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Handmade 101
Troubleshooting: Making Lotion From Scratch
Author: Wholesale Supplies Plus
Thursday, March 24, 2016

1. Challenge: The water and oils separate.

Lotion is made up of waters and oils. The two naturally want to separate so an emulsifying wax is used in the formulation to help them stay together. If not enough emulsifying wax is used or if water is added to a really thick lotion the marriage breaks up and the oil will float on top of the water.


2. Challenge: Pigments that speckle in lotion.

Pigments are dispersible and not soluble so they will always speckle in lotion. For this reason we recommend coloring lotions with liquid dyes designed for cosmetics. They will dissolve in the water portion of your formula and produce beautiful colors. Remember to never us so much dye that the skin becomes colored.


3. Challenge: Lotion that feels slick and greasy

Lotions contain oils and butters and some are naturally slicker than others. Some absorb into the skin fast and others are considered a “dry oil” because they rub into the skin feeling instantly dry. You want to formulate your lotion using a blend of all of these to obtain the after-touch you like best. Another option is “Crafter’s Choice Slick Fix” – a powder that helps absorb the feel of oil. 


4. Challenge: Lotions that clog a lotion pump

Not all lotions are formulated to be used with bottles. Some are so thick and luxurious they require a jar. When designing a new lotion formula, make sure you test your lotion pumps after your lotions have set for a good 3-4 days. Use the pump a few times and then wait another day or two before testing again. If the pump appears clogged you can reformulate your recipe to not be as thick or you can package your product in a jar.

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