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I like to think of myself as the 'crazy mom of four'. I'm 31 years old and I love my life, my kids, my husband and my God. "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." Jim Eliot

Monday, May 3, 2010

Let's talk about lotion...

But first...

Mommy and Me Monday at Really, Are You Serious?
Hosted by Krystyn

I am a little late with the Mommy and Me Monday meme.


It's still Monday?

Yeah, I know. I didn't get around to it LAST week. I took the picture, but never got a chance to actually post it. So as to avoid always being a week behind, this picture will have to count for last week and this week! :-) Here is me with my darling Abigail.

OK...now...where was I? Oh yes...LOTION. If any of you bless me with your time by reading my blog that constantly shows my failure to live yeast-free (though that wasn't the original intent!), you already know about my experiments in making my own lotion. Tonight I spent 10 (TEN) minutes making lotion.

Over the weekend, I promised Kaleb I would let him get an oil that was more masculine, so he could have his own lotion that didn't smell like flowers or Fruit Loops (according to Livvy the second batch I made smells like that beloved cereal). We went to a little shop downtown that I have fallen in love with called Cassie's. They have essential oils as well as aromatic oils and lotions; at least, I think that is what she called them. They have some unique scents, in that they have oils from Curve for men & women, Pleasures, Tommy, Cool Water, etc...

I let Kaleb pick out one he wanted--I had told him about Cool Water, which is a scent that I love on men. He liked it quite a bit but I have to say I was disappointed that he chose that over an oil one of the workers mixed that combined Cool Water and two other men's cologne oils. The smell was wonderful and I really wanted him to get it so I could make Kris wear it! But to my dismay, he chose the Cool Water and I gave in.

Katherine chose to get a mixture of 3 oils - Curve for women, Jade Iris and one other perfume scent that I can't remember the name of. It smells really light and sporty and just lovely. I was going to pay for those two oils and leave before I spent even more money I didn't technically have to spend but the lady working there asked if I wanted to combine some oils and find a scent that I love. Well, I couldn't really be RUDE could I?? Plus I told the kids that if Daddy asked, that was what I wanted for Mother's Day! So she tested some different things and I still didn't find one I loved. She finally mixed some grapefruit and ivy together and I didn't really like it but told her I liked the ivy and asked what else would go good with ivy. She decided to try Cool Water for women and Ivy and the result was amazing. It is probably one of my favorite scents EVER.

So, having three new scents to play with, and having a son who would not STOP hounding asking me to make his special lotion, I mustered up the energy after work tonight and made lotion. Well, I should clarify. It took no energy at all. It took MOTIVATION! And a lot of nagging...BUT, I am glad I did it. I took some pictures while I worked and decided to go ahead and put the recipe on here for those of you who don't read my other blog.

I have also had a lot of people ask me where I get my oils and emulsifying wax, etc. So, I am going to give you the resources to buy the ingredients you need and the instructions necessary to make your own lotion. Honestly, I can't see ever paying for lotion again. EVER.

There are many places to get the right ingredients. In St. Louis, at least from my internet research, I have not found one single place that sells emulsifying wax. THAT I had to get online. And while I love Cassie's for some of the more unusual oils, the best place that I know to get the wax AND essential oils (and pay only one flat shipping price) is online at Camden-Grey. You may be able to find the wax and oils cheaper on Ebay or elsewhere but I think you will be more limited. It's far cheaper than some of the local specialty shops. For instance, I shelled out $12 for 1/4 oz. of oil at Cassie's and less than $7 each for 2-4 oz of regular essential oils online.

1 lb. of emulsying wax was $5.25. Just to give you an idea of how much that is, or how far it will stretch, I have made 5 1/2 batches of lotion thus far (I'll get to the amount of lotion in a minute), and still have HALF of my wax left. I've barely used any of the essential oils I bought so it will go a long, LONG way. 1/4 oz of essential oil is approximately 350 drops. Considering you need maximum of 36 drops per batch (see below), you can see that 2-4 oz of oils will stretch very far.

While I didn't have to get everything I did, I wanted to have a little variety, so with my wax I purchased 2 oz. of cedar wood, 2 oz. of ginger, 4 oz. sweet orange, 1 oz. of lemon grass and 2 oz. of lavender. With shipping, my total was under $40 (and shipping was $8.95 so the product itself cost me around $30).

You may regret me saying this, but let's do some math here, even though I firmly believe that math is evil!!! Let's say it's going to cost you $10 MAX for enough olive oil (1/4 cup per batch) for 11 full batches of lotion. Add your $40 for the essential oils and wax. We're up to $50. I used glass containers with lids that I had on hand in the beginning...now I am experimenting with cheap $1 travel bottles from Target. I bought 6 of those and it cost me approximately $7. So, now we're at $57. Water is free, unless you just insist on buying bottled water for your lotion. For $57, you will get about 200 OUNCES of lotion. And that price may be high. What does that breakdown to? The travel bottles I bought at Target hold 6 oz. - so I could get about 25 (6 oz.) travel bottles (BUT each batch had about 4 oz left over so the number is really 8). **THIS IS SOUNDING LIKE A REALLY COMPLEX WORD PROBLEM RIGHT ABOUT NOW**

So that you can get an idea of what you are really saving, a regular 8 oz. bottle of lotion from Bath & Body Works will cost you $10.50 if it is not on sale. If you were to buy 25 of those, it would cost you $262.50. 8 oz. of homemade lotion will cost you around $2.50 while 8 oz. of great quality lotion from B&B will cost you $10.50. That's a savings of EIGHT dollars per bottle! AND...if you use strictly essential oils, the lotion is safe for children, especially those with allergies or eczema, like my youngest 2 have. My 7 year old's skin hasn't been this clear and soft since she was a baby!

See why I hate math? There are a LOT of numbers there; though, they may not have confused you as much as it confused me. Bottom line, you can get about 16 oz. out of EVERY batch you make. And each batch will cost you about $5. So you can get twice as much, for half the price! Who doesn't love that bottom line???

OK...now that I have bored you with all the technical nonsense, here is the recipe and some pictures.

Homemade Lotion

What you will need:

1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup emulsifying wax
1 1/4 cup water
24-36 drops essential oil (or other oil of your choice)

1. In a glass bowl, combine olive oil and emulsifying wax. It is not necessary to stir this. Microwave on high until melted (mine takes about 1 min 30 sec).

2. Remove from microwave and heat the water in the microwave. I heated mine for 1 min 45 sec because the times I did it for under 1 min 30 sec the lotion didn't solidify as much as I would have liked).

3. While the water is heating, drop desired amount and combination of oils in (24-36 as suggested above - I've done about 30) into the olive oil/wax mixture.

4. Add the hot water to the oil mixture. This is where the fun science experiment begins. If you have kids, let your kids watch this. I hate science and yet I think it's pretty cool! Your yellowish, oily mixture will turn white as the water is poured in!

5. Pour into container of choice and let sit for 24 hours. I will know tomorrow if the cheap, plastic bottles work as well as the solid, glass containers. I would have used canning jars had I remember to get them from the store yesterday, but for convenience sake, I am hoping it sets up just as well in the plastic bottles. I'll let you know!

I feel like I should add that it is not necessary at any point to stir any of this. It will all meld together well and I do not know if stirring it will create problems. It doesn't need it, so I err on the side of caution and just heat and pour.

Water ready to pour into oil/wax mixture

As you can see, clear on top, white on bottom

Milky white

Use funnel (if necessary because you can't pour directly into container w/o burning yourself for the life of you) to pour hot, hot mixture into container

An overall picture of what you will need, which is hardly anything!


  1. Not gonna lie, I am TOTALLY impressed with your homemade lotion! love it! :)

  2. Wish I could take the credit for inventing it!! That'd be great! :) It's really fun and SO easy...I neglected to mention that!!

  3. Wow...homemade lotion. That's impressive.

    And, that's a cute shot of the two of you.

  4. Cool project! TOO MUCH MATH!! lol