Posts Tagged ‘homemade products’

Handmade Soap

Monday, January 13th, 2014

handmade soap My name is Amy Garrett, and I own Alberta Handmade Soap Co. It’s a tiny “just me with the support of my family” company located in rural Alberta so it’s been a lot of work getting seen, but I love my work and products, and my customers really make it worthwhile for me!

I am an American from Oregon who married a Canadian from Alberta, which is what started my soap making adventure (and living in Alberta) – I wanted to make handmade soap wedding favours, and it turned into a major part of my life! There was no way I could do it as a hobby, there is too many soaps to make in a week and my house couldn’t contain them all, so once we finished the immigration process into Canada and got moved up here, *and* learned all the Canadian legalities, I formed Alberta Handmade Soap Co. and it just keeps growing. It wasn’t long after bar soap that I started expanding what I make – it makes me very happy to make bath and body products that my customers love.

My specialty is cold process handmade soap, but I also make lotions and body butters, lip balms, bath bombs, and more, with more products on the horizon. I’m a new customer to Nature’s Garden, and the fragrance oils have been so well received in all my products – I am so happy with the quality! I use a few suppliers but can easily say that Nature’s Garden has replaced a large portion of my regular scents, and I’m adding so many new ones, they are all so nice; Pink Sugar and Pumpkin Apple Butter sold huge this season, what I thought would last me til spring is just about out of stock from just a month of holiday sales!

Citric Acid

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014

citric acidCitric Acid

Naturally found in bitter/sour tasting fruits such as oranges, limes, lemons, grapefruits, etc; citric acid is the naturally occurring organic acid that gives such fruits mentioned above their typical sour taste.  Although citric acid is found in various fruits and vegetables including raspberries, tomatoes, and some peppers, it is most potent in limes and lemons consisting of up to 8% of the dry fruit’s weight.  This amount varies based on factors like climate and soil conditions.

Besides fruits and vegetables, citric acid can also be produced from cane sugar, molasses, and dextrose as well.

For biochemistry means, citric acid occurs in the metabolism of nearly every living creature.  This is due to citric acids vital role in the Krebs cycle.  Outside the metabolic role of citric acid, it is also a common go to ingredient for cosmetics, pharmaceutical, food, beverage, and cleaning industries.  In fact, citric acid has been deemed safe by all major food regulatory agencies both on the national (FDA) and international end.

Sold most commonly in a powdered or crystalline form that is white, citric acid can be used as an antioxidant, preservative, pH adjuster, emulsifier, additive, cleanser, and stabilizer.

The industry yielding the most use out of citric acid is food and beverage.  This is because citric acid is an additive that can be found in everything from meat to ice cream to candy and especially soda pops.  Obviously, citric acid can be ingested and very few people are allergic to this ingredient.  Although a typically harmless additive; this natural substance is sour and when consumed in larger quantities, may cause an upset stomach.

On the cosmetic end of things, citric acid is starting to gain popularity.  More and more, people are starting to realize the benefits of using citric acid in their homemade bath and body products because of its pH adjusting abilities.  Items like bath tablets and bath bombs (or bath fizzes) require citric acid as a base ingredient for their formulation.  It is solely this ingredient’s interaction with baking soda that produces carbon dioxide the characteristically known and sought out fizzy action when introduced to water.  Citric acid is also used in masks, peels, creams and lotions because it is an alpha hydroxy acid, giving products great exfoliate and emollient properties.

To view some great bath bomb recipes, click here.

When it comes to antioxidants, citric acid is phenomenal.  Not only does this natural substance help to rejuvenate and refresh the skin, but it also helps to stall the aging process in your skin.  Citric acid also works as both a tonner and a cleanser.  For recipes outside of bath bombs, citric acid can be used up to .5% of the total recipes weight.  To add this ingredient to bath and body recipes, simply dissolve the citric acid in a liquid, and heat the mixture to 165 degrees Fahrenheit before blending it into your other ingredients.

The cleaning industry also has many uses for citric acid.  It is considered an environmentally friendly cleaning agent.

This natural substance makes a great water softener, breaking down the small amounts of metal that is commonly found in water.  When it comes to treating hard water, citric acid is an optimal choice for an all natural water softener.

As for a cleaning agent, citric acid is quickly gaining popularity in kitchen and bathroom cleansers.  Not only does citric acid remove hard water stains from glassware, but due to the nature of this natural ingredient, it works great as a deodorizer with its instinctive clean citrus scent.

To view a natural coffee maker cleaner recipe, please click here.

There are some cautions that should be noted with the hands on use of the concentrated (powdered form) citric acid.  Always use caution when dealing with citric acid.  Skin irritation may occur from interacting with large amounts of citric acid, especially if you have sensitive skin.  Always wash your hands after touching citric acid.  Never rub your eyes after touching citric acid.  Finally, when using products with citric acid for its alpha hydroxy acid benefits; prolonged and aggressive use is not advised.  Doing so will cause skin irritation.  Most skin treatments that involve alpha hydroxyl acid are followed by applying a facial toner that neutralizes the skin’s ph.

To store citric acid, it should be placed in an air tight container away from moisture.  The container should be kept at room temperature.  This will eliminate any chance of humidity from activating its fizzing ability.   If housed in this manner, citric acid can have a shelf life of up to multiple years. 

 

Smells Men Like

Friday, December 27th, 2013

Wild Wild West ScentWild Wild West Fragrance Oil - Fragrance Oil Spotlight

A clean and masculine type aroma, Wild Wild West Fragrance Oil is definitely one of the rugged smells men like.  This sexy scent works perfectly in any medium from car fresheners, to colognes, to soaps, and even candles.  This manly man’s scent is considered a keeper by many of our customers.  In fact, this wonderful leather based scent even receives compliments from our southern states customers who feel this scent smells just like home.

What does Wild Wild West Smell Like?

This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is a wild and sexy accord, combining top notes of Tumble Weeds, Basil Leaves, and Tonka Beans; followed by middle notes of Brushed Suede, Earthy Patchouli, and Amber Stone; all sitting on manly base notes of Aged Saddle Leather, Red Cedar, and Full Musk.  Gitty Up Cowboy! An NG Original Fragrance!

How Do Our Customers Use Wild Wild West Fragrance Oil?

For all of you candle crafters or home scenters, Wild Wild West Fragrance Oil is used in soy, WOW, Joy, Palm, and paraffin blend waxes.  This masculine fragrance oil has amazing scent throw and makes wonderfully strong tarts as well.  This scent also works very well in electric warmers, hanging car fresheners, and room sprays because of the aromas long lasting scent impression.

For bath and body crafters, this fragrance oil is a huge hit with male clientele.  Wild Wild West has a usage percentage of 5%, and is used to make: shave soap, shave gels, solid lotion bars, cologne, foaming body scrubs, melt and pour soaps, and even aftershave.  Finally, for those of you that are cold process soapers, this fragrance oil is easy to work with and makes perfect beer soap.  Here are the official results:  Perfect Pour.  No ricing, no acceleration.  No discoloration.  Scent is amazing!

Strong Berry Scent

Monday, December 23rd, 2013

twigs n berriesTwigs n Berries Fragrance Oil- Fragrance Oil Spotlight

This unique berry scent is very wonderful and uplifting.  This perfect outdoorsy scent is the perfect combination of sweet and juicy berries contrasted against earthy wood tones.  Twigs n Berries scent is considered a keeper by many of our customers.  This tangy berry mixture is super strong and sells products out in no time.

What does Twigs n Berries Smell Like?

This fragrance oil by Natures Garden is a fruity floral combination of strawberries, oranges, and apples; accompanied by sweet floral aromas of jasmine, rose geranium, and oakmoss. A Best Seller!

How Do Our Customers Use Twigs n Berries Fragrance Oil?

For those of you that are candle crafters; our customers use this fragrance oil in their paraffin soy blend, WOW, pillar of bliss, soy, and Joy wax candles.  The scent throw is terrifically strong from beginning to end in both the hot and cold throw.  Twigs n Berries Fragrance Oil also works well in oil burners and in sachet beads.  For extra room scenting fun, this scent can also be made into room sprays to bring a little of the outside, in.

On the bath and body end, Twigs n Berries Fragrance Oil is very well liked.  The usage percent for this fragrance oil is 5%, and is used to make:  lotions, melt and pour soaps, bubble baths, foaming sugar scrubs, bath splashes, lotions bars, and bubble bombs.  Finally, for those of you that are cold process soapers, this scent is awesome.   Here are the official results:  Perfect Pour, no ricing, no acceleration, yummy scent.  Discolors to a light cream.

Gifts for Guys

Saturday, December 7th, 2013

Dude Fragrance Oil On the hunt for gifts for guys? 

This holiday season show those special men in your life just how much you appreciate them with a homemade gift.    Homemade gifts are heartfelt, memorable, and are way less expensive than department store presents.  Plus, being that your gift is homemade, you can cater it exactly to the person whether it is your boyfriend, husband, grandfather, brother, uncle, etc.

These easy to make recipes are written with step by step instruction, and are tried and true being formulated, made, and tested.

Hydrating Hand SticksHydrating Hand Sticks-  Perfect for your man in the elements, this recipe provides skin conditioning, moisturizing elements, and a “weather proof” coating for the skin, especially skin that is chapped and windburned.  A great gift idea for mechanics, construction workers, hunters, or anyone that enjoys the outdoors; these hydrating hand sticks are the perfect size to stay on the move with your busy man.

rejuvenating foot balmRejuvenating Foot Balm Recipe-  Great for tired and achy feet, this foot balm recipe will be heaven on earth for the men in your life that need a little pick me up.  With energizing essential oils and conditioning ingredients this recipe is awesome for any man on the move.

edible massage barSexy Edible Massage Bar-  A wonderful gift for any man that deserves a massage at the end of the day, this recipe is one you can both enjoy!  This massage bar is the answer if massage oils are a little to messy for you or the man in your life’s liking.

whipped-shaving-soap-pic2Whipped Shaving Cream-  A solution for any man of shaving age on your holiday gift list, this shaving cream recipe provides an excellent sleek shave free of nicks and cuts.   Plus with a rich lathering foam, this whipped shaving cream makes a wonderful gift for a ideal shave every time.

Winter Body Butter RecipeWinter Body Butter-  Winter can do a harsh number on the skin with the wind, low humidity, and bone chilling temperatures.  This winter time body butter recipe is especially moisturizing and nourishing.

beer candleBeer Candle-  What man would not love this beer candle?  Perfect for any manly man on your list, this gel wax candle smells and looks just like beer (it even has froth).  A great addition to any man cave!

green camoGreen Camouflage Candle-  If your man is the outdoors type, this granulated candle done in camouflage fashion is your answer.  Easy to make and fun to design, this scented candle will really stand out!

Cold Process Beer SoapBeer Cold Process Soap Recipe- If cold process soaping is nothing new to you, this beer soap recipe is a true winner.  With it’s thick and creamy lather, these soap bars are worth the extra effort.

Cold Process Shaving SoapCold Process Shaving Soap Recipe-  If the men on your holiday gift list hold grooming high in priority, this shaving soap will be exactly want they want.  With skin loving benefits and amazing lather, this easy to make shaving soap will have your man grinning from ear to ear.

Hunters Cold Process SoapHunter’s Cold Process Soap-  Receiving rave reviews, this cold process soap recipe is loved by every man, especially the “hunting crowd”.

On a special note:  Because you are making these recipes from scratch, you are able to scent these items with any fragrance oil (body safe fragrance oil if it is a body product).  To see a full list of all the fragrance oil possibilities please click here.  If you are interested in masculine type fragrance oils like designer scents, or man themed aromas, check out Natures Garden’s Masculine Category of fragrances.