Formulating Goat Milk Lotion

Formulating Goat Milk Lotion

Oh my heavens, the testing!  The formulating, and testing, and re-formulating and re-testing!  The disappointment when I got it wrong…  the almost-giving-up and then the determination to find a way.  I really wanted to be able to provide a lotion in my line.  But not just a lotion - I created a lotion on my first attempt.  But it wasn’t a good lotion.  It wasn’t something that I considered better than, say, a certain mall chain store that has such nice-smelling lotions and soaps…  I had to create something better; something that I could be proud to sell and confident that it would be loved by everyone who tried it!  

Wow, did it take just about forever.  And then, just when I thought I had something really special, I had to go and decide to add goat milk to it…  because, who wouldn’t absolutely love a goat milk lotion?  So I decided to add goat milk, and then I had to figure out the right ratio, and it was back to the trial-and-error testing and re-testing.  

But you know what?  I did it.  I have created a formulation that I am truly happy with, that’s pumpable, and has that magic goat milk ingredient.  And, just when I had it figured out one week before an important event for which I really wanted to have it ready, I realized I didn’t like the bottles I bought.  And so I had to order new ones (and they came two days before the event so I made lotion late into the night both nights).

These are the joys of being a maker…  but folks, just wait until you try this lotion.  If you remember from my blog about making body butter bars, I wasn’t crazy about making an emulsified body butter for the summer.  Emulsified formulas are mostly water, and include some kind of emulsifier (a waxy alcohol, usually) which then makes a stable solution that won’t melt in the heat.  The emulsifier is needed to help make the oils and the water mix.  Think about an oil and vinegar salad dressing.  You can shake it up and it looks like a homogenous mixture, but as it sits, the vinegar settles to the bottom and the oil sits on top.  That is what would happen if you tried to make a lotion with water and oils without an emulsifier.  The emulsifier marries the oils and water together into a lovely homogenous formula.  

The thing I love best about my body butter recipe is that it is all oils and butters.  There is no water or emulsifier in it.  It’s rich and luxurious, and so moisturizing.  It’s the absolute best.  But in the summer heat, it would just become a jar of liquid oil.  So a lotion is the perfect substitute.  It’s also lighter, and in the summer, we really don’t want something heavy, no matter how moisturizing it is.  We want something light that sinks into the skin quickly without leaving a sticky residue on our hands.  And that is why I decided to formulate a lotion.  

If you are interested in how I make my lotion, keep reading!

These are all the ingredients and equipment that I use to make lotion.  I use two large pyrex bowls, a scale to weigh my ingredients, and an immersion blender.  The other ingredients are distilled water, goat milk, vegetable glycerin, avocado oil, hemp seed oil, emulsifying wax, my fragrance, Vitamin E oil, a preservative and liquid soap dye for color.  


Now, please don’t get hysterical over the preservative.  Any product made with water as an ingredient should have a preservative.  It’s not harmful, and it’s absolutely necessary to ensure the product stays good over time.  You wouldn’t want your lotion to mold or have any other bacterial growth, would you?  The preservative keeps it that way.  It’s important.  I probably wouldn’t buy a lotion that didn’t have a preservative.  

Why goat milk?  I like it because it adds a nice creaminess.  But I did an internet search to find out what other benefits goat milk can provide in beauty products.  Here’s what I found:  According to PureWow’s website, goat milk is rich in proteins and amino acids, which help to moisturize and even exfoliate your skin 1In Style Magazine also reviewed a goat milk lotion.  They quoted a dermatologist that said that goat milk can “gently exfoliate the skin to reduce dullness and brighten the skin 2.” 

I also use two liquid oils since I wanted it to be pumpable - avocado oil and hemp seed oil.  Both of these oils are rich and full of skin-loving properties.  Here’s how I make the lotion:

First I weight out my water phase ingredients in one Pyrex bowl (water, goat milk and glycerin) and the oil phase ingredients in a larger Pyrex bowl (the oils and the emulsifying wax).  



I heat them both up to melt the e-wax and bring the water phase to the same temperature as the oil phase.


Now we pour our water phase into our oil phase and emulsify.  I blend the mixture for two minutes.


At this point I check the temperature to make sure the mixture isn’t too hot to add my cool down ingredients.  I add my Vitamin E, preservative and fragrance during this stage.  All fragrance oils will have a “flash point,” which is the temperature at which the properties of that oil change.  Usually these flash points are fairly high and when it comes to lotion I don’t have to worry about it, but I always check them anyway.  My preservative must be added below 122℉ or it will lose it’s preserving properties.  As a general rule of thumb, I add my cool down phase ingredients below 120℉.  


I am using a fragrance blend for this lotion, and I add 1 to 3 drops of liquid soap dye for color.


Then I blend again for another two minutes to get everything mixed together and then pour into my bottles.


My lotion uses some of my usual fragrances, like citrus and lavender, and a few new fragrances.  Love Letter has proven to be a very popular body butter bar fragrance, so I had to put it in a lotion (and a soap, which is now curing and will be ready for sale in about a month)!  And I found a dupe of my very favorite now-discontinued fragrance from that mall store which makes me so happy because it was my absolute favorite…  and now I can make it myself!  I’m calling it Twilight Skies…

So it’s been quite the experience formulating the perfect goat milk lotion, and I hope you like it as much as I do.  It is now available for sale, and I will have it at all of my upcoming events, even in the extreme summer heat!  

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