Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating Hair What might impart this tan/beige/cream color to shampoo?

  • What might impart this tan/beige/cream color to shampoo?

    Posted by chemicalooze on February 6, 2023 at 8:23 pm

    I have a client sample that I need to recreate (left) and was given a base formula with the basics:

    Xanthan gum

    Decyl glucoside

    Citric acid

    Sodium chloride

    Phenoxyethanol, DHA (and) benzyl alcohol


    The sample on the right is what I got when I added EGMS as an opacifier. I thought maybe the preservative + fragrance might get that color I was looking for but no dice. Does anyone know what I could add to the formula to naturally achieve that color or is it probably just pigment?

    Lab replied 1 year, 2 months ago 5 Members · 5 Replies
  • 5 Replies
  • MariaSibon

    February 7, 2023 at 5:54 am

    I do not see any picture to see the colour.

    But bare in mind that if it is an old sample decoloration might occur due to the fragrance decomposition to colorful substances such as vanillin. If it a “sweet” fragrance it is very likely to contain high content of vanillin.

  • chemicalooze

    February 7, 2023 at 7:38 am

    Oh it appears the picture didn’t load but this should be it

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 2 months ago by  chemicalooze.
  • ketchito

    February 7, 2023 at 8:14 am

    Still no picture, at least I don’t see it 🤓. As mentioned before, fragrance oxidation could be driving color drift.

    Regarding your formula, perhaps you don’t need NaCl, since the viscosity increase happens when besides CAPB, you have an anionic surfactant.

  • ozgirl

    February 7, 2023 at 2:50 pm

    DHA discolors over time to a yellow /brown color so this is probably what is causing the color in your sample.

  • Lab

    February 8, 2023 at 6:26 am

    Sorry, as your photos didn’t load I guess I misunderstood something. I will answer for both possibilities, guide yourself according to what you want:

    IF your formula has a color you DO NOT want:

    • Try solubilizing your fragrance and preservative in Cocamidopropyl Betaine
    • Decrease the % of fragrance, if it has its own coloring (non-transparent)
    • Check batches of your raw materials to make sure the expiration date is okay

    IF you WANT your formula to have a different coloring:

    • Add dyes, clay (you can call it a “detox shampoo”) or something
    • Change your fragrance to one that already has natural coloring
    • Add keratin and/or hydrolyzed proteins and/or extracts that have a brownish color or stronger (from 0.2% - 1% you already get a good result)
    • Use a pearlescent
    • Make a 2-in-1 emulsified shampoo (cleans and conditions) and add some strong color active (non-transparent)

    I hope it helps! (:

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