slather it on

lotion ingred

Have you ever tried making your own lotion, facial moisturizer, chap stick, shampoo (didn’t go so well), laundry soap, all purpose household cleaner, butter, chicken broth, or Kombucha?  Well I have.  I have made and continue to make most of the items listed but in order to spare you the insane details of each product and how I make them we are going to focus on lotion and facial moisturizer.  It takes me about fifteen minutes to make both lotions.  I love to watch someones face change when I tell them I make all these crazy things.  It makes me laugh.  But, without fail no matter how weird they think I might be, they are almost always intrigued!  I have gotten several requests to post how to make my lotions.  I figured it would be a great thing to talk about  since it is so easy and most everyone uses it!  Oh goodness, my journey of making lots of different everyday household and personal items has been nothing short of exciting for me!  I love saving money and love caring for my family even more!  After learning of my husband’s intolerance to gluten the door swung wide open for me to explore other avenues of my family’s health.  I did not really have a particular order of ailments that I was going to tackle so I started with the ones that bothered me the most.  Two of my four children suffer from mild eczema.  It has bothered me since I first noticed it several years ago.  It has never seemed to bother them but all I wanted to do was fix it!  I know from our experience that eliminating gluten from their diet definitely helps!  But, they do eat a little gluten here and there.  So, it does not ever seem to truly go away.  I have vowed that this is our year to get really strict with the kids and their diet.  Notice I said this is the “year.”  Baby steps…  That is what we have to do on our journey to better health.  Sometimes all the options and solutions can be so exhausting that one can feel completely overwhelmed.  Well, hopefully I can help in some way if you too are looking for a few changes.

Since the skin is the largest organ of the human body why not treat it with extreme care?  I mean our family tries to eat right for our internal parts and overall health, why not treat our skin the same?  If you wouldn’t drink a toxin such as Windex or bleach, then why would I put something toxic on my skin?  If I understand correctly my skin “drinks” whatever I put on it right?  So….it drinks my lotion?  Well, let’s take a look at what is in my old store bought lotion.  Hmmmm…this should be interesting…..(to name a few) Petrolatum, Glycol Stearate, Sodium Acrylate/Acryloyidimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Dimethicone, Urea (really!!! I don’t even want to know what that is!!), Butylcarbamate, and the list goes on.    Well doesn’t that sound delicious?  Just serve me up some Urea with a side of Titanium Dioxide and call it a day.  This particular lotion is a very popular store brand lotion that is compared to Vaseline Aloe Fresh.  As a health conscious momma I was not willing to stand for this.  I wanted something better for my babies.  Why not make my own lotion?  It can’t be that hard, right?  I began to research making lotions at home.  My goodness the options are endless!  Once I found what I felt like was a good basic option I did a little tweaking of my own to the recipe .

So here is my recipe:  This recipe makes both a body lotion and a facial moisturizer.  I just pour the body lotion in a pint size mason jar and the facial moisturizer in a much smaller glass jar.  The only difference in the two is the facial moisturizer has essential oils and the body lotion does not.

¼ Cup of Coconut Oil (if your skin is dry you can use Olive oil instead, if it is combination you can use half olive oil and half coconut oil) – Coconut is very light and not oily once absorbed.  Keep in mind if you use olive oil your lotion will have a yellow/green tint to it.

¼ Cup + 1 Tbsp. of Emulsifying wax (NOT beeswax for this recipe) – the Emulsifying Wax Pastilles work best

1 ¼ cup of HOT water

1 tsp. Avocado oil

1 tsp. Calendula oil (or you can just use 2 tsp. of Avocado oil as it is very good for you skin.  Calendula is a good oil for sensitive skin and used a lot in baby lotions)

10-25 drops of essential oil of choice (I don’t use any essential oils for my body lotion but I do use Frankincense and Myrrh for my facial moisturizer) – Frankincense is a natural anti-wrinkle!!!  Optional.

Let’s just make this as easy as possible (detailed pictures of each step are below).  Place a small pot on the stove with approximately 2-3 inches of water in it.  Turn the burner on medium heat.  Place Coconut oil/Olive oil and emulsifying was in a Pyrex jar and place the Pyrex jar in the pot with water (this is called a double boiler).  Stir frequently until the wax and oil have liquefied.  Remove the Pyrex jar from the pot and turn the burner off.  At this point add your Avocado oil and Calendula oil in your Pyrex jar of wax and oil.  Stir all the oils and wax mixture for thirty seconds or so.  Next, add the hot water and stir until mixed well.  When you add the water your mixture will immediately turn white (unless you use olive oil) and look like whole milk.  When I make lotion I make both lotion and facial moisturizer at the same time.  So, I have my pint size mason jar and my smaller glass jar (for my moisturizer) in front of me.  Fill your smaller glass jar almost full then pour the rest into the pint size jar.  At this point I leave the pint size jar (my body lotion) alone but add a few essential oils to my smaller glass jar (face moisturizer).  I like Frankincense for its’ anti-wrinkle properties and Myrrh since it is good for the skin.  I use around five drops of Myrrh and seven or eight of the Frankincense oil.  Now, for those of you who have gotten quite used to your store-bought lotions don’t expect them to smell the same!  The store lotions have a lot of toxic chemicals and perfumes in them to make them more appealing to your sense of smell whereas your homemade product does not, at least in this case with the oils I choose.  The Myrrh is a more clean smell whereas the Frankincense is a more medicinal/musty smell.  The smell only lasts for a few minutes on my face and then is quickly absorbed into my skin.  I have made sure of this by asking my husband to smell my face and neck!  Hey, I love natural stuff but I don’t want to smell like a hippie!  Once you have poured your liquid lotions in their glass jars set them on top of the microwave, on the counter, or somewhere to cool down and become creamy like lotion.  I like to leave the lids off during this process otherwise if you put the lids on while the lotion mixture is still warm/hot steam forms inside the jar and on the lid dripping back into your lotion and you don’t want that.  Over the course of the next several hours while the lotion is thickening be sure and stir your lotions thoroughly two or three times.  Sometimes the oils like to separate from the wax in spots and by stirring them during the thickening process you eliminate this problem.

Now, since water has been added to this recipe and no preservatives  have , this lotion will not last as long as store-bought lotion.  This has never been a problem for us as we use it daily.  Mine lasts about six weeks for both the lotion and moisturizer.  I did have one moisturizer that I made that had too much Frankincense in it and I quit using it because the smell was so strong.  I left it in my bathroom closet for maybe a couple of months and when I found it and opened it up it had a different almost spoiled type smell to it.  So just be aware of this.  It should be ok for six weeks or so.  I hope you have enjoyed learning a little about making homemade lotion.  It really is fun for me and I love saving the extra money for all these specialty lotions for dry or sensitive skin.  I haven’t purchased lotions for our family including my facial moisturizer (which I use twice a day everyday) for over eighteen months.  Now, coming from me a former Clinique, Olay, Neutrogena, Biore, and Aveeno user that is a big deal!  Anytime I can make something out of things from my kitchen for everyday products, I am all for that!  Let me know what you think.  I would love to hear if you try it!  If you have any questions I would love to answer them!  Have fun!

On a side note, I get my oils and waxes from here.

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