Formulating Baby Wash (losing viscosity after 24hrs)

Morning All,

I am currently trying to formulate a baby wash to use. I usually set it to a viscosity 3500cps to 2500cps for a few hours but when I return the next day it is water thin.

My formula added in that order are

                                 QS %
Water                        to 100
EDTA                          0.05
Panthenol                    0.5
Glycerine                      2
SLES 70%                     12.5
CAPB 30%                    2.5
Aloe Extract                 0.2
Vitamin E                     0.1
Nacar (Pearling Agent)  4
Lactic Acid 88%            0.05
NaCl                             1

I even tried a second batch where I added Cocamide MEA 2% to help thickened and it again went to a high viscosity before going back to being water thin overnight.

Can someone guide me on what I am doing wrong?


  • First measure the pH when thick and then later, thin.
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  • pH was 5.55 after being made and over the weekend it is 5.45
  • When the viscosity goes thin, do a salt curve analysis.

    If you don't find a good salt level, you could adjust your formula. Your ratios seem a little off with 1:12 Betaine:SLES. You might try a 1:4 ratio so the final % would be about...

    SLES 70% = 12.5
    CAPB 30% = 7.0

  • Hi Perry is this with MEA included in the formula or not?
  • Drop the glycerine

    Allow 72 hours to get a final viscosity.

  • @anne86sarah - without but you can also include it. The MEA will work as an opacifying agent. But it looks like you've already got a pearlizing agent so maybe you don't need it.

  • There is one thing that works every time crothix liquid (PEG-150). 1 to 1.5% will assure good viscosity. Also if you want to go ‘natural’ for a baby product, I would say replace SLES to coco-glucoside and thicken it with xantham gum (not more than 1%). The texture however would not be as nice as with crothix.
  • @Perry the COCAMIDE MEA works great in clear systems too, never heard it to be used as opacifying agent though. 
    I see that 0.1% Vitamin E as well, with such low surfactants this oil will crash the viscosity over time. As Perry said,  readjust the surfactant ratio and in my opinion that Vitamin E isn't a hero in this formulation. 
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