The following is an exhaustive list containing ingredients not listed on one of my main supply pages.
I use many of these to make things like beauty recipes, soapmaking, candles, and other crafts found on SavvyHomemade.com. I will be expanding this as I continue with DIY recipes. These ingredients are in alphabetical order.
A to B Ingredients
Allantoin powder is an extract of the comfrey plant. It is an excellent, high-performance botanical extract with wonderful properties to heal the skin. It can be added to many different skincare products, but best in water-based products (such as a toner) but also emulsions.
A wonderfully natural ingredient that I’ve used for various reasons. Aloe Vera Gel is packed full of vitamins and minerals to help your skin restore itself. It’s excellent for treating burns, and is a brilliant additive to any after-sun creams and many salves.
An ingredient you’re probably already familiar with, baking soda is most commonly used in the food industry but has many exciting properties for skincare products. Baking soda can be a good treatment for acne, as well as a good exfoliator. Its uses are almost endless, it seems!
Borax, or sodium borate, shares many characteristics with ordinary salt. It is used in many skincare products and has preservative, emulsifying and sanitization properties. It also has many of the same properties as baking soda!
C to D Ingredients
A beautiful ingredient that I’ve used countless times also referred to as marigolds in some parts of the world. These beautiful dried flowers are excellent for soothing irritated or otherwise compromised skin. You can use it to make a tea that can be especially soothing for your skin. It can also be an additive to many different moisturizers, something you may have seen me do many times.
Cetyl Alcohol is an interesting ingredient used in skincare products to thicken and emulsify creams. It has many other, none skincare related uses as well. It is important to take care when using this ingredient if you suffer from eczema or sensitive skin, as cetyl alcohol is known to cause irritation in these circumstances.
Extracted from lovely citrus fruits, citric acid is an additive in many products, including bath bombs. When mixed with a liquid, it creates a chemical reaction, which causes the fizzing in products such as bath bombs. Research shows that it is an excellent exfoliator, but should not be applied directly to the skin.
Cocamidopropyl Betaine is a surfactant that is widely accepted as an ingredient in natural skincare, and it adds an extra punch to a cleanser recipe that will break up layers of make-up and oil on the skin.
Coco-Glucoside is a non-ionic surfactant that is derived from vegetable sources, namely coconuts and glucose (from cornstarch). It is one of the few surfactants that is fully accepted in natural skincare.
This surfactant produces a lovely foam, making it perfect for various bath products, shower gels, body washes, and foaming cleansers. While it provides no real skin benefits besides foaming and cleansing, it will not dry out your skin like many other surfactants.
When using this ingredient, try to stir it in slowly and gently. As with all surfactants, they have a tendency to foam when you work with it, rendering the product useless. As long as you’re careful, you should have no problems.
Cornstarch is the starch that is extracted from corn and can be used as a good substitute for talc as a moisture absorber. Many prefer cornstarch over talc, as it can leave a softer, silkier feel to the skin without looking too cakey.
Prized for its use in the food and beverage industry, but did you know that creamed coconut is an amazing natural skin and hair mask? It can leave skin feeling smooth, silky and very fresh, and can be used in a variety of skincare masks and skincare products.
Cream of Tartar
A product of the winemaking industry, cream of tartar has a variety of uses in skin care. It’s a great additive in many treatments for acne and is a great all-round anti-microbial agent. It’s worth giving a try at some point.
Dead Sea Mud
Packed full of minerals and nutrients, Dead Sea Mineral Mud lends a purifying, anti-aging, skin softening and refining qualities to diy face masks and other beauty treatments. As the name suggests, this mud comes from the Dead Sea in the Middle East. This sea is known for offering some of the best skincare ingredients in the world, and its mud is no different.
G to K Ingredients
Glycerine is a wonderful little ingredient that is excellent in any skin care product designed to moisturize the skin. It can extract moisture from the air, and then locks it in to stop skin become rough and dry. It’s definitely something I’d recommend using for all of your creams, lotions and moisturizers.
Green Tea Glycerite
There are few antioxidants in this world that are as high performing as this gorgeous tea. But if it couldn’t get better, this green tea extract will help keep your skin strong, giving you armor to weather the storms of everyday life.
Floral waters are the by products of the essential oil production process. They have a number of uses, namely in skin care products and as a flavoring in the food and beverage industry. They can impart lovely aromas and nourishing qualities to your skin care products, and I highly recommend giving them a try. Many varieties of hydrosol are available at Mountain Rose including, but not limited to, rose hydrosol, orange, lavender, chamomile, and more, in fact, they have more than 20 to choose from!
Isopropyl Alcohol, also referred to as rubbing alcohol, has many applications in DIY and soap making projects. I’ve personally used it a lot in soap making, as it’s great at getting rid of bubbles when working with melt and pour soap. Other applications include the production of reed diffusers. It’s a good thing to have around and really doesn’t have a shelf life at all.
Isopropyl Myristate is an ester that is commonly used in skin care products. It is used to reduce greasiness in an oil/cosmetic based product that doesn’t include any water or wax. Products using this ingredient include a variety of whipped body butters.
L to P Ingredients
Lanolin is a waxy substance that is extracted from the coats of wool producing animals (e.g. sheep) and has been used for a milenia for waterproofing. Like beeswax, it is highly nourishing for the skin, and is found in many expensive, high end cosmetics or topical medicines designed to soothe compromised skin.
Natural loofah is derived from the living loofah plant. It is used as an ingredient in cooking, but when it is dried is an excellent skin polisher. You can use it to effectively exfoliate your skin, leaving it softer and smoother to the touch. It’s great when suspended in soap!
Olive Squalane is a naturally occurring compound that can help you fight off the signs of aging! Our skin produces squalane naturally and so accepts it readily, allowing for deep hydration on a cellular level. We only produce this compound until around the age of 25, so start using this as soon possible to help fight off wrinkles and facial lines.
Polysorbate 80 is an emulsifying agent that is used in many different products, including cosmetics but also food, beverages, vaccines, and various medicines. It is often used to help thicken a product.
Q to Z Ingredients
Solubilizers are an ingredient used to allow oil and water to mix. While they may sound similar to an emulsifying wax, they are not the same thing. In skincare, the main use is to allow essential oils and water to mix, with otherwise naturally repel one another. Most solubilizers are not natural. Examples of these are ingredients such as Polysorbate 20. However, if you search the web for a product called ‘SimbioSolv’, this ingredient is a solubilizer that is accepted in natural skincare. It isn’t, unfortunately, currently available on Amazon, but can be easily procured with a simple google search.
Rosemary CO2 Extract
Rosemary co2 extract is a thick, dark liquid antioxidant that is known for it’s anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as it’s ability to extend the shelf life of many natural oil extracts. It has quite a strong smell and can darken the color of anything you add it to.
Silk peptide has wonderful moisturizing benefits. Once applied to the skin, it sort of creates a film that prevents the evaporation of moisture from your skin, meaning your skin will remain softer for much longer. This film can also make your skin appear smoother and more even, although it will not do much to reduce visible lines and wrinkles. Although preventing water-loss on the skin will go a long way to preventing the visible signs of aging.
Sponges are naturally occurring flora found in our seas and oceans. Although natural sponge is quite expensive, replica sponges are just as good and relatively inexpensive. While you can treat yourself to a natural sponge, I would recommend making use of the replicas, as you get way more bang for your buck. Replica sponges are easily found in various health and beauty stores, but natural sponges are probably best found on amazon.
Stearic AcidStearic Acid from Mountain Rose
Witch Hazel Extract
Whole Milk Powder
Organic Whole Milk Powder is exactly what is says on the tin, milk that has been dried into powder form. It’s generally used as a long-life alternative to milk and can be rehydrated. However, it has many used as a skin-softening agent in various cosmetics. It comes as either dairy or a substitute (goat milk powder is a great option for anyone wanting to avoid dairy).
Xanthan gum is used as an emulsifying stabilizer, but also as a way to thicken many skincare products. While it’s not really an emulsifier itself, it’s great at preventing oil separation, which is why it’s prized for moisturizer recipes. It can even improve the shelf life of a product, but like vitamin e oil, it is not a substitute for a proper preservative.