After much research on making homemade lotion I came up with a recipe I wanted to try. So much to consider though: what kind of oils to use?...there are so many choices...use borax to prevent separation, or is it unsafe?...beeswax or emulsifying wax?
Once I made my choices, I gathered all the materials. The process is simple: some measuring, some heating of the oils and wax, and some blending--I used a hand blender-- and ended up with a thick, rich cream that made my skin feel really soft.
Unfortunately, within several hours my moisturizing cream began to separate...so, I did some more research on what is apparently a not uncommon problem for some lotion-makers. The next day I transferred my cream back to a pan and heated it again. This time I whipped it with the hand blender for about 10 minutes--a lot longer than I had done the first time. It came out an even thicker consistency, more like a body butter. I put a small amount in a recycled glass cold cream jar for daily use and stored the rest in the fridge. The small amount I used daily lasted about a week before it again started to separate. The jar in the fridge is not separating so I will continue to take out just what I need for a week. I love the cream--it leaves my skin silky, it's all natural, and works better than any commercial product I've tried, so for now I'm content to use it as is. The combination of essential oils I used are a bit too sweet smelling for me, so I would probably change it up a little next time. I do like the geranium scent.
My recipe is very loosely based on one found in the book, Making It: Radical Home Ec for a Post-Consumer World
3 oz olive oil
2 oz avocado oil
2 oz shea butter
1 oz cocoa butter
1 oz beeswax, grated
8 oz rosewater
1/4 tsp borax
60 drops grapefruit seed extract
7 drops geranium essential oil
7 drops rose essential oil
7 drops lavender essential oil
I measured out the oils, butters and beeswax into a Pyrex measuring cup and heated in a pan of simmering water. Once melted completely, I added the essential oils and grapefruit seed extract, then blended in the rosewater and borax using the hand blender til it was thick and creamy.
The original recipe in the book is a very simple combination of olive oil, coconut oil, beeswax, essential oils and water--my mistake may have been in veering from that recipe too much. If anyone has advice on solving the separation problem, please let us know...I'm not ready to give up yet :)