An Easy Lotion Bar Recipe
A DIY Lotion Bar Recipe - Great Gifts to Give and Keep
A luxurious solid lotion bar recipe, chock full of luxury butters and skin-loving beeswax — that is the objective. A DIY lotion bar may seem surprising, but there is nothing better to keep inside of your knitting bag for small finger snags and scratchy places. Give it a quick rub on a rough elbow, or seal in the moisture from a recent bath or shower. This lotion bar recipe is formulated to allow for a broad range of experimentation with different oils and butters. There are even vegetarian and vegan versions. This DIY lotion bar recipe is also a great project to do with kids, who can easily create a gift welcomed by a wide range of recipients.
This beeswax lotion bar is easily adapted for tallow or even soy wax. The proportions are the key to success here. If you want a lotion bar that is slightly harder, increase the beeswax, tallow, or soy wax. If you want a slightly softer bar, increase the liquid oils a little at a time until you reach the consistency you prefer. This beeswax lotion bar recipe is non-sticky and absorbs quickly, leaving skin with a softened feel and a thin barrier against moisture loss that lasts for hours.
Lotion Bar Recipe
Makes four, 4 oz. lotion bars
- 5.25 oz. Beeswax (raw or refined), OR refined tallow OR soy wax flakes
- 5.25 oz. Cocoa butter (raw or refined), shea butter, OR any other solid butter
- 5.25 oz. Jojoba oil, OR any other liquid oil
- .25 oz. Cosmetic-grade fragrance OR essential oils, optional.
Combine beeswax, tallow or soy wax with liquid oil in a microwave-safe container. Microwave on HIGH in 30-second increments until beeswax is completely melted and transparent. Add the solid butters to the melted mixture and stir until butters are completely melted and transparent. If the mixture cools off too much and begins to become opaque or to harden, just put it back in the microwave for a short time until re-melted. Add essential or fragrance oils, if using. Pour into 4 oz. molds and place in freezer for 20-30 minutes, until completely hardened. This quick cooling prevents the lotion bar from crystallizing or developing a grainy texture. Once hardened, remove from the molds and allow to reach room temperature. Package and share!
To use, simply rub the bar between your hands and then rub the lotion onto the affected area. Alternately, rub the lotion bar directly onto the affected area. Massage in with hands for best results.
The beeswax, tallow, or soy wax in this recipe acts as a hardening agent. These substances are also very emollient and form a breathable barrier on the skin that protects against water loss. If using raw beeswax, you will also have the added bonus of a honey-like scent to your lotion bars. If you prefer not to have this scent, choose processed beeswax instead of natural. Processed beeswax will also provide a whiter finished lotion bar. Tallow and soy wax are both pure white and will create a white lotion bar as well.
The butters in the lotion bar recipe add to the solid qualities of the lotion bar and are also rich in essential fatty acids that condition the skin. If you use raw cocoa butter, you will have the added benefit of a natural chocolate scent and a golden color. Use processed cocoa butter if you prefer unscented and white. Certain other butters, like coffee butter and lavender butter, can also be used both for their conditioning qualities and the fragrance they lend to the finished lotion bar.
Ideally, a middle viscosity oil is best – enough to properly lubricate the skin, but light enough to avoid being sticky. The jojoba oil called for in the recipe is technically a wax, but it has the viscosity of a light oil. Jojoba oil moisturizes and conditions the skin without forming a thick or greasy film.
Whether you use the recipe as-is or make substitutions based on your cupboard, these solid lotion bars are sure to be a hit with many. They are an excellent project to share with the children for quick gifts, as well. As noted above, the trick is to melt all of the ingredients until they are completely translucent to ensure there are no stearic acid crystals in the finished lotion bar. Once everything is fully melted, it is important to cool things down as quickly as possible. In this case, I recommend putting the lotion bars straight into the freezer for 20-30 minutes. Not only will the cold lotion bars easily pop out of their molds, but the quick cooling will prevent the formation of crystals in the lotion bar which can give it a gritty texture. Have fun making solid lotion bars, and let us know your experiences!