Use 1 formula for multiple uses

If i have a formula for body wash, can use that same formula for shampoo and Dish soap
Or If i had a multipurpose cleaner formula can i use for kitchen and bathroom as well?


  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    There are certainly companies who do this.  

  • Also, Do you have to change the formula to add a different color?
  • Thank you,
    Can you give me your insight on this? 1 formula multiple uses?
  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    It depends on the color, but colors typically are compatible across formulas.  So, no you don't usually have to change the formula.
  • I often use the cleaner that is assumed to be used in the bathroom for the kitchen, but dish washing liquid and bodywash are not the same thing. You will either have a product that is ok to use on body but doesn't properly clean your pots, or you will have a product that cleans your pots but also dries skin out.

    You can, however easily repurpose body wash as a shampoo if you add some polyquat 10 or polyquat 7.
  • Thanks For the insights.
  • I tried to see (purely out of curiosity) if 27% SLES, as supplied, is good for washing dishes. The answer is no. It can't clean an oily pan as quickly and efficiently as Fairy dishwashing liquid. I also tried olefin sulfonate (because it's cheap). Same result. So I concluded if these detergents (that are intended to be used in personal care) don't work at such concentrations they not going to wash anything when diluted to body wash appropriate concentration (15-20% of active surf matter). 
  • MarkBroussardMarkBroussard Member, Professional Chemist

    Generally, Yes, within a category.  For instance, a personal care body wash can also be used as a shampoo/body wash and hand soap or facial soap, for instance.  Personally, I only use one product for all of the above purposes because working with so many surfactants and chemicals over the years, but primarily surfactants, my skin, hands in particular, has become quite sensitized and irritates easily.  Add to that a hair conditioner and moisturizer for shaving and 3 products take care of most of my needs.

    I've never tried washing my dishes with it.  But, by the same token, I never wash my face, hands, hair & body with a dishwash detergent.
    Chemist/Microbiologist formulating in the Organic & Naturals arena under ECOCert/Natural Products Assn/Whole Foods/National Organic Program guidelines focused skincare & haircare products. 

    See website for details
  • Yes ,
    Thank you for that.
    This is a new field and i am absorbing all the knowledge i can. Since my customers want less bottles and multiple uses.
  • MarkBroussardMarkBroussard Member, Professional Chemist

    You can even throw conditioning ingredients into the combo body wash/shampoo to eliminate a separate hair conditioning product ... it won't perform as good as a dedicated hair conditioner, but certainly would be acceptable.
    Chemist/Microbiologist formulating in the Organic & Naturals arena under ECOCert/Natural Products Assn/Whole Foods/National Organic Program guidelines focused skincare & haircare products. 

    See website for details
  • I don't know whether it's an acceptable alternative for you @Royalbre, but you might want to consider syndet bar products. The reason why i am saying it, bars are solid, and very forgiving from mixing anionics and cationics point of view. You can make a syndet bar with relatively inexpensive anionic detergents (SLSa), throw BTMS-50 in it for conditioning and position it as three in one product (shampoo/conditioner/body wash), plus no bottles at all. These products also last long, and travel friendly. 

  • Something like
    7% active SLES (Sodium laureth sulfate)
    2% active SLS (Sodium lauryl sulfate)
    3% active CAPB (Cocamidopropylbetaine)
    water q.s. to 100%
    salt q.s. as needed to thicken it

    and it can work as
    shower gel
    mild, non-irritating dishwash
    bathroom and surface cleaner
    laundry prespotter
    and so on.
  • @Gunther Thank you,
    My customers want natural products.

  • Thats why I am researching all i can to satisfy my  customers wants.
  • Royalbre said:
    @Gunther Thank you,
    My customers want natural products.

    The performance, cleansing power, foam, and irritation of everything natural plainly sucks. Synthetics do far better.

    To start with, the only true natural surfactants come from plants like soapworth and they're just inadequate for about any practical application.

    Then any other single surfactants is synthetic.
    Even "natural" surfactants like polyglucosides or saponified vegetable oil soaps are actually synthetic, even if derived from natural materials.

    Vegetable-derived is probably your best bet.
  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    Consumers want products that work. They might want a natural story to go along with it but if the products don't work, they won't buy it again.

    There are no truly natural cosmetic products. There isn't a shampoo bush or a lipstick tree. Only through man-made, synthetic processing can products be made.
  • Then you have to go back to stone age and just make castile soap. It will be a bad shampoo, a bad body wash, a bad dish washing liquid but it is as natural as you can get. It also will be a bad floor washing liquid. I was given a bottle of castile soap and didn't find a better use for it.
  • @Perry, I thought you should see this video. "Natural" brought to the extreme,  guy makes KOH out of wood ashes (from grille) and then makes soap. As natural as possible (if ignore that burning is also a chemical reaction).
  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    Interesting. But in addition to the unnatural heating, saponification is a synthetic reaction.
  • ozgirlozgirl Member, PCF student
    Formulas can definitely be used as a multi-use products but you need to consider what your formula can actually do and what your target market will accept.

    A shampoo/body wash/ hand wash product will probably be well accepted because these products already exist. If you develop the formula as a shampoo with some light conditioning this will also be acceptable as a body & hand wash.

    Trying to use a shampoo as a dish washing liquid might work but only to a limited extent as dish washing liquids are generally designed to cut through grease and you won't get this performance with a well-formulated shampoo. 

    A kitchen spray and wipe type cleaner is usually mildly alkaline and is developed for grease-cutting. Bathroom cleaners are often acidic to cut help remove soap scum. So neither would work particularly well in the other location. Also keep in mind that some natural stone surfaces in kitchens are sensitive to acidic cleaners.

    Hope this helps. :)
  • Yes, Thank you from everyone , all  of this helps.
  • If the product isnt Effective I dont want to put our company name on it. 

    Thanks for the video as well. I will now focus on The safest Effective approach.
    When I finally consider this new lane, I didnt know it was this complex. 
  • How you determine the effectiveness?
    Do you tweak the formula after the formula is made and tested?
  • @Perry @ngarayeva001 @Gunther Here is a panacea for " one in all formula " of dish wash liquid which contains Alovera,  Glycerin,  Vitamin E , Pantenot and many more from . In fact it is a premium dish wash liquid.  

    To create mild and skin friendly dishwashing liquids, use SLES with three moles of EO like Pilot’s Calfoam ES-303. Cocamidopropyl betaine can be added for improved mildness. Other amphoterics like sodium lauroamphoacetate can also be used for mildness. Aloe vera, vitamin E, panthenol, glycerin and other herbal extracts can be added to the formula for skin care benefits in premium products. Essential oils, such as lavender and rosemary, can be used for aromatherapy benefits. Triclosan is commonly used as an antibacterial agent. To claim antibacterial/antimicrobial efficacy, the product must be registered with appropriate regulatory agencies such as FDA and EPA.

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