Why use a program to create cosmetic formulas?

It seems just about every other week there is an ad or a site promising to make cosmetic formula creation super simple. We investigate them because we have a program to offer too! But too often, on closer inspection, we see they are not as simple as you need them to be, or like our program can provide.

But as a user who just wants a simplified program that helps you create a cosmetic formula just the way you want it, why should you consider our program, Create Cosmetic Formulas, over the others, and as a solution to your cosmetic formulating needs?



#1: You need a program that is much more than just a cosmetic formulation calculator

When you are just starting out, how are you supposed to know how much emulsifier you need to create a lotion formula versus how much emulsifier you need to create a cream formula? How are you supposed to know exactly which emulsifiers are natural, and how much of each different type of emulsifier you will need? And next you have to consider gums and preservatives, and that’s before you’ve even thought about what oils you want to use and any actives or extracts you may want to include…!

Several programs require you to know the names of the ingredients you will need, as well as which ingredients you will need. But they usually come as a glorified excel sheet to add up inputs of your ingredients.

But if you don’t know what you actually need in that formula, how are you supposed to make the right selections to ensure it is stable, and even becomes the product form you are hoping to create?



Our Create Cosmetic Formulas program starts by asking you: what do you want to create today? And then you can pick the product form, for example, a lotion, or a cream.



In fact, there are 32 different product types you can create with our general skin & hair care formulation program, 28 different product types you can create with our organic formulation program, and 22 product types you can create with our makeup formulation program.

The program also contains information on hundreds of different ingredients, so you can pick and choose what you need easily. Here is what our lotion formula guide looks like.



You’ll notice too that at the bottom, it also has a ‘generate method’ button. You don’t even need to know how to put your formula together – once you’ve selected all your ingredients, you just click on that button and the program will decide the best way to put all of your selections together.

It really is that simple!



Here is a close up of some key ingredients – by their function in the formula – for a lotion product.

The program lets you know what is absolutely essential (the numbers marked in red) – and until you select in these categories, it won’t let you move on to the method. In other words, you can stop wasting ingredients, because every formula will work. The program will not allow you to create a formula without the essential ingredient types.


#2: You need a program that provides loads of cosmetic ingredient choices

Another great thing about the Create Cosmetic Formulas program, is there are HUNDREDS of choices of ingredients. We’ve also ONLY used ingredients that are available from small suppliers. Check out this list of emulsifier choices!

Another great thing is the program helps guide you on a suitable selection. So, you would have seen the program tells you that you need an emulsifier for a lotion, right?

But how do you know which emulsifiers will work best, or which are needed? You can’t use just one emulsifier on its own, so how do you know how many or which ones will work?

The program will ONLY list emulsifiers that will work for a lotion. It will ONLY list combinations of materials that will work for a lotion. It also tells you how natural or not each ingredient is, what other components are present, and provides selection tips why you might choose one over the other.

And it does this for every type of ingredient in the program!

In other words, you can’t make a bad choice, because the program will only provide you with suitable choices, and then provides additional selection criteria so you can pick and choose to suit your individual needs.


# 3: You need a program that only suggests ingredients you can source

You can’t possibly get every ingredient you need from one supplier – even Belinda Carli, the program creator, Cosmetic Chemist and Director of Institute of Personal Care Science, can’t source all the ingredients she needs from one supplier.

But – you want a list of nearby suppliers that can supply a variety of ingredients in small quantities to suit your location and formulation needs. You can find a global list of cosmetic ingredient suppliers here.

Our Create Cosmetic Formulas program ONLY uses ingredients available from small suppliers. It does not include ingredients that are only available from large suppliers. While not every supplier on this list will have every ingredient in the program, it gives you a ready source of suppliers to get familiar with specific to you region – and between them, you will be able to source a significant number of these ingredients. Then the occasional order to a supplier in another part of the world for highly active or special ingredients can be justified – when you can get everything else much closer to home.


#4: You need a program that tells you the right inputs – and won’t let you add too much or too little!

We’re going to show you how useful the Create Cosmetic Formulas program is to protect you from making the wrong input choices by demonstrating this with a preservative.

It’s a common misconception that all preservatives need to be added at 1%. This is not correct. Too much preservative can be very irritating and possibly unsafe – and too little preservative is definitely not safe, as it leaves a product able to be contaminated during consumer use.

Here is an example using Optiphen Plus, which needs to be used at more than 1%. In this case, the program tells you, it must be used at between 1.2 and 1.5%. If you select Optiphen Plus, the program will automatically list it at the minimum needed for protection, in this case, 1.2%.

So, the program won’t let you use too little, or too much, of any type of ingredient.

If the program won’t allow you to use a certain input, there would be a good reason. You can stop wasting ingredients because every formula works.


#5: You need a program that prevents incompatible ingredient pairing

One of the mistakes a beginner cosmetic formulator makes is with incompatible ingredient pairings. But when you are just new to cosmetic formulation, how do you know what you don’t know?

With the Create Cosmetic Formulas program, you don’t need to worry, because it’s been designed to recognise ingredients that cannot be put together – and it just won’t allow you to make that selection.

You can stop wasting ingredients because every formula works.


#6: You need a program that automatically determines the right method

Even the best ingredient selections will turn into a failed sample if you don’t use the right method.

Which ingredients need to be heated together? Which ingredients aren’t suitable for heating?

Which ingredients need to be mixed with high shear? Which ingredients do you need to mix under low shear only?

And what does the final pH need to be for your cosmetic formula and ingredient selections?

With Create Cosmetic Formulas, you don’t need to worry about any of this, because the program recognises the ingredients you have selected and instantly determines the right way to put your cosmetic formula together.


You just click the ‘generate method’ button and the Create Cosmetic Formulas program will recognise the ingredients you have chosen and:

  • Phase compatible ingredients together
  • Tells you which phases need heating
  • Tells you which phases need to be added after cooling
  • What sort of mixing needs to happen at each step
  • What your final pH needs to be, to suit all ingredients

The program won’t let you make a mistake – and makes sure that everything is put together the exact way it needs to be.


#7: You need a program that makes cosmetic formulation fun and easy.

When you are starting out, there is nothing more disheartening than a failed formula. You know, the type that either doesn’t come together at the start, or starts looking like lumpy custard, separated into two layers, or a failed mud pie after just a few days.

With Create Cosmetic Formulas, every formula works. This means you can stop wasting ingredients, get more enjoyment, and build your confidence as you grow and learn with your selections. You may want a more viscous cream than what you created, so you just add the upper limit of the recommended input of wax next time. You may want a shampoo with more foam next time – again, follow the guided inputs and just use more of your foaming ingredients next time.

The point is, every formula will work. You will at least have a lotion, or shampoo, or whatever it is you tried to create, each time. Then its fun to work within the guides provided in the program to chance the oils used, increase or decrease the viscosity, and alter its performance. But each time, you will create a product that at least comes together, holds together, and does what you wanted it to do.

Then its over to you – to keep creating, having fun, and enjoying the process of cosmetic formulation.

Experiment with cosmetic product formulas that are new to you – or improve ones you’ve guessed at previously – the Create Cosmetic Formulas program makes sure it can’t go wrong, so you can get back to enjoying creating cosmetic formulas. At the end of the day, that’s what being a cosmetic formulator is all about!

Happy formulating!