This past week, I made new moisturizer and new toner. I’m making posts for each. The toner is incredibly simple, and yet due to a new ingredient I’ve started working with in soap and beauty products, it’s awesomely hydrating and skin softening. I’m talking about sodium lactate.
Sodium Lactate is a salt that is naturally derived from the fermentation of corn and beets.Despite the “lacta” in the name, it has nothing to do with dairy and is safe for people with a milk allergy. It’s an amazing humectent, or in other words, it pulls moisture from the air and traps it next to your skin’s pores, preventing trans epidermal water loss. When making soap, it hardens soap faster so it’s easier to unmold from silicone molds and slices cleaner. Too much can make your soap brittle, though, so it’s important to use as recommended. In lotions, creams, toners, shampoo, and conditioner, it’s my new fave ingredient. It’s extremely economical and you get excellent results with as little as 3-5% in your product.
This toner owes its skin softening silky feeling to a combination of sodium lactate, and fractionated coconut oil that I added with some polysorbate 80 to help it emulsify into the liquid.
*You can mix up the herbs and teas you use here. Just add up to about 2 tablespoons of tea and loose herbs or 6 teaspoons.
Green Tea and Chamomile Toner
125g alcohol free witch hazel
115g distilled water, boiled for five minutes
2.5g Optiphen or Liquid Germall plus
2g chamomile essential oil
6g sodium lactate 60% solution
1 green tea teabag or 1 tsp loose leaf green tea
1 chamomile teabag or 1 tsp loose leaf chamomile tea
1 bamboo teabag or 1 tsp loose leaf bamboo tea
1 tsp calendula leaves
2 tsp white willow bark
Pour boiling water over herbs and teabags and set aside to come to room temperature. Mix remaining ingredients in 250ml or 8oz container (I find a squeeze bottle works well). Once the tea is cool, strain it and then add to the bottle. Add other ingredients. Shake well. Shake well before using each time. Watch carefully for any signs of spoilage and toss immediately if goes bad. Should last approximately 2 months.
Preservatives are not optional here, not even if you store this in the fridge. With all this botanical food, bacteria will set up shop in a heartbeat and they are invisible. You’ll see mold in three days or less. Gross. Use the preservative!