If you're looking for your next home-made project, why not give moisturizer a try. It's so easy to throw a store-bought lotion in the cart when you're out doing your shop, but moisturizer is super easy to make and super fun too - and a perfect family project if you're mom to some older girls.
Now, if you want to give this a go, you may have to get used to a few things. Home-made moisturizers tend to be greasier than store-bought moisturizers, meaning you need to rub them in well, and they also tend to be thicker, meaning they don't work so well being stored in hand pump bottles. It's better to store them in mason jars.
And it's worth noting that the shelf life of homemade moisturizers is nowhere near as long as the commercial moisturizers, which go on and on forever, but that's because they don't contain all the preservatives and compounds that conventional moisturizers use to stop the product from going bad.
Conventional moisturizers contain large amounts of preservatives, emulsifiers and chemicals designed to improve the penetration of the product into your skin. Now, the jury is not out on the extent to which these products are toxic; more research needs to be done, and different skin types will react differently even to all-natural homemade products so it's good to try different recipes and different products and see which ones work better for you.
Just remember that if you do make a homemade moisturizer and don't want to see your time and money go to waste, you will have to get used to remembering to use up your product in weeks and months rather than having the luxury of letting it sit on your shelf indefinitely. Because you're not packing them full of preservatives like the store-bought products, they will go off.
To make moisturizer at home, you will also need to buy in one product you are unlikely to have sitting around your house and that is beeswax. And you will also need a whisk to get all the ingredients blended together nicely into a smooth lotion.
If you're still not put off, then the other good news is that once you have all the ingredients, the method is pretty simple and recipes tend to follow a general pattern that involves melting down the beeswax and blending with a combination of oils, essential oils and/or butters.
GreenThickies has a really simple 5-minute recipe in which you can add your own choice of essential oils. If you don't have an electric whisk, they say a good stir with the trusty old fork should do just as well.
For a lighter and less greasy moisturizer, why not try Wellness Mama's aloe-based handmade lotion. This recipe uses aloe vera gel but it does come with a warning label and that's the short shelf life as it needs to be used within a month.
If you want a moisturizer that has a bit of natural color in it as well, HelloGlow has a recipe that uses green tea, which it says can also help skin that's been damaged by the sun.
Note that with home-made moisturizers, the addition of scent using essential oils is optional and so, if scent isn't your thing, just leave them out. It's also worth noting that different essential oils do different things and your skin might not react the same way to every essential oil. So if you do plan on adding an essential oil, it's best to do a skin patch test first before making a batch of moisturizer that you plan on applying to large areas. Living The Nourished Life has a handy guide here.
And if you don't want to bother with the hassle of melting down wax then you can stick to a butter like shea or cocoa butter - although be sure to buy it from a natural store to ensure that it is naturally derived and not made with additives.
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