How to Make Lotion with Shea Butter

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Do you ever feel like a detective, scouring the labels of products before you buy them? It can be depressing. So many commercial body care products have way too many sketchy ingredients! It even goes for many that are supposed to be natural and organic. That’s one the reasons I love making them myself. I can have full control over the ingredients, and it’s fun! Come join me as I show how to make lotion with shea butter. 

How to make lotion with shea butter

Non greasy shea butter lotion recipe

In my journey of healing, I really became aware of the huge toxic burden on our modern world. The products we use on our skin is a huge part of this! Did you know that our skin, our largest organ, quickly absorbs whatever we put on it? It’s true. And this becomes pretty scary when we realize just how toxic so many commercial personal care products are.

This lotion is perfect for when you want a light, non greasy moisturizer that is made with only the purest, most natural ingredients. I think you’re going to really enjoy learning how to make lotion with shea butter. 

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How to make lotion with shea butter | A simple and easy DIY homemade lotion recipe #diy #lotion #organicskincare

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Taking it into my own hands with DIY lotion 

In my quest for the purest and most natural skincare, I decided to try making some things. After all, creating things has always been a huge passion of mine.

As I quickly discovered, making your own organic skincare products is super fun! One of my favorite things to make is lotion. One thing I don’t DIY is makeup, and you can check out my 100% Pure makeup review here

I just think it is so fun to take different ingredients that wouldn’t normally easily mix, and emulsify them into a smooth, light, and luxurious lotion. 

How do you make your own lotion?

When you make lotion, you’re creating an emulsion. That’s when you force two things to combine that don’t naturally mix. The process is actually just like making homemade mayonnaise. 

My favorite piece of equipment for making homemade lotion is a food processor. You can also use a blender, but I find that the food processor gives the most reliable results. 

Cleanliness is really important when making any skincare products, especially when they contain water. I recommend cleaning all your equipment in a weak bleach solution, and then letting it air dry before making lotion. That way, you won’t introduce any bacteria into your recipe. 

I recommend using distilled water for the water portion. Again, this is just so that everything is as pure as possible, with nothing unwanted getting into the finished lotion.

How to make lotion with shea butter directions

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Measure jojoba oil, shea butter, and beeswax into a heat safe glass container, preferably a pitcher.
  2. Create a double boiler by placing the pitcher on a cloth in a pan of water. 
  3. Heat water to a gentle simmer until shea butter and beeswax are completely melted.
  4. Pour hot oil mixture into food processor. 
  5. Turn food processor on, and in a small, slow stream, gradually pour water into food processor. 
  6. Allow food processor to run for another minute or so. 
  7. Make sure lotion mixture is below 176° F.
  8. Add preservative and essential oils, if using, and allow food processor to run for another minute or so. 
  9. Pour into glass containers. 
  10. Store in a cool, dark place at room temperature. 

How to make lotion with shea butter homemade lotion

Natural preservative for homemade lotion

When you make homemade lotions containing water, it is important to use a preservative.

Wait a second, right? Don’t we usually avoid preservatives in our food?

Of course. I balked at the idea of a preservative in homemade lotion at first, too. But, the thing is, if we make something that contains water, and have it sit around at room temperature, we really do need to add something to keep it fresh and to prevent unwanted bacteria mold growth.

I found a natural preservative that works great, and I am comfortable using it. It is called Optiphen Plus, and is paraben free and formaldehyde free. I’ve been really happy with it, and that’s what I recommend when I show how to make lotion with shea butter. 

Of course, if you want to go totally preservative free, you can just store your homemade lotion in the refrigerator. But keep in mind that the shelf life will still be shorter. 

Alright, now that we’ve gone over everything, let’s jump in and make some lotion!

Customize your DIY lotion 

What’s even more fun is when you get to experiment and play around with ingredients. That’s when it gets really exciting! 

In this recipe for how to make lotion with shea butter, I have a liquid oil, which happens to be jojoba oil, and shea butter. You can totally substitute these two for any other liquid oils or butters that you want. You could try sweet almond oil and cocoa butter. Or avocado oil and coconut oil. The options are really endless!

Make it smell pretty and do even more

Essential oils are really fun to use, too. You can choose a single oil, a premixed blend, or create your own blend. 

There are oils with anti aging properties, which are wonderful in a homemade lotion. Certain single oils, like lavender, are chock full of beneficial ingredients for skin, and smell gorgeous. 

Some of my favorite premixed essential oil blends from Plant Therapy are Soft Skin and Bouquet. Soft Skin is full of oils that help to soften and renew skin, with wonderful anti aging properties. Bouquet is a gorgeous floral scent. There are lots more beautiful blends, too.

And of course, you can get creative and come up with your own blends! If you’re looking for some natural gift ideas, I share some essential oil gift ideas here

If you’re dealing with skin rashes or itchy skin, this post has info on what essential oils can help

How to make lotion with shea butter DIY lotion recipe

Is commercial natural skincare the real deal?

I realized that our personal care and skincare products really do matter. In order to reduce our personal toxic load, we’re far better off using pure, natural ingredients, and avoiding synthetic and artificial substances.

There are lots of skincare and personal care products out there that are labelled as being “natural” or even “organic.” But are they really a good choice?

Quite often, sadly, the answer is no. Lots of the natural skincare that is available commercially still contains ingredients that aren’t natural, and that I’d rather avoid.

For my favorite non toxic cleaning products, check out this post here. I also have a tallow lotion recipe here

Benefits of shea butter

For a plant based ingredient, shea butter is moisturizing and has properties that can revitalize and soothe skin. It is rich in fatty acids and vitamin A, vitamin E, and natural anti inflammatory properties (source). 

Unrefined shea butter has more beneficial nutrients compared to refined shea butter. If you don’t mind the stronger smell, unrefined is the best way to go, in my opinion. 

MORE DIY SKINCARE recipes

Magnesium lotion recipe

Stick deodorant recipe

Tinted lip balm recipe with honey and tallow

Tallow balm recipe

Pure tallow soap recipe

Whipped tallow sugar scrub

Have you made homemade lotion before?

What ingredients are your favorite? Let me know in the comments!

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Jojoba oil

Shea butter

Beeswax

Natural preservative

Distilled water

My food processor

Glass jars

Plant Therapy essential oils

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Yield: 16 fl. oz.

Bumblebee Apothecary Lotion with Shea Butter

How to make lotion with shea butter

Do you ever feel like a detective, scouring the labels of products before you buy them? It can be depressing. So many commercial body care products have way too many sketchy ingredients! It even goes for many that are supposed to be natural and organic. That's one the reasons I love making them myself. I can have full control over the ingredients, and it's fun!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup jojoba oil
  • 5 TBSP shea butter
  • 2 TBSP beeswax
  • 1 cup distilled water
  • 1/2 tsp preservative

Instructions

  1. Measure jojoba oil, shea butter, and beeswax into a heat safe glass container, preferably a pitcher.
  2. Create a double boiler by placing the pitcher on a cloth in a pan of water.
  3. Heat water to a gentle simmer until shea butter and beeswax are completely melted.
  4. Pour hot oil mixture into food processor.
  5. Turn food processor on, and in a small, slow stream, gradually pour water into food processor.
  6. Allow food processor to run for another minute or so.
  7. Make sure lotion mixture is below 176° F.
  8. Add preservative and essential oils, if using, and allow food processor to run for another minute or so.
  9. Pour into glass containers.
  10. Store in a cool, dark place at room temperature.
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