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How to Make a Soothing Aftershave Balm for Men

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Difficulty:IntermediateLength:ShortLanguages:

Put your lotion-making skills to work and make a soothing aftershave balm for men. Formulating products for men isn't very different from making a regular moisturizer, but men usually want a lighter-feeling lotion, so I've used a higher water-to-oil ratio to formulate a thinner product. This recipe makes approximately 250 grams or 8oz of finished lotion.


Supplies

aftershave-materials
  • 190g distilled water
  • 1g aloe 200X powder
  • 8g vegetable glycerin
  • 30g hazelnut oil
  • 20g ECOmulse emulsifying wax
  • 2g cucumber extract
  • 2g Germall Plus preservative
  • 10 drops eucalyptus essential oil
  • 5 drops bergamot essential oil
  • 2 pyrex cups
  • Electric mixer
  • Scale
  • Thermometer
  • Funnel
  • 4 2oz bottles or jars

1. The Water Phase

Step 1

Using the scale, weigh out your water directly into a heat-safe container. Always use distilled water when making lotion to cut down on contamination.

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Step 2

Add the glycerin to the water and stir. Glycerin is a humectant that will help attract moisture to the skin.

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Step 3

An aftershave should have some soothing and astringent ingredients to help calm irritation caused by shaving, so I've used aloe powder, cucumber extract and hazelnut oil.

Add the aloe powder to the water and stir well to incorporate.

Aloe has great skin-soothing properties. By re-hyrdating aloe powder you are creating your own aloe juice. Alternatively, you can substitute half the water for straight aloe juice for the same effect.

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Step 4

Put the whole water-phase container into a pot of boiling water to create a double boiler and heat until 70 degrees celcius.

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2. The Oil Phase

Step 1

Using the scale, weigh out your emulsifier.

This recipe calls for ECOmulse, which is certified for use in organic formulas and available at lotioncrafter.com. ECOmulse is an all-in-one emulsifier that creates dryer-feeling lotion which sinks in quickly and doesn't feel as waxy some other emulsifiers. This is great when making products for men or anyone who prefers a more powdery final result.

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Step 2

Add hazelnut oil.

Hazelnut oil is very light weight. It's great for men's products because it absorbs quickly and is slightly astringent. Other good substitutions are jojoba oil or apricot kernel.

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Step 3

Put the oil-phase container into another pot of water and heat until 70C.

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Step 4

Once both the water phase and the oil phase reach 70C, reduce the heat and maintain the temperature of 70C for at least 20 minutes. This helps to ensure a stable emulsion and also helps to sanitize the water phase.

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3. Combine

Step 1

Remove both the oil and water phases from heat, then quickly add the oil phase to the water phase.

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Step 2

Mix the two phases together for at least three minutes to ensure a good emulsion.

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Step 3

Set the lotion aside to cool and monitor the temperature.


4. The Cool Down Phase

Step 1

Once the lotion has cooled to 45C, add the preservative.

For a preservative, I’m using Germall Plus, a broad-spectrum preservative that’s effective against mold and bacteria and has a non-paraben base. Preservatives are necessary for any formula that uses water to prevent the growth of bacteria and mold.

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Step 2

Add the cucumber extract and essential oils.

Cucumber is a great extract to add to an aftershave product, due to its cooling and calming properties. Eucalyptus is also a cooling essential oil that blends nicely with bergamot. Alternatively, you can add peppermint essential oil for a similar effect.

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Step 3

Mix well to incorporate the final phase.

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Step 4

Use a funnel to transfer the lotion to bottles.

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Step 5

Allow to cool to room temperature before capping with a disc top.

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You're Done!

You just learned how to formulate a soothing, light aftershave balm for men. This lotion is light and made with naturally calming ingredients that are especially good for cooling and soothing irritation that can be caused by shaving. Make a creative label and package it up as a very special handmade gift.

Do you like making your own skincare products? How did you go with this tutorial?

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