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Adding actives in powder??

Talk about making your own skin care recipes, DIY Skincare, hot new active ingredients, and more.

Adding actives in powder??

Postby DJC7 » Sat May 30, 2009 9:11 am

Is adding actives in powder form as simple as just measuring out how much you want(by mass) then mixing the powder in whatever base cream you have chosen??

Does the powder really dissolve and the cream/lotion stay smooth and not have little bits of powder throughout?

rookie question I know :oops:

where can I find more info on adding actives and other things to base creams??

thanks for any help.
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Postby kylesmom9 » Sat May 30, 2009 5:17 pm

No, that is actually a good question! For some powders it really is that simple. It depends on your active and your base.

Here is a great list of solubilities for actives that DCNGA put together.

http://messageboards.makemeheal.com/vie ... p?t=106659

I recently started using licorice root from skin actives and it was a bear to dissolve. After making two batches that ended up with little white undissolved bits (very usable by the way, just maddening) I resorted to dissolving in vodka (mostly ethanol) and then adding to my other ingredients and base.

The smartskincare forum is great place to learn, so is the forum at skinactives. :)
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Postby DJC7 » Sun May 31, 2009 1:12 am

thanks kylesmom. :)

I am getting caught up in all of this. BTW I was on makeupalley and read a review on Vaseline's Clinical Therapy Body Protectant and I looked at the reviewer and it was YOU lol... you gave it 5 lippies...

I am now going to try some.

I am going to use Cerave lotion as my base too. I want to add 4% Niacinamide and 2% N-acetyl-glucosamine. Have you ever tried that?

I am really looking for some good actives with some reasonably sound science behind them that are stable and dissolve easy. Ones that arent heavily reliant upon a precise pH.

Those 2 look pretty solid. I just want to be able to dump the powder in and stir well and have it dissolve :) No mess...no fuss.

I was looking at SAS's GHK-Copper but I am not sure what a good percentage is and what pH is required. I know Pickart says this form of Copper is quite fragile and easily damaged. So formulated it would be as easy as other things.
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Postby kylesmom9 » Sun May 31, 2009 8:19 am

Sorry to burst the bubble DJC7, but kylesmom27 is not me. :lol: Funny though, I would have thought the same thing. Surprisingly I have never done a review on makeupalley, though it is my "bible" for advice!

It looks like that one is good though...100% would buy again says alot.

Yes, I use the Cerave lotion as a base almost exclusively now. It works great. I also use the Niacinamide and NAG in the concentrations you are going to use.

For my morning serum I use :
4% Niacinamide
2% NAG (N Acetyl glucosamine)
2% licorice
2% alpha arbutin
1% caffiene
3% DMAE bitartrate
10% glycolic (70% solution)
all in a base of half water and half Cerave lotion.

These all work together well. The things I really had to research were the acid tolerances. Some non experts (not in any way saying I AM some sort of expert :lol: ) say that DMAE should be in a neutral to basic base, but the bitartrate is an acid and I have read that DMAE will disassociate from any base in aqueous solution. When I tested the pH it is around 4 with only the DMAE bit. and water. So I figured the glycolic was ok. Then the alpha arbutin...it is stable down to about 3.5 pH and mine is right around there so I feel ok with that.

The other issue was the licorice which I already went through.

At night I use Cerave base (straight, no water) with only the Niacinamide, NAG, Alpha Arbutin, and Licorice. Same concentrations as above.

What exactly do you want your actives to do? What are you trying to correct and/or prevent?

Copper peptides (GHK) can't be in an acidic environment (you can't even layer them with glycolic lotions or vitamin C) or the copper will disassociate and cause free radical damage. I would not mix it with any other actives, but Cerave should be fine to mix it in. On the SAS website it says it should be used in a 0.1% concentration.

I'm with you...I like to keep things simple. Dump it in and mix. The licorice is almost too much trouble for me, but I have been noticing great results with it and the arbutin...so I will endure. :D
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Postby DJC7 » Sun May 31, 2009 10:08 am

wow...i cant believe there is another kylesmom...lol :o
she is even a big fan of cerave lotion too.

anyway, I want to use those 2 actives(niacinamide and NAC) because I have read that they work in synergy.

SAS says,

"N-Acetyl Glucosamine and Niacinamide can increase collagen production and significantly reduced hyperpigmentation, age spots, and uneven melanin distribution."

Also Niacinamide at 4% was shown to be very beneficial for acne. It slightly out performed Clindamycin.

They are both supposed to be very moisturizing as well.

When you added those 2 actives in your cerave lotion did they dissolve easily when u stirred? Was your lotion smooth and devoid of any grit, or sandpapery feel?

Your serum looks very nice. SAS says that the licorice extract wont dissolve completely, so I can imagine it would be difficult to work with.

About the Copper Peptides, yes I also knew that you cant mix them with acidic substances. I was thinking of adding that GHK copper to my lotion as well but Im not sure what percentage needs to be used for it to be benficial. I doubt Dr Pickart will disclose that kind of info to me as he sells the stuff.
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Postby kylesmom9 » Sun May 31, 2009 10:57 am

The niacinamide and NAG will dissolve completely...perfectly smooth lotion.
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Postby DJC7 » Sun May 31, 2009 5:29 pm

thank you kylesmom :)

looking at all these actives makes you want to add them all :D

I think I might add some of what your using, Arbutin. SAS says it doesnt dissolve immediately upon adding the powder into the cream base but it will slowly. Sounds like it could be a bit more hassle than using niacinamide and NAG.
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Postby kylesmom9 » Sun May 31, 2009 7:38 pm

Actually I have not had any trouble whatsoever dissolving the alpha arbutin. I didn't buy it from SAS, but as far as I know it is a patented ingredient and only available from pentapharm...so it should be the same no matter where you purchase. :?: Not postitive on that one.
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Postby DJC7 » Sun May 31, 2009 9:18 pm

i notice the Arbutin is yellow. Does that make creams and lotion yellow too?

I think licorice extract gives things a yellow hue too. Acne.org uses licorice extract in their AHA+ cream and they said its yellow due to the licorice extract.

Kylesmom, do you know if Niacinamide and NAG are OK to use with Lactic Acid?
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Postby kylesmom9 » Mon Jun 01, 2009 6:10 am

Alpha arbutin from lotioncrafter is white. It does not change the color of the base. The licorice from SAS is white too. There are quite a few types of licorice extract, I researched quite a bit before deciding on the SAS one.

How do you know the Arbutin from SAS is yellow? I could not tell from their site. Is it on the forum?

Lactic is fine with the Niacinamide /NAG.

Here is the PDF from pentapharm with the attributes of alpha arbutin:
Pentapharm PDF

It says "crystaline white powder".
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Postby DJC7 » Mon Jun 01, 2009 8:10 pm

I just wanted to see what arbutin was soluble in and did a google search and it said,

Arbutin 497-76-7
Appearance Light yellow powder With yellowish Solubility Freely soluble in water and ethanol.


But if yours is white then that is much better. I dont know if the one from SAS is yellow, I was just commenting on what I read from the google search. There seems to be some contradicting info floating about.

Thanks for that PDF too :)

I just bought cerave cream, have you tried that? It is very nice. I am going to get the lotion and cleanser next too.

** Also, I have spoken to you before about this, but I was just thinking when looking at your serum about percentages by mass and not volume, when using acids that are not 100% strength to start with.

For example, say you have 50ml of Glycolic Acid(90% strength) and 50ml of Glycolic Acid(70% strength). These 2 liquids would probably be, or almost indentical in weight.

If I were to make a 60g lotion with 10% Glycolic acid, that would mean 6 grams of Glycolic acid has to be used and 54 grams of base lotion. That much I understand.

But here is where I am getting confused now. The reason why I gave 2 examples of different strength glycolic acids was because 10% of a Glycolic Acid(90%) would be stronger than 10% of Glycolic Acid(70%), as it has been diluted as weaker. So your only getting 10% of a weaker glycolic acid.

The way I am seeing it is, unless you have a pure 100% concentration of Glycolic Acid it wouldnt really be 10% glycolic acid.

Or would it?

Sorry for the long post, I just thought about this stuff and got confused.
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Postby kylesmom9 » Tue Jun 02, 2009 7:36 am

There is a difference between Arbutin, Alpha arbutin, and beta arbutin. Alpha arbutin is the one with the best profile for lightening. Maybe that one described as yellowish was just arbutin. The problem is a lot of people leave off the alpha or beta and call all of it arbutin, when it is not the same thing. I am not making a point for DIY being easy. :lol:

I have not tried the cerave cream...I was going to, but my skin is a bit on the oily side in the summer, so if I do I'll wait until winter. Yet every time I go to Walgreens it beckons to me from the shelf! I love the cleanser. Personally I have found that if my skin gets too much retin a or gets a little windburned, etc. the cleanser will sting, but interestingly does not make my skin red when it does. So I kept using it because it makes my skin feel so nice!

The reason I gave the percent of the glycolic is that I am using 10% of a 70% solution...NOT 10% final concentration in my lotion. (This is about the level of alpha hydrox brand products...though the pH of the serum is lower.) For a daily product with free acid I don't want too much.

So in 30g of lotion (what I typically make at a time) I use 3 g of 70%. Which comes out to a 7% free glycolic. If I wanted to make a true 10% I would use 4.3g of the 70% to end up with a 10% concentration of free glycolic in my final product.

Xg of 70% = 30g of 10%
.70x = 3
x = 4.3

So yes you are right! It's the same thing using DMAE bitartrate. It is only 37% DMAE...so I am using 3% but it comes out to just over 1% DMAE in solution. I didn't make a distinction there because DMAE bitartrate is the only DMAE you can get for DIY...the amine is very difficult to work with and DIY suppliers don't sell it.
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Postby DJC7 » Wed Jun 03, 2009 8:14 am

Ahh...alpha and beta...lol :oops:
Thanks for that. I think I will get some arbutin too.

Yeah my skin is oily in the t-zone, but this cream dries matte. But I havent tried the lotion yet, it sounds nice though! Does the lotion dry matte?

I didnt know you used a retinoid. I use differin 0.1% cream EOD very, very lightly. Works like retin-a, its just milder. There arent any studies out that confirm it is anti-aging, like tazorac and retin-A have, but since its a retinoid most ppl in the know say that it should be anti-aging. My skin looks nicer when I use it thats for sure.

I thought that might be the case, in that you have to compensate in order to get a free glycolic percentage.

I look at your math equation but I cant understand it...lol
:oops: What is wrong with me!!!!!
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Re: Adding actives in powder??

Postby oberz3 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 2:28 pm

I know it's been quite a while since anything new has been posted here, but I just found this and I've been reading all this GREAT information! It's just what I've been trying to research myself!

I'd like to take the Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) powder that I have and add a little to my current moisturizer to make it a SUPER moisturizer! I'm using the Olay Regenerist Microsculpting Serum and so far it's been FANTASTIC on it's own, in that it hasn't upset my skin in any way (I tend to break out from certain products) AND, because of the Niacinamide already formulated in the serum, any skin problems that do arise heal and fade FASTER because of this ingredient.

I've tried mixing a little of the Niacinamide powder directly in with the Olay serum each time I use it, but the powder never seems to dissolve enough. Always feels scratchy on my face and sometimes leaves bits of white powder on my skin after the moisturizer has sank in. Anyway, I was hoping to get some advice on a simple gel or serum base, perhaps, that I could pre-mix a little of the Niacinamide powder in to dissolve it completely before adding it to my moisturizer.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance! :D
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