How Creams Are Made – Cream Manufacturing Process
When it comes to skincare, creams are the go-to products for many people. From moisturizers to anti-aging creams, these luxurious potions are loved for their smooth texture and ability to nourish the skin. But have you ever wondered how creams are made? What goes into creating that silky, creamy concoction that we slather on our faces and bodies? Let’s take a behind-the-scenes look at the fascinating process of cream production.
Step 1: Formulating the Recipe
The first step in making a cream is formulating the recipe. Skincare companies carefully select a combination of ingredients to create a formulation that meets their desired product goals. This process involves extensive research and development to identify the right combination of ingredients that will provide the desired benefits, such as hydration, anti-aging, or skin brightening.
The formulation typically includes a combination of water-based and oil-based ingredients. Water-based ingredients, such as distilled water or herbal extracts, provide the base of the cream and act as a solvent for other ingredients. Oil-based ingredients, such as carrier oils or butters, add richness and nourishment to the cream. Emulsifiers, which are special ingredients that help water and oil blend together, are also added to create a stable and homogenous mixture.
In addition to water, oils, and emulsifiers, creams may also contain other active ingredients such as vitamins, antioxidants, peptides, and botanical extracts, depending on the specific skincare goals of the product.
Step 2: Weighing and Measuring
Once the formulation is finalized, the next step is to carefully weigh and measure the ingredients. Precise measurements are crucial to ensure that the cream has the right consistency and efficacy. The ingredients are measured out in accordance with the predetermined recipe, usually using specialized scales or measuring equipment in a controlled environment to maintain accuracy.
Step 3: Mixing and Heating
After measuring the ingredients, they are mixed together in a specific order and heated to create a homogeneous mixture. The emulsifiers and other ingredients are carefully blended together to create an emulsion, which is a stable mixture of water and oil. The mixture is heated to a specific temperature to facilitate the emulsification process and ensure that all the ingredients are fully incorporated.
Step 4: Cooling and Adding Additional Ingredients
Once the emulsion is formed, the mixture is cooled down to room temperature to allow it to solidify and thicken. At this stage, additional ingredients such as preservatives, fragrances, and colorants may be added to enhance the sensory appeal and shelf life of the cream. These ingredients are added in precise amounts to maintain the integrity of the formulation.
Step 5: Quality Control and Packaging
Before the cream is packaged, it undergoes rigorous quality control checks to ensure that it meets the company’s standards for stability, consistency, and safety. This may include testing for pH levels, microbial contamination, and stability over time.
Once the cream passes quality control, it is carefully packaged into jars, bottles, or tubes. Packaging is an important aspect of cream production, as it not only protects the cream from contamination but also provides information to consumers about the product, such as its ingredients, usage instructions, and expiration date.
Step 6: Distribution and Storage
After packaging, the creams are ready for distribution to retailers or directly to consumers. They are stored in a controlled environment to maintain their stability and efficacy until they are used by customers.
Creams are a result of meticulous research, formulation, and production processes. From formulating the recipe to weighing and measuring the ingredients, to mixing, heating, cooling, and adding additional ingredients, each step is carefully executed to create a high-quality product. Quality control checks and proper packaging ensure that the creams are safe and
HOW ARE OUR CREAMS MADE?
A cream is basically a mixture of oil and water. As you know oil does not readily dissolve or disperse in water, so to allow this to happen, a dispersing agent called an emulsifier is added to the mixture. A cream is therefore a type of emulsion, made of a water phase and an oil phase.
Emulsifiers ‘Unite’ Oil with Water
Emulsifiers are substances that have the ability to react with both oil and water. One piece of an emulsifier molecule joins to the molecules of water and another piece joins to the molecules of oil. This allows the oil to disperse as very fine droplets surrounded by emulsifier molecules, into the water medium. The emulsifier is often a waxy substance (e.g.: Glyceryl Stearate), which is melted into the oil before it is added to the water.
‘Oil in Water’ and ‘Water in Oil’ Emulsions
Oil in water emulsions
are prepared by dispersing a lesser quantity of oil in a greater quantity of water. The oil phase is called the ‘internal phase’ because the emulsifier molecules enclose the minute oil droplets as they disperses them through the water medium, which is referred to as the ‘external phase’. The oil is ‘wrapped within the water’. Such creams have a lighter feel, are more easily absorbed into the skin without leaving an oily residue.
Water in oil emulsions to cream
are prepared by dispersing a lesser quantity of water into a greater quantity of oil. Water here is the internal phase because the emulsifier molecules wrap round the minute water droplets as they disperse through the medium of oil, which is the external phase. Such creams tend to have an oily feel and are used to provide an oily barrier, which protects the skin and reduces the loss of moisture in conditions like eczema.
The Water Phase to make cream
Water constitutes the major ingredient (61-77%) of most creams. The lighter and more cosmetic-type creams contain more water and less oil. This phase contains the water-soluble herbal ingredients of a cream. In our creams, the water phase is never tap or deionised water as is the case with most creams, except in our base cream. We always incorporate beneficial high quality active ingredients into the water phase in the form of distilled aromatic waters, strong infusions and decoctions and cold percolates of organic herbs.
The Oil Phase to make cream
Oils make up, anywhere between 11 and 24% of the bulk of a cream. The heavier purely medicinal creams contain a higher proportion of oil but water is still their major ingredient. Oil-soluble herbal ingredients like resins dissolve and become incorporated into this phase which gives creams a richer and heavier feel. Many oils are susceptible to oxidation or rancidification over a period of time. This process is hindered by the addition of antioxidants like vitamin E, to all our creams and lotions.
Making a cream
The ingredients of the water phase are heated gently until their temperature reaches 70-75 Degrees C. Simultaneously, the ingredients of the oil phase are heated gently in a separate container again to a temperature of 70-75 Degrees C. When both phases get to the required temperature the oil phase is poured gradually into the water phase. As this is taking place the mixture is whisked vigorously using a high sheer mixer, which breaks the oil, emulsifier, and water particles into minute droplets. This greatly facilitates the dispersion of oil into water and enhances the stability of the emulsion. A creamy texture forms after a few minutes of high-sheer high-speed mixing. This is then transferred to a low-shear low-speed stirrer, which gently mixes and turns the cream giving it body and gradually cooling it down. When the temperature of the cream drops down to around 40 Degrees C, heat sensitive ingredients like essential oils and some preservatives are added and stirred in for a few more minutes to ensure uniform dispersal. Here is your cream, which is now left overnight to cool to room temperature, then filled into sterile containers and sealed.