Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating Skin Making a lotion base go further

  • Making a lotion base go further

    Posted by plasma800 on December 15, 2022 at 8:08 pm

    Hi Everyone. I do a lot of reading here, but remain quiet.  I enjoyed Perry’s course.

    I have been working with a vegetable based lotion formula for a little while now (not made by me) and I am happy with the results of the base.  The base works good as is, the draw back is it doesn’t fill very far.

    I would now like to make the this base fill more bottles.  Additionally, I would like to explore ideas for adding both gentle and light scents (for those who like perfumed lotions) and/or marketing/efficacy ingredients.

    I want to preface this by saying that I am a newbie at this level of formulation.  I’ve been in the industry for a longer time, but I am now working towards deeper formulation in house or private lab.

    Does anyone have a suggestion as to how they would approach the following set of ingredients to get more fill and/or efficacy?  The maker of the base has suggested a distilled water.  And this might be the answer.  Or there may be more complex answers for this situation.

    Here are the base ingredients: Aloe Vera Juice, Avocado Oil, Shea Butter, Natural Vegetable Emulsifying Wax, Vegetable Stearic Acid, Vegetable Glycerin, Silver Dihydrogen Citrate

    I filled into 2fl oz HDPE bottles using a pneumatic filler. This worked, but the bottle was only for sampling.  It’s not a desirable packaging solution for a production run.   

    I wanted to inquire additionally if anyone has seen or used a collapsible tube filling and sealing machine that was intended more for smaller runs, 500 to 1000 pieces.

    Collapsible tubes with a flip top seem ideal for this product, but I was wanting to perform our batch prep and filling in-house.  My next best option is Airless packaging.  Expensive on the wholesale side, but very nice in the customer experience.  I am not opposed to additional formulation, batching and filling out of house.   Near to Texas would cut down on shipping costs.

    Thank you very much in advance for your expertise and advice.

    I am located in Texas.

    plasma800 replied 1 year, 6 months ago 4 Members · 10 Replies
  • 10 Replies
  • Graillotion

    Member
    December 15, 2022 at 8:24 pm

    Add a better preservation system.

  • plasma800

    Member
    December 15, 2022 at 8:33 pm

    Add a better preservation system.

    I had also considered this…  If you have a suggested system, I would be extremely receptive.

  • ozgirl

    Member
    December 15, 2022 at 9:51 pm
    Bases are really only designed for adding a small amount of fragrance and possibly a very small amount of an extract but not much else. If you add more than this you run the risk of destabilizing the emulsion and overwhelming the preservative system. Do not add more water as you will just dilute the preservative rendering it ineffective and cause the lotion to become contaminated with bacteria etc.
    If you are unhappy with the base you can either look for another base or you can formulate your own product.
  • plasma800

    Member
    December 15, 2022 at 10:46 pm

    ozgirl said:

    Bases are really only designed for adding a small amount of fragrance and possibly a very small amount of an extract but not much else. If you add more than this you run the risk of destabilizing the emulsion and overwhelming the preservative system. Do not add more water as you will just dilute the preservative rendering it ineffective and cause the lotion to become contaminated with bacteria etc.
    If you are unhappy with the base you can either look for another base or you can formulate your own product.

    I see. 

    I am not unhappy with the base, however economics matter.  Margins open as when the product goes further.

    The maker of the base doesn’t want to discuss any changes such as this beyond a rather standard statement saying that water can be added for dilution. 

    I completely understand their reluctance to modify further, and I believe the company is reputable.  I understand it’s up to me to move my own soccer ball forward.

    And yes, I could of course formulate.  This is not a bad thought, although I prefer tip-toeing.

  • Joy

    Member
    December 16, 2022 at 6:09 am

    I definitely agree that a better preservative is needed, and that would be the first thing to change. 

    As for “stretching” the base, while diluting with water will increase the overall lotion quantity, you’ll also need to increase the preservative accordingly, make sure the lotion stays emulsified, performs well, and you’ll have a thinner lotion. Since you liked the original, you may not like this new version. If you want to keep it thicker, then you would have to re-add less expensive oils/waxes/gums/etc., but then you’d be reformulating the lotion anyways, but just badly since it wouldn’t have been made with the proper steps from the start, so at that point why not start over and formulate it yourself?
  • plasma800

    Member
    December 16, 2022 at 3:15 pm

    Joy said:

    I definitely agree that a better preservative is needed, and that would be the first thing to change. 

    As for “stretching” the base, while diluting with water will increase the overall lotion quantity, you’ll also need to increase the preservative accordingly, make sure the lotion stays emulsified, performs well, and you’ll have a thinner lotion. Since you liked the original, you may not like this new version. If you want to keep it thicker, then you would have to re-add less expensive oils/waxes/gums/etc., but then you’d be reformulating the lotion anyways, but just badly since it wouldn’t have been made with the proper steps from the start, so at that point why not start over and formulate it yourself?

    Yes I see your point.

    What preservative system would you reach for first?
  • Graillotion

    Member
    December 16, 2022 at 7:45 pm

    Probably of the ones that will be readily available to you… Liquid Germall Plus.  Anything with Aloe….needs a good one.

    Is this really the best formula/base you could find?  This is below mommy blogger construct.  Doesn’t even have a chelate.

  • plasma800

    Member
    December 17, 2022 at 3:01 pm

    Probably of the ones that will be readily available to you… Liquid Germall Plus.  Anything with Aloe….needs a good one.

    Is this really the best formula/base you could find?  This is below mommy blogger construct.  Doesn’t even have a chelate.

    No, of course not.  There are very very many makers of quality skin care products in the States.  I am VERY receptive to recommendations to shops that sell skin and face lotion in bulk/wholesale.

  • Graillotion

    Member
    December 17, 2022 at 8:16 pm

    Here is a VERY similar base…..but has a better preservative and a chelate.  This company has numerous bases…..and offers inexpensive sample sizes….so you could try lots of them.  It appears they have basic competence in formulating.

    As I formulate….I have never tried anyone’s base….so can not speak to their haptics, stability and performance.

    Good Luck @plasma800 

    Simple Lotion - Buy Bulk | Essential Wholesale

  • plasma800

    Member
    December 17, 2022 at 8:37 pm

    Here is a VERY similar base…..but has a better preservative and a chelate.  This company has numerous bases…..and offers inexpensive sample sizes….so you could try lots of them.  It appears they have basic competence in formulating.

    As I formulate….I have never tried anyone’s base….so can not speak to their haptics, stability and performance.

    Good Luck @plasma800 

    Simple Lotion - Buy Bulk | Essential Wholesale

    Thank you. While I haven’t done much business with EW, I am familiar them.

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