Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating Guar Gum Clumping in Shampoo

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  • Guar Gum Clumping in Shampoo

    Posted by SashaHayz on April 11, 2022 at 3:47 pm

    Hi everyone ! I’m working on a shampoo with  a small amount of  castor oil. I have catonic guar gum in the formula for thickening and conditioning however when I bottle it and leave overnight the guar gum forms a clump in the bottle.  I mixed the guar gum on the glycerin before adding to the water phase . Any idea why or how to fix ?

    Decyl glucoside  - 14 %
    CAPB   - 12%
    Peg 7 glyceryl cocoate - 2%
    Castor oil - 1%

    Water - 53.2%
    Aloe Vera Juice - 10%
    Gylcerin - 3%
    Guar gum - 0.3%

    Crothix - 3%
    Panthenol - 1
    Liquid Germal Plus - 0.5 %
    Fragrance - 0.5

    citric acid to adjust pH

    ketchito replied 1 year, 8 months ago 7 Members · 19 Replies
  • 19 Replies
  • evchem2

    Member
    April 11, 2022 at 6:12 pm

    you may need to adjust your pH to slightly acidic before you add surfactants to let the guar fully hydrate

  • SashaHayz

    Member
    April 11, 2022 at 8:15 pm

    evchem2 said:

    you may need to adjust your pH to slightly acidic before you add surfactants to let the guar fully hydrate

    So adjust to about pH 6 ? or does it need to be lower. 

  • ketchito

    Member
    April 12, 2022 at 1:28 pm

    I’m with @evchem2 on this. I’d go even a bit lower than 6, closer to 5. And giveit some good mixing before adding surfactants.

  • SashaHayz

    Member
    April 12, 2022 at 1:37 pm

    ketchito said:

    I’m with @evchem2 on this. I’d go even a bit lower than 6, closer to 5. And giveit some good mixing before adding surfactants.

    I tried what @evchem2 said and it helped but now instead of getting a big clump in the product I’m seeing small fish eyes. I’m wondering if its the amount of decyl glucoside that causing the problem.

  • paprik

    Member
    April 13, 2022 at 1:05 am

    Why are you adding the guar gum anyway? 
    Try it without, only with Crothix and see how it goes. 

    I don’t see a problem if you really premix it well with glycerin and add that to a water and slightly acidify it. . And let it hydrate for some time. Unless it does something bad with the Crothix. 

    Also, a note, reduce Panthenol input to 0.01%. It won’t have any benefits anyway and it is wasting your money. Your main humectant would be the glycerin. It is mainly a marketing ingredient and it will be washed away. 

    One more note, I am not sure if you have enough solubilize for your lipids. Castor oil is hard to solubilize and you have also 0.5% of fragrance which is basically free and may cause stability issues. 

  • SashaHayz

    Member
    April 13, 2022 at 2:53 am

    Main reason for adding cationic guar gum is because it has good conditioning properties and it gives the shampoo a nice feel.
    I think my problem with clumping may be because I was using decyl glucoside at 14 % I decided to drop it to 4% and put in 10% SLES and 13% CAPB. What method would you use to incorporate cationic guar gum with these surfactants? 

    I was also seeing separation of the castor oil as well so I dropped castor oil to 0.5 %. I’m hoping the peg 7 at 2% will be able to keep it solubilised. I removed panthenol as well because it really wasn’t needed. 

  • SashaHayz

    Member
    April 13, 2022 at 2:54 am

    Paprik said:

    Why are you adding the guar gum anyway? 
    Try it without, only with Crothix and see how it goes. 

    I don’t see a problem if you really premix it well with glycerin and add that to a water and slightly acidify it. . And let it hydrate for some time. Unless it does something bad with the Crothix. 

    Also, a note, reduce Panthenol input to 0.01%. It won’t have any benefits anyway and it is wasting your money. Your main humectant would be the glycerin. It is mainly a marketing ingredient and it will be washed away. 

    One more note, I am not sure if you have enough solubilize for your lipids. Castor oil is hard to solubilize and you have also 0.5% of fragrance which is basically free and may cause stability issues. 

    Main reason for adding cationic guar gum is because it has good conditioning properties and it gives the shampoo a nice feel. 
    I think my problem with clumping may be because I was using decyl glucoside at 14 % I decided to drop it to 4% and put in 10% SLES and 13% CAPB. What method would you use to incorporate cationic guar gum with these surfactants? 

    I was also seeing separation of the castor oil as well so I dropped castor oil to 0.5 %. I’m hoping the peg 7 at 2% will be able to keep it solubilised. I removed panthenol as well because it really wasn’t needed.

  • paprik

    Member
    April 13, 2022 at 3:30 am

    Ok, this changes situation. You only said Guar gum. This is non-ionic gum.
    Hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride is cationic guar derivative. And there’s a big difference. 
    So, Hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride does not need to be slurried. It goes straight into the water. You only need to acidify the water so it hydrates. 
    But, add that at the end. The gum should hydrate with all water available from the formula. As Decyl Glucoside is (usually) 50-52% active, the rest is water. CAPB is also 68-70% water .. I don’t think you add too much of it. 

    So I think what happened is, you let the gum swell with some water and after you add some extra, which was not “grabbed” by the gum. If that makes sense. So that causes the separation. 

    Regarding the oils, you need to solubilize them first. So you have to premix your lipids with solubilizer separately until homogenous and after slowly add to water phase in small increments and wait until water clears. 

    Hope it makes sense? Let me know if not :) Good luck! 

  • SashaHayz

    Member
    April 13, 2022 at 2:00 pm

    Paprik said:

    Ok, this changes situation. You only said Guar gum. This is non-ionic gum.
    Hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride is cationic guar derivative. And there’s a big difference. 
    So, Hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride does not need to be slurried. It goes straight into the water. You only need to acidify the water so it hydrates. 
    But, add that at the end. The gum should hydrate with all water available from the formula. As Decyl Glucoside is (usually) 50-52% active, the rest is water. CAPB is also 68-70% water .. I don’t think you add too much of it. 

    So I think what happened is, you let the gum swell with some water and after you add some extra, which was not “grabbed” by the gum. If that makes sense. So that causes the separation. 

    Regarding the oils, you need to solubilize them first. So you have to premix your lipids with solubilizer separately until homogenous and after slowly add to water phase in small increments and wait until water clears. 

    Hope it makes sense? Let me know if not :) Good luck

    Thank you this help a lot ! Just so I’m clear of the order of addition…
    Step 1 pour out water ( water ,glycerin, aloe juice)
    Step 2 Add my surfactants to the water phase and mix
    Step 3 Adjust pH to below 6
    Step 4 Mix oil in solublizer until homogeneous and slowly add to the mixture
    Step 5 Add cationic guar gum and mix
    Step 6 Add preservative and crothix

  • paprik

    Member
    April 13, 2022 at 6:06 pm

    Yep, try it. 
    I would measure the pH after adding the aloe juice. The one I had was really acidic and brought my pH to around 4. Try to have it close to neutral before adding cationic guar gum, so it has time to be properly dispersed in the water phase. This is my thinking. 

    Try it and let us know.

  • ketchito

    Member
    April 14, 2022 at 11:30 am

    @SashaHayz If you add Cationic guar as a premix, try to acidify the premix with some Citric acid or EDTA, so the polymer swells properly (you’ll see a change in color and a high increase in viscosity). If you don’t do that, the polymer won’t be able to fully expand and interact properly with your surfactants once in your formula.

  • SashaHayz

    Member
    April 15, 2022 at 8:03 pm

    Paprik said:

    Yep, try it. 
    I would measure the pH after adding the aloe juice. The one I had was really acidic and brought my pH to around 4. Try to have it close to neutral before adding cationic guar gum, so it has time to be properly dispersed in the water phase. This is my thinking. 

    Try it and let us know.

    It worked, I don’t have the clumping anymore   :) :smiley: . Would the same procedure work with polyquaternium 10 ? 

  • SashaHayz

    Member
    April 15, 2022 at 8:04 pm

    ketchito said:

    @SashaHayz If you add Cationic guar as a premix, try to acidify the premix with some Citric acid or EDTA, so the polymer swells properly (you’ll see a change in color and a high increase in viscosity). If you don’t do that, the polymer won’t be able to fully expand and interact properly with your surfactants once in your formula.

    It worked thank you so much ! 

  • cjames

    Member
    May 16, 2022 at 12:54 pm

    Hi May I ask is  Cationic Guar gum the same as Guar gum .I am in the UK and can not find  Cationic Guar gum. I have a formula the requires  Cationic Guar gum could I use Guar gum .Thank you 

  • ketchito

    Member
    May 16, 2022 at 1:30 pm

    @cjames No, they are two different ingredients. Unlike Guar gum, Cationic guar has a positive charge that confers it conditioning properties.

  • abdullah

    Member
    May 16, 2022 at 2:02 pm

    cjames said:

    Hi May I ask is  Cationic Guar gum the same as Guar gum .I am in the UK and can not find  Cationic Guar gum. I have a formula the requires  Cationic Guar gum could I use Guar gum .Thank you 

    Cationic guar gum has different types. The least expensive is called guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride. Search for that.

  • drjaysee

    Member
    June 9, 2022 at 7:00 am

    ketchito said:

    @cjames No, they are two different ingredients. Unlike Guar gum, Cationic guar has a positive charge that confers it conditioning properties.

    Abdullah said:

    cjames said:

    Hi May I ask is  Cationic Guar gum the same as Guar gum .I am in the UK and can not find  Cationic Guar gum. I have a formula the requires  Cationic Guar gum could I use Guar gum .Thank you 

    Cationic guar gum has different types. The least expensive is called guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride. Search for that.

    @Abdullah @ketchito you gave a alternative to guar gum but what is the solution with guar gum only, is there no solution? 

  • ketchito

    Member
    June 9, 2022 at 12:01 pm

    @drjayseesunish As mentioned before, guar gum and GHTC are two different ingredients (not alternatives for each other). In the case of Guar gum, I see no reason for clumping, rather than mechanical (eg., low mixing speed, inadecuate mixer, short mixing time). Gums have to be vigurously mixed and for quite some time, to priperly incorporate them and prevent clumping.

  • drjaysee

    Member
    June 9, 2022 at 4:22 pm

    ketchito said:

    @drjayseesunish As mentioned before, guar gum and GHTC are two different ingredients (not alternatives for each other). In the case of Guar gum, I see no reason for clumping, rather than mechanical (eg., low mixing speed, inadecuate mixer, short mixing time). Gums have to be vigurously mixed and for quite some time, to priperly incorporate them and prevent clumping.

    @ketchito thanks 
     I have made shampoo using guar gum and facing same problem. Now you told the reason behind it and I will do the same as you mentioned for guar gum. 

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