These solid diy lotion bars are a great homemade beauty gifts idea. They are very easy to make and once you have the basic recipe you can then tweak it till your heart’s content.
Apart from the obvious all over diy lotion bar, you can also create lip balms and muscle rubs with this versatile recipe. There are no preservatives needed in these moisturizers which are great for anyone with sensitive skin.
These make excellent gifts when packaged in foil, cellophane, lip balm pots, deodorant tubes or pretty tins. They are also very handy in the summer, on the beach, camping or flying.
A nice solid “mini” moisture bar in a small pot in the back pocket is perfect!
Making Your Solid Lotion Bars
- The basic diy lotion bar recipe is easy to remember, it’s simply 1/3 beeswax 1/3 butter and 1/3 oil. Further down the page I’ve listed a few of the most popular oils and butter to choose from.
- To work out how long these bars are going to last you must look at the shelf life of the actual oil you are using (most are at least 6 months). But you can also freeze them or add a little vitamin E to further prolong the shelf life.
- Don’t be scared to experiment by using more than one oil or butter, then lacing it with a few drops of essential oil you can create a very personal and therapeutic bar.
- You can make up a big batch of these diy bars using inexpensive oils and butters and a popular fragrance oil. Place them in the freezer and pop them out whenever there’s a birthday or gift needed.
Basic 3oz Moisturizer Bar Recipe
Optional Extra (drop the liquid oil to 33% if adding this)
- Weigh out the beeswax, butter and oil
- Place into a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water and heat until melted, or place a small can (an empty tuna can is perfect) at the bottom of a pan, fill the pan with water and place a heat-proof jug with the ingredients inside on top of the can. Bring to the boil and simmer until melted.
- Remove the bowl (jug) from the heat and cool slightly (watch it, as it can start to solidify very quickly you only want to cool it enough so as not to destroy the fragrance. Mix in the Vitamin E or fragrance if using and pour into molds or containers.
- Allow it to set then transfer to the refrigerator or freezer until solid. If you are using a balm or deodorant stick as a container, make sure it’s twisted all the way down and don’t try to move it until its set or you may end up with a dent in the middle of the tube from splashing it around (no need to ask me how I know this)
Homemade lotion bars are almost impossible to get wrong. If for some reason you don’t like the way they look, feel or smell, you can melt them down again. Add a bit more oil or butter if the bars are too hard or a bit more beeswax if they are too soft.
Not enough scent? Melt it down and add a little more, although you do need to be a bit careful with fragrance and essential oils as they can be heat-sensitive, so melt them lightly.
As I may have mentioned earlier these diy lotion bars refrigerate and freeze extremely well, so if you make a few too many you can store them in a container or freezer bag until needed.
Generally, if you are making this solid moisturizer in a lip balm tube or tin, the 3oz batch will make about 9 or 10 of them.
You may also have noticed that one of my bars has a slight pink tone to it, you can achieve this by adding 1 or 2 drops of food coloring (I used red) as soon as the oils were removed from the heat.
Choosing Your Oils & Butters
These are only my suggestions, you can use almost any of the natural carrier oils for these bars.
- Dry and sensitive skin; Apricot kernel – Avocado – Olive – Sunflower oil – Sweet almond oil
- All skin types; Fractionated coconut – Hemp seed – Rice bran oil – safflower oil – Sesame oil – Soy bean oil- sunflower
- Greasy skin; Hemp seed – Jojoba
As with the oils these are only my suggestions you can use almost any of the natural butters for these bars. With a quick guide to hardness in brackets, 1 being melts easily, 10 being incredibly hard.
- Aloe; a soft butter that’s great for dry skin, (4)
- Cocoa; a very hard butter that traps moisture into the skin, suitable for all skin types, (10)
- Mango butter; less greasy than most butter’s so good for greasy skin (8)
- Shea butter; sinks deep into skin to repair damage (7)
Using Essential Oils
Whenever possible I use essential oils in my homemade bath products, not because I have anything against using fragrance oils; most are well priced, completely safe and come in every possible scent imaginable.
I just feel that if I’ve gone to the trouble of choosing my oils and butter to suit my skin type why not go the whole hog for maximum benefit!
Unfortunately, there are a few precautions’ when using essential oils. Firstly they don’t like daylight so you will need to keep any products that contain them in a colored container or cupboard.
Secondly you need to make sure the containers you are using are made from a compatible material, glass, PET plastic or Aluminum jars/bottles that have been EPA (Epoxy Phenolic) lined are all suitable. You can find some nice tins on my recommended packaging & containers page.
Recommended Essential Oils for the Lotion Bars
Carrot Seed, Cedarwood, Chamomile, Clary Sage, Cypress, Frankincense, Geranium, Jasmine, Lavender, Lemon, Neroli, Peppermint, Rose, Rosemary, Sandalwood, Tea Tree, Ylang-Ylang. Check them all out on my essential oil use chart.
Teaming them up with the homemade bath salts makes a great gift.
Or add some layered melt and pour soap for a wonderful gift!