Easy Homemade Lotion Bars
Homemade is back in style. Now you may be someone who’s thinking that handmade never went out of style in your experience. 🙂 If that’s you, that’s awesome! If you’re here to for a recipe on how to make lotion bars, that’s awesome too, and we’ve got you covered.
If you already have some homemade lotion bar recipes and are looking for more, cool! We’d love it if you shared your favorite recipe with us as well.
Lotion bars are fun to make and less expensive than the same amount of ready made lotion. DIY lotion bars are also healthier, because homemade means you don’t have to add chemical preservatives, and you know exactly what’s in it.
Homemade lotion – because your skin drinks up what you put on it.
Lotion Bars Make Wholesome Homemade Gifts
Often the best gifts are those made by hand. Not only for the quality of ingredients, but also for the TLC and time that goes into it.
If you go through a lot of lotion, you may want to try making your own lotion bars. Gardening can be rough on your hands in summer, and then there’s the dry heat in winter that’s harsh on the skin.
Homemade lotions soothe your skin while saving money.
Homemade Lotion is Better for You
Most of us don’t think twice about slathering lotion on our hands, and yet here’s the thing: skin is our body’s largest organ and it can absorb like a sponge.
What we place on our skin gets absorbed into our body and bloodstream. So to think that we’re just applying lotion to our hands and that it doesn’t have to be all natural, is deceptive thinking.
I realized this when I started having allergic reactions.
Skin is the body’s largest organ and it can absorb like a sponge.
Food for Your Skin
In my family we try to be very conscientious about what we put into our bodies and choose organic as much as possible. But for some reason it took me awhile to fully grasp this concept in relation to things like hand lotion. What we put on our bodies is absorbed into our bodies.
What you put on your body goes into your body.
What helped me wake up and catch on to what I was doing to my body happened when I was given a prescription medication that was to be applied externally. The medicine was applied to the backs of my hands and inside of my arms, in order to be absorbed into the body.
Wake-up call! This medicine was entering my body and doing its work solely through absorption. So what else was being absorbed through my skin?
Our skin is like a sponge. Much of what we place on our skin gets absorbed.
No More Buying Quantity Over Quality
It was time to slow down on bulk buying. No more industrial sized lotion bottles from Costco containing unnatural and unhealthy ingredients, most of which I don’t even recognize.
But natural and organic cosmetics can be expensive, however, less so if you make your own.
How Many of These Would You Eat?
One day my daughter commented on an image she was seeing online that showed using food for homemade cosmetic remedies. It seemed icky to her to use foods like avocado, or honey and oatmeal for instance, on the face.
Sure, slathering food on skin seems gross. But when you think about it, if a substance isn’t good enough to eat… to take internally, why would we place it on our largest absorptive organ… our skin?
So we would eat avocado, but which of these ingredients from a top-selling lotion which I was using, would we eat? Maybe five out 26? We wouldn’t consume these if they were fed to us, yet to apply them externally ends up in our body, almost as if we had eaten them!
If a substance isn’t good enough to eat… to take internally, why would we place it on our largest absorptive organ… our skin?
Ingredients from the label of a popular hand lotion:
Water (aqua), Glycerin, Stearic Acid, Isopropyl Myristate, Mineral Oil, Glyceryl Stearate, Glycol Stearate, Dimethicone, Peg-100 Stearate, Petrolatum, Cetyl Alcohol, Tapioca Starch, Phenoxyethanol, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Methylparaben, Fragrance (parfum), Acrylates/c10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Propylparaben, Disodium Edta, Xanthan Gum, Stearamide Amp, Dihydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride, Hydroxyethyl Urea, Propylene Glycol, Avena Sativa (oat) Straw Extract,1)https://www.livestrong.com/article/126352-benefits-avena-sativa/ Titanium Dioxide (ci 77891)
The item bolded in the list above are the only things I could imagine eating. Yet all these things are being absorbed into the bloodstream whenever I put it on my body. Yikes!
That sent us looking into how to make lotion bars and homemade lotion!
The Problem of Time
Before we get into making lotion bars, you would create homemade products more often if you had more time.
So for many of us, homemade lotions and skin products is a time issue. If we have a full-time job in addition to raising a family and/or gardening, doing everything from scratch takes time, and lots of it.
Whether it’s making healthy homemade meals and snacks—from homemade yogurt to homemade mayonnaise and hot sauce, or homemade cosmetics and beauty products—it definitely takes more time.
How to Find More Time to Create
So one way to “find” more time to do these things is to cut back on those recreational things that take time but don’t add much value, such as TV and surfing social media.
A good thing about TV is how it’s an experience the entire family can share. However, gardening and cooking and making homemade things can be shared activities that contribute value and wonderful interactive opportunities.
Creating together helps cultivate harmony at home.
Rethinking Recreation and Pleasure
Americans spend a lot of time and money shuttling kids to all kinds of after-school sports and class events. From little league to soccer, dance to music lessons, these are all beneficial things.
However, consider this: of all the kids in special extracurricular programs, it’s an exceptionally small percentage who actually go on to do anything in life with that skill. In fact, often times all of these “privileged” recreational pursuits just add unnecessary time and money stress to family life.
Rushing here and there for expensive lessons, often happens at the expense of family time. Fast food meals grabbed in the car on the way to and from, become the norm.
Once home, everyone scatters to their respective activities or responsibilities. Expensive lessons end up costing more than dollars, they may also come at the expense of family time.
We’re not saying that’s the case for you, because only you would know if that’s applicable in your situation. However, we are saying that if you think you don’t have time to do more of the kinds of things you value, evaluating and repositioning your family priorities may help.
Home crafting is an experience we can share with family and friends, and in so doing, we build memories far beyond sharing about a TV show we watched.
Some of the best of times and fun and meaningful conversations occur in and around the kitchen.
So consider creating new family traditions such as cooking and making things together. Now it’s not just mom’s responsibility to cobble dinner together at the end of her long day. Instead, the family can all pitch in to prepare and clean up while each taking turns sharing about their day.
Creating new family traditions could change the trajectory of your family and your children’s future in a very positive way.
Slow down… you move too fast. You’ve got to make this feeling last.
Family Time: Making Memories While Making Things
My daughter and I helped serve as staff at an incredible, life-transforming retreat for parents and kids aimed at helping them slow down and extract from their usual hectic schedules into playful and meaningful activities together.
Our friends Jim Sheils and Brian Scrone ran this program—Board Meetings International—along with with their lovely wives, Jamie Lee Sheils and Coco Scrone. That program is now run by Jim and Jamie and is titled 18 Summers.
Most of the parent attendees are high powered, highly successful entrepreneurs and their kids have access to all the best programs and extracurricular opportunities. Do you know what the majority of the children attendees wanted? The kids just wanted more time with their families hanging out and doing things together.
A poll of kids revealed that most don’t want more things or activities. Rather, they want more time with their family.
Do you know the biggest negative in the kid’s lives? Hectic, busy schedules… rushing around to all these great privileged activities the parent’s are investing in for their children.
All the sacrifices the parents were making for the children… so much of the shuttling and chauffeuring around, the best education, the best lessons and instructors, were not necessary.
Thinking back to your own childhood, is that so for you? That’s what we hear from others and it’s certainly true in our own lives.
Simpler times and pleasures often generate the fondest memories.
Okay, let’s get to the lotion bar recipes!
How to Make Lotion Bars
The good news is that it’s actually quite easy to make your own lotion bars with simple all natural ingredients! That way you’ll know exactly what’s in it and what you’re putting on your skin.
I’m using lotion bars gifted from Bryan Wagner’s wife, Vickie. We did a story on the organic farm he manages, as seen from Google Earth. Pretty amazing visual. Hope you will visit that article after this one. (You’ll find that link at the bottom under the References section).2)https://gardensall.com/organic-farm-from-google-earth/
I’m really enjoying the simplicity of using these simple bars for moisturizing, so when these run out, it will be fun to make some.
Here’s a photo of Vickie, followed by her grandmother’s recipe. It’s super simple and easy to remember.
Grandma’s Simple Lotion Bar Recipe
Original recipe contributed by Vickie Wagner
Embellished by GardensAll.com – renamed as
Super 8 – Simple Lotion Bars
We’re calling this “Super 8” because it’s easy to remember the ingredients quantities: everything is in 8’s.
- 8 oz Beeswax
- 8 oz Organic Coconut Oil
- 8 oz Almond Oil
- 8 drops of essential oil for fragrance, (more or less, depending on your preference)(optional)
- 8 drops of Vitamin E Oil (adds nutrients and preserves)(optional)
- Melt the beeswax over low heat in a double boiler.
- Remove from heat.
- Add coconut oil and almond oil
- Add fragrance (optional).
- Add Vitamin E oil (optional).
- Stir until blended.
- Pour into molds.
- Allow to set overnight at room temp.
Vickies uses candy molds, which you can get in virtually any shape you like.
The Benefits of Lotion Bars
Lotion bars are quick and easy to make at home. If you’ve detoxed your beauty routine and banished conventional lotion from the house, then you’ll know that moisturizing with natural oils such as sweet almond or coconut feels awesome but can get a bit greasy.
Lotion bars, however, work well to moisturize dry skin without feeling greasy, thanks to the presence of beeswax. The beeswax also helps seal the moisture in so you don’t have to reapply as often.
This next recipe uses cocoa butter or shea butter instead of the almond oil in Vicky’s Grandma’s recipe. So this has more natural fragrance, but again, you may enjoy enhancing yours.
Homemade Lotion Bars with Shea Butter
by Katherine Martinko on TreeHugger.com
- 1/2 c Fair trade virgin cold-pressed coconut oil (I use Dr. Bronner’s brand)
- 1/2 c Cocoa butter or shea butter
- 1/3 c Beeswax
- 1 teaspoon Vitamin E (optional, but adds skin nutrients and preservative benefit)
- 25-40 drops Essential oil (optional; as desired)*
- Place a quart-sized glass jar in a small pot of water and bring to a simmer.
- Add coconut oil and cocoa (or shea) butter.
- For more moisturizing benefit use equal portions of oil to beeswax.
- For less oily bars, use more beeswax.
Place all ingredients in the jar and stir constantly until melted. Remove from heat. Add the Vitamin E, if using, and 25-40 drops of your choice of essential oil. I like lavender, but citrus would be really nice, too. Stir thoroughly.
If you want a variety of aromas, then add different fragrance essential oils to the individual molds rather than to the entire batter. We recommend using one type of drop per mold the first time around so you won’t lose track of which lotion bars are which, as you may want to identify which are your favorites to make again.
Pour into the mold of your choosing. Let sit undisturbed for several hours or overnight.
Original Recipe by Katherine Martinko on TreeHugger.com 3)http://www.treehugger.com/organic-beauty/homemade-lotion-bars-are-fun-and-easy-make.html
Lotion Molds or Baking Pan
Cute Molds or Practical Muffin Tins
Double-duty Springform Baking Pan
You can even use regular metal muffin tins or baking pan lined with plastic wrap. For the baking pan you’d just need to cut the bars into pieces after they set.
An double-duty option for rough cut square or rectangular soap bars could be something like this springform cheesecake pan. The removable sides would ensure that the bars can be moved to a cutting board for cutting.
More Lotion Bar Molds
Favorite Garden Herbs to Use in Lotion Bars
Now if you want to fancy up your lotion bars with herbs and flowers, you can choose options such as beneficially medicinal and antibacterial, antifungal dried buds. If you have fresh dried garden herbs, all the better.
Garden Herbs for Lotion Bars
- Rose petals
- Dandelion petals
These will add color and visual interest as well, but for the best user experience as a lotion bar, you’ll probably want to strain out the herbs flowers before pouring into the molds. However, they can look really lovely sprinkled on top with a dusting of herbs.
Other Articles to Check Out
If you enjoyed this article you will also enjoy this one on making loofah soap bars.
Oh! And… for those who may be familiar with this popular folks song by Simon and Garfunkel in the 60’s… Slow down, you move too fast… ENJOY!
Let’s keep on growing!
I’m LeAura Alderson, entrepreneur, ideator, media publisher, writer and editor of GardensAll.com. Pursuits in recent years have been more planting seeds of ideas for business growth more than gardening. However, I’ve always been interested in medicinal herbs and getting nutrition and healing from food over pharmacy. As a family we’re eager to dig more deeply into gardening and edible landscape for the love of fresh organic foods and self sustainability. We thoroughly enjoy and appreciate the creative ingenuity of the GardensAll community.
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