:  antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti inflammatory.

Shea Butter works as a natural sun block.  This is because it is able to absorb some ultraviolet rays, due to the fact that Shea butter contains the component cinnamic acid.  The addition of Shea butter to a lotion or cream will allow the product to provide some sun blocking properties against harmful UV rays.

Shea butter is also used as a base in many medicinal ointments because of its anti-inflammatory properties.

This amazing product can even help to alleviate discomfort from bruises and even burns (heat/wind/sun burns).  Medicinally speaking, using raw Shea butter on sore and achy muscles will actually drain the toxins from the area, helping to reduce the soreness.

This is a go to ingredient for massaging people who suffer from arthritis and pains in their joints.  This is because Shea butter contains stigmasterol, an agent for preventing stiffness.

And, within the realm of massaging, Shea butter is a perfect massaging agent.  Because this ingredient melts when it is in contact with the skin, it creates an ideal situation for deep tissue massages.

Cosmetic Uses:

Shea butter is one of the best all natural skin care products available hence it growing popularity in this booming market.

Due to its moisturizing benefits, Shea butter prevents chapping and extremely dry skin.  It is a great go to ingredient for dermatitis, psoriasis, and eczema.  As an exemplary moisturizer, Shea butter contains many fatty acids.  These fatty acids are necessary to help keep skin looking supple and youthful.  Shea butter also assists our skin in keeping its elasticity.  This is because Shea butter can actually encourage collagen production from our bodies.

Shea butter can be used as a natural hair conditioner.  But, the healthy hair benefits do not stop there.  Shea Butter can actually prevent hair from breaking and thinning and actually stimulates hair growth!  Shea butter can even be used as hair pomade.

For hand creams and body lotions, not only does the addition of Shea butter help to keep skin moisturized, but it also helps with cracked cuticles and even fortifies nail beds.  This ingredient is ideal for the super dry areas of your skin such as elbows, knees, and heels.

In shaving creams Shea butter can help to prevent irritations.  It even promotes the skin to have a radiant and healthy glow.

Shea Butter is ideal for soap making.  Because many of the components of Shea butter are non-saponifiable, therefore, many of the nutrients and skin loving elements are still existent in the finished bar of soap.  To view a great cold process soap making recipe that contains Shea butter and all its healthy benefits, please click here. 

To help firm and rejuvenate sagged, wrinkled, or aged skin, use Shea butter in the formulation of your bath and body products.  Promoting cell renewal and increasing circulation, this is an overall great ingredient for your whole body product line.

A great makeup remover that does not clog pores, Shea butter can be used to remove facial makeup in a cinch.

As you can see, Shea butter has many versatile uses.  A great addition to any bath and body recipe, Shea butter is easy to work with and will provide your products will numerous healthy benefits.  To purchase Shea butter from a trusted supplier in the soap and cosmetic industry, please click on this link.

Sodium Lactate in Soap & Lotions

Thursday, September 26th, 2013
sodium lactate

Sodium Lactate: Most commonly derived by the fermentation of corn or beets, this natural body product additive has a smooth, clear appearance with almost no odor.

 

Sodium Lactate is quickly gaining the spotlight as an additive in the creation of bath and body products.  Although it is not a mandatory ingredient, sodium lactate can hold its own when it comes to functionality in a recipe.  

Sodium lactate, a water soluble ingredient, is added during the water phase of the creation.  It is used in bath products and has many beneficial aspects to its use.  It is a natural moisturizer, humectant (bringing moisture to itself), and pH regulator.  Sodium Lactate is used in a variety of bath products such as soaps, lotions, and shampoos.   In fact, when it comes to lotion formulations, sodium lactate can be used to replace vegetable glycerin.  Why is this a benefit?  Using sodium lactate instead of vegetable glycerin will give you a final product that lacks the stickiness that usually occurs when using vegetable glycerin in a lotion recipe.  Sodium lactate also helps reduce the “greasiness” of the oils in your emulsions, while improving the absorption capability of emulsions.   In emulsions like lotions, sodium lactate is used at the rate of 1-3% of the weight of your recipe.

Sodium lactate is used in cold process soap recipes to harden the soap, making for a harder, longer lasting bar of soap in the tub.  One of the great bonuses of using sodium lactate in your soap recipe is the easier releasing of the soap from the mold, especially if you are using more of a complex shaped mold.  Besides adding moisture and conditioning aspects to your soap, sodium lactate helps to increase lather and can even add mildness to the soap.

For cold process soap makers, the sodium lactate is added to your cooled lye water solution.  What results is a harder bar of soap that will release from the mold easier, and can be cut earlier than the traditional cold process soap.  Also, the physical appearance of a soap that has the addition of sodium lactate will improve.  The bars will have a creamier look to them, and the soap will provide a more luxurious lather. Sodium Lactate aids in keeping your soap batter in a liquid state longer.  This makes coloring/swirling and pouring easier.  But once the soap is molded, sodium lactate will harden your soap faster, allowing for the soap to unmold easily.

For hot process soap makers, sodium lactate is added to your lye water solution, and other ingredients are mixed in.

Testing is key for finding the right percentage of use for sodium lactate in your recipe.  For a great starting point is 1/2 oz.  sodium lactate per pound of soap oils. But, test, test, test!  Be cautious not to add too much sodium lactate, this will cause your soap to be brittle and/or crumbly.

Natures Garden is not responsible for the performance of any of the recipes provided on our website. Testing is your responsibility. If you plan to resell any recipes we provide, it is your responsibility to adhere to all FDA regulations. If there are ingredients listed in a recipe that Natures Garden does not sell, we cannot offer any advice on where to purchase those ingredients.