Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Homemade Christmas: Whipped Body Butters, Two Ways

It's official: body butter is my new favourite "anyone can do this" DIY personal care product. Especially the delicious Chocolate Orange version I just cooked up (

Today I'm going to share two different ways to make body butter. The first one is the more extravagant Chocolate Orange version and then I'll fill you in on my friend Kerry's easy Whipped Coconut Oil Body Butter.

Chocolate Orange Body Butter
I made a batch of this earlier today so I could photograph it for this post and I'm having trouble not sneaking back into the kitchen to continuously slather myself with this (or at least give it a good sniff and admire its fluffy rich texture).  While the chocolate orange scent smells delicious, the sweet orange essential oil is also known to have a number of health benefits, including boosting your mood (and who couldn't use a bit of that in the middle of winter?). Below is the recipe I used and then I'll tell you how you can adapt it to suit your own tastes. Using an unrefined cocoa butter will give the final product a more intense chocolatey scent.

4 oz jojoba oil
4 oz cocoa butter (unrefined if you can get it)
4 oz mango butter
4 oz coconut oil
20-25 drops sweet orange essential oil

In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine all of the ingredients and cook over low heat until totally melted (give it a good stir at the end to make sure the oils are thoroughly blended).

Place the pot in the fridge on a trivet or cork mat to cool for about half an hour. Add the essential oil, then transfer to the freezer and let cool for another 15-20 minutes or until it is starting to solidify on top but NOT all the way through.

Remove from the freezer and beat on medium-high speed with an electric mixer until it changes to a light, fluffy consistency. Return to freezer for about 5 minutes or until it is fairly firm but not rock-solid (i.e. it will still yield slightly if you give it a poke). Beat the butter again to a smooth consistency then transfer to storage containers (try not to touch it while transferring it, or it will melt under the heat of your fingers - I used a combination of spoon and spatula to get it all packed into jars).

This recipe will make 3 to 3 1/2 cups of body butter. When I costed it out with the ingredients I used, it came to around $27.50 for the batch. That's fairly pricey in my world, but it will yield you 6 half-cup jars to give as gifts with a little bit extra to keep for yourself. That's about $4.60 per gift, which is really reasonable even for a frugalista like me. If you want a more extravagant gift, you could add some homemade scented bath salts or a sugar scrub, hard lotion bars or lip balm, face scrub or a personalized tea blend, all of which are very inexpensive to make!

You could lower the cost of this recipe by using another oil in place of the jojoba, like grapeseed or olive. You could also use any combination of solid fats you like, as long as the ratio of solid to liquid fats is 3:1. If you don't want a chocolate scented body butter, you could use shea butter in place of the cocoa butter or use twice as much each of the mango butter and coconut oil (6 oz of each rather than 4).

If this (admittedly fabulous, but somewhat pricey) body butter isn't in your budget, here's another quick and easy option that only uses two easy-to-find ingredients.
Kerry's Easy Whipped Coconut Oil Body Butter
My friend Kerry Turcotte shared this recipe with me. She is a whiz at DIY personal care products, and runs workshops on how to make everything from sugar scrubs to cold process soaps - check out her events HERE if you're in the Hamilton area!

7 oz coconut oil
3/4 oz beeswax
essential oils, if desired (about 10-15 drops)

Melt the beeswax and the coconut oil together in a small saucepan (or in a glass dish in the microwave).

Place in the fridge for half an hour to cool, then transfer to freezer until it starts to firm up but is not rock solid. Beat with an electric mixer until it has a light and fluffy consistency. Transfer to storage jars.

This recipe should only cost you about $3.00 or so, depending on the coconut oil you use (even less if you use cosmetic grade rather than food grade coconut oil). It doesn't make quite as much body butter, either (I'd say less than 2 cups), so you might want to double it if you want to have enough to give to several people.

Where to get the ingredients to make body butters:
I bought my mango and cocoa butters from Mountain Rose Herbs, but as I mentioned before, their shipping rates to Canada are pretty steep. So, if you're in the U.S., I'd definely recommend Mountain Rose, but if you're in Canada,  a better option may be Saffire Blue, especially if you're in Ontario. They have a FANTASTIC deal on cosmetic grade coconut oil and you'll find all the other butters and oils you need to make these recipes as well.

You can usually buy beeswax from a local honey producer (or, failing that, the health food store). Mountain Rose sells it as well, although you should be able to find some locally for the same (or even lower) price.

I buy most of my essential oils from - I find the Aura Cacia brand reasonably priced and good quality)

 If you missed the earlier installments of my Homemade Christmas series, check out Create Your Own Tea Blends and a lovely Lavender & Calendula Face Scrub. For even more holiday ideas, you can find my whole Christmas on a Dime series HERE. 

Note: The links to Mountain Rose are affiliate links and I will receive a commission from them (at no cost to you) for any purchases you make after clicking these links.

Mountain Rose Herbs. A herbs, health and harmony c 
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  1. Love it! Can't wait to try the chocolate orange!!

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