Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating Layer separation of shampoo on using HEC For thickening

  • Layer separation of shampoo on using HEC For thickening

    Posted by Richa on December 29, 2020 at 1:42 pm

    There is layer separation of my shampoo when I used HEC as thickening agent.
    The formulation is as follows:
    1) aloe Vera extract - 21%
    2) reetha extract - 12%
    3) shikakai extract - 7%
    4) amla extract - 3%
    5) glycerine
    6) HEC - 0.5%
    7) TEA to neutralize HEC
    8) Lemongrass E.O. - 0.4%
    9) mint E.O. - 0.1%
    10) SLES - 36.5%
    11) CAPB 
    12) CDEA
    13) polyquat
    14) honey - 2.5%
    15) citric acid to get pH 
    16) salt for thickening 
    17) EDTA
    18) potassium Sorbate 

    HEC SWELLS and separates overnight.

    Where am I making a mistake?

    How to thicken this shampoo?

    Carpool cannot be used because of SLES.
    Xanthum gum is not compatible with polyquat. So it is ruled out.
    Now HEC has layer separation!!!

    Richa replied 3 years, 1 month ago 4 Members · 5 Replies
  • 5 Replies
  • ketchito

    December 29, 2020 at 7:44 pm

    @Richa Carbopols can (and usually are) used with anionic surfactants, like SLES. Once neutralized, Carbopols have a negative charge, similarly to SLES. Polyquats can be used with this system as well, providing that you add CAPB before the Polyquat. 

    By the way, you have way too many extracts, and in very high amounts, considering that in a rinse-off product they won’t do much, and will challenge your preservative system (actually, potassium sorbate alone not only is not advisable as a broad spectrum preservative, but it’ll be easily overwhelmed by your high level of botanicals).

  • em88

    December 29, 2020 at 8:27 pm

    First of all “7) TEA to neutralize HEC” is incorrect. HEC does not need to be neutralized! 

    Where am I making a mistake?”
    Don’t use HEC, you can try PEG-120 Methyl Glucose Dioleate.

  • justaerin

    December 29, 2020 at 10:14 pm
    I did a bit of experimenting with HEC recently, because I had bought it and why not. The HEC is whatever they sell at Lotioncrafter that I am too lazy to check right now.
    What I learned is that this HEC really wants to be hydrated in nearly plain water that is neutral or alkaline before adding anything active. It was ok with a small amount of glycerin, and heating made it hydrate faster. 0.1% tetrasodium EDTA was fine too.
    It does not like acidic water. As in, it won’t hydrate in acidic solution under about pH 6. Didn’t matter how long I left it or how much I stirred it or heated it.
    If you are trying to hydrate it in 21% aloe vera with a bunch of other extracts too, you are going to be disappointed. Even if you neutralize the aloe/extracts before adding the HEC, I don’t know if there will be enough water in it to make it work.
    Try a batch where you replace all of the extracts with plain water and see if that works.

  • Richa

    December 31, 2020 at 7:29 am

    @em88. Thanks. Will use PEG-120 MGD and check

  • Richa

    December 31, 2020 at 7:32 am

    Thanks for your observations @justaerin. Will see how my changed formulation worjs

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