Other than being a fun project, the biggest reason I love making homemade lotion is that it is inexpensive and it doesn’t contain any chemical ingredients or strong scents (which I don’t like on my skin or in my body whenever I can avoid it). And, for those who have sensitivities to scents and additives, this could be a simple solution for you to enjoy the benefits of a really moisturizing lotion. It absorbs quickly and it feels great on your skin!
This is an easy “do it yourself” project that my daughter and I did to create gifts over the holidays (and yes, we saved a bit for ourselves). We also had lots of fun a few weeks ago at a Girl Scout meeting where I demonstrated how to make this Homemade Hand, Body and Face Moisturizing Lotion…. where it actually didn’t turn out very well! Having said that, I came home and figured out how to fix it up. Below are tips on why this happened and how I fixed it, just in case this happens to your batch. It may look lengthy, but thought I’d give you some “what if” info, but actually it only takes about 15-20 minutes to make (the rest of the time is letting it cool).
Why I prefer not to use store bought lotions and decided to make my own:
-They often have chemical ingredients which gets absorbed into our body
-They are super expensive if they are really natural blends
-Too often the scents are not what I prefer or are too strong
-Many of them really don’t work well or go on too thick or greasy
-It’s simple enough to make at home and doesn’t take much time
Most of the ingredients can be purchased at a local supermarket or at the very least a health food store. The only item that may need to be ordered is Beeswax unless you are fortunate enough to have a local supplier.
- 1/2 cup Grapeseed Oil
- 3/4 oz. Beeswax **, in pastilles or shaved from a bar
- 7/8 cup Aloe Vera Gel
- 1 tsp. Vitamin E Oil
- 1/8 tsp. Rose Hips Oil **(Not in the pic.)
- 7-8 drops of an Essential Oil ** of your choice (OPTIONAL). I like “sweet orange” or “jasmine” in mine.
- Jar(s) that have been cleaned/sterilized for about 1 ½ cups of moisturizing lotion
I ordered my bar of Beeswax at my affiliate partner, Mountain Rose Herbs (also sells Rose Hips Oil, a variety of Essential Oil, herbs, teas, some jars, etc.)
For jars, you could use just about anything, even Ball or Kerr jars, used cosmetic jars, Pyrex or fancy ones from a hobby shop. For gifting I ordered my jars & lids at Container & Packaging Supply: small 2 oz. jar (G064) & white dome lid (L220), but they have 4 oz. and other sizes, shapes and lids as well.
- Double broiler (or a makeshift broiler with a larger sauce pan and either a smaller one inside or a glass Pyrex measuring cup, as I did)
- Blender (preferable) or a hand mixer (that whips/blends well)
- Measuring cup
- Measuring spoon
First you will use (or make) a double boiler and put in both the Grapeseed Oil and Beeswax shaving to the top pan. Warm up the water on Medium and stir the oils occasionally until the Beeswax has completely melted in the Grapeseed Oil.
After the wax has melted, swirl it around just a bit and pour it into a mixer (or in a med/large bowl if you are going to use a powerful enough hand mixer). Then, let the oil mixture cool to room temperature (MAKE SURE TO LET IT COOL…. take a break and do something else) or you may find that your lotion will separate. If it’s really warm in the house, put it in the fridge for an hour or so. This cooling process may take an a couple hours or you can even leave it over night. This mixture will become stiff looking, but still soft enough you could give it a good press with the flat end of a spoon and it would go into it.
In a measuring cup (or something you can easily pour from) combine the Aloe Vera Gel, Vitamin E Oil, and Rose Hips Oil (and optionally drops of Essential Oils). Mix together with spoon or fork.
Put the blender with the Grapeseed Oil/Beeswax mixture on Slow to Medium Speed and slowly pour in the Aloe Vera / Oil Mixture a little at a time. Make sure what you pour is blended in before pouring more in. Pour in very little at a time and stop periodically to mix in the side areas with a spatula. Keep pouring and blending until it is all mixed and looks like a creamy lotion. It will look like off white creamy whipped lotion without lumps.
I put it in several 2 oz. jars and used them as gifts for the Holidays. If you plan to use it yourself, a mason jar works fine and you can divide it into 2 or 3 small jars. Keep one out for use and put the others in the refrigerator to keep longer. Generally, kept out, this lotion lasts about 4 weeks. There are no preservatives and it’s safe to put on your skin. It’s a wonderful lotion that’s moisturizing, yet not so greasy.
Helpful Hints if you have trouble:
I thought this would be an easy demo for the 20 girls at the Girl Scouts, but to my dismay, though I’ve made this on multiple occasions without event, this time it came out lumpy with tiny globs of wax and areas of liquid. It didn’t have that whipped creamy smoothness. So, I’ll give you a couple tips on how to how to fix it.
If it comes out lumpy and/or there is oil and aloe separation, then there are likely 2 possibilities. First, it may not have been at room temp (or it’s simply too warm that day). And, second, your mixer/blender may not be strong enough to break up the lumps and really whip it. I used a hand mixer at the GS meeting, which I believe was not strong enough for the huge batch (5x’s) I was trying to blend. So, this is what you can do to fix it:
- Put it in the fridge for a few hours or overnight
- Whip it again in your blender and turn it on Medium or High for a few seconds at a time (in spurts), when it looks whipped better than let it stay on for 10 seconds or so.
I put my mixture in the fridge overnight and then mixed (what little I had left) with my Magic Bullet (now that I didn’t have to “pour” the aloe in and in less than a minute it came out looking a bit whipped with a creamy smooth look and feel.
Also, if you find the beeswax/grapeseed oil mixture is too hard after it’s cooled to room temp (you can’t crack the surface at all) than you’ve probably added just a tad too much beeswax. You could reheat and use just a tad more olive oil and get the oil mixture blended again, than cool again, before you try to emulsify it with the aloe mixture.
photo credits: judy
this post was shared at Nourishing Simplicity
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