Caffeine & Cucumber Under Eye Gel

Caffeine & Cucumber Under Eye Gel


An under eye gel is an ideal addition to your summer and festive season skincare routine. Feeling like you need a bit of a skin pick-me-up, or need to depuff after one too many the night before? Our under eye gel is deliciously cooling, smells like fresh cucumber and does the trick!


Our gelling agent of choice here is going to be hydroxyethyl cellulose (HEC). I love the gel it makes because it is clear and non-sticky. You could use xanthan gum instead, however on its own I sometimes find it a little tacky feeling, and we don’t want that in an eye gel.


I’m using quite a small amount of HEC because I want the gel to be runny enough that it pumps out nicely from a pump dispenser bottle. You could make it thicker by increasing the HEC amount to 0.75% or even 1% if you prefer a thicker gel.


The nice thing about certain gels such as hydroxyethyl cellulose, is that they are able to carry small amounts of oils without the need for an emulsifier. I chose cucumber for its divine scent and wonderful skin properties, and while you could swap it for any other oil I really wouldn’t want you to miss out on the cucumber experience!

Keep in mind that adding the oil does take away a little of the gel’s clarity. 


Caffeine powder does the de-puffing job, and some added allantoin soothes the skin. I used the smallest amount of caffeine because I always formulate for sensitive skins. If your skin can handle more then feel free to increase the caffeine a little. It's max usage rate is 2%.


Ready to make your own? Let’s go:



Caffeine & Cucumber Under Eye Gel

2%  cucumber oil

0.5%  hydroxyethyl cellulose

2%  propanediol

93.8% fresh boiling water/ tea infusion

0.2%  caffeine powder

0.5%  allantoin

1%  Saliguard BDHAGeogard 221

Beakers

Loretta or  serum pump bottle



In a beaker, add the caffeine and allantoin to the freshly boiled water and stir to dissolve. In a separate beaker, mix the HEC and the propanediol together to create a slurry, then slowly stir in the caffeine water. Blend with a stick blender until a smooth gel is formed. The mixture will probably still be quite hot, so allow it time to cool and any bubbles to dissipate. Then stir in the cucumber oil and the preservative, and mix well to make sure they are fully incorporated.

Check the pH to skin friendly levels of 4.5-5.5, and pour into a bottle


Apply to clean skin.


Back to The Essentially Natural Blog

6 comments

Hi Corrine, how strange. Using hot water and blending works for me every time. If you want a thicker gel you can also try increasing the amount of HEC. This is not a very thick gel, more of a runny gel designed to pump out of a serum pump bottle. Perhaps people are expecting a thicker gel..

Juliette

I had the same problem as Micheal. The mixture remained very watery. After doing some research it seems that HEC takes a few hours to fully thicken into a gel. Although it says using hot water as per your instructions speed up the process it still didn’t work for me. Now I know to wait at least an hour. I will try again.

CP

Hi Janine, as explained in the blog, hydroxyethyl cellulose gel is able to carry small amounts of oil without the need for an emulsifier :)

Juliette

Hi there Juliette, which product performs as the solubalizer? There the bit of cucumber oil in all the water…

Janine Bentley

Hi Mike, oh dear sorry to hear that. Please tell me the exact measurements you used in your version and I’ll try assist.

Juliette