I love sharing my recipes with you. It is, after all, the reason that I started this blog…but it really has become so much more then that. It’s my creative outlet, a way to connect with like-minded people, a place where I can learn and grow within my writing and photography…and I great way to distract myself from my looming infertility issues (bet I never told you that before!)
However, although I love to share my recipes, and then read success stories in the comments (like my life-changing facial cleanser recipe!), once in a while I get a small, selfish urge that tells me to keep a certain recipe to myself. This has been the case for my Body Butter recipe, that simply is…the best. It’s so delicious, moisturizing without feeling greasy, and down-right wonderful, that I just wanted to keep it all to myself…for a little while at least.
Alas, that selfish piece of me has subsided, and I’m ready to share with you my “secret” recipe. Why? Well, it’s just too lovely to keep to myself any longer, and I although I’ve been selling it in local shops for over a year now, I want you to give you the chance to make it at home too. It’s also the base for a few other recipes that I’d like to share…like my Whipped Sunblock, and Homemade Vapor Rub…so you see, now’s the time.
Why homemade body butter is the superior moisturizer
Homemade body butter, is hands down, the nicest thing that you can do for your skin. Unlike store-bought moisturizers and lotions, body butters don’t not contain preservatives, and are very nourishing.
Lotions are water-based, and butters are oil-based. Anytime you add water to a cosmetic, you are also adding a shelf-life to it because water creates a breeding ground for bacteria to grow, and thus, your homemade lotion will soon spoil if a preservative isn’t also added. While some preservatives are considered safe, others can be a concern for your body and the environment. Check out David Suzuki’s “the ‘Dirty Dozen’ cosmetic chemicals to avoid.”
Body butters, on the other hand, do not contain water, and are a pure mixture of oils, which eliminates the need for a preservative. However, a common complaint about homemade body butter is that they tend to feel a bit greasy.
How to prevent the “greasy” feeling of homemade body butter
Well, I have a little trick up my sleeve to help with the “greasiness.”
My secret – well first of all, a little goes a looonnngg way! You just need pea sized-amount for a large area. Then rub it in until it’s absorbed.
Second, adding some arrow root powder or tapioca starch really helps 😉
What you’ll need
- Stand mixer or hand mixer
- Medium, glass bowl
- Large pan
- Kitchen scale – you could convert grams to tablespoons, but a kitchen scale will make your DIY-life a lot easier!
- 4-6oz container for storing
*Always try to use organic ingredients whenever possible. Mountain Rose Herbs is a great resource for organic, DIY ingredients. The information below is from Mountain Rose Herbs.
- Shea Butter: Shea butter is naturally rich in Vitamins A and E as well as essential fatty acids and other vitamins and minerals. Shea butter is an intense moisturizer for dry skin, and is a wonderful product for revitalizing damaged skin. It is also wonderful to use in the summer as a moisturizer before and after sun exposure to reduce the possibility of the skin peeling or becoming dried out, and offers a low level of UV protection (approximately SPF-6)
- Coconut Oil: This is a great oil for general moisturizing and serves as a protective layer, helping to retain the moisture in your skin. It also acts as a mild oil suitable for those with inflamed and irritated skin, and those with skin sensitivities.
- Sweet almond oil: Sweet almond oil contains fatty acids as well as vitamins A and E and penetrates easily into the skin.
- Sunflower oil: An oil wealthy in oleic acids with high amounts of vitamins A, D, and E, it also has beneficial amounts of lecithin, and unsaturated fatty acids. It is deeply nourishing and conditioning for the skin, and is highly recommended for recipes designed to treat dry, weathered, aged, and damaged skin.
- Jojoba oil: Jojoba oil comes from the beans of a shrub like plant, and it is actually a liquid plant wax rather than an oil. It is bright and golden in color, has a mild odor, and is favored in the carrier oil family because of its advanced molecular stability. It makes a wonderful skin moisturizer because of it’s absorption properties that are similar to our skins own sebum.
- Beeswax pastilles: Added to this body butter to help maintain it’s consistency in warmer temperatures.
- Vitamin E oil: Vitamin E oil is great for preventing rancidity in cosmetics, and it acts as an anti-oxidant in lotions and body butters.
- Tapioca starch or arrow root powder: Arrowroot powder is generally used as a substitute for cornstarch, which is highly processed and difficult to source in non-GMO varieties. In this recipe, tapioca starch and arrow root powder is added in help with greasy feeling.
- Essential oils: sky is the limit when it come to scenting your body butter. Just add a few drops of whatever smells good or has a therapeutic effect to you. Below I share my faves!
“Scenting” your body butter
You can really add any essential oils you’d like to scent you body butter, but there are two scents that I sell, and either one or the other seem to appeal to most people.
Best of luck with your body butter, and stay tuned for many DIY recipes, using this body butter as a base, to follow!
- 53 g organic shea butter
- 26g organic coconut oil
- 13g organic sweet almond oil
- 13g organic sunflower oil
- 7g jojoba oil
- 3.5g bees wax pastilles
- ½ tbsp tapioca starch or arrow root powder
- ¼ tsp vitamin E oil
- For "Hippie Skin" body butter add 3-4 drops of each: patchouli, lavender, tea tree, frankincense and sweet orange essential oils.
- For "Orange & Vanilla" body butter add ⅛ tsp vanilla extract (or 5-7 drops of concentrated vanilla absolute) and 10-15 drops of sweet orange essential oil.
- Using a kitchen scale, measure out the shea butter, coconut oil, sweet almond oil, sunflower oil, jojoba oil and bees wax into a small, glass bowl.
- Melt the oils using a double boiler. You can create effect this by putting the glass bowl into a pan of simmering water.
- Remove from heat once melted and let the mixture cool until it's opaque (to speed this is you can put it in the fridge, but don't let it solidify completely).
- Next, it's time to whip the melted oils into body butter. If you using a hand mixer, add the remaining ingredients to the bowl. If you're using a stand mixer, add the remaining ingredients and the melted oils to the stand mixer bowl.
- Whip until the ingredients are well combined and the mixture is light and fluffy - about 3-5 minutes.
- You're finished whipping when the body butter can stick to a spoon when held upside-down.
- Transfer to a small container or jar and store in a cool place.