Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating List some of your favourite ingredients to work with

  • List some of your favourite ingredients to work with

    Posted by mikebavington on February 18, 2014 at 11:04 am

    I suspect many members have 2 to 3 favourite ingredients they ‘go to’ quite often when completing a formula. Members repeatedly get good results from using their favourite ingredients and therefore continue to go back to such ingredients when needed.

    I think it would be a great resource for everyone to post a few of their favourite, often used ingredients. That way, people who are stuck in their formulation process could read about what others have successfully incorporated into past products.

    I will list my favourite ingredients:

    Polyhexanide - antimicrobial, preservative, cooling effect, very mild on skin
    Hydroxyethylcellulose - emulsifier, stability agent, very mild on skin
    Phenyl Trimethicone - silicone, great for highly increasing spf rating while keeping viscosity low

    Note: The ingredients you choose to list could be ones that you have used personally, ones that you know others have used often with success, or ingredients that you might have spent much time researching, even if you didnt end up using them in the end.

    microformulation replied 9 years, 9 months ago 8 Members · 8 Replies
  • 8 Replies
  • chemicalmatt

    February 18, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    Mike, I’ll offer up C12- 15 Alkyl Benzoate (Finsolv TN).  As I am fond of saying: what CAN’T it do? Among other things it serves as “Poor Man’s phenyl trimethicone”, since it gives 70% of the shine at one-fourth the cost as your fave, also stabilizes SPF, and is completely miscible with cyclomethicone. It can de-grease petrolatum or beeswax and de-oil mineral oil or any other.

    Also in “ester-land” is octyl isononanoate, as versatile a workhorse ester as you’ll find, and one that many suppliers offer now that it’s secret powers have been established.

    In the preservation area: p-chloro m-xylenol (PCMX).  It has limitations in solubility and odor, but it works great even at 0.10%, at any pH, especially with phenoxyethanol, and is approved virtually everywhere.  Originally listed in the British Pharmocopaeia if memory serves, where it was first used to sanitize latrines during WWI.  “Poor Man’s triclosan” if you will, with none of the bad press.

    (This is a good idea by the way.)

  • chemist77

    February 18, 2014 at 8:59 pm

    @Mike great thread you have started.

  • Ayla

    February 20, 2014 at 5:07 am

    I love Polyquaternium-37 ! For the feeling in gels, shampoo, emulsion… almost everywhere !

  • oldperry

    February 20, 2014 at 9:34 am

    I was always a fan of Glycol Stearate.  It’s just fun to see the pearl develop.

    And Carbomer 940.  Sure it’s a pain to get into solution but the cool, stable gels you can make are unmatched.
    My go to preservative is DMDM Hydantoin.  Not popular in some circles but it’s the most effective one I’ve seen.
  • Zink

    February 21, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    Benzoyl Peroxide, makes my work more exciting. 

  • microformulation

    February 21, 2014 at 2:24 pm


  • Bobzchemist

    February 21, 2014 at 2:52 pm
    I don’t know, Mark. That’s a very dangerous chemical…


  • microformulation

    February 21, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    I have heard it is even found in cancer cells!

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