Solid haircare and skincare have been gaining popularity over the past few years, and with good reason. They cut down on plastic packaging, they usually contain little to no water, they're packed full of nutrients, they tend to last longer than their creamy counterparts - which saves you money in the long run and... they're pretty easy to make yourself!
With the NZ border starting to open up again and the idea of travel starting to flicker back into our collective consciousness, I thought it would be fun to look at putting together an entirely DIY solid travel pack.
Buy our easy-to-follow, pre-measured kit here.
Makes approx 6 x 50g bars
240g SCI surfactant (Use a face mask when working with SCI)
60g decyl glucoside
40g cetearyl alcohol
30g conditioner pellets
8g cocoa butter, certified organic, deodorised
6g hydrolysed wheat protein or hydrolysed quinoa
6g lactic acid
8g essential oil or fragrance oil of your choice.
2g Geogard 221
(Work in a well ventilated area, put on your dusk mask and turn on the extractor fan if you have one, the SCI fumes are very unpleasant at the beginning.)
- Melt Step 1 ingredients in a pot on the stove.
- Once it's starting to melt, blend with a stick blender to speed up the process and get a smoother finished bar.
- Blend until the mixture comes together to form a paste-like consistency.
- Take the pot off the heat and blend in Step 2 ingredients.
- Using a spatula, pour the mixture into moulds. Smooth top over with a knife. It can be difficult to get a clean finish so don’t worry if it’s a bit messy.
- Pop them in the fridge to speed up the setting process.
Apply bar to wet hair and build up a lather, shampoo as normal.
Buy our easy-to-follow, pre-measured kit here.
Makes 6 x 50g bars
250g conditioner pellets
40g cocoa butter, certified organic, deodorised
8g hydrolysed wheat protein or hydrolysed quinoa
8g essential oil of your choice
2g Geogard 221
For those wishing to avoid wheat, substitute the hydrolysed wheat protein with anther 8g of glycerin.
- In a pot gently melt the conditioner pellets and cocoa butter.
- Once melted take off the heat and stir in the rest of the ingredients.
- Pour into moulds and leave to set.
- Refrigerate to speed up the process.
Starting and the ends of hair, work the bar up until you can feel the conditioning properties activate. Separate hair with fingers and work through.
Shampoo and conditioner bar ingredientsSome of these ingredients may be unfamiliar so here's a quick summary of what they are and what they do.
SCI (sodium cocoyl isethionate) - a coconut oil-based surfactant. It is very mild on skin, hair and eyes and has a silky skin feel. SCI makes a great lather and is good for making liquid shampoos and solid shampoo bars.
Conditioner pellets (aka BTMS-25) - Derived from rapeseed oil and palm oil (RSPO mass balance certified), these pellets make a luxurious hair conditioner (the best we've ever come across) and hair detangler for leave-on and rinse-off products.
Decyl glucoside – one of the first of the alkyl polyglucoside (APG) surfactants. APG surfactants are obtained from renewable, plant-derived raw materials, such as vegetable oils and starch. They have first-rate environmental and skin compatibility profiles and fit in well with consumer demands for wellness, 'green solutions', mildness to human skin, and safety for human health.
Lactic acid - Our lactic acid is produced from fermented corn. It is used to make a harder and longer-lasting bar and has excellent exfoliant, moisturising and deep cleansing properties.
Hydrolysed wheat protein – derived from wheat germ it is used to increase hydration and elasticity, protect cuticles and strengthen hair. Because of its low molecular weight, it easily penetrates the hair shaft and absorbs into the inner fibres of the hair.
Hydrolysed quinoa - is considered a complete protein, packed with vitamins and minerals as well as 17 amino acids, including all eight essential amino acids, which help repair damage to the hair shaft while its proteins coat and strengthen the hair. It can help to gently cleanse and nourish your hair while aiding in hair colour retention, conditioning and protection. Also said to aid in hair growth while preventing breakage, increase shine and healthy appearance of the hair.
Coco Caprylate – a skin-conditioning agent naturally derived from coconut oil to provide hydration, spreadability and slip.
Organic glycerin - palm oil free, vegetable oil based, mainly soybean and coconut oil. Glycerin is a sugar alcohol which acts as a moisturiser (emollient) and humectant, meaning it absorbs water from the air. Most glycerins are palm-oil based, so please beware.
Geogard 221 - Ecocert approved, broad spectrum preservative.
Makes one 120g bar - use our Batch Size Calculator and the percentages provided here to easily adjust the volume of your batch.
42g | 35% Shea butter, certified organic, unrefined
40.8g | 34% Cherry kernel oil, certified organic
37.2 | 31% Candelilla wax
- Weigh your ingredients
- Gently melt on the stovetop
- Pour into mould/s
- Allow to set
- Pop out of mould
Gently rub on skin, the bar should soften on contact with skin so give it a moment to warm up. Massage in.
Lotion bar ingredients and substitutions
Wax - I've made this bar with candelilla wax to make it vegan, you could also use beeswax or another vegan wax like sunflower or rice bran. Each wax can produce a slightly different final product so just be aware you may have to do some adjusting.
Butter - You can use refined or unrefined shea butter, or swap it out for another soft butter such as mango. The consistency of the butter will change the consistency of the final bar. I used shea butter because it's softest and I am using quite a high ratio of wax.
Carrier Oil - You can use any liquid carrier oil you want, or a mixture of several, just keep the entire ratio of liquid oil the same.
Scent - I kept this one unscented because I wanted to be able to use it on my face and I personally prefer unscented products for facial use. If you wanted to scent it you could add essential oil or fragrance oil at 0.5% for facial use or 1% for body use. Take that percentage out of the carrier oil/s so that your formula remains at 100% total. Add essential oil once you've taken it off the heat, right before you pour into moulds.
Colour - You can sprinkle in some mica to give you bar a bit of colour. Sprinkle in once melted until you achieve the desired shade.
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