Most of you will agree with me that shop-bought skin creams and moisturizers are very expensive. But did you know that natural homemade face cream is often better for your skin, or that it’s actually very simple to make at home, and comes at a fraction of the price?
So, although there are many other homemade face moisturizers for you to try your hand at, in this post, I want to focus on how to make one of my all-time favorite DIY face cream recipes.
Similar to the very popular homemade wrinkle cream, the cream below is great for all skin types, even sensitive skin. It’s also non-greasy and absorbs quickly into the skin. I often apply my basic face cream after using my homemade anti-aging serum or facial oil as it helps it penetrate the skin more quickly and eliminates the oiliness.
Eight DIY Face Cream Recipes
I will start by showing you how to make my basic anti-aging cream for mature skin, which although I call it basic, is still very luxurious! But keep reading, because after that I have 8 more excellent face cream recipes, I hope you enjoy these, I loved them all!
Watch How To Make Face Cream At Home
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The Benefits of Using Face Creams
Moisturizing is perhaps the most important part of skincare. Without it, the skin can look tired, dry and will age faster over time.
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 they are 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 the use of a solubilizer, the emulsion is the only moisturizing product that can use both water and oil-soluble ingredients together.
Furthermore, the combination of water and oil makes a face cream 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 be able 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 will always be able to tweak your homemade face cream recipes to suit your skin type. This is not always the case with gel moisturizers and anhydrous formulas (facial balms & crème).
To learn more about formulating all types of moisturizers, take a look at my new DIY face moisturizers course where I go into more detail and show you how to make them all, and make them your own! This could be the first step on a journey to ridding yourself of store-bought products, full of unwanted chemicals and undelivered promises!
About Making Your Own Floral Infusions
To give your face cream that little extra, you can substitute all of the distilled water in the recipes below with floral waters (also known as distillates, hydrolats, and hydrosols).
The recipe already calls for some rose hydrosol, but you can, if you wish, substitute all the distilled water for this ingredient.
Alternatively, you can also 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.
The homemade face creams below will keep for a couple of days without preservatives, and 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 do go down the ‘making your own floral infusion’ route. You must use a preservative or it will only stay fresh for a very limited time, and 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, just make sure you use a preservative to get your 4 months.
For a more in-depth look at how to make your own herbal and floral infusions, take a look at my post that shows you exactly how to brew one up in your own home!
So, What’s In My Basic Homemade Face Cream?
We’ve formulated this face cream recipe to include a blend of gorgeous ingredients that will nourish all skin types. It’s relatively generic because we didn’t want to make it too complicated.
- The Argan and Macadamia nut oils are rich in vitamins and healing properties that soothe, moisten and encourage new cell growth.
- The Roman Chamomile essential oil is intensely soothing for the skin. If you’re heading into winter, like we are at the time of writing this post, this is the perfect essential oil for you. It’s anti-inflammatory, intensely healing and one of the best essential oils for people with sensitive skin. You can, however, swap this out for whatever you like. If there’s a particular essential oil that works great for your skin, now is the time to use it. E.g., if you want to give this cream some excellent anti-gaining action, consider using frankincense and lavender, which are a great pairing for this.
- Rose essential oil is perhaps one of the best available, but it’s very difficult to use at home. It’s prohibitively expensive, and it can only be used when making large batches (the dermal limit for Rose EO is extremely low and the risk of sensitization is very high). Therefore, we are using some rosewater (rose hydrosol), as it shares many of the same benefits but is much less intense.
- You’ll notice we’re using a little cetyl alcohol here. This is a stabilizer and thickener, as well as a co-emulsifier. We’re using it because it allows us to lower the e-wax a little. Emulsions that have more e-wax tend to be heavier and can feel a little ‘soapy’ on the skin. But if we’re only using e-wax, we’d need to accept this, otherwise, our cream would be very thin. By using some cetyl alcohol, we achieve an emulsion that has body without weight (i.e. not runny but also not heavy and waxy).
Adding Preservative To 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 cool-down 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 all of these homemade face creams keep for about 1 week without preservatives, and 12 months with preservatives added.
Substitutions And Scents
Making this face cream your own is not only possible but highly recommended. A cream that is basic is always easier to customize, so this is the perfect recipe for you to do just that.
Firstly, if this is your first time messing around with an emulsion formula, consider keeping it the same as it is. If you have made emulsions before, then, by all means, do what you like. However, be careful with playing around with the more functional ingredients – especially the e-wax, cetyl alcohol, preservative, and vitamin e antioxidant.
As for the other ingredients, you could swap them out as you see fit. Feel free to change the carrier oil to what works best for you or your skin type. Avocado oil, sweet almond oil, and jojoba oil are all great carrier oils for a face cream, but take a look at our post, The Best Organic Carrier Oils & Their Uses. This post is a detailed list of various different carrier oils and is a great resource for learning more about their benefits, uses and which are best for your own skin type.
You can do the same with essential oils. However, be careful with your pairings. It’s easy to choose two essential oils that have opposing benefits, meaning they will cancel each other out. Furthermore, it’s also possible to pick two essential oils that don’t smell very nice together. While you may only care about skin benefit, remember that you’ll have to walk around smelling of your face cream every day.
If you’re new to essential oils, and don’t know what works for you and your skin type, take a look at our Essential Oil Use Chart. Much like the post above about carrier oils, this will introduce you to everything you need to know about essential oils.
While we haven’t used any, you could also add a few botanical extracts to this product as cooldown ingredients, to further boost its powers to alter and improve the appearance of our skin. There are literally thousands to choose from, all with their own unique benefits. It would be impossible to talk about them all. So, take a look at this post we did a few years back that discusses some of the best botanical extracts.
OK Let’s Make My Basic Face Cream
But don’t miss these other recipes
How To Make Face Cream At Home
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- 40 g Rose Hydrosol
- 23 g Distilled Water
- 5 g Glycerine
- 6 g Emulsifying Wax NF
- 3 g Cetyl Alcohol
- 3 g Shea Butter
- 8 g Argan Oil
- 8 g Macadamia Nut Oil
- Combine your water part ingredients, including the rose hydrosol, distilled water, and glycerine40 g Rose Hydrosol, 23 g Distilled Water, 5 g Glycerine
- Combine your oil part ingredients, to include the e-wax, cetyl alcohol, shea butter, argan oil and macadamia nut oil.6 g Emulsifying Wax NF, 3 g Cetyl Alcohol, 8 g Argan Oil, 8 g Macadamia Nut Oil, 3 g Shea Butter
- Place both beakers into a water bath to melt, and remove once all the solid oils in our oil part have melted.
- Pour the water part into your oil part and stir vigorously.
- We need to wait for our mixture to cool to 40C (104F) before we can add our cooldown ingredients. You can speed up the cooldown by immersing the beaker in ice water. As this will also speed up the thickening process, you will need to stir continuously.Once it has cooled enough, add the vitamin e, broad spectrum preservative, and roman chamomile essential oil1 g Preservative, 1 g Vitamin E Oil, 1 g Roman Chamomile Essential Oil
- Transfer to a 3.5oz pot to store. Your pot must come with a lid, and must be made of glass, PET plastic or aluminium1 Cosmetic Jar
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.
How Often Can I Use My Face Cream?
You should use your DIY face cream can be used daily. However, you won’t get much 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.
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.
How Do I Use The 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.
You can apply this either in the morning or at night. If you have very dry skin, you can combine this with a heavier moisturizer if you wish. You may want to use this lighter cream in the morning, and your heavy moisturizer in the evening for intense hydration overnight.
8 More DIY Face Cream Recipes
Homemade Wrinkle Cream That Works!
This homemade wrinkle cream is fantastic, it’s perfect for tackling any ageing effects on the skin, it’s very easy to make and considerably cheaper than store-bought anti wrinkle creams.
DIY Moisturizer For Dry Skin – Antioxidant Summer Face Cream
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.
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.
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.
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.
A 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.
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.
I hope you enjoy making these DIY face creams, 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 my latest premium course Fabulous Face Creams & Moisturizers, it’s the product of many years of experience.
Discussion (78 Comments)
Can’t wait to try your DIY Face Creams. Which ones do you recommend as non-comedogenic creams for aging skin? Thank you.
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.
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?
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
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. 🙁
I did everything like the video but my emulsion did not work. I just stayed as a liquid. Help!!
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?
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?:(
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.
Yes, I just ordered a new scale Thank you.!!;) I will let you know how it works out;)
It worked!!! Thank you so much!!! Can I use polawax instead? I’m trying to use something more natural.
Absolutely you can. Polarwax works well in this recipe, as it’s similar to NF
It’s been great! My skin feels better now! Love my new cream!!?❤️?Thank you again!!!
That’s wonderful to hear Maria, I’m so glad you’re loving your cream!
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? ?
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
Have you ever used rose floral wax as the emulsifying wax? If so how much would you use?
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.
Can I use any emulsifying wax?
You can, however, make sure it is safe for use on the skin. Also keep in mind that different emulsifying waxes have different usage amounts. So you may need to play around with your measurement until you reach a thickness you’re happy with. You may also find that not all emulsifying waxes produce a texture that you will like, so that may require experimentation as well.
If you’re very unsure, make small batches. Maybe no more than 20-50g at a time so you don’t waste too much of your ingredients. You can also make a very simple formula, using just distilled water and vegetable oil to save money while working with new e-waxes.
Hope this helps!
You did not respond to the question I ask you the other day about what to replace Kukui oil with other than Rice Bran Oil?
Oh my gosh I’m so sorry, for some reason I thought I had already answered it. Please forgive me.
Rosehip Seed Oil and Melon Seed Oil are great subs, as is Avocado Oil. Although, you could also try Evening Primrose. I’ve got a bottle of that myself and It’s such a gorgeous oil on my skin, I’m finding myself making any excuse to use it right now.
Hope this helps Paula, lovely to hear from you again. Happy formulating!