Non-Greasy DIY Lotion Recipe
If you want the ultimate DIY lotion recipe, you want it to be quick, easy, and have accessible ingredients, right? Well, now you’ve found it! This recipe is great for year-round dry skin problems. You can use this lotion on your face, legs, elbows, wherever you need!
I use it everyday on my face and my skin loves it. And I’m confident that after you try this DIY lotion recipe, you may never buy regular lotion again! I haven’t bought lotion in over five years and I haven’t looked back.
Pin this image for later!
This post may contain affiliate links. Learn more on my disclaimer page.
About the Amazing Natural Ingredients
There are a minimum of six ingredients in this DIY lotion recipe, depending on how many oils you want to use. We’re only going with what you need here, and no extra fluff! One ingredient that I’m purposefully leaving out is coconut oil.
While it’s being hailed as this amazing do-it-all ingredient, it’s not the best thing for your skin. Don’t get me wrong, I love coconut oil. However, there are better options out there for your skin. Coconut oil may be amazing, but it’s a very heavy oil that takes a long time to soak into your skin. I wouldn’t recommend putting it all over your face, because it can easily clog your pores. (source)
So, what makes this DIY lotion recipe non-greasy and fast-absorbing? Lightweight oils, and small amounts of some heavier moisturizers. One of these heavy moisturizers is raw Shea butter. But don’t think that this lotion will be too heavy! This lotion recipe has Shea butter to help the moisture stay all day long. You can get my favorite brands of the ingredients below:
When I made my first batch of lotion, I was apprehensive to put this on my face. But I found that it mixed evenly and absorbed into my skin faster than I thought! My skin wasn’t overly greasy at all, considering I have very oily skin. In fact, my skin felt less oily throughout the day because it had all the moisture it needed.
Luckily, there isn’t another heavy moisturizer in this DIY lotion recipe. Emulsifying wax also adds to the moisture, but it’s there primarily to give it that “lotion-y” texture and to keep everything from separating. It also creates a nice barrier on the skin to lock everything in place! If you have no idea what emulsifying wax is, there’s nothing to panic about. It’s absolutely crucial for a good DIY lotion recipe.
A Word On Natural Preservatives and Emulsifiers
While I originally designed this lotion recipe to be super simple, I realized that there was one crucial step I missed. When I first published this recipe, it quickly became one of my top performing posts on Essential Moves to Wellness. But after some pointers and some much needed education, I realized that this recipe needs a preservative.
Without a preservative, any DIY beauty recipe that has a water-based ingredient will grow bacteria and mold after just a few days. This can be disastrous for people with a compromised immune system, among other things. But if you were to get lotion without a preservative in your eyes or mouth, it’s possible you could develop sickness or infection.
That’s why you’ll find my favorite natural preservative, Leucidal Liquid SF, on the ingredient list. Leucidal Liquid SF is a kind of probiotic that’s actually used to make fermented foods like kimchi. These little microorganisms make the environment of the lotion too acidic for mold and bacteria to grow, making it last much longer. (source) Not to mention, Leucidal Liquid SF will emulsify into the perfect lotion texture that won’t involve any use of a blender or beater.
Emulsifiers Hold Everything Together
And what exactly is an emulsifier? It’s a special bonding agent that will keep everything mixed evenly. Emulsifying wax pellets is one of these things, which is nothing more than a vegetable-based wax designed to hold everything together. Beeswax is a very common ingredient used to give lotion its texture, and you’re totally welcome to use it in a pinch! Just keep in mind that everything will separate over time, and you will have to re-blend it periodically.
Just about any lotion or cream you’ll make has a water-based ingredient, which in this case is the aloe vera. I noticed that the aloe would float to the surface of my lotion after a few weeks, so I had to re-blend it back together with some egg beaters. This would result in somewhat lumpy lotion that lost its silky texture over time. So I highly recommend using emulsifying wax instead of beeswax if you can get ahold of it. You can easily find it on Amazon.
Now that we know all about preserving our lotion, let’s get into why the oils I have below are so great for your skin. There are so many options out there! And most of them are way better than coconut oil.
Carrier Oils and Nourishing Oils
The rest of your recipe, other than aloe vera gel, emulsifying wax, and Shea butter involves nourishing and carrier oils. A carrier oil is often a diluting agent for more potent essential oils. I put essential oils in this recipe for a skincare boost, so a carrier oil is super important.
You can read more about essential oil safety if you want to learn more about what you should and shouldn’t do. I chose sweet almond oil for my carrier oil because skin absolutely loves it (source). And it’s lightweight! You can get it pretty easily online and at health food stores.
A smaller portion of this recipe involves what I call a nourishing oil. It can be applied to skin without a carrier oil, but it’s potent enough that you don’t need a large amount. I went with jojoba oil for my batch, because it’s very similar to your skin’s oil.
Click here to buy jojoba oil from Rocky Mountain Oils, one of the best essential oil companies out there! You can read my Rocky Mountain Oils review if you want to know more. They’re one of the most honest companies I’ve come across when it comes to their ingredient lists. Plus, you can get free shipping anywhere within the U.S. over $25.00. That’s always a game changer for me! Trust me, it’s very easy to get to that price point.
Create Your Own Aromatherapy Mix!
A totally optional part of this recipe is adding your favorite essential oils. You can add them simply for their aromatherapy benefits, or to help with any skin ailments. They can help treat anything from dry skin to eczema.
I went with lavender and mint because they’re my personal favorite scents, but they have good benefits too! Lavender is very soothing and moisturizing, and peppermint is invigorating and cooling. Do a quick search on Pinterest to see what aromatherapy combinations are best for your desired mood.
Click here to go to Rocky Mountain Oils’ homepage, where you can find all the essential oils you need. The quality is amazing, and the price is super reasonable. They can also help you pick essential oils just for this purpose. For example, if you apply your lotion first thing in the morning, you could try an invigorating combination. The customer service at Rocky Mountain Oils is top-notch, and they would be happy to help you find an essential oil that works for you.
My Ultimate DIY Lotion Recipe
Before we begin, I want you to think about how much lotion you’ll actually need. Yes, this lotion has a preservative, but it will still go bad after about six months. A little bit of this stuff goes a very long way, so I recommend you take a look at the chart below and assess how much lotion you think you’ll go through in a six month period.
When I made this lotion for the first time, I went with the largest amount and barely put a dent into it. So I cut it in half and things got a bit better, but I hated how much lotion I had to throw out. So I cut it in half again, and I’m finally happy with the amount. I did this because I go through lotion at the rate of a snail, and it’s better to make lotion in small batches anyways.
So if you tend to use a lot of lotion and your household goes through it pretty quickly, I would recommend you use the largest amount, or the full mason jar. Or if it’s just you and still go through a lot of lotion, go with the middle amount. Or if you’re like me and go through lotion slowly, make the smallest batch. I only use about half a nail’s worth of it on my face every day. You can see how little I use in my Lotion Highlight on my Instagram page.
For the Recommended Smallest Amount, You Will Need:
- 1/4 cup aloe vera gel
- 1/4 cup sweet almond, jojoba, or avocado oil
- 1 tsp nourishing oil, such as Argan or jojoba oil
- 1 tsp emulsifying wax pellets
- 1 tsp raw Shea butter
- 1 tsp Leucidal Liquid SF
- 5-7 drops each of other essential oils of your choosing, like lavender or peppermint
- Cooking thermometer
- Two Glass Mason Jars with Lids
- Airtight Container of Choice
- Measure out your aloe vera gel and scoop into a clean, empty mason jar.
- Measure your carrier oil, nourishing oil, Shea Butter, and emulsifying wax pellets and place in another clean and empty mason jar.
- Create a double-boiler by adding water to a small to medium-sized saucepan and put your mason jars in the water before you bring to a boil. This will prevent the glass from shattering.
- Allow the oil ingredient jar to completely melt together. I also recommend covering your aloe vera jar so it doesn’t evaporate away.
- Once everything is melted, carefully removed the jars from the water and place on a clean cloth for a moment to cool. Use a thermometer to make sure that they are roughly the same temperature.
- Add in your essential oils of choice.
- After a couple minutes of allowing your mixtures to cool, pour the hot aloe vera into the oil mixture and stir together with a whisk. It will bubble and turn white, so don’t panic.
- Let the mixture sit for about 15-20 minutes so it can cool to a proper temperature. For this particular Leucidal Liquid SF, it is safe to add when the temperature of the lotion dips below 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Test the temperature periodically, and when it’s cool enough, add in the preservative and mix thoroughly. The lotion will thicken as it cools.
- Scoop the lotion into your favorite container and use once completely cooled! Store in a cool, dry place for up to six months.
If you’re interested in more DIY skin care, this is only the tip of the iceberg! You can completely make your own skin care products with this handy checklist I have below. Spoiler alert: You’ve already made one of the most advanced things on this list!
My Tips and Tricks with This Recipe
I’ll admit that making your own lotion is something that might not turn out great the first time. When I first made this, I boiled everything together at once on accident and the consistency didn’t feel right. Then I wasn’t too sure about how much Leucidal Liquid SF to add and didn’t add enough.
But if you take anything from this section, it’s that you should always read the instructions before using your preservative!! Each individual preservative from certain brands will work under a certain temperature with a certain amount. If you use the Leucidal Liquid SF I linked here and above, then you can use my measurements for it. However, if you use a different preservative, use the directions for that instead.
Most preservatives will require that it consist of a certain percentage of the lotion. I was able to calculate that half a tablespoon of Leucidal Liquid SF is approximately 4% of the middle amount for this recipe, which is what the label called for. So be careful, and follow instructions!
How to Avoid Chunky Lotion that Isn’t Emulsifying
Another problem I’ve seen with making lotion is that sometimes it won’t emulsify properly. The easiest fix for this issue is to use a hand blender (the kind of blender that’s used to get rid of chunks in soup like this one). This will blend everything together and make the lotion thicken up better.
If you’re still having trouble after that, it might be best to recalculate your measurements for your preservative. You might need to add more or less. Or, if you simply want thicker lotion overall, I suggest adding in more emulsifying wax the second time around.
Making Your Own Lotion Can be Life-Changing
Now that I’ve mastered this lotion recipe, I’m confident that I’ll never buy my own lotion again. And there are so many ways to customize it with essential oils! One recipe I really want to try is vanilla essential oil with cocoa butter instead of raw Shea butter for a cookie-themed lotion. The possibilities are truly endless! Click here to get your essential oils for this recipe from Rocky Mountain Oils!
You can put this lotion on any part of your body that needs moisture. Like I said, it may seem a little heavy for your face, but trust me when I say that your skin will love it. I have an oily skin type and I didn’t break out or feel greasy at all!
My legs absolutely love it for summer as well. It works great right after you shave and your skin could use a little extra moisture. There’s nothing better than the feeling of smooth, silky legs. So go ahead and make your own personal lotion. I’ll be chilling here in the meantime.
Would you try this DIY lotion recipe? Let me know in the comments below!
Also related to DIY lotion:
- Get the Closest Shave of Your Life with this DIY Sugar Scrub Recipe
- Easy DIY Toilet Cleaner with no Harsh Chemicals!
- The Best DIY Makeup Setting Spray — Tested!
- Stop Poisoning the Air with this DIY Air Freshener — Only 3 Ingredients!
- The Best All-Natural Sunburn Remedies to Make at Home
- How to Use Castile Soap the Right Way in Home and Beauty
- 10 Gifts for Essential Oil Lovers Actually Worth Giving