Hydrating your skin is crucial for healthy cell turnover and providing a plump, smooth surface. Dry skin can lead to uncomfortable conditions, such as itchy, flaking surfaces or even cracks that allow baterias to take hold. Plus, moisture can help combat sun damage and the signs of aging.
The problem many people have is choosing a lotion that works with their particular skin type. Most lotions have synthetic ingredients and harsh synthetic colors and fragrances which may cause more problems – especially for sensitive skin types. Those lotions that are pure and transparent with their ingredients generally have a hefty price tag as well.
Having the option to make your own lotion from known ingredients allows you to customize your hydrating experience, and for a fraction of the cost. Read on to learn how to easily, and quickly, make your own DIY natural lotion.
Why Make Your Own Lotion?
As mentioned above, making your own lotion puts control of the ingredients in your hands. You do want to hydrate your skin for a variety of reasons, and do so as soon after you bath as possible to lock in the water you just exposed it to.
Lotion is basically water suspended in a greasy material that helps hold moisture in your skin. You want to use it daily, and as often as you feel your body benefits from it. Fragrances and certain ingredients (especially those that are synthetic in nature) can actually work against your skin’s own moisture barrier, and create problematic skin.
Making your own lotion can help you narrow down which ingredients are best for your own skin’s health, and even allow you to address any sensitivities or problems you may have. Naturally sourced, organic options for both hydration, fragrance, and skin treatments are more widely available than you may have even known.
If you have wondered how to make natural lotion, but have held off taking the leap, you are going to take a look at the ingredients below and shake your head at how simple the whole process is.
First, go grab a bottle of your favorite lotion and take a look at the ingredient list. Bet you can’t pronounce a few things on there and are wondering what the heck about half of them even are. Most of those ingredients are non-active, and are used to keep the ingredients mixed together without separating, preserve, and synthetically scent and color the whole lot.
What if I told you making lotions with natural ingredients will create a personalized, hydrating option with a longer shelf life? Ingredients such as coconut oil, beeswax, shea butter, arrowroot powder, and essential oils are all samples of options you can use that both preserve what they are blended with, and hydrate your skin. You also have the option to go wholly organic or even vegan if you desire.
What You Need:
To make approximately 20 ounces of your own homemade lotion, use the following:
1 cup shea butter
Shea butter is highly moisturizing, plus it has anti-inflammatory and healing properties. It is gentle enough for sensitive skin and does not clog pores, plus it serves as a hydrating and protective treatment for eczema, insect bites, surface wounds, and sunburns.
1 cup coconut oil (non-fractionated)
Anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory properties of coconut oil make this an ideal skin treatment. It not only helps preserve your lotion, but is gentle enough to use on all skin types.
1 tablespoon beeswax pastilles
Anti-inflammatory and protective, beeswax serves as a barrier against the elements without clogging pores. It also is high in vitamin A which supports cell reconstruction.
1 teaspoon essential oil of your choice
See below for suggestions of what to use. You can choose for scent or for skin treatment options.
Step One: Soften Shea Butter
All natural shea butter comes in bricks and does need to be softened. You can zap it in the microwave at 20-30 second intervals until it feels soft and malleable. Simply place it in a glass bowl and cover with a damp paper towel.
You also could place it in a double boiler until it softens but you will have to watch it carefully because you don’t want it to melt. If it does melt set in the refrigerator for a few minutes to start solidifying again.
Hint: Light colored shea butter has a light scent, while the deeper yellows are richer in their aroma. Choose based on personal preferences.
Step Two: Add Coconut Oil
Your Coconut oil should be a soft solid at room temperature, but don’t worry if it melted due to a warmer room since it melts at 76 degrees fahrenheit. You do want to use a non-fractionated oil as it has been less processed and can help with the lotion setting up.
Hint: If all you have is fractionated coconut oil, don’t despair. Use it anyway and add an extra teaspoon of beeswax to the mix!
Step Three: Melt Beeswax, Add, and Blend Well
You’ll need to melt your beeswax for this in order to ensure it blends into the other ingredients. Again, this can be done in the microwave with a damp paper towel over the top, or in a double boiler (I recommend a double boiler, just use low heat and keep an eye on it as it will melt fast!).
Once melted, pour into the softened shea butter and coconut oil while you blend to keep it from solidifying in the cooler ingredients. I generally run my blender or hand mixer at a medium speed for a few minutes, turning the bowl and scraping the sides to ensure I don’t miss any clumps.
Hint: The more beeswax you use, the thicker the lotion will be. If you prefer a more lightweight creamy texture you can leave it out altogether, or use less. I like the thicker feel and prefer using a bit more.
Step Four: Add Oils and Whip
The reason I don’t add the oils in the above step is because I sometimes like to take a little of the lotion base out and mix different scents for various skin care purposes. You can do this as well, or simply make the whole batch the same- it’s up to you. Just be sure to use the proper amount of oil drops to each.
Once you have added the oils, whip it up good! You want to see stiff peaks forming when you lift the blender tines! This will stay like this and not separate.
Hint: You don’t have to add essential oils if you don’t want to and prefer the light scent of shea butter and beeswax. If you do choose to use oils, be sure to use pure, concentrated oils that have not been diluted with a carrier oil (these are also sold as pure due to the purity of the carrier). If you are unsure of the difference contact the manufacturer as they should provide transparency to what is in their bottles.
Step Five: Store in Glass Jars
Spoon your lotion into storage jars for personal and gifting uses. Because this recipe whips up so quickly (pun intended) you can easily make a few batches for various holidays and events.
Natural ingredients store best in glass jars and in a cool, dark area. Use jars with wide mouth lids for easy lotion access. You can also invest in a lotion spatula if you have more narrow opening to help scoop the lotion out.
Oils to Consider for Various Skin Types
Mentioned above is the importance of using a concentrated, pure essential oil. I’m not saying this to knock companies that sell their oils already diluted. In making this lotion you are going to be diluting the oils and if they are already diluted, you won’t get the full benefits.
To put this into perspective:
Companies that sell a concentrated oil in 5 -15 ml bottles provide approximately 85 to 250 drops of undiluted oil. In comparison, a 15 to 30 ml bottle of 10% diluted oil may only have 10 to 50 drops of concentrated oil suspended with a carrier. Although those larger bottles may be cheaper, cost wise you aren’t getting as much oil as the smaller, pricier choices. This doesn’t negate quality, but it doesn’t provide the same concentration.
There are quite a few oils to choose from if you want a lotion for facial care and to help control oil without drying out. This is especially important if you are looking for a natural moisturizer for a dry face due to combination oily/dry skin types. Some of the best include: Geranium, tea tree, eucalyptus, lavender, ylang ylang, myrrh, patchouli and roman chamomile essential oils.
Dry, problematic patches of skin can benefit from a few specific oils as well. These include:
Lavender, helichrysum, myrrh, frankincense, geranium, carrot seed, cucumber seed, sandalwood, rose, and jasmine essential oils.
If you have very sensitive skin and are looking for strong healing properties try lavender, sandalwood, lemongrass, or frankincense for overall skin health.
To treat acne prone skins, you want oils that combat bacteria and support a healthy immune response. Some of the best include tea tree, lavender, lemongrass, clove, and frankincense.
Caring for your tattoo begins immediately if you want it to heal fast and showcase clean lines and vibrant colors. Hydration is especially important to keep your tattoo from getting itchy, and the addition of certain oils can speed up the healing and lock in the colors. Helichrysum, frankincense, myrrh, and lavender are some of the best to use. These also allow your tattoo to ‘pop’ even years later.
You can see how the lotion helped smooth out a new, healing tattoo here. It kept it from ever getting itchy and allowed the skin to recover in a gentle manner.
Stiff and sore? Feet tired after a long run? Recovering from a muscle injury? Make your own deep penetrating lotion by adding in oils that support blood flow and are anti-inflammatory. Peppermint, wintergreen, orange, lavender, cinnamon, camphor, lemongrass, and helichrysum are popular picks and can blend well with each other to create personalized scents. You can also use pre-made brands such as Panaway or Deep Blue, or even pick up CBD oil mixtures.
Now that you know how simple it is to make up your own batch of all natural face and body lotion, you need to get started! All ingredients are easy to purchase at local pharmacies or online. Making your own lotion will save you a bunch in the long run, especially since this recipe is highly moisturizing and a little goes a long way!
If you have any questions or comments, please let us know below! And, as always, please share!