Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating Cream Formulation Advice Needed

  • Cream Formulation Advice Needed

    Posted by Jamjar on August 29, 2019 at 3:42 am

    Hi Everyone, 

    I need some help with my cream formulation. I am trying to make an inexpensive cream that leaves the feel of cream being on your skin for a bit of time (hence the high oil content). I have tried a number of different options and my latest option (see formula below) still has the look of being slightly grainy and perhaps a touch too thick. Here is the formula:

    Water - 69%
    Glycerin - 5 %
    Sunflower Oil - 10%
    Mineral Oil - 4%
    Shea Butter - 4%
    CetoSteryl Alcohol - 2%
    GMS SE - 3.8%
    Ceteareth 20 - 1.2%
    Euxyl k320 - 1%

    My two main problems are that the feeling of cream being on your skin doesn’t last as long as I would like and secondly, the look of the cream has an almost buttery look rather than thick cream look. 

    Any tips and advice would be greatly appreciated. 

    Jamjar replied 4 years, 9 months ago 3 Members · 7 Replies
  • 7 Replies
  • lopamudra

    August 29, 2019 at 4:03 am

    u can add some 0.2% of xanthan gum as thickener and simultaneously reduce shea butter by 1 %…..

  • ngarayeva001

    August 29, 2019 at 9:17 am

    To have a long lasting effect on skin, you need an occlusive agent. As I can see mineral oil in your formula I assume you won’t mind using petrolatum and dimethicone as well (so nice to see someone who is making a real product not some “free of toxic chemicals” nonsense). Both are very cheap. You have good amount of glycerin for a long lasting cream for dry skin. My main suggestion to improve the texture is to swap Glyceryl Stearate SE to a blend of Glyceryl Stearate and PEG-100 Stearate that is known under different brand names (for example Arlacel 165). Glyceryl Stearate SE often responsible for a grainy texture.

    Suggested change:

    Water 68%
    Xanthan gum 0.20%
    Glycerin 5.0%
    Sunflower oil 8.0%
    Mineral oil 2.0%
    Shea Butter 0.5%
    Petrolatum 4.0%
    Dimeticone 2.0%
    Cetearyl Alcohol 4.0%
    Glyceryl Stearate/PEG-100 Stearate 4.0%
    Ceteareth 20 1.0%
    BHT 0.05%
    Tocopherol 0.10%
    Euxyl k320 1.0%

    I don’t think you need ceteareth 20% as Arlacel 165 seems sufficient to me. You can get rid of shea butter at all, or leave a tiny amount for claims.
    You can use pretty much any dimethicone (I think 1000 cst should be the cheapest one). 
    I suggest adding antioxidants to prevent that sunflower oil from oxidation.
    Small amount of xanthan will improve stability.
    You should get nice and thick cream that lasts on skin, doesn’t soap (thank to dimethicone) and has reasonable stability.

  • Jamjar

    August 29, 2019 at 11:58 am

    That is seriously helpful. Thank you Ngarayeva001. 

    I have been waiting for my supply of Tocopherol to come and that’s why I didn’t add it (Still 10 weeks away). I only have Tocopherol Acetate at the moment. I have the Glyceryl Stearate / Peg-100 Stearate Emulsifier so I will give that a try and see how that turns out. Great suggestion. I also don’t have a supplier of Dimethicone at the moment so I will start trying to source some. 

    Lastly, I have been testing Carbomer 940 with some positive results. Would that be worth using or should I try Xanthan Gum?

  • ngarayeva001

    August 29, 2019 at 12:41 pm

    You are welcome @Jamjar. Tocopheryl acetate is an active ingredient (it supposed to have skin benefits, but there is not much scientific proof for that, so it’s a “claim” ingredient) and doesn’t work as an antioxidant for oils unfortunately, so you will have to wait for tocopherol. It doesn’t stop you from experimenting with the base. You will not notice differences in the texture after adding it.

    Carbomers provide much better aesthetics than xanthan, so if you have that option, just use carbomer.

    Dimethicone is a great ingredient, and you will only benefit from having it. I understand you are looking for commercial quantities, but if you want to get some to experiment with it (to see what it brings to your formula) I know many repackers around the world. If you let me know where you are based, I can advise where you might get a small amount.

  • Jamjar

    August 29, 2019 at 12:51 pm

    So I have managed to source some Dimethicone. Which do you recommend DC200/100 or DC200/350? 

    Thoughts on Stearic Acid and Cetyl Alcohol? I have found Stearic Acid tends to give a nice texture but for some reason, I have found stability a challenge when using it. 

  • ngarayeva001

    August 29, 2019 at 2:42 pm

    Re: dimethicone, I don’t think you will notice much difference. But in theory higher cst is more occlusive, so 200/350.

    Stearic Acid and Cetyl Alcohol - it’s a matter of taste. I find stearic acid too draggy and don’t like adding it to my moisturisers. I know people who think it’s “creamy” and gives nice texture. I don’t see a reason why it should create any stability challenges, but depends on the formula. Cetyl Alcohol is more smooth than cetearyl alcohol. It’s the least draggy fatty alcohol I tried, so usually it’a my thickener of choice. You will have to experiment with all of them and decide which one you like the best. You can also combine them in one formula.

  • Jamjar

    August 29, 2019 at 5:45 pm

    Thanks for all the comments and help. Extremely helpful. Thank you 

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