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10 Tips For Mixing Your Own Skincare Products | Skin Actives

10 Tips For Mixing Your Own Skincare Products | Skin Actives

Posted by Dr. Hannah Sivak and Brendan Leonard on Jul 31st 2020

Having a fun hobby is a nice way to spend your personal time. It gives you something to look forward to when the days are long, and it gives you a sense of accomplishment when you finish something successfully. 

There can also be a lot of experimentation and time spent accruing the experience to do a better job next time. Nobody wants to look at the project they spent an hour working on and see a big mess! And no one wants to waste money.

Below you’ll find some great tips on how to get started with the DIY skincare hobby, and maybe some advice on how to reach the next level if your journey has already begun!

It may seem like a “no brainer” but before mixing your own products, you decide what your aims are for your skin. Then, you can make a plan to achieve those goals. There have been many people before you who have tried to just pour all their favorite actives into one super-cream and been disappointed with the results. The fact that there is no super-cream available on the market from the skin care giants right now isn’t due to a conspiracy. It’s because there is no such thing! 

That said, let us begin:

Foundational Thinking in Mixing Your Own Skincare Products

1. Be Prepared For Some Messy Results at the Beginning. This doesn’t mean you should just be ready to clean up after yourself. What we really mean here is that you may mix a cream that doesn’t look, feel or even smell very flattering. If this happens, don’t throw it away! Even messy serum or cream will retain the activity of its ingredients. You can use the “mess” as a concentrate by mixing a fraction of it to a base cream.

2. Focus on Inspiration Over Emulation. Trying to imitate your favorite cream, or maybe an expensive one that is currently out of reach is a dicey proposition. Premade creams are formulated by chemists with a staggering array of sophisticated processes and specialized equipment. That’s what it takes to get the “look” and “feel” of the top-shelf creams! Instead, try to identify what it is that you like in a product and go after that. Specifically, we mean the results of the product’s activity. What ingredients make it do what it does so well? You might not be able to mix a clone cream in your kitchen, but you will be able to achieve equal to, or even better skin health results. 

3. Don’t Be Taken In By Gimmicks.  This is where the rubber hits the road and is closely linked to the previous point. If it turns out that what you really like in a product is its make-up effect, its “feel” or fragrance, it is very unlikely that you will be able to copy those attributes. At Skin Actives, we don’t sell DIY fragrances or coloring dyes. These components are not part of your skin health, and so they are not part of our business model. We also don’t include these ingredients in our own formulations because they increase the potential for an allergic response. Health is what we are all about, and when you formulate at home, we encourage you to think in that direction as well.

Tools and Tips for Successful DIY Skin Care

4. Show Your Work. We’ve all seen cooking shows where the famous chefs are just throwing what looks like fistfuls of seasoning into the pan. They make it look so fun and easy! But the truth is that they got where they are by working from prescribed recipes and taking careful notes on the reaction. Perhaps the most important tool you’ll use in mixing your own skincare product is a notebook to write down exactly what you are doing. If you get that “magic potion” you always dreamed of you will want to be able to reproduce it next time. Even if you do not produce a “magic potion”, you’ll want to look back on your work and iterate going forward.

5. Weigh In. A small scale that can weigh up to 250 gm and will give you 0.1 gram, is indispensable and they go for about $20. A kitchen scale is also useful but it may not help if you are trying to weigh very small amounts of actives. Half a teaspoon could be a useful measure for sugar in a recipe, but weighing a powder is more convenient. At this point, learning to think in very small weights like grams will take you a long way.

6. Home Base. If you are mixing lotions or creams, start with a base that you like. We hate to brag, but we think ours are pretty great. Try our Canvas Cream if you have oily or normal skin, or European Cream if your skin is dry.

Application of Mixing Skin Care Products

7. Be Prepared to Do Some Research. Because you know what you are trying to achieve, you’ll need to research the actives that will help you do it. You might have an idea of what those actives are already, today’s skin care customers are the best informed in history. But whether you are coming to this as a scholar or a neophyte, you’ll want to do some research to make sure you are doing the best possible job. To help decide what you need to be successful, check out our glossary! It will help you find out the main activity of an ingredient.

8. Dust Off Your High School Chemistry Knowledge. Stop, wait! Don’t give up! We know this may seem daunting. But there are just a couple basic concepts you’ll need to remind yourself of before you go further. Go online and reacquaint yourself with the difference between weight and volume. Additionally, you’ll want to do a little bit of research into solubility. Some actives prefer oil, others like water! There is also a limit to how much of an active can “suspend” in a given medium. These basic principles will carry you a long way, so don’t be afraid of them.

9. Start Small. At Skin Actives Scientific, we believe in the power of small, handcrafted batches. That’s how we manufacture our formulations. Now, our definition of small is very different from what you will be able to achieve in your kitchen! But that said, there is a very different economy of scale between baking a loaf of bread, and 100 loaves of bread. It’s much easier to make just one! So start small. Work your recipe until you have it just right, with the actives you want, and the best consistency possible. 

The Best DIY Skin Care Tip

10: Have Fun! Remember, DIY skin care is a great way to have fun, interact with a community, take care of yourself and enrich your life. Always be safe, but remember that this should be fun! So take it seriously, but not too seriously! 

Those are all the DIY tips we have for you today! Thanks for stopping by and sharing with us. In the meantime, we want to help you with your DIY journey just a little more. All of our DIY active ingredients are 10% off right now! It’s the perfect time to look up some recipes and get started on your first projects. And, as always, your standard shipping order in the United States ships for free!

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