Shampoo formulas determine good shampoo from the downright dreadful

by Gail Chadwick

Anyone who remembers their years at high school may recall science classes where the science teacher demonstrated the results of mixing chemicals, and how slight changes in formulas resulted in dramatic changes. Hair care product formulas can be difficult to tame, and as we've found on occasion, even the slightest deviations from a set formula can have disasterous effects.

Production managers when faced with such deviations need to ascertain whether or not the cost of "starting a production run from scratch" outweighs releasing the product to market in its resulting, yet imperfect, form. As a small independent manufacturer, we're often faced with such a challenge where the chemist/manufacturer has produced a slight variation to what is normally supplied. So do we discard the hundreds of litres in question and start over or can the incorrect mix be corrected? Thankfully the latter is usually possible but we have refused delivery on occasions. We don't say this to place oursleves above the rest, rather, we're using this as a precurser to what comes next! Read on!

During one of our many supermarket trips we dropped into our basket a new shampoo that we'd not previously seen. Back home it was quickly obvious that the forumula used had somewhere gone awry, leaving the liquid inside the bottle next to impossible to actually get out of the bottle! The consistency was so "tough" that using the product was difficult. How many people were under the shower that weekend trying to extract the shampoo from the bottle!

This example was the perfect case of a manufacturer either wittingly releasing a sub-standard product to market or a "new kid on the block" unaware of what happens after the product is released, and what occurs to the shampoo consistency when exposed to raised temperatures, excessive UV, etc. Sound and experienced manufacturers will know what "triggers" a formula under certain environmental conditions. We work in the industry and we see this all the time.

We don't always get it right but we do stop production when we find a fault (just ask our supplier!). Just be wary of inferior shampoos, lotions and gels. And yes, of course, if you find any of our products not "behaving" the way that you've come to expect - tell us about it and we'll arrange an instant replacement even if our manufacturing process isn't at fault. To that end, be mindful of where you store bottlles, it's best to keep them away from direct sunlight or other sources of heat.


May 24, 2011

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