Here is a recipe that I adapted from a formula I found in a book by herbalist and aromatherapist Jeanne Rose. The recipe is simple, and uses only three main ingredients: a carrier oil (like jojoba or sunflower oil), rose hydrosol, and beeswax. In the winter, our skin drinks up good oils to nourish and protect it. Rose hydrosol is astringent, cooling, healing, and soothing. The beeswax helps form a protective layer on the skin, to keep moisture in. Beeswax is also antibacterial. It also helps thicken the lotion and keep the oil and water together.
Typically, creams and lotions are the trickiest to make at home. Why? Because lotions are a blend of oil and water, and we all know that oil and water don’t mix. Getting these two disparate elements to not only blend but also STAY together is what makes lotions so tricky to make.
I made this particular recipe with a group of herbal students, and it came together perfectly. I was shocked and pleased!
A side note: I tried the same recipe at a later date, and for some reason it did NOT come together; the oil and water separated.
If this happens to you, you can still use it! Put the mixture into a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid, and give it a good shake right before you intend to use it.
Are you ready to say goodbye to dry hands and hello to a crafty good time?
You will need:
- 5 ounces unscented carrier oil (sunflower, jojoba, or grapeseed oil)
- 4 ounces rose hydrosol
- 1/2 ounce beeswax beads
You can also add essential oils to add a heavenly fragrance, as well as the healing powers that essential oils naturally possess.
Try this sweet, soothing blend:
- 10 drops rose blend essential oil
- 5 drops sweet orange essential oil
- 15 drops sandalwood essential oil
You will also need:
- A kitchen whisk
- A double boiler, or some type of similar contrivance
Melt the beeswax into the carrier oil over the double boiler. Stir well until all the wax is melted and the oil and wax are completely blended.
Remove from the heat.
Slowly pour the rose hydrosol into the beeswax and oil mixture, and beat with the whisk until it’s cool. If you’re adding essential oils, do that now.
Pour the finished lotion into a clean glass jar. It’s ready for use as often as you like.
The lotion doesn’t contain any preservatives, so use a spoon or spatula instead of dipping your fingers into the jar.
You can punch up the skin-healing power of this lotion by soaking healing herbs in your carrier oil six weeks before you prepare the recipe. My favorite herbs for healing the skin include:
- Comfrey leaf
- Rose petals
- Lavender flowers
You can use a combination of any of the herbs listed above, or keep it simple and use calendula by itself. Calendula is a well-known skin repair herb, and helps with dryness, cracked skin, rashes, inflammation, acne, and so much more.
To make an herb-infused carrier oil, take a clean dry glass jar with a tight-fitting lid and fill it 3/4 full with calendula, or a blend of your favorite botanicals. Make sure the jar is COMPLETELY dry, to eliminate the chance of mold growing inside the jar. Once the jar is filled with the dried herbs, pour carrier oil over them, making sure the herbs are completely submerged in the oil. You can use dry chopsticks or a clean dry butter knife to shove the herbs back into the oil. Screw the lid on tightly, and set the jar on a small plate.
Every day for six weeks, give your oil a good shake to help release the active ingredients into the oil.
At the end of six weeks, strain the oil out of the herbs through a fine mesh stainless steel strainer. (I like to strain my oils over a glass measuring cup.) Pour your finished strained oil into a glass jar. If there is sediment on the bottom, let it settle to the bottom of the measuring cup before pouring the finished oil into the jar. Label your jar with the ingredients and the date.
You can use the finished oil in the lotion recipe, or on its own as a healing body oil. Massage it into your elbows, knuckles, heels, or anywhere you need a little help.
Try this and let us know what you think!