Posts Tagged ‘humectants’

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.

Why Does M&P Soap Sweat

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

melt and pour soap

Why Does M&P Soap Sweat?

Melt and Pour Soap Bases contain high levels of vegetable glycerin.  Glycerin is a natural byproduct of the saponification process.   The ingredient glycerin is a humectant.  A humectant is a substance that can retain and preserve moisture, therefore also preventing loss of moisture as well.  Humectants are very important in bath and body products.  Having a moisturizing aspect to your products is especially crucial for the dry skin type products.

Sometimes, during the manufacturing process of melt and pour soaps, extra glycerin is added.  Glycerin is a key ingredient for making clear soaps.  Some types of melt and pour soaps even have up to 20% of pure glycerin in them (this would be why glycerin is listed so highly on the ingredients label).  But remember this glycerin is what gives melt and pour soap some of its highly sought after qualities, easy to color and mold, skin loving nature, mild and gentle soap (good for children and sensitive skinned), and very highly moisturizing naturally.

In fact, it is believed that in theory when you wash your hands with glycerin soap, there will be a thin layer of glycerin that is left behind after you rinse off the lather.  This layer of glycerin then does its humectant job and pulls moisture from the air, keeping your hand moisturized until the next wash.  But, it is also this same ingredient which is causing your melt and pour soap to “sweat”.  Some people believe that m&p sweat is inevitable, but there are some steps you can take to help avoid and reduce sweat.

Because glycerin is a humectant, the sweat that is produced after m&p soap in unmolded is actually condensation from the air that the glycerin drew out unto itself.  This is a very important element to remember if you live in an area with high heat and high humidity, or if you are soaping while it is raining outside.  Humidity is the number one cause for sweat.

How to Reduce M&P Soap Sweat

One of the best suggestions that we have for reducing the amount of sweat on your soaps is to have a dehumidifier in your soaping area.  You also want to keep the temperature of the room where you are soaping constant.  Drastic changes in temperature will also enhance soap sweat.

The first option in reducing sweat on m&p soap, especially if you live in a very humid area, is to store unmolded soaps in an airtight container.  By doing this, you are eliminating any extra moisture to be retained by the glycerin.  One tip we have learned from our customers is to spread a thin layer of aroma beads into the bottom of the air tight container.  Since aroma beads absorb liquid, this will also better your chances of having an air tight moisture free environment for your soaps to dry and harden.

In addition to the aroma beads, you will want to use drying racks in your containers if possible.  Setting your soap directly on top of the aroma beads for long periods of time will also dry out your soaps.  The time limit that the soaps can be in the air tight container is 2 hrs.  The soaps should also be checked and rotated every 30 minutes.

Some soap crafters use muslin bags to lay their soap out to dry, rotating them once a day.  This however will only work if you live in an area that does not have high humidity.

Although there is some debate as to when you can wrap your soap to avoid sweat, the general consensus is to wrap your soaps immediately after unmolding, if you are not storing them in an airtight container.   Regardless of whether you are using, plastic wrap or saran wrap (sealed with a heat gun), or shrink wrap, the sooner you get the soaps covered, the less chance glycerin has to draw moisture to the outside of the soap.

Another way to reduce sweat forming on the soap is to allow the soap to cool and harden naturally.  You want your soaps to harden at room temperature (70-72 degrees).  Even though you can speed up the hardening process by placing your molds in the fridge/freezer, it should NEVER be any longer than 15-20 minutes depending on the size of your mold.  Also, this step should never occur right after you poured the hot melted soap in the mold.  Wait until your soap has already started to harden.  The drastic temperature change from piping hot to freezing cold will lead to soap sweat.  And, you never want to completely freeze soap.  When the frozen soap thaws, you can almost guarantee soap sweat.

On a closing note, soap sweat does not affect any of the soap’s abilities.  Soap sweat happens naturally in humid environments that the soap is in.  Although using the preventative measures listed above will help to reduce the amount of soap sweat that occurs on your bars of soap, soap sweat may still appear.  The humectant agents in your soap are just doing their job, collecting moisture from the air, just as it will to moisturize your skin.