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reduce irritation in bubbly, lathery products, but they can be sticky and suppress foam. Polysorbate 20 is best used with fragrance or essential oils, while polysorbate 80 is better with carrier oils. For either, mix together 1 part oil, 1 part solubilizer before adding to your product. You may need to increase the amount as high as 1 part oil, 5 parts solubilizer to fully incorporate it, so experimentation is key here. They may create clear systems, but I have found that’s not often the case, sadly.
When I’m using powdered colorants in a bath bomb, I use about 5% polysorbate 80 with my powdered colorant, then mix it into the bath bomb mixture until combined. If you want to add some oil, mix it with the polysorbate 80 and colourant, then add to the dry mixture and combine.
Caprylyl/capryl glucoside is a certi ed Ecocert solubilizer with a suggested usage of 1% to 10%. It’s used a lot in facial cleansers and make-up removers as it’s a very gentle cleaner with a suggested usage rate of up to 5%. Unfortunately, it’s very sticky: I damaged the wood countertop in my workshop after a drop dripped and glued the bottle down tight! In my various experiments, I’ve used as much as 10 parts CCG to 1 part fragrance or essential oil and the product still required a good shake before using.
fragrance, essential, and carrier oils - the suggested starting point is 2% to 0.4% fragrance or essential oil – with no added stickiness. I mix the solubilizer and oil together, then add it to products like room or body sprays. You can use it at up to 5% in a bath bomb for dispersing colourants or adding emolliency in the same way I’ve used it above with polysorbate 80. Try it in a dispersing bath oil at 10%.
Cromollient SCE (INCI Di-PPG-2 myeth-10 adipate) is a PPG ester that also works very well as a gentle cleanser and emollient in facial products, like micellar waters and make-up removers. It’s not sticky, won’t suppress foam, and works well to detangle and reduce combing forces in hair conditioners. Use at 1% in leave on products or 3% in rinse off to create clear products in the heated or cool down phases. You can add it to bath oils at up to 10% or in bath bombs at up to 2% as a solubilizer and emollient. Mix with the oils well before adding it to a water only product.
Caprol Micro Express, also known as CME (INCI PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides (and) Polyglycerol-6 Dioleate (and) Glyceryl Caprylate/Caprate) can be used at up to 15% to create non-sticky, clear systems, although I suggest using it at 10% or under. It works well as an emollient for facial or hair care products, so add it wherever you want moisturizing awesomeness. The easiest way to use it for
To use, combine fragrance or essential oil and CCG together, mix well, then add to the water based product. I don’t suggest this for bath bombs as it can be quite sticky and attract moisture, setting off the  zz well before it hits the tub.
PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil is another inexpensive and easily sourced solubilizer used as an emollient and foam booster with a usage rate of up to 10% in the heated or cool down phase. It can create clear solutions with
a room or body spray is to use about 9 parts water to 1 part CME and 1% fragrance oil and preservative. Mix the water, preservative, and CME together then add the fragrance or essential oil. It’s suitable for micellar waters at 3% or lower, and can be used in bath bombs at around 5%.
Finally, remember to check the compatibility of any solubilizer with your preservatives as some may not work with parabens at higher concentrations.
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