This is my second post about how to make your own lotion. To start with the basics, click here.
What is an emulsifier?
Water and oil do not mix, as I’m sure you’ve noticed before. An emulsifier binds water and fat so that they do not separate. An emulsifier is only necessary if you are making a product that contains both water and fat (oils, butters).
Do I really need an emulsifier?
If you’re making a product that contains both water and fat, then yes, you must have an emulsifier otherwise your product will separate into distinct layers, which is not at all desirable. So if you’re making lotion, cream, or ointment, you must use an emulsifier. If you are making body butter, you do not need one.
What are my options?
There are really only two good options as far as emulsifiers go. You can use emulsifying wax and/or conditioning emulsifier which is also known as BTMS. I know people who say that beeswax is an emulsifier but it really isn’t a very good one, in my opinion. Your product will separate over time if you use beeswax alone. I know other people who use a combination of beeswax and borax but I prefer not to use borax on my skin. Emulsifying wax and conditioning emulsifier are the best ones and very easy to use. Both of these waxes can be purchased at Brambleberry.
You can also look into playing around with proportions using a combination of lecithin and xantham gum. More to come on this shortly!
I hope this answers any questions about emulsifiers. If you’d like more information, have questions, or would like to request a specific type of recipe, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below.