This Rosehip Oat Solid Oil Serum formulation is a non-greasy, packaging-optional facial moisturizer starring some beautiful oils and antioxidants. The original inspiration for this formulation was Robbie Burns Day, which is tomorrow. I was thinking about Burns’ “A Red, Red Rose” and Scottish oat cakes, and somehow ended up here 😄
Want to watch this project instead of reading it?
The bulk of this solid oil serum is our three star oils; rosehip oil, oat oil, and olive-derived squalane. Ultra-light rosehip oil can be beneficial for hyperpigmentation and scarring, and it’s a great oil for acne-prone skin. Oat oil is rich and soothing, with inflammatory and barrier-boosting benefits. It can be a bit heavy on its own, but it balances out well with the other oils in this formulation. Our last emollient is olive-derived squalane. This beautiful, lightweight emollient balances beautifully with the heavier oat oil.
Cetearyl alcohol is the primary solidifier in this formulation. I chose cetearyl alcohol rather than a true wax because I wanted the creamy, slippy, not-waxy skin feel that cetearyl alcohol brings to our formulations. If you don’t have cetearyl alcohol I’d try a blend of cetyl alcohol and stearic acid instead. I’d start with a 60/40 split favouring cetyl alcohol to ensure we still get lots of lovely slip, which works out to 16.2% cetyl alcohol and 10.8% stearic acid.
Some cornstarch helps counter any greasiness and leaves the skin looking velvety-matte rather than shiny. If you don’t have cornstarch you could use a different starch instead—rice, wheat, arrowroot, etc. I’ve also included a wee bit—just 1%—of a peachy-coloured mica. This is totally optional; you can replace it with more cornstarch if you don’t want to use it, or choose a different colour of mica. The mica mostly contributes colour to the bar (amping up the orangey hue we get from the rosehip oil and antioxidants) and adds a titch of light-catching glow to the face—it doesn’t leave any noticeable colour on your skin.
For some extra skin-loving benefits I’ve also included two antioxidants; Coenzyme Q10 (Ubiquinone) and Tocopherol (Vitamin E). Conenzyme Q 10 can help prevent collagen breakdown and repair UV damage, while vitamin E helps protect the skin from environmental damage and improve the shelf life of this anhydrous formulation by delaying rancidity. The Conenzyme Q 10 I’m using is Lotion Crafter’s Coenzyme Q10, Q-MAX at 1%, which is a blend of Tocopheryl Acetate and Ubiquinone in a base of C12-15 alkyl benzoate. The total Conenzyme Q 10 content in this formulation is 0.075%; keep that in mind and adjust as required if you are using a more concentrated product. If your’e using the pure powder I’d probably use it at 0.1–0.2%, replacing the remaining 0.8–0.9% with more squalane and including the Conenzyme Q 10 in the heated phase.
You have a couple options for packaging this Rosehip Oat Solid Oil Serum. It is designed to be applied directly to the face, so if you want it in a package I’d recommend a push-up tube of some kind. I used a paperboard container from YellowBee (gifted) in the video. The one I used is 2oz, which was a mistake (d’oh). This batch size (25g) will work well in a 1oz tube. If you want to go the packaging-free route, this formulation works beautifully as a free-standing bar—just pour it into a silicone mould of choice. I do recommend storing it in some sort of tin or jar throughout its life to protect it and keep it clean, though—if left out the bar will collect bits of lint and hair and that gets rather icky after a while.
Want to watch this project instead of reading it?
Relevant links & further reading
- Oat Oil in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia
- Olive Squalane in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia
- Rosehip Oil in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia
- Cetearyl Alcohol in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia
- Corn Starch in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia
- Coloured Mica in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia
- Coenzyme Q10 (Ubiquinone) in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia
- Tocopherol (Vitamin E) in the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia
- Other oil serum formulations:
- How long will ______ last? What is its shelf life?
- A Guide to Carrier Oil Substitutions
- A Quick Guide to Cetearyl Alcohol & Liquid Oil Ratios
- A Quick Guide to Cetyl Alcohol & Liquid Oil Ratios
- A Quick Guide to Stearic Acid & Liquid Oil Ratios
Rosehip Oat Solid Oil Serum
5.5g | 22% rosehip oil
Prepare a water bath by bringing about 3cm/1″ of water to a bare simmer over low to medium-low heat in a small saucepan.
After about 20–30 minutes everything should be completely melted through. Remove the water bath from the heat, remove the measuring cup from the water bath, and dry it off with a dishtowel. Set the measuring cup on a towel or hot pad to insulate it from the counter and stir the mixture with a flexible silicone spatula to combine everything. Add the rosehip oil and stir to combine.
Once the mixture has thickened a bit, quickly add the cool down phase, stir to incorporate, and pour the product into its container or mold. I used a paperboard container from YellowBee (gifted) for the video and a silicone honeycomb mold (USA / Canada) for the blog post. Gently transfer the product to the fridge to set up.
When the solid facial serum has set up, that’s it!
Use as you’d use any facial oil; I like to glide it over my skin after washing and using any watery serums. Enjoy!
SHELF LIFE & STORAGE
Because this solid facial oil is 100% oil-based, it does not require a broad-spectrum preservative (broad spectrum preservatives ward off microbial growth, and microbes require water to live—no water, no microbes!). Kept reasonably cool and dry, it should last at least a year before any of the oils go rancid. If you notice it starts to smell like old nuts or crayons, that’s a sign that the oils have begun to oxidize; chuck it out and make a fresh batch if that happens.
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 formulation 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 25g, which will fill a 30g (1.06oz) container nicely.
- To learn more about the ingredients used in this formulation, 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 please look up the ingredient in the encyclopedia before asking.
- You can choose different liquid oils that your skin loves, though changing up the oil blend will change the final product.
- If you don’t have cetearyl alcohol I’d try a blend of cetyl alcohol and stearic acid instead. I’d start with a 60/40 split favouring cetyl alcohol to ensure we still get lots of lovely slip, which works out to 16.2% cetyl alcohol and 10.8% stearic acid.
- If you’d like to incorporate an essential oil, please read this.
- If you’d like to incorporate a different essential oil, please read this.
- You could replace the Coenzyme Q 10 with more vitamin E.