Today we’re adding another awesome product to our suite of Lavender Aloe skincare goodies—a lovely Lavender Aloe Exfoliating Body Wash, made with an all-natural sulphate-free surfactant blend, fragrant lavender hydrosol, and soothing aloe vera juice. You don’t need to heat anything up to make this, either—it’s a simple weigh, stir, and wait. Voila… body wash!
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Our gentle surfactant blend features two ingredients; some amphoteric Cocamidopropyl Betaine, and a new-to-me blended product called Plantapon® TF (INCI: Decyl Glucoside, Polyglyceryl-10 Caprylate/Caprate, Coco-Glucoside, Glyceryl Oleate). Plantapon® TF is part of BASF Care Creations’ “Plantapon®” range of surfactant products (the “TF” suffix stands for “tear-free”)—there are quite a few Plantapon® products, so make sure you’re getting the right one! The “TF” version is a blend of three gentle non-ionic surfactants and a re-fatting/conditioning ingredient, resulting in a really gentle final product with great skin feel. It’s a liquid that’s super easy to work with, and the lather is downright decadent. Make sure to check it out in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia to learn more, including information on substitutions!
I’ve added some scrubbiness to this body wash in the form of jojoba beads. Jojoba beads are made from hydrogenated jojoba wax, and are a great biodegradable exfoliant (they aren’t a microplastic!). The jojoba beads I have are white, but you could have a ton of fun with different colours—I thought a purple body wash + green jojoba beads would be a really fun colour combination for the lavender aloe theme.
Our scent comes from the inclusion of some beautiful lavender hydrosol. If you don’t have a hydrosol, you can adjust the formulation to use essential oil instead. I’d switch the lavender hydrosol for distilled water, and then remove about 0.25–0.5% water to make room for the essential oil. The surfactant blend should be sufficient to keep that small amount of essential oil properly solubilized in the body wash.
Once finished, this Lavender Aloe Exfoliating Body Wash has the most gorgeous lather. It’s rich, thick, dense, and creamy—not a massive cloud of big, fluffy bubbles, but a rich abundance of indulgent, creamy goodness. Swoon. Lather up a dollop of this body wash with your hands or on a pouf for a delightfully indulgent shower experience. Enjoy!
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Lavender Aloe Exfoliating Body Wash
Weigh the glycerine, carrageenan, jojoba beads, and dye into a beaker or a small heat-resistant glass measuring cup. You are unlikely to be able to weigh out the dye due to the very small amount; what I did was dip a clean spoon or glass stirring rod into the bag of dye so there was just a tiny amount on it, and then used that to stir up the glycerine mixture.
Add the surfactants, and stir to combine.
Add the aloe vera juice, lavender hydrosol, and liquid germall plus. Stir gently to combine, cover the mixture, and leave it to thicken for a couple of hours (overnight is also very convenient!).
Once the mixture has thickened up, all that’s left is transferring it to our packaging. I used a 120mL (4 fl oz) tottle, with a funnel to fill. I recommend choosing something with a wide enough opening that you don’t have to worry about the jojoba beads clogging it up; they’re pretty tiny, but I wouldn’t choose a bottle with a turret-type cap. Use the body wash as you would use any body wash. Enjoy!
Shelf Life & Storage
Because this body wash contains water, you must include a broad-spectrum preservative to ward off microbial growth. This is non-optional. Even with a preservative this project may eventually spoil as our kitchens are not sterile laboratories, so in the event you notice any change in colour, scent, or texture, chuck it out and make a fresh batch.
As always, be aware that making substitutions will change the final product. While these swaps won’t break the recipe, you will get a different final product than I did.
- As I’ve provided this recipe in percentages as well as grams you can easily calculate it to any size using a simple spreadsheet as I’ve explained in this post. As written in grams this recipe will make 150g, which fills a 120mL (4 fl oz) bottle perfectly.
- To learn more about the ingredients used in this recipe, including why they’re included and what you can substitute them with, please visit the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia. It doesn’t have everything in it yet, but there’s lots of good information there! If I have not given a specific substitution suggestion in this list (Plantapon® TF) please look up the ingredient in the encyclopedia before asking.
- You could use propanediol 1,3 or propylene glycol instead of glycerin.
- You could try a differen gum, but I find carrageenan has the best feel + is the least fussy (I love hydroxyethylcellulose, but it can go a bit weird in surfactant products). You could also try salt thickening as the makers of Plantapon® TF say it thickens well with salt.
- You could use a different exfoliant—walnut hull, pumice, etc.—instead of jojoba beads. Don’t use sugar or salt, they’ll dissolve.
- The dye is optional; you can replace it with more hydrosol.
- You could also try using a mica instead of the dye, though you’ll need more (I’d start with 0.5%, adjusting the hydrosol to compensate).
- If you’d like to learn more about the surfactants used and compare them to ones you might already have so you can make substitutions, check out this page.
- You could replace the aloe vera juice with distilled water.
- You could use a different hydrosol, or more distilled water, instead of the lavender hydrosol.
- If you’d like to incorporate an essential oil, please read this + the pre-amble.
- If you’re like to use a different preservative, please review this page.
The purple water-soluble dye was gifted by YellowBee.