How To Make DIY Face Cream: New Recipe For 2024

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It’s been nearly two years since I posted my new DIY face cream recipe. It’s not so new anymore, it seems! So, I decided to do another update. Each time I take a pass at this formula, I do my best to improve it. New ingredients, new benefits, new skins! Or at least that’s my mantra.

So, let me know how you find this natural homemade face cream. Inevitably, I’ll be back to replace it again in the next year or two. But until then, let me know what you think of the new formula. I’m so excited to hear what you think!

natural DIY face cream

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Introduction

Here’s how to create your own natural, homemade face moisturizer at home! Say goodbye to expensive store-bought creams and hello to a natural, healthy glow!

Like the popular homemade wrinkle cream, the recipe below is great for reducing and preventing wrinkles; it’s also non-greasy and absorbs quickly into the skin. I often apply this anti-aging cream after using my homemade anti-aging serum or facial oil as it helps it penetrate the skin more quickly and it eliminates the oiliness.

So, I will show you how to make my Rose Anti-aging Cream for mature skin. Then, keep reading because, after that, I have eight more excellent face creams. I hope you enjoy these; I loved them all!

Benefits of Using Face Moisturizers

homemade face cream

Moisturizing is the most important part of skincare. Without it, the skin can look tired and dry and age faster.

The best face creams replenish moisture for the skin, as well as helping to lock it in so that our skin looks fresher and more supple for longer. Furthermore, as emulsions, they are amazing carriers for a whole range of different botanical and synthetic ingredients that can be fantastic for our skin.

Glycerites, tinctures, macerated oils, extracts of all kinds, emollients, silicones, esters, humectants, and so on can all be used here. Without a solubilizer, the emulsion is the only moisturizing product that can use water and oil-soluble ingredients together.

Furthermore, combining water and oil makes a DIY facial lotion relatively lightweight. It’s an excellent choice for anyone who doesn’t need or doesn’t like heavy skin care products. However, there is a lot of scope to customize your emulsions, meaning you can make them as heavy or as light as you want.

This means that no matter your skin type, you can always tweak your homemade face cream recipes to suit your skin type. This is not always true with DIY gel moisturizers and anhydrous formulas (facial balms & crème).

What’s In This Face Cream Recipe?

I’ve formulated this DIY face moisturizer to include a blend of gorgeous natural ingredients that will nourish all skin types. Let’s take a look.

Carrier Oils and Butters

I didn’t want to overcomplicate this formula, so I’ve gone for just the one carrier oil and cosmetic butter. For these, I’ve selected Argan Oil and Shea Butter. 

You may have seen it as an ingredient listed on many different hair treatments, but Argan oil is also fantastic for the skin. It’s intensely hydrating, packed with nutrients, and high in antioxidants. So kiss goodbye to dry, dull, and damaged skin. 

And I’ve paired this with shea butter, perhaps one of my favorite cosmetic ingredients. It’s even more nourishing and hydrating than the argan oil. 

It also helps to soften the skin, leaving it feeling silky, soft, and supple. You’ll be surprised how much dry skin can bounce back with care and the right ingredients. 

Humectants and Olive Squalane

Because no emulsion is complete without a humectant, I’ve decided to really treat myself. And so should you! Humectants are ingredients that draw moisture to a product. It helps keep them from going dry in between uses but also helps to keep the skin more supple. 

That’s right, humectants will draw moisture from the atmosphere and impart it to the skin when applied. Therefore, this formulation will continue to hydrate your skin long after you have applied it. 

Glycerine is perhaps the most universal humectant, and just about anyone should be able to get hold of it. But I’ve paired it with d-Panethol, which is fantastic at soothing skin, reducing inflammation, and delivering hydration to deeper levels of our skin.  

However, my favorite humectant of all is hyaluronic acid. It’s such a strong humectant that the plumping effect can actually help to ease fine lines and wrinkles. It’s also one of those trendy ingredients, so your friends will be impressed that you’re using it in your own formulations! 

ingredient for a face cream recipe

Aromaceuticals 

Now, we come to our essential oils. Not only do they smell amazing, but they also provide therapeutic benefits. I’ve selected rose geranium and ylang-ylang essential oils. They both have beautiful floral aromas that will pair well but about those benefits for our skin? 

Rose geranium is actually great for balancing the skin’s oil production. While this might sound like it’ll make the skin drier, which is true if you have oily skin, it does the opposite on dry skin. It’s magic stuff, really! 

The ylang-ylang is also deeply hydrating, penetrating deep to provide moisture at the very core of our skin. Furthermore, it synergizes with our rose geranium to help boost the production of natural oil in the skin. 

Squalane 

Squalane naturally exists in our skin and has many important functions in our body, too. It’s one of the skin’s natural lubricators, keeping skin feeling soft and moisturized on its own. 

However, as we age, production diminishes, and by 30, we probably won’t be producing any in our skin anymore. The body actively redistributes away, leaving the skin lacking. 

But we can replenish these levels by using a supplement in the form of olive squalane. It’s basically the same thing but derived from olives. And boy, does it sink in fast! It really is a magic oil.  

Making Your Own Floral Infusions

To give your homemade face moisturizer that little extra, you can substitute all of the distilled water in the recipe with floral waters (also known as distillates, hydrolats, and hydrosols).

The recipe already calls for some rose hydrosol. Still, you can, if you wish, substitute all the distilled water for this ingredient.

Alternatively, you can make your own floral infusion by steeping dried flower petals or herbs in boiling water for 10 minutes, then straining through a fine strainer or piece of muslin.

For a more in-depth look at how to make your own herbal and floral infusions, please take a look at my post, which shows you exactly how to brew one up in your own home!

Using Preservatives In Homemade Face Creams

The homemade face cream below can be kept for a couple of days without preservatives and for 12 months with preservatives added. We don’t, however, recommend omitting it. Who wants to have to make their own face cream every week?

This is particularly important if you go down the ‘making your own floral infusion’ route. You must use a preservative, or it will only stay fresh for a limited time. Even with the preservative in it, you will still have to reduce the cream’s lifespan to 4 months (12 months with purchased flower water/distilled water).

That’s not to say that I wouldn’t recommend making floral infusions; I definitely would; make sure you use a preservative to get your four months.

Adding The Preservative

preservative for a homemade face cream

When it states to add the preservative, you will notice I give a choice of when to add it. When buying your preservative, the packaging should always give a guideline of when it can be added, along with a maximum temperature limit.

Most can now be added at the cooldown phase; this is my preferred method as it eliminates the chance of overheating and destroying it. But always check the recommended usage guide before buying it. Unless otherwise stated, these homemade face creams keep for about one week without preservatives and 12 months with preservatives added.

Ok, let’s make my not-so-basic DIY face cream recipe!

Quick Substitution Guide

  • Rose Hydrosol: You could choose a hydrosol of your choice or replace it with more distilled water.
  • D Panthenol Powder: If you use the hydrated (liquid panthenol), this is not heat stable, so you will need to add it with your cool-down ingredients. If you choose to leave it out altogether, up the glycerin by 1g.
  • Argon Oil: Sweet Almond Oil or Jojoba Oil would be good but you could use any that you have to hand.
  • Shea Butter: Cocoa butter or Mango would work well.
  • Olivem1000: Another emulsifying wax of your choice, but this may affect the thickness of the finished product.  
  • Cetyl Alcohol: Cetearyl alcohol would be my first choice if I had no cetyl alcohol.   
  • Hyaluronic Acid Gel: As this is the star of the cream, it isn’t easy to substitute. Replace it with more glycerin, or maybe try sodium lactate.
  • Rose Geranium and Ylang Ylan Essential Oils: You can use any essential oil of your choice.
natural DIY face cream

How To Make Face Cream At Home

This natural DIY face cream recipe is for mature skin. It's often better for your skin, it's very simple to make, and comes at a fraction of the price.
4.86 from 21 votes
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Active Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Yield: 100 grams
Author: Angela Wills

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Video

Instructions

  • In a heatproof beaker or container, mix the xanthan gum and glycerin with a flexible spatula until the gum has been dissolved.
    0.2 g Xanthan Gum, 4 g Glycerine
    mix the xanthan gum and glycerin
  • Add the distilled water, rose hydrosol, d panthenol powder to the gum slurry and stir well. This is our water phase.
    34 g Distilled Water, 30 g Rose Hydrosol, 1 g D-Panthenol Powder
    Add the distilled water, rose hydrosol and panthanol powder to the gum slurry
  • Place the Argon Oil, Olive Squalane, cetyl alcohol, shea butter and olivem1000 into a separate heat proof container. This is our oil phase.
    8 g Argan Oil, 5 g Olive Squalane, 2 g Cetyl Alcohol, 3 g Shea Butter, 5 g Olivem 1000
    ingredient for a face cream recipe
  • Make up a water bath by adding a few inches of hot water into a wide shallow pot. Sit both containers into the water and bring the water up to a gentle simmer.
    Stirring occasionally, leave the containers in the water until the water has been heated through and the waxes and butter has fully melted.
    Make up a water bath
  • Once heated, remove from the heat and pour the water into oils. Stir briskly for a couple of minutes to fully combine them. If you have a Norpro mini mixer, the metal blend attachment is great for small batches like this.
    After blending for a couple of minutes, the cream should have thickened and cooled. From this point, it's important not to use the mini blender as this would break the liquid crystal structures that are beginning to form. We do, however, still need to continue stirring, so transfer to a flexible spatula and continue mixing by hand until the cream cools to 40c (104f).
  • Once our cream has cooled to 40 (104f) we can start to add our cool-down ingredients. Start with the vitamin E, followed by the Hyaluronic acid gel, stirring these in well.
    1 g Vitamin E Oil, 5 g Hyaluronic Acid Gel
    preservative for a homemade face cream
  • Next, add the Rose Geranium and Ylang Ylan Essential oils and finally, the preservative. Give the cream a good stir to make sure everything is fully combined.
    0.4 g Rose Geranium Essential Oil, 0.4 g Ylang-Ylang Essential Oil, 1 g Preservative
    face cream Essential oils
  • Transfer to a suitable container ready for use. 
    1 Cosmetic Jar 4 oz
    Transfer face cream a suitable container ready for use. 

Notes

Unless otherwise stated all of these homemade face creams keep for about 2 days without preservative, and 12 months with preservative added.

Want To Ditch Store-Bought Moisturizers Forever? I’m Running a 50% off sale on the Face Creams & Moisturizers Course Today!

How Do I Use My Face Cream

Using your face cream is super easy. Apply a thin layer to the skin, massaging it using circular motions. This will ensure good penetration and an even spread.

If you have particular areas of skin that suffer from dryness, you can apply more liberally here. The cheekbones can often be a little drier than the rest of the face, so applying more here can be very beneficial.

How Often Can I Use My Face Cream?

Studies have shown that after 8 hours, only 50% of your face cream remains on the skin surface. So, you should absolutely use your DIY face cream daily. However, you won’t get much more benefit from using it more than twice a day, so try not to overdo it. I like to apply creams in the morning and at night. This will give you optimum benefits without wasting any product.

If you have very dry skin, you can combine this with a heavier DIY face moisturizer or a serum. You may also want to use this lighter cream in the morning and your heavy moisturizer in the evening for intense hydration overnight.

FAQ & Troubleshooting

My Face Cream Keeps Splitting

This is likely a problem with your water-to-oil proportions or your e-wax is not up to scratch. Take another look at your e-wax and make sure it’s a good quality one. Polar wax, NF, BTMS-50 are all good choices and work fantastic.

If your e-wax is fine, then your emulsion is destabilizing because your oil and water parts have been measured incorrectly. Make sure to take care when measuring your ingredients, and always use a good digital scale to get accurate measurements. Furthermore, this formula and suggested e-wax is for oil-in-water emulsions only.

What Preservative Should I Use?

Selecting the right preservative seems difficult but is actually pretty simple. You’re looking for something that is broad spectrum but can be soluble in either oil or water for an emulsion formula. I use either Geogard ECT, Preservative Eco, Germaben, or Saligaurd (Plantaserve P). Any of these will work just fine in your emulsions and should prevent any microbial growth for about 12 months.

You will notice that this formula also calls for an antioxidant, in the form of vitamin e. You can swap this out for Rosemary co2 extract if you prefer. However, it is not a preservative on its own. Antioxidants prevent oils and fats from oxidizing and becoming rancid. However, it will not prevent microbial growth in the form of bacteria and fungi.

Why Is My Face Cream Too Runny?

If your face cream is too runny, there’s likely a problem with the emulsifying wax. Check to make sure it’s in date, and that you’re using a good quality e-wax, such as Emulsifying Wax NF, Polawax or BTMS-50.

If you do find that your cream is too runny, and wish to salvage it, you can gently melt it down and add a few more grams of e-wax. This should thicken up nicely. This is best done before you add your cooldown ingredients.

8 More DIY Face Moisturizers

Effective Homemade Wrinkle Cream That Works!

Discover an affordable and easy-to-make homemade wrinkle cream that effectively fights the signs of aging, rejuvenating your skin for a more youthful glow.

homemade anti wrinkle cream

DIY Face Moisturizer For Dry Skin

For this DIY face moisturizer, I decided to embrace antioxidants by making use of green tea & lavender to make a moisturizer that really cares for my dry skin.

Two pots of lavender and green tea face cream

How To Make Aloe Vera Lotion For Men

Skincare doesn’t have to be just for women. So I decided to show you how to make aloe vera lotion for men.

diy men's body lotion next to an avocado and some almonds

Wrinkle Cream Recipe With Honey And Orange

Similar to my first homemade wrinkle cream this natural anti wrinkle cream is another great overnight treatment, it’s perfect for smoothing out fine lines and wrinkles in your facial skin. But you can also get some great results when using this cream on cracked heels or dry hands.

diy orange and honey wrinkle cream

Lavender and Aloe Face Cream

I’m loving this lavender and aloe face cream recipe! It’s great for sensitive skin, speeds healing, soothes, calms, and also restores your natural glow.

my best DIY moisturizer

Top Quality Homemade Face Moisturizer For Men

If a guy is going to use only one DIY skincare product, what should they use? This amazing homemade face moisturizer for men is what I came up with, and it really is amazing!

How To Make DIY Eye Cream Without Using Preservatives

Specially formulated to keep eyes looking bright, young, and full of life. This DIY eye cream doesn’t call for any water, it can happily keep for up to a year.

DIY eye cream

Luxurious Natural Face Moisturizer with Rose and Argan Oil

By making this gorgeous and natural face moisturizer with rose and argan oil, you can have a little piece of the A-list lifestyle, just for you at an affordable price.

Luxurious Natural Face Moisturizer Recipe with Rose and Argan Oil

Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoy making these DIY face cream recipes and moisturizers; I know they all work well as I use them myself. Let me know how you get on, and ask any questions in the comments below.

And don’t forget to have a look at all of the other types of homemade skincare recipes you can make.

Author: Angela Wills

Title: Founder and Author - Savvy Homemade

Expertise: Beauty Recipes, Skincare Formulation, Soapmaking, DIY Crafts, Parenting

Angela Wills is an author, founder, and the driving force behind Savvy Homemade. With over fifteen years of experience, she brings a wealth of knowledge and dedication to every post she writes. She is fearlessly dedicated to creating tried and tested beauty recipes, skincare formulations, soap recipes, and many other DIY crafts that will work for everyone. Angela has a Diploma in Skincare Formulation, is a proud member of the Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild, and infuses each DIY product with her passion and expertise.

Discussion (86 Comments)

    • Hi Eliana, the xanthan gum is in there to stabilize the olivem1000 which is a natural emulsifying wax.
      You could omit it and the cream would still work, but be less stable. And, you could use a different ewax if you are not worried about the naturalness.

      Reply
  1. Hi Angela! My cream turned out beautifully, right consistency etc. But after a few weeks the cream has become like fluffy mousse? It also has some crystallizations and oil droplets.. any ideas?

    I used Eco E Wax (Glyceryl monostearate SE) and Cetyl alcohol for the emulsion.

    Thanks!!

    Reply
    • Hi Natasha,

      Yes this sounds like a problem with the e-wax. It sounds like the emulsion has failed. I would try using some cosmetic gum alongside this. While the cetyl alcohol will help, but I think it needs something extra. Add 1% xanthan gum to your glycerine before adding it to the water part. Mix it thoroughly so it becomes almost like a gell/paste like consistency.

      Reply
    • Rosemary essential oil is lovely, and great for the scalp and hair especially. However, it isn’t that soothing and wouldn’t be a great substitute here, and doesn’t have a great smell for a face cream either. Consider lavender essential oil.

      Reply
    • I would recommend something light. Avoid using too much cosmetic butters that can clog the pores, such as cocoa butter. Kokum butter is an excellent substitute. Try taking a look at my anti-aginging face cream. I didn’t include any butter at all to ensure it doesn’t clog pores at all! Also includes a gorgeous homemade calendula infusion that I find is so wonderfully soothing for my skin.

      Reply
      • Hi Angela, I made the 2X amount and it turns out great! I tried to make double that and it does not emulsify correctly. I’ve tried it three times, exact same ingredients but it won’t work. Have you had that happen?5 stars

      • Hi Carmen,

        Yes, this can be a problem when you scale up. I don’t think you’re measuring anything wrong, what I think is happening here is whatever you’re using to whisk isn’t doing the job anymore. As you increase your batch, sometimes that also requires an investment in some heavier-duty equipment.

        For starters, I would try this again but swap out a hand whisk or milk frother for an immersion blender (like one you’d use for your soap-making). I had the same problem with my cold process emulsion face creams and found using an immersion blender is just so much better.

        Alternatively, you can make multiple smaller batches too. Whatever works for you!

        Try this and let me know how you get on.

  2. Hi Angela,
    I made the face cream, but in using 1 gram of Roman Chamomile, it has an exceptionally strong scent, where it’s overpowering.
    Is one gram the correct amount to use?
    Cindy

    Reply
    • Hi Cynthia,

      Yes 1% is a safe amount to use. However, if you don’t like the fragrance too much, consider dropping it down by half to 0.5g.

      Hope this helps

      Reply
  3. Hi Angela, I tried the half portion with all the same ingredients. I substituted the macadamia nut oil with avocado oil. It did not work for me again I don’t know what I’m doing wrong. 🙁

    Reply
    • Hi Maria,

      There’s a couple of reasons why your emulsion might have failed. If it was always a liquid, then there’s a chance that there is a problem with your e-wax. Which one did you used? Have you double checked everything was weighed right, and you stirred continuously after mixing your water part into the oil part?

      Reply
      • It also feels sticky not like a cream for my face. I’m checking on my scale because it doesn’t show half a gram. It only shows whole numbers. How do you know when a number is exact.? I feel like the numbers go back-and-forth and I’m not sure if it’s exact.

      • Hi Angela, it worked!! Thank you so much for posting your video. It was a little oily, but I think it’s because I put Rosehip at the end. I’ll try putting next less next time. ?❤️?

      • It looks like my cream is splitting. I added half dropper of Rosehip oil in the cold face. Maybe that’s why?:(

      • Hi Maria,

        It sounds like you might need to invest in some different scales. I find that jewellery scales are the most accurate. It’s quite important to be able to see the numbers after the decimal point.

      • It worked!!! Thank you so much!!! Can I use polawax instead? I’m trying to use something more natural.

      • It’s been great! My skin feels better now! Love my new cream!!?❤️?Thank you again!!!

      • Hi Angela, I’m trying to make bigger batches but my cream solidifies fast. How do you put 4× or 8x times in containers fast enough? ?5 stars

      • Hi Maria,

        Yeah this can be a little tricky sometimes. I’ve found that if you make use of a funnel, you don’t have to worry so much. If it’s a little too thick to run through, use your stirrer to poke it through. Hope this helps! 😀 <3

    • Hi Julia,

      Unfortunately floral waxes are totally unsuitable for emulsifying. In fact, the benefits of floral waxes in general are disputed and research suggests all they possess is a mild aroma and no skin benefit. I would stick to using a good quality, total emulsifying wax such as NF or BTMS 50. You could use Olivem1000 if you prefer a natural e-wax.

      Reply

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