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Mold in Premade Lotion Base


bugtussle
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What could cause mold to grow in premade lotion base? I only add FO & color. It has happened twice now and it's when there is just a little left in the jar. I don't sell yet, but make a lot for family & friends. I thought these bases had a sufficient amount of preservatives.

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Contamination can overwhelm even the best preserved systems. What are the ingredients in the preservative? Some are only good for bacteria, and not yeast and mold.

Are you "sterilizing" your area and all of your tools - hands well washed and hair tied back if it's long? Made sure everything is wiped down with a bleach solution.

Do you heat the base to thin it out? If you do, make sure it's completely cool before you cap it. *Any* water condensation in the bottle/jar is *not* preserved, and so can harbor ickies.. Heat can also destroy a preservative system - some are sensitive to temperature.

You aren't reusing jars, are you?

And you aren't adding more FO than the recommended amount?

Those are the usual culprits. A base isn't fool proof - it gives you a good formulation with sterile environment and hopefully enough preservation. And hopefully it wasn't already contaminated at the source when it was bottled into the (assuming) gallon jugs?

I'm betting water from the air that isn't preserved is getting into your container and giving the mold a place to grow.

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Thks for the responses. I am really careful when I make the lotions. When I get the 8 oz jar, I cap it closed so it stays clean till I use it. I do heat the lotion, but I let it cool before I cap it. I use 2% FO and BCN soap dyes. I think probably I am contaminating it when I use it (finger in jar syndrome.) I have always used thick lotions (store bought) which have to be scooped out. I have never contaminated any of these. Should I try to add more preservatives to base?

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Too much preservative can be almost as bad as too little - it can be irritating. Preservatives kill bacteria by disrupting their cell wall - wouldn't want it to do that to good cells too...

Does the base you use recommend up to 2% of additions? Most of the bases I've seen (BCN is one), recommend you add only 1% of additives without compromising the preservative. I suppose you could add more preservative if you were going beyond that limit, but it would be such a tiny amount I don't think you could measure it properly.

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It is WSP's base that I am having problems with. Just looked at their ingredient list and it includes Methylparaben, Propylparaben. They do say 1-2% FO. It is their Head-to-Toe lotion and I have used it before with no problems. It is very thick and is hard to squeeze out of a squeeze bottle. It does concern me, but since I don't sell it, I'll just keep checking it and will keep it in-house. This may just be an isolated case; I love the lotion. Carole Just to add this info: This lotion base was probably close to a year old. I posted in May about expiration on bases. Could this have been the cause??

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The container had never been opened and was kept in a cool area, but it was close to a year old. (Forgot it.) It smelled & looked great, but I probably should not have used it. I just got a new shipment and will test it. Thanks for all of your help. The mold was just something I had never expected. Carole

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Most products are good even after their expiration date, but they do have one for a reason. What I've found is that often, in cosmetics/lotion it will begin to take on a fatty-rancid smell when the product becomes old, but does not grow mold (at least visible mold).

If you have to add more reservatives to a lotion base, what's the point in using a base any more?

I don't want to hex myself, but I've used WSP lotion bases and never encountered any mold.

Are you sterilizing your containers? I've received containers that are actually pretty dirty--when I wiped them down the paper towel showed all of the dust that was on the lids.

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