I love well-made DIY body lotions, they nourish our skin and keep us looking younger for longer. But what about top-quality whipped body butter recipes?
I’ve experimented with them in the past, but this week I decided to make it my mission to become an expert at making homemade body butter for glowing skin!
So, below I’ll show you in detail, with videos, how to make seven great body butters, I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.
- 1) What Is A Body Butter
- 2) My Whipped Shea Butter Recipe
- 3) Watch How To Make Body Butter
- 4) Benefits Of Body Butter
- 5) Homemade V Store-Bought Body Butters & Lotions
- 6) Butter & Oil Substitutions
- 7) How to Make Whipped Body Butter
- 8) Shelf Life & How To Store Body Butter
- 9) How To Use Body Butter
- 10) FAQ & Troubleshooting
- 11) 6 More Body Butters
- 12) Final Thoughts
What Is A Body Butter
So, what actually is body butter? We’re all used to smearing lotion on our skin, so how is this any different from that? Well, in some ways, body butters are more intensely hydrating. This is because traditionally, body butters don’t contain any water, and are made of all oil-based and soluble ingredients.
Because of this, body butter is perhaps the best moisturizing product for anyone who has to deal with very dry, ashy skin.
There are two types of body butter, whipped body butter and unwhipped. Both are excellent at nourishing your body with vitamins and skin-softening properties that will keep your skin glowing, healthy, and youthful for so much longer than anything you can buy.
Better yet, if the thought of adding a preservative to a lotion puts you off, this is the product for you, because body butter doesn’t call for any preservatives at all!
My Whipped Shea Butter Recipe
So, the first recipe you will see below is my whipped shea butter. It’s an exceptionally light butter, almost grease-free, and scented with 3 different essential oils that will impart powerful benefits to our skin.
But keep reading, because after this I have 6 more excellent body butter recipes, I hope you enjoy them, I loved them all!
I absolutely LOVE the consistency of this DIY whipped body butter. It’s like slathering your body with clouds! Beating air into the mixture at various intervals creates tiny air pockets, giving it an exceptionally light and almost marshmallow-like consistency. It’s a lot like whisking up some whipped cream for sweet desserts!
I now use this daily, and I don’t think I’ll ever go back!
Watch How To Make Body Butter
Benefits Of Body Butter
There are two main benefits of body butter. Firstly, as we’ve already said, this product type is intensely moisturizing. They are perhaps the best choice product for those with dry skin. But my absolute favorite benefit is how easy they are to make!
You don’t have to worry about achieving an emulsion, which is the hard part of whipping up your favorite lotion. In fact, if you can melt butter, you can make body butter!
Another benefit of making your own is that it’s difficult to get true body butter these days. Most of our store-bought alternatives will just be lotion in disguise. So by making your own, you know you have the real McCoy.
Homemade V Store-Bought Body Butters & Lotions
First of all, if you’re buying your body butter from a large brand, then it’s likely you’re not getting body butter at all. In fact, you’ll be getting a heavy emulsion that is made to look and feel like whipped body butter.
The reason big industries do this is that lotions are much cheaper to make. True body butters are made from expensive, solid oil ingredients – such as high concentrations of shea, mango, and cocoa butter.
In fact, a lotion calls for as much as 70% water. So, you think you’re slathering your body with gorgeous shea butter, but then you check the ingredients list and the first ingredient is ‘aqua’… It’s not exactly what you were expecting from an all-oil moisturizer.
But it gets even more damning when you consider that all emulsions, including the ones masquerading as body butter, need strong preservatives to prevent mold and microbial growth. Our cosmetics are already filled with parabens, silicones, and other things we would rather not want – adding another to the list might not be something you want.
Of course, we have lotion recipes on this site that require you to use a preservative. But if you’re looking for truly natural skincare, homemade body butter made without water is 100% the way to go!
Butter & Oil Substitutions
The butters and oils have been carefully chosen in order to maintain a fluffy texture to the finished product. But let’s take a look at some choices you can make with this gorgeous homemade whipped body butter.
Using anything other than refined shea butter in this recipe may give you a different texture, but you absolutely can experiment.
I’ve used mango before, which worked quite well. I’ve also tried avocado, which had a wonderfully light, fluffy feel to it but for some reason was also a little grainy (although these ‘grains’ melt very quickly when applied to the skin).
Using Coconut Oil
Using a solid oil, such as coconut, can be a little tricky here. This is because it has the chance to radically change the texture and consistency of your product.
However, coconut is a fantastic ingredient. It helps to gently moisturize very dry skin, reduces inflammation, stimulates the healing of wounds, and has some good antimicrobial action.
Therefore, you might want to include it in your body butter recipes. In order to do this, we need to think of coconut oil as liquid oil. This is because it isn’t the most stable of solid ingredients, and is prone to melting at a temperature only just above room temperature.
So, swap out no more than 20% of your liquid oil for coconut oil. Any more than this, and you’ll start noticing the product is significantly stiffer.
Using Cocoa Butter
Cocoa butter is another fantastic cosmetic ingredient you might want to use. It’s filled with lovely minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants that our skin loves.
Furthermore, it’s fantastically moisturizing, and wonderful for keeping skin looking healthy and supple all year round.
However, this butter is significantly harder than shea and so unsuitable for this method. Place a little of both kinds of butter between your fingers. Unless it’s very cold, you’ll find that shea can easily be massaged into the skin. Cocoa butter, however, cannot.
As we’re cold blending, we need a cosmetic butter that will easily be whipped at room temperature. This is, unfortunately, not something that is possible with cocoa butter. In fact, you’ll likely break your whisk trying.
However, cocoa butter can be fantastic in a body butter recipe that includes a heated phase, so that solid ingredients can first be melted down. Take a look at my unwhipped harder body butter recipe to learn how to do this.
Essential Oils & Scents
As much as we include essential oil blends as part of many of our recipes, you can actually use whatever you like!
If there’s a particular blend that you just love, your body butter formulas are a great place to use them. Alternatively, you could keep things simple and make use of just one essential oil. We like to do this, and when we do we often opt for Lavender essential oil.
For a more unconventional aroma, you could decide to use fragrance oil. While they are synthetic, research shows that they’re okay for use on the body.
Fragrance oils come in all varieties, and often cover scents and smells that you can’t get in essential oil form. Blueberry muffins, leather, strawberries, licorice, and wine are but a few examples of what is available to you. You can even find imitation designer perfumes as fragrance oil blends!
While we know fragrance oils are a controversial ingredient, we wanted to empower you to use whatever you think is right for your body. Because making your own decisions is what DIY skincare is all about!
However, we will say that more research needs to be done in this area to clarify some of the long-term effects of fragrance oil use. It’s also worth noting that fragrance oils should never be used on the face.
OK Let’s Whip Body Butter
But don’t miss these new recipes
How to Make Whipped Body Butter
Rate This ProjectPrint Comment Pin Share
- Weigh out and place the refined shea butter into a glass, aluminum or PET plastic bowl. Then, using the electric hand blender, whisk the butter so that it is light and fluffy. This should take 2-5 minutes, but this can vary.97 g Shea Butter
- Add the isopropyl myristate and blend once more until the mixture has fully combined.15 g Isopropyl Myristate
- Add the sweet almond oil and once again blend until nice and fluffy.36 g Sweet Almond Oil
- Add the vitamin e oil..75 g Vitamin E Oil
- Add the essential oils and give it one final blend. The end product should be light, fluffy and somewhat marshmallowy in texture (sort of like fluff)..5 g Neroli Essential Oil, .5 g Grapefruit Essential Oil, .5 g Rose Absolute Essential Oil
- If your mixture is too runny, check your measurements once more and try again. Also, be careful not to over whip your butter. If your mixture is too hard, it is likely that you've managed to add far too much shea butter.
- Spoon into a sterile container1 Cosmetic Jar
Shelf Life & How To Store Body Butter
Because our body butter recipes do not contain any water, there is no need to make use of a preservative. Providing you’re using a good quality antioxidant, such as vitamin e, your body butter should happily last 6 months before showing signs of becoming rancid.
If you do find that you’re getting mold growing in your product, it is likely because the product has been contaminated with water during storage. If you’re the kind of person that stores this product in the bathroom or likes to apply it when still wet – consider adding an oil-soluble preservative, such as phenoxyethanol. This will solve your problem.
It might not seem like much, but even a few drops of water in your all oil-based products can be enough to cause massive bacterial and fungal growth.
If you wish to avoid this, be sure to store your body butter somewhere dry and only apply using clean, dry fingers. To prevent the oxidation of any essential oils you have used, also be sure to store your products out of direct sunlight.
How To Use Body Butter
Applying couldn’t be easier! Simply apply like a lotion, using long, circular motions across the skin. Be sure not to apply too much, as a body butter generally has a medium absorption speed, as opposed to a lotion which sinks in very fast.
If body butter is applied to the skin while it is still wet, it can help trap moisture in the skin, providing even better hydration all day long. However, see above for why this can be problematic, and how you can avoid mold and microbial growth in your body butter.
FAQ & Troubleshooting
How To Keep Whipped Shea Butter From Hardening
If your whipped body butter is hardening after you have made it, it’s likely two things are happening.
Firstly, you may be storing your body butter somewhere too cold. For instance, there’s no reason to store your body butter in the fridge, as this will not massively extend shelf life.
Secondly, it could be that your formula is a little off. Try taking a look to see if you’ve measured your ingredients properly and if you have the right ratio of solid-to-liquid ingredients.
How long does whipped body butter last
It’s unlikely your product will last too long, as it’s just so lovely on the skin! However, your body butter should have a shelf life of around 6 months, provided it is stored correctly and not contaminated with water.
How often should I use body butter
It is recommended that anyone with dry skin should use their body butter daily. However, normal to oily skin types won’t see much benefit beyond 2-3 times a week.
What preservative should I use for body butter?
This is the best part, you don’t need one! Because this recipe does not contain any water at all, it’s not possible for microbes such as bacteria and mold to grow. However, you will want to make use of an antioxidant, such as vitamin e, to prevent your oils from becoming rancid.
Having said that, if it is likely your product will be contaminated with water (e.g. steam condensation in the bathroom) then you will want to make use of a broad-spectrum, oil-soluble preservative to keep things in check. I would recommend phenoxyethanol.
Why is my body butter greasy
Body butter can be greasy, however, as my recipe is formulated with Isopropyl Myristate, you don’t need to worry about this.
Isopropyl Myristate is an ester that helps to increase the speed of oil absorption through the skin. By using this, our DIY body butter doesn’t feel as greasy for as long.
6 More Body Butters
This emulsified body butter smells great, & it feels great too. My skin is ultra soft, & I owe it to this extra creamy, buttery emulsion. I find the smell of chocolate so intoxifying.
Body butters are formulated with lots of heavy moisturizers, such as cosmetic butter. But you can offset this with a few tricks to create a non-greasy body butter recipe.
You’ll just love this creamy whipped shea butter recipe. It’s gorgeous on the skin & makes it feel so soft & supple. It’s the product your body craves, so why not treat yourself?
This mango body butter recipe is great for targeted moisturizing for dry skin. I’ll use this on my elbows, knees, and anywhere that likes to dry out like a prune in 100-degree weather.
I’ve been experimenting quite a bit, and this body butter recipe fragranced with raspberry fragrance oil is one of my newest creations, it’s absolutely to die for.
While the whipped DIY body butter can be a bit more difficult to crack than the unwhipped mango body butter, you definitely should keep at it. Once you get the technique down, you absolutely won’t regret the early mishaps and mistakes. I know I don’t.
While you definitely can head into a store like Lush and pick up a commercially produced alternative, I just think making your own just… well, makes sense. Who knows what’s in those, and they just cost way more than I’m willing to part with. Homemade body butter is the way to go, and it makes an amazing gift too!
I love how customizable these skincare products can be, too. An example of this is my winter body butter which is infused with carrot oil.
Don’t forget to be careful with your ingredient choices when you whip body butter, as you may find it fails to whip if choose something a little too heavy.