Cream making/handmade

  Technical Information & notes



10/08/17               I will give you a take on cream making, well if you are going to build lots , there are now so many  regulations  and testing + it tends to be constant rush and dead lines, I did that for about 3-5 years and ended not enjoying what I was doing, then I had to reset myself and what I wanted to do…………….. so after much thought I changed to small batches of 1-5 K max:, so then it was time to do what I have always wanted to do, build REALLY NATURAL 97.8 PREPARATIONS FOR people and clients who require that something that is really special, and is the best that I can design and build, as in SMALL is  beautiful………….so now I enjoy what I do  and it is no longer a task, but now a pleasure.


25/07/17                      I was asked to explain the difference between  a cream  and a body butter, well after thinking about it , I came up with the answer……………….the cream has more oil fraction content and less wax fraction content ,  while a body butter has more wax fraction content and less oil fraction content,  so that is the way it is. There are percentages  for each method  that are alway correct………………… so after doing trials, they consistantly  hold within those  amounts . So it is the way Confucius stated , it is not what , but   actual how you do it. And PASSION IN DOING IT IS MOST IMPORTANT.

We only use plant material  waxes and oil fractions, and consider them to be more  beneficial and safer in application, but they cost more. But we do not use  chemicals that are dangerous to human well being.


22/07/17                      In understanding testing results, it makes it easier to understand how a product is going to last in the real world, so knowledge leads to improvements, but the other route to improvement is step trials and accurate note keeping and observation. I had seen individuals change one ingredient , this is followed by major problems, due to not fully unstanding how each ingredient interacts.  One of the biggest issues is water content, and how it affects the whole product, ie;- the higher levels of  water = an increased ratio of for each chemical preservative. So water content should be kept lowest possible  ratio. In some of the commercial creams there is a lot of water content, BUT  also there is a very high level of chemical preservatives.  ALSO they try to get around this using a low viscosity mineral oil(which is usual quite cheap to buy), but the problem with this , is the wet feel, and slow absorption. Remember when they call a product  light, it tends to have higher water content.

REMEMBER STEP TRIAL  improve the way you work .


01/07/17                     I am constantly asked the same question, what oil and wax to use in cream making………………… well firstly understand what the oil and wax do in the cream eutectic.

The wax, gives the protection barrier characteristic, each wax has its own differing qualities, some are very brittle, while others spread very easily, also they all have differing melt points, so are stable at different temperatures, so have very diffent applications  and areas of use. REMEMBER  to do step trials , to understand the correct balance within the product.

The oil content can be used to reduce the wax content down to be more pliable in use, and can have very useful applications in use, for instance HEMP SEED OIL (has no THR qualities),it remains  liquid down to -0.10c, and has lots of skin applications. While Watermelon Seed oil is extremely light in application and is very useful in baby products. So getting and using the right oil can really improve what you are making, and also getting the correct balance so you have a product that is fully stable under differing conditions. SO REMEMEBER , USE YOUR BRAIN AND STEP TRIALS, TO BE A BETTER BUILDER OF CREAMS


09/01/17       I been asked to produce a skin preparation for a client who wants a high level of skin protection, so I added 4%Coco butter( this gives a high eutectic set point), with added Boabab seed oil to give anti chafe qualities, and it is working Most modern creams have a very high content of mineral oil, so when applied to the skin………………. have a very wet finish to start – with low rub resistance. The old method was to understand how to balance ingredients to achieve something special, now it is slop it on, and rush out.


02/01/17, After being asked to make fully NATURAL  creams , my first big mistake was to do it for another practitioner, who required it to be very thin ,with a very low viscosity…………….because she liked it that way, but that is achieved with a high water content, that have big problems with bacterial action within months. Now WHEN YOU GET WOMEN TO UNDERSTAND QUALITY, they prefer it, so that is why I build classically.

SO it was a case of going back to the classic way of cream making and relearning to build properly. So now I can build Rosa  creams that have a shelf life of over 12 months, without all of the nasty chemicals. After talking to some really old cream makers and starting to understand  the classic route, which needs thought and care,   with real interest in what I am doing,  now I can build thoroughly and know how. I even understand why they used Styrax……………….


Update11/07/16,  The Papaya body butter is stable  and really works as expected, I have found that cutting the water content to 25- 28 %is the way it should be done to get constant consistency and better shelf life. That batch of  15/10/15 is holding very well, the batch was made to prove how reliable the formulation would be, so far so good. Testing also proves this, so it proves that the traditional methods still  have a place in this world.


 15/10/15  Well, I have revisited the Papaya body butter and have been reformulating it. The first new trial looks really good……….it has now been REFORMULATED TO ;-Papaya / Cocoa-Butter + 2 fractions of Coco-nut ( solid and liquid fractions ). BUT with such a high oil percentage and low water content – it has been quite critical on build temperature + finishing, now it has the real butter feel and weight.   The cut is low gloss and that is good.


We have a client with vasculitis in her lower legs in very hot conditions+ a lot of exertion……….and other possible underlying conditions.  So I built a Mango oil rich cream base , then added Aesculus hippocastanum  &  Trifolium pratense extracts, which she applied twice per day. When she came back 2 days later, I was impressed and my jaw dropped open with what I saw. These 2 herbs have been used for hundreds of years and prove how clever some of the active compounds are in application, when used to their best……….It comes down to intuitiveness and insight.


Well, I was talking to an expert who’s specialty is seed oil , and he told me that Sesame seed oil has a very good resistance to oxidative rancidity…………… so I will be testing it in full natural cream production……………….. then we will really know. it MUST be better than the mineral oils used by certain makers.


After talking to people who enjoy using creams at an event, these are the findings;- most of the creams now tend to be very oily and are viscid…………leaving an oily feel and spot problem. This is caused by the oil vehicle component – usually a synthetic + a very high non natural chemical content. Why not use higher ratios of NATURAL ingredients, because this is the biggest organ on the human body, which can be easily damaged. But I suppose it comes down to cost and shelf  life, and of cause BIGGER PROFITS………………..So.


 Why not use I made a test batch with low fragrance on September 3rd 2014, and it it still stable , high gloss cut and to all appearances is not affected with any problems, I have adjuster the ratios as I explained…………………..It is going to be worth a full test to actually see if I am right or wrong.  SO we will see, it makes sense that it should work as I stated  (finally there are no nasty chemical in the batch)……………and natural preservative.


Well, when you go through formulation data, it really becomes apparent that there are ratios involved in making………that still applies today, i.e. the relationship between the ratios  used of, oils, waxes and emulsifiers, also how they interact with the “vehicle” component, to produce a special preparation, to give the correct user feel/properties required.

That is why we  build creams  from best natural ingredients without all of the chemicals,  because we have an interest in Herbal  Medicine……….using best practice methods with thorough testing (Non animal testing compliant to EU Standards).


After spending months trying to make a fully natural cream, it has become apparent that it is not possible to do so, with only fully natural HERB ingredients and achieve readings of <10 in PETtmph1 testing. The best that I can achieve is 95-97.0-% natural content, with a plant based preservative. But this method has a shelf life of 5-7 months.  For  real natural product that is good, when you consider that some of  the so called natural creams  out there, have about 10-15% real natural content. 


 SO, understanding  the way the new combination preservation works, I have been asked to formulate a body -butter using approximately 30% maximum water content, so this will mean blending low viscosity seed oils  to get the feel and action correct. The wax content is going to be grade 1 Cocobutter ,etc. And I have already decided what scent to use………… achieve something special.


The next body butter will consist of a MANGO+, the previous Papaya + Shea nut double have proved to be very popular. This week, my step trials pointed towards 2 oil to use as a combination for the new butter, they are Papaya  and Watermellon- used at the right percentages , this gives a light, soft cream with a low water content at about  27% . So I have now made a working  batch to try out on our client testers……….. who should enjoy the experience. Testing is next.


We  have 3 creams that have passed PET.TMPh1 without all of the chemicals………The latest  Rosa otto moisturiser is going well with the lady clients, they really enjoy all of the grade 1 and organic components. The Rose oil is certified grade 1 Bulgarian,………… I adore building something that is beautiful, from such wonderful oil.


Some of our clients have asked me to remake ARABIAN NIGHTS cream again,  but  naturally as possible, and I have had a good idea how to do  it even better with a clever twist………… The cream is now formulated and I must admit that it is a great improvement with more natural actives ( it was brought about by discussions with Stuart Fitzsimmons many years ago, when we talked about making as many ingredients….. work actively), so the consept actually works as we though.


The best creams are made with very good quality oils, waxes , herbs and other ingredients, makes a cream that is a pleasure to use and is absorbed readily into your skin . This is achieved by the cream maker having an innate understanding of balance , quality and passion to making  the best possible.


  • When I work and develop creams,  often I am ask how it turned out so well . I tell them that it comes   from  passion   and  wanting to work  to the highest standards, to build something special.


Some of the grade 1 and organic oils we can use to make creams are;- avocado, castor, echium vulgar,  flax, sweet almond, walnut, safflower, borage, shea nut, coconut, soya, hemp, watermelon, red palm oil, olive, sesame, baobab, jojoba, wheat germ, manketti, mango, marula, yangu and papaya THE OILS HAVE DIFFERENT VISCOSITIES, allowing,  greater  flexibility in making + each oil has its different characteristic and therefore different  application, which can be used for skin types,etc  +herb infused oils can be used to maximise the herbs percentage input in creams. Aiso blends of different oils can be very useful, to achieve the right action in use. We do not use  mineral oils in our  cream products……………


  • The use of Aromatic waters are another way of maximising  the actives in a cream base, by adding the A/W  instead of plain water  the active percentage is increased + some very special qualities can be  found in these solubles to improve the cream properties………naturally.  They increase the bandwidth of purfume notes within the preparation i.e;- as in Rosa aromatic water used with Rose oil, gives a much better spectrum of  purfume notes and is very noticeable.

The Waxes that we can use are; bees wax, cocoa butter, coconut solids plus fractions, shea-nut+ fractions , palm waxes + fractions + red palm  waxes,  olive fractions  and soya.  Herbs can be infused into the waxes to increase the active percentage + its the way you blend waxes to achieve the best and  be able to think “outside  the box” when needed + that strange sense of knowing it will be right……. Also remember that some waxes work better for certain uses and applications and that becomes apparent in step trials.


The PRESERVATIVES  that we now use comply with European standards for natural products AND FULLY PASS TESTING. When we say that it is natural – we really mean it …… We have stopped using questionable chemical preservatives, it took about 2-3 years to change over as the formulations had to be changed and tested …………. but our clients prefer creams without questionable chemicals and fillers.




Skin type creams are usually built from creams with a pressed oil that fits the requirements of the; Hemp seed, Olive, Sweet Almond etc. After a proper herbal consultation.


From stock bases, using a stock base and add the required components that the Qualified Medical Herbalist wants added after a herbal consultation, to provide the client with a unique preparation.

and finally


Creams built for the individual, but only after seeing and understanding them, in doing this you are making them a  preparation ideal for them and their life style. Then the formula is kept on card index to be able to make it exactly the same again…….. that is what you call service.