As winter approaches you notice that you skin starts to feel less plump and healthy and more dry and cracked. Sadly my skin has been breaking recently when I knock against something. Frustratingly, no matter how much store bought lotion I seem to apply, it doesn’t make a real difference. I figured if I can make soap and lip balms, why not have a go at making something stronger than lotions I already buy. Thats exactly what Ive done and have to say, I’ve been pleasantly surprised.
Based on the ingredients, I think this is more of a butter than a lotion, so Im just going to call it a potion. I have hyper sensitive skin and need to be careful as to what I use. For me, this is a winner. Naturally this wont stop me from making and trying out other lotion potiony recipes! 🙂
I thought I have this clever thing called Google, it can answer my many questions (sometimes I ask why more than a three year old) and typed in What is the difference between lotion and body butter, apparently this is a common question. The answers varied but in short here is a summary:
Body Oils soften and nourish the skin, as they resemble the natural oils in our skin they are easily absorbed. However, as oils are not water-based they may be more likely to cause breakouts, so its best to avoid acne prone areas such as back, face, and chest. Oils are ideally applied to warm, damp skin, like after a shower or bath.
Body lotions are lighter than body butter and oils, as they contain more water than oils and butters and absorb quickly as a result. It doesn’t moisturise as much or last/stay on as long as a butter or oil do. Lotions are better for skin that isn’t as dry or for people who tend to have oilier skin.
Body butter is the thickest of the three potions and they provide the strongest possible protective barrier to seal and lock in moisture. Body butter products are typically manufactured using a combination of carrier oils and essential butters. Body butters are applied to retain moisture, nourish the skin and lubricate.
Why this potion is good for you:
Shea butter is an excellent moisturiser for the face and the body. It locks in the moisture in the skin and keeps it hydrated for long, without clogging the pores, and is effective for dry skin.
Vitamin E oil is a nutrient to the skin whilst preventing and repairing radical damage.
Frankincense essential oil can treat dry skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles, age spots, scars, and stretch marks.
Peppermint essential oil gives a cooling sensation and has a calming effect on the body, which can relieve sore muscles.
Eucalyptus oil has a cooling and refreshing effect whilst having vast remedial and healing properties.
A few things you need to know about this homemade potion, it is sightly greasy to begin with but it absorbs well. Its quite hard to begin with but softens/melts quickly with the heat of your fingers. You dont need a lot, in-fact use less than the size of a single pea to start out with, if you need more, get a little bit more but dont go crazy with it to begin with. Im using it currently as a everything lotion, Ive used it on my hands, feet (dry heels) and face (at night). Ive found that this works great on super dry skin overnight.
DIY winter Skin Potion
Makes: Just over a cups worth Prep time: 10 mins Making time: 2.5 hours Total time: 2 hours 40 mins minimum
- 100g shea butter
- 20g mango butter
- 5g avocado oil
- 15g apricot kernel oil (or you can remove Avocado and this oil and use coconut oil instead)
- 25g beeswax
- 2g of vitamin e oil
- 3g frankincense essential oil
- 2g peppermint essential oil
- 2g eucalyptus essential oil
Unfortunately for the amounts Im using it became a big awkward trying to measure this with cups, so I gave it and pulled out my metric scales and it made life much easier!
Now how to make this winter hydrating DIY potion:
If your beeswax is not already in pellet/small bead form, go ahead and grate it down. I use a cheap grater that I keep in my soaping box. This helps immensely when it all melts down, as the smaller pieces of wax melt more quickly (lesson learnt from previous potions).
1. In a bowl or milk jug, combine the shea butter mango butter and beeswax. You can use a traditional double boiler (bain marie) with a glass bowl or go with my route, I use a milk jug (which I use specifically for my crafting/making ONLY) in a pan with water.
2. Melt the ingredients over a low/medium heat in the double boiler. Do not rush this process, as you want the beeswax and butters to completely melt, which will solidify the potion making it creamy and rich. This should take between 10-15 mins.
3. Take your liquid potion mixture off the heat and allow to cool down slightly. Maybe 5-10 minutes, feel the pan/bowl, if its too hot to touch, its too warm to add in the oils.
4. Allow the mixture to cool slightly and add in the oils. You add them in after the oil is off the heat and cooled slightly, adding them before the mixture cools down will break down some of the therapeutic benefits of an essential oils (I forgot to shove the apricot kernel and avocado oil in the picture but I most certainly added it in).
5. After mixing in your oils and giving it a good stir, go ahead and pour it into pots/containers. As I used rather small pots(13-30g), the solidified within from 5-20 minutes, as you can see the first pot was solidifying by the time I poured the last pot.
This is no whip recipe, so once its become a solid, you’re done! As this mixture has beeswax, you really cannot whip it (believe me, Ive tried), it makes no difference. Once set, it is a hard potion that will soften with the heat of your fingers and skin when being applied.
To use: Start with a pea sized amount and you’ll probably be surprised how moisturising it is and how just a little goes a long way.
Fancy some night time moisturising? Apply this potion liberally, massage and rub it in to your hands and feed for a few minutes and then put on a pair of cotton socks (or cotton gloves) after you apply the lotion. Leave overnight and your feet (or hands) will be moisturised and soft in the morning!
*Notes: When making body butters, potions, lotions, soaps or any body product, always make sure that the equipment, spoons, bowls etc you use will NEVER be used for edible purposes again and are only used to make body products with.
*When using any essential oils directly or indirectly on skin, ensure that you stay out of sunlight or UV rays for up to 12 hours after application. This might sound quirky but as per this article, the combination of sun and essential oils can cause the skin to severely burn and blister.
This works as great for your own dry skin and even better as a gift for friends and family, remember to share with friends and enjoy silky skin! 🙂