Preservatives in Scrubs?
Like lotions, we have to talk about preservatives because a preservative is an anti-microbial solution that helps prevent mold and bacteria and other kind of yucky things from growing in your products. There are some great broad spectrum preservatives you can use for scrubs and if it's an oil based scrub or a water based scrub you need to be thinking like is this an oil based product, is this a water based product which will mix in. But Germaben, Optiphen, Optiphen ND, and Phenonip just like lotions are great options to use. Using preservatives in scrubs is a somewhat of a more controversial topic in the kind of DIY do it yourself community because if you are just making a scrub that only has oil in it and salt in it, do you need to use a preservative? Right, their like nothing's gonna grow in there. The question is what's the end user gonna do with it, right. Is the end user going to put this in their hot, warm, moist shower and leave it there for days and then open it up and use some...
on their legs and arms and then take their wet hand and scoop more in and wet hand and scoop more in and then close it back up and let sit there in the beautiful, hot, warm, moist environment? You know, there's a good chance they will. So it's a personal preference if you want to use a preservative in your scrub. I generally err on the side of caution and if you're selling the product, I generally recommend using a broad spectrum preservative at a .5% usage rate in your scrub and that's by the total weight so that would include your salts, and your butters and all of that kind of stuff. Preservatives are not things like antioxidants, so GSE, Grapefruit Seed Extract, ROE, Rosemary Oil Extract, and Vitamin E are great at extending the shelf life of your scrub but they don't act as a really good broad spectrum preservative. Are there any questions kind of about that really basic stuff before we just dive right in and kind of start mixing?
I have this question is from Lynn Kelter, I have a lot of extracts in powder form which I use in cold press process soap, cold press soap, but can I use them in lotion and how so they don't clump? And in what phase can I?
So sorry, that was about lotion.
No, it's fine. We can talk about extracts that are powder based 'cause that can apply to lotion and that can apply to scrubs. So if you have extracts that are powder based, I'm curious if those are ground up herbs so if they're like ground up herbs like if you're using actual ground up herbs in your scrubs then I definitely would go with a preservative just so you know. But ground up anything that's powder, if it doesn't dissolve in water, you are going to feel it in a lotion. Right, like if it doesn't dissolve 100% away when you add your lotion, you're gonna feel a little bit of grit which is why it would be ideal in a scrub. But usually with that type of thing you would either figure out if it's water soluble or oil soluble 'cause water soluble, add it to the water phase, get that dissolved in, if it's oil soluble, you can add it at the end when you're doing lotions. And if you were doing it in scrubs, you would do it kind of in the powder phase. So you would add it to actually one of these powders or one of these exfoliants, good to go?
I got one more question,
For you so far. It's from Stacy Frost, what about your drains? Do seeds and loofah cause clogged pipes?
What about your drain, yes. Okay, so that's a good, I'm so glad you asked about your drains. I'm sure your plumbers also are delighted that you're caring about your drains. Do seeds and loofah and all this cause clogged pipes? So we are really, really hard on our drains, right. Think about all the stuff we put our dishwater disposal, right, think about what we do. That's one of the reasons why it's so important that you're using irradiated product so you don't accidentally have things growing. Like for example, every year when I work with pumpkins to make Halloween stuff for the kids, I'm left with all these pumpkin seeds and I'm always like, I can do something beauty wise with them. And so I'll grind them up and I'll make them into a scrub and mash them up and I really wanna do something with them. Those if they go down the drain, they do have a chance that they could sprout and germinate so that's something to definitely keep in mind. When you're just normal usage right, you would not have to be worrying about your drains. For example, if you were gonna use this scrub, you'd literally be using like that much. You know a couple tablespoons for your whole body. So you wouldn't have to worry about drains or anything like that. Now if you're manufacturing this in giant vats because you have figured out how to sell this product into multiple retail stores, then that's definitely a different story and you wanna be having a really robust drain system similar to what they would have in restaurants. So that's a great question but for normal home use, you don't have to worry about that.
So, I know we talked about this earlier in the class when we were talking about different products but the question came up again from Kimmy Leman. Is there a more natural preservative option?
Is there a more natural preservative option that you could use to make sure that your consumer when they were using this product in the shower didn't accidentally introduce microbes and grow, there's really not a more tried and true natural preservative option so there's a lot of really great preservative options out there that are quote natural and let's be clear guys, you wouldn't be able to just go out to a Japanese honeysuckle for example which is a really common natural preservative you see out there and get like extract out of it yourself. Like there is a lot of lab work that happens to make natural preservatives. But there are a lot of natural preservatives in there and they have so many restrictions on the pH and the temperature and the usage rates and the storage conditions that they're not very feasible for home crafters to use and actually expect them to work. When you get bigger though, if you have big dreams of selling into every Whole Foods in the entire universe and you know you're gonna do it, you will eventually have a clean kitchen with negative air pressure and people wearing white lab coats and the whole deal and you'll be able to play with and use some of the more natural preservative options that are out there that are newer and be able to use them effectively. But for the home crafter, the home do it yourselfer, there's not a lot of natural options out there and it's really important for your own safety and for your family and friends and customer safety that you are, you take extra care of them. That said, salts have been used to cure meats for centuries and preserve meats so there is definitely a lot, like I said, there is controversy in the homemade bath and body like industry about if you really need a preservative in every single thing you make. This particular one with the Himalayan pink sea salt that we're going to be working on next, I didn't put a preservative in. I feel really confident that the recipe formulation as is, is gonna stay mold free under most uses. So I didn't put a preservative in here and in fact, this is one of the handmade beauty box projects and these are these really cute labels that were done for them and I love how cute they turned out. At this point, hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of people have made this recipe and have reported so many positive things with it and no sign of mold, or growth, or bacteria.