Saturday, February 23, 2013

HOMEMADE LOTION BARS (3 INGREDIENTS, ALL NATURAL)

homemade lotion bars

Hello, dear Reader! It's my first "spring" in California, and I have all kinds of mixed feelings. First I was shocked when, a few weeks ago, I noticed tulips sprouting up from the ground. In early February! And now spring blooms are all around. Of course they're gorgeous, and I love seeing them just everywhere, but it's kind of messing with my sense of time and season. You see, in Illinois, the flowers don't wake up until April or May, and the first flowers that do come up are brave little souls, as they may well get taken by a late frost.

Regardless of the pretty fleurs and sunny warmth we've had, my skin has been as dry and wintery as ever. These little bars have been wonderful. I've been using them especially for my feet: putting on a bunch before I go to sleep, and wearing socks to bed. Waking up with soft feet is a pretty nice way to start the day!

We've had a few big chunks of beeswax lying around, leftover from other projects, and I've been wanting to use some to make lotion for a while now. Then when I saw Trader Joe's had coconut oil for CHEAP, I finally did it. I used just three ingredients:

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  • beeswax (I got mine at Michael's - you can find it cheaper online, but shipping can be expensive.)
  • coconut oil (the cheapest I've seen it - including online - is Trader Joe's)
  • grapeseed oil
Before choosing my ingredients, I sifted through many recipes and tried decide which ingredients would make the least greasy bars. At first I was a little disappointed in these because they seemed quite greasy, but that goes away quickly - it sort of just melts into your skin. Now I really like them.

For your information, there are tons of recipes out there for lotion bars, so you can mix and match the basic ingredients. For example, you can replace grapeseed oil with almond oil, or replace coconut oil with cocoa butter or shea butter. The idea is that you have a liquid oil and a solid oil with the beeswax. You can also add Essential Oils (like lavender or citrus), but I chose not to because I nanny in a scent-free home.

Just melt the ingredients together, pour them into molds, and wait a few minutes for them to set!

Simple. Natural. Inexpensive.

HOMEMADE LOTION BARS RECIPE


You will need:

  • beeswax
  • coconut oil
  • grapeseed oil
  • silicon mold (I used a silicon mini-brownie mold - they came out very easily.)

Use equal parts of each ingredient. I just measured with my eyes:

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In a double broiler (or you can use the microwave), melt the beeswax. Once completely melted, add coconut oil, stirring occasionally. When coconut oil is melted, add grapeseed oil and stir to combine. Pour into silicon molds and allow to set. Mine only took about an hour, but I left them overnight just to be sure.

Pop them out of the molds, and you're done!

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52 comments:

  1. Thanks, Stephanie! You should try it :)

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  2. I am going to attempt to make these today as little gifts for my classmates. We are always washing our hands (best to have clean hands when dealing with people's eyes) and so our hands are always super chapped by this time of year. Hopefully these will do the trick! Thanks for the recipe.

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    1. Cool, Katie. Good idea :) Hope you enjoy them!

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  3. What is the best way to store these?

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    1. Hi, Paige. They will keep for a VERY long time sealed in a ziploc bag, but they are really fine left out while you're using them (for several months). I have some out on a little dish with my lotions, and one out with the soaps by the kitchen sink. I keep extras in a ziploc bag, and take more out when I need them. Hope that helps!

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  4. Can I use almond oil in these?

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    1. Hi, Dona. I haven't personally tried almond oil, but I'm sure you can use it in place of the grapeseed oil. As long as you combine a liquid oil with a "solid" oil (like coconut oil), they should turn out just fine.

      Mmm, I bet they would turn out wonderfully with almond oil - I will have to try that next time! Let me know how they turn out if you end up trying it :)

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  5. How exactly do you use lotion bars...I have never used any. Do you just rub them on your skin or hands like you would bottled lotion?

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    1. Hi, Janne. Yes, you just rub them on your skin. It looks and feels like a bar of soap, but when you make heat by rubbing it, it melts into your skin like lotion. I like them best for hands and for little dry spots, rather than for my whole body.

      Hope that gives you an idea of what they're like :) Happy holidays!

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  6. can you use olive oil or almond oil instead of grapeseed oil?? How would I infuse lavender oil?

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    1. Hi, Nita. Yes, you can use almond oil, olive oil, or even avocado oil in place of the grapeseed oil. You can also use shea butter or cocoa butter in place of the coconut oil. For lavender lotion bars, simply stir in a few drops of Lavender Essential Oil once all the other ingredients are combined.

      Thanks for reading!

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  7. Wow ... I'm very happy to read this and I give appreciation to you. Someday I'll try to make it as well.. This is my first time visiting here. For Greetings, visit my blog too http://www.extractweightloss.com/ :)

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  8. My coconut oil is liquid. Would that be a problem?

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    1. I would not use liquid coconut oil. Natural "solid" coconut oil helps the bars to set up and helps the consistency of the bars. You can substitute shea butter, mango butter, or cocoa butter for the solid coconut oil if you would like.

      Hope this helps, good luck! Thanks for visiting the blog :)

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  9. I made these for friends as Yule gifts and they were a huge hit! I made a lavender scented bar for the ladies and a bergamot scented for the men. I took one to work beforehand and one of the women has asked me to make her some to buy even! Thanks so much for all your postings!!

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    1. Wow, Lalani! I'm so happy to hear that! Bergamot for men - good idea.
      Thanks for visiting the blog :) Happy New Year!

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  10. These look great! I have found that Costco has the least expensive coconut oil...at least in my area.

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    1. Codie,
      That's good to know! I've been using coconut oil more and more these days for all kinds of things. Thanks for visiting the blog, and Happy New Year!

      Delete
  11. So do you use water with these bars? I read one comment that a teacher was going to use them with her students for clean hands. Then another comment mentioned that they will melt with the warmth of your hands. So I'm a little confused. I've made lots of coconut oil and Shea butter body lotions and I'm very familiar with them melting on contact with your skin. Would you please clarify the exact way to use? Thank you kindly, Paula.

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    1. Hi, Paula.

      I rub these bars directly onto my skin - no water. They are basically lotion in solid form. As you said (thanks to the coconut oil), they melt with your body heat as you rub them onto/into your skin. It's feels a bit oily/greasy at first when you rub them, then the greasiness is absorbed into skin.

      I'm don't know the context of the comment you read about the teacher using these with her students, but I'm guessing they would be great for kids because they aren't messy like liquid lotion. However, just to clarify, they aren't meant for actually CLEANING hands, and they aren't meant to get wet.

      I hope this answers your question! Thanks for reading.

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    2. I think the teacher meant they use these to soften after they wash their hands

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  12. I just made these after seeing them on Pinterest. They turned out great and were very easy. I made them as recommended with the addition of a small amount of tea tree oil and Vitamin E. Thank you very much.

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    1. Hi, Deb. So glad these worked out well for you, and thanks for the comment. Tea tree oil and vitamin E sounds GREAT.

      Thanks for reading!

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  13. Hi how much vitamin E did you use Deb

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  14. Hi. I'm from the Philippines and would like to try to make lotion bar but will it stay solid in temp like 28-30deg celsius? thanks

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    1. Hi, Lizzie. Yes, they should stay solid in those temperatures. It gets up to 35 degrees celsius where I live, and I've never had a problem. But I do try to keep them in a cool, dry place inside my apartment. Good luck!

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  15. Morning Alyssa,
    One question. Do I need to use a spray on the silicon molds ?
    Thank you foe sharing.
    Nadine

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    1. Hi Nadine,
      You won't need to use a spray. They pop right out of a silicon mold.
      Thanks for reading!
      Cheers,
      Alyssa

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  16. I amke mine with coconut oil and shea butter and they melt just as wonderfully. I am thinking about using the cocoa butter for a batch or two though because I have a friend who is highly allergic to coconut oil but he loves lotion sooo.. crossing fingers those come out ok

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    1. Thanks for the comment, Angel. I'd love to hear how your shea butter version turns out! I haven't yet tried it myself.

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  17. I just made these today and they are amazing so thank you. Just like the ones that my fave organic soap store sells. I couldn't get my favourite scent in them so decided to look for a "recipe" to make my own. I added in chai essential oil and even the husband loves it. He usually hates everything perfumy so that is why I started the quest for organic and essential oil use. I bought some ice tube trays (3 to a pack) and they worked out beautifully. Easy to pop out and the right shape for holding onto. I thought for gifts I could wrap in a bit of tissue and twist each end like a wrapped candy. Otherwise to keep dust free I have popped them into a coloured canning jar since canning jars are all the rage right now.

    One word of caution on the use almond oil. Do not give to people who are allergic to nuts or who are in close contact with people with nut allergies. I asked a friend who has the allergy and he says it would be a serious problem. Oils and extracts are just as dangerous to them.

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    1. Thanks for your comment - I'm glad these turned out well for you. Ice cube trays are a great idea. Thanks for mentioning nut allergies - that's good to know!

      Happy New Year!

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    2. First, thanks Alyssa for this great tutorial. I'm excited about making some to hand out as favors at a friend's bridal shower. Boots61, how much essential oil did you use? I'm sure different scents will have different strengths but a starting point would be great. My friend's name is Jasmine so of course I have to add jasmine. :) Thanks!

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  18. I just got done making some of these.... I am a nurse and I wash my hands constantly so I made some for me and my coworkers!!

    I used some extra virgin coconut oil I had here that has a slight hint of coconut smell to it. I also added some lemon essential oils to it. I can smell the coconut, but not so much the lemon. Guess, I will see what they are like when they set up!! Can't wait!!

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  19. Hi... I'm a little late to the party... but do you just use equal measurements of each oil?

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    1. Hi! Yes, equal parts of each of the three ingredients.
      Happy holidays!

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