Palm-free replacements for Syndet Shampoo Ingredients

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KiwiMoose

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Gee - there's a lot of palm included in these syndet bars.

Instead of Coco Sulfate noodles, can I use Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate Noodles if I'm already using Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate Powder in the recipe? ( noodles for texture)

To get a palm-free replacement for SLSA, can I use Potassium Cocoate?

Is Cocamidopropyl Betaine palm-free? I think it is but it doesn't explicit say so in the supplier's description .

BTMS-50 contains cetyl alcohol which is Palm derived, can i use another conditioning agent instead?

Cetearyl alcohol seems to be palm-free - can i get an ok on that assumption?

Phew - I think that's all my questions.
 

Cellador

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Hi KiwiMoose!

So, I'll try to address some of these- maybe some others will chime-in with more input too.

1. Yes, you can substitute any SCS with SCI. SCS actually has a higher pH (which is worse for hair), so SCI is actually a better option (IMHO) than SCS. I never use SCS in my shampoo bars.

2. SLSa is a powder and it helps contribute to the solid bar form. You could probably substitute SLSa with a number of liquid surfactants, but it would probably be difficult to get the bar to stay in solid form. I have found another powdered surfactant -SMO Taurate Powder-on Making Cosmetics, but it also has a high pH and I haven't had a chance to experiment with it yet. Besides the SCI, SCS, SLSa, & Taurate Powder, I can't find much that will help contribute to the hardness.

3. Cocomidopropyl Betaine is coconut derived as far as I can see.

4. The conditioning emulsifier is the kicker. There are other options besides BTMS 50, but almost all of them contain cetyl or cetearyl alcohol. And...

5. ...from what I understand, cetearyl alcohol is a combination of cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohols. So, the cetyl alcohol would still be present (kinda? I think?)

Honestly, if you're looking to make a palm free shampoo, I might look into a liquid shampoo. There are tons of surfactants available, but it's challenging to find the right syndets and cationic emulsifiers that will contribute to a solid, bar form of shampoo.

I hope this helps. Hopefully, someone else can provide some additional clarity.
 

DeeAnna

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"...To get a palm-free replacement for SLSA, can I use Potassium Cocoate?..."

Potassium cocoate is soap made with KOH and coconut oil. It's true soap, not a synthetic detergent, so using it may be contrary to your goal if you want to formulate a syndet shampoo.

I agree with Cellador that you have a lot more options for synthetic detergents if you go to a liquid shampoo versus a solid version.
 

KiwiMoose

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Thank you both so much for your input. Cellador - your explanations were most helpful.
BUT - the whole idea of moving to a solid shampoo bar was to eliminate plastic bottles. So that's my choice now I guess - plastic or palm, but I can't be rid of both?
I'm starting to formulate a few recipes to try, but really wanted to knock the palm on the head if I could. It's NOT a popular ingredient here in New Zealand. Although, as my friends state - if they are already using commercial liquid shampoo in a plastic bottle, then they are getting the worst of both worlds ( palm and plastic), so a synthetic-det bar will still be an improvement.
 

Cellador

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BUT - the whole idea of moving to a solid shampoo bar was to eliminate plastic bottles. So that's my choice now I guess - plastic or palm, but I can't be rid of both?
I was thinking the same thing as I was typing the response. I wish there was a calculator which would tell you which of two options has the biggest impact on the environment. :confused:
 

HowieRoll

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I make liquid shampoo, not bars, but two of the surfactants I use are Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate (SCI) and Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate. The SCI are stubby noodles and the Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate is a powder (the third surfactant I use is the liquid Cocamidopropyl Betaine), and all of them, as far as I can tell, are palm-free. Maybe that combo would work in a shampoo bar, too?

I'm also not certain that all BTMS-50 contains palm? The cetyl alcohol I use is coconut-derived so perhaps some of the BTMS-50 on the market does, too?

As far as plastic, I hear ya. We've been trying to significantly reduce our usage, too, and for our shampoo/conditioner I purchased a few plastic containers and we reuse them over and over. To clean them, I put them into the dishwasher and then douse them with rubbing alcohol when they come out and again before I re-fill them. I feel comfortable with this solution because they are for personal use and I usually only make enough to last about 2 months at a time, but this obviously is not suitable if one were thinking of selling the product.
 

Dawni

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I make liquid shampoo, not bars, but two of the surfactants I use are Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate (SCI) and Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate. The SCI are stubby noodles and the Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate is a powder (the third surfactant I use is the liquid Cocamidopropyl Betaine), and all of them, as far as I can tell, are palm-free. Maybe that combo would work in a shampoo bar, too?
In my research on syndets those are the top three I've seen being used. Unfortunately for me, the sodium lauroyl sarcosinate is hard to find here.

Anyway, @KiwiMoose, I read that the best bars are one which contain more than one syndet because a combination would produce a milder bar, like the liquid shampoos. I came across it but need to read up more.

But.. Both points probably explain why the syndets I've seen locally mostly have just SCI and my scalp really doesn't like em. I've tried so many in two years so I'm really thinking of making my own. I'll be following this thread closely..

I didn't help ya in any way lol sorry
 

DeeAnna

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Yes, you're right, Dawni, and that is especially true if there is at least one syndet in the blend that has a different electrical charge than the others. The choices are anionic (negative charge), cationic (positive charge), nonionic (no charge), and amphoteric (can behave as positively or negatively charged depending on the situation).

To give a few examples -- SCI and SLSa are both solid anionic detergents. Sodium C14-C16 Olefin Sulfonate is a liquid anionic detergent. Cocoamidopropyl betaine (CAPB) is a liquid amphoteric detergent. Polysorbates are nonionic.
 

KiwiMoose

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I was of the understanding that the CAPB is one of the main irritants, and not good for eczema sufferers? Any comments on that?
 

Megan

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I was of the understanding that the CAPB is one of the main irritants, and not good for eczema sufferers? Any comments on that?
I did a quick search on some scholarly articles and it does seem that there are several sensitizing contaminants in CAPB that can cause contact dermatitis. From what I read, I don't think CAPB itself is a sensitizer, but there have been documented cases of allergy to CAPB...(which, isn't suprising)
 

SideDoorSoaps

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I’ve been doing research on making shampoo bars as well as thinking about reducing palm and plastics but how do you all reduce plastics of the ingredients containers?

I only wash my hair twice a week so that reduces the amount of shampoo (bottles) I buy already but I would love to go to solid bars! I have all these ingredients KiwiMoose mentioned in a cart that I’m just itching to buy!
 

KiwiMoose

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I’ve been doing research on making shampoo bars as well as thinking about reducing palm and plastics but how do you all reduce plastics of the ingredients containers?
Ssssshhh! Don't mention them. When my customers buy stuff they say, "it's great to go back to real soap and ditch the plastic bottles". I think the same thing as you - if only they could see MY recycle bin at home. We are going for a trip in a few weeks, and will be passing one of my stockist's premises. I had wondered if I might drop a bunch of containers in and ask for them to recycle them (might make them think a little more about packaging!).

So I have my shopping cart ready ( not cheap is it??) - just one more question. The recipe I have calls for cocoa butter at 5% of the recipe, and I'm just wondering if I could use something i already have - either soy wax or shea butter instead. Thoughts?
 

Cellador

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You could try soy wax or shea butter. Personally, I wouldn't use the wax because it might leave the hair feeling....well, waxy. Shea butter would probably work if you split the butter in half & use additional hardener/thickeners for the other half (cetyl alcohol, cetearyl alcohol, BTMS). With the shea at 5%, I'm afraid the bar won't be hard enough.
 

Gaisy59

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Ssssshhh! Don't mention them. When my customers buy stuff they say, "it's great to go back to real soap and ditch the plastic bottles". I think the same thing as you - if only they could see MY recycle bin at home. We are going for a trip in a few weeks, and will be passing one of my stockist's premises. I had wondered if I might drop a bunch of containers in and ask for them to recycle them (might make them think a little more about packaging!).

So I have my shopping cart ready ( not cheap is it??) - just one more question. The recipe I have calls for cocoa butter at 5% of the recipe, and I'm just wondering if I could use something i already have - either soy wax or shea butter instead. Thoughts?
Hey there KiwiMoose you have the same conundrum that I have...get rid of plastics or save the palms. You have been on my post of Syndet shampoo bar help. I too hate using palm products but I hate plastics even more. They pollute the earth and our oceans. I chose to get rid of plastic as much as possible.

Also, per my post the ladies were saying that adding a butter to the shampoo bar would not add to the shampoo bar and would be better to add it to a conditioning bar instead.
 

SoaperForLife

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Also, per my post the ladies were saying that adding a butter to the shampoo bar would not add to the shampoo bar and would be better to add it to a conditioning bar instead
Butters and oils give some moisturizing to a shampoo bar and depending on the butter, can also help to harden the bar. They are also hydrophobic so "when diluted and rinsed, will remain on the hair where they can counteract hair problems" (taken from the BeSpoke formulary). Cocoa butter has a "drier" feel while shea butter has an "oilier" feel so you would want to take that under consideration when designing your recipe.
 

KiwiMoose

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You could try soy wax or shea butter. Personally, I wouldn't use the wax because it might leave the hair feeling....well, waxy. Shea butter would probably work if you split the butter in half & use additional hardener/thickeners for the other half (cetyl alcohol, cetearyl alcohol, BTMS). With the shea at 5%, I'm afraid the bar won't be hard enough.
I also have BTMS and Cetyl in the recipe - should be good with the Shea then?

This recipe is one of the few I have found that doesn't contain cocamidipropyl betaine - which I am very happy about, so I'd be keen to give it a go. It's only 5% Shea.
 
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