We wear short shorts

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Stage two of the shaving cream; it’s got body, but it’s not light and fluffy yet!

And as a result, shaving cream was requested by a friend. As previously mentioned in another post, she had some specific demands for this cream so I got to work this morning.

I had brewed some strong yerba mate tea to give this mixture a jolt of caffeine, and I planned to use some menthol crystals for extra tingle as well. Coconut oil and aloe, as well as a little comfrey root powder for its healing properties rounded it all out. I added a tsp of kaolin clay to help the razor slip and slide along the skin and a little homemade liquid soap to keep things clean and eliminate the need for preservatives.

Now, the whipping. In theory, as this cools and the emulsion sets up, I should be able to beat it into stiff, creamy, peaks. However, so far I’ve got a fluffy mess in a pan. My emulsifier is a little slow acting, and coconut oil takes a little while to rebound to a more solid form. I’m going to keep checking and whipping it from time to time and report back.

UPDATE:

That was a mess! It never did set up to the point where I could get stiff, fluffy peaks out of it. I ended up tossing the whole mess, brewing more Yerba Mate, and starting over the next day.

The next day, I had a few things that I tried differently. First of all, I scrapped the coconut oil and beeswax combo and just grabbed cocoa butter. It’s stability under pressure is what I needed. I also decided to give my new emulsifier a try. Up until now I’ve worked with cetearyl alcohol/polysorbate 60, also  known as Emulsifying Wax NF. I like it, it’s easy to use, melts quickly and takes very little to make a stable emulsion. However, it has drawbacks. It takes approximately 48 hours to reach it’s full thickness, so trying to whip yesterday’s concoction up was an exercise in futility. This time, I was working with glyceryl stearate/cetearyl alcohol/sodium stearoyl lactylate, known as emulsimulse or ecomulse. It sets up very quickly…which meant that making shaving cream finally happened. It finally happened!

It still was scary, because I left the shaving cream for a full 24 hours to see if it would stop being a light and fluffy cream, if the emulsion would seperate, or if any other number of things would go wrong. The only bad thing that happened is that it turned green. I had mixed in some beet root powder in an attempt to make it bright pink and fun, and it was a glorious shade of hot pink for about 12 hours…before it turn, suddenly and without any warning, a definite “wilted plant” color. It’s not unattractive, especially, but it was shocking to wake up and find. I went to bed and it was pretty and pink, I wake up and it’s weed green. But I’m told that beetroot powder is unreliable as a colorant; apparently it’s been something of a interesting item when used for bath fizzies as well.

Meanwhile, I’m getting ready to ship this out to my friend, along with a bar of my shaving soap so she can compare the two. I personally thing she will like the shaving soap better. I know I love my shaving soap. But some people are inclined to like creams and lotions for shaving, and the caffeine and menthol may make it an amazing experience. I hope she enjoys it in any case, as I enjoyed the challenge of making it. Now, to drum up more challenges…

 

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Author: scseery

Soap, bath and beauty, jams and jellies, and unique upcycled gifts. That's what I make and talk about here. A lot.

2 thoughts on “We wear short shorts”

    1. I tried several times, and then the emulsion just up and separated. The choice then was to try again from scratch the next day, or heat that one back up and keep adding ingredients. I decided to try again from scratch; it seemed like I had made a calculation error or perhaps the emulsimule might be more stable than the wax NF pellets I was using. Turned out I was right.

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