There isn’t much we women won’t do for beauty. Endure painful waxings. Check. Spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars a month on laser treatments. Check. Apply harsh chemicals and toxins to our skin. Check. Over the past 60 years, the beauty industry has grown into a multi-billion dollar manufacturing machine. But did you know that just about every beauty product on the market can be made at home with ingredients found at your local grocery store?
You may be thinking, why would I want to go through the trouble of making my own beauty products at home when I barely have the time and energy to go to the store to purchase them? Well here it is:
1) Most DIY beauty products don’t involve a huge time commitment to make, especially the beginner recipes. Many DIY products such as scrubs, cosmetics, and hair masks can be made in under 15 minutes. Not to mention that many of the recipes will yield a several month supply meaning that you will most likely spend less time making them than you do purchasing them.
2) Businesses like to make money. That’s a fact. However I find the markup on beauty and cosmetic products somewhat insulting. It is not uncommon for the retail price of a beauty product to exceed the manufacturing cost of the product by 75% or more. Therefore it is typical to see significant savings on your beauty budget once you begin making your own products.
3) Triclosan, Ethylene Oxide, and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons. Sound like Greek? Nope, those are the names of some of the most commonly used chemicals in beauty products. These chemicals have been linked to an increase risk of breast cancer and the disruption of hormonal systems. When you make the products yourself, you greatly reduce the number of toxins and additives to which you are exposed.
4) It’s FUN! Seriously! There’s something extremely cathartic about using your imagination and making new creations. Enjoy some alone time and have an impromptu spa day testing products as you go or invite the family to help you and get everyone involved. Oh and when you have extras, they make excellent gifts for family and friends. Who doesn’t love to pamper themselves with luxurious products?
For those just getting started in beauty DIY, this is my top ten list of beauty recipes for beginners. These recipes are super easy to make, the ingredients are relatively easy to find, they are inexpensive, and the results are beyond fantastic! The sampling below is only a very small selection of the different products and recipes there are to try. The possibilities are endless!
1) Lemon Sugar Lotion Bars
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup cocoa butter
1/4 beeswax pellets (add less for a softer bar)
1 tsp vitamin E oil
5-10 drops vanilla essential oil
5-10 drops lemon essential oil
*Yields 3 bars
Place coconut oil, cocoa butter, and beeswax in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave in 20 second intervals stirring after each interval. Add the vitamin E oil. Add the lemon and vanilla essential oils. Pour the liquid mixture into the molds and allow to cool until completely hardened. Once hardened, remove the bars from the molds and place in container for later use. To use rub the bar directly on the skin. The lotion bar will begin to “melt” due to your natural body heat.
2) Skin Firming Coffee Scrub
They say that admitting you have a problem is the first step to recovery. Well, I admit it. I am addicted to COFFEE! So it’s only fitting that one of my most favorite DIY beauty products is made with coffee. However it’s not to keep you awake. The caffeine and antioxidants in the coffee are known to tighten and improve the tone of the skin. Exfoliating sugars and hydrating olive oil will leave your skin feeling soft, supple, and smooth. These three ingredients combine to make what I like to refer to as a beauty trifecta!
1/2 cup coffee grounds (fresh or used)
1/4 brown sugar (you can also use white)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl until well blended. Scoop into a container and seal for later use. To use gently massage onto skin in a circular motion. Leave on for 5 minutes and rinse completely.
3) Nail Polish
Did you know you can make your own custom nail polish colors? No, me either! And it’s super easy 🙂 So the next time you are running around looking for that perfect shade of pink nail polish, remember you can make your own.
1 small bottle of clear nail polish
eyeshadow (whichever color or color blends you would like to make)
Choose your color/colors of eyeshadow and chop it up until it is a fine powder. Using a small funnel, dump the chopped up eyeshadow into the bottle of clear nail polish (you may need to add more pigment depending on the size of your nail polish bottle). Shake the bottle very well until completely mixed. You may also add textured pieces such as glitter or small confetti.
4) Lavender & Lemon Layered Soap
I have been a long time fan of body washes and loofahs however I have recently come across tons of wonderful bar soap recipes that use natural ingredients and have me rethinking my shower routine. I love this particular bar because it is perfect for day or night. Use the lemon side for a refreshing burst of citrus to get your day started in the morning; and use the lavender side at the end of a long day to help promote peace and relaxation.
*All soap making items can be purchased at craft stores such as Michael’s or A.C. Moore. Or purchase supplies in bulk on sites like Ebay & Etsy.
1-2 lbs Pre Made Soap Base (I prefer goat’s milk soap base because it is easy to work with as a suspension base and is great for extremely dry skin. Exact quantity needed will depend on the numbers of bars you make and the size of your soap molds)
10-15 drops lemon essential oil
10-15 drops lavender essential oil
1/2 tsp vitamin E oil
zest from 1-2 lemons
Lavender (purple) soap dye (color)
small spray bottle
*Yields about 6 bars
Break up chunks of soap base and put them in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave the base for 40 second intervals until it is completely melted. Mix in the lavender soap dye and stir thoroughly. Add 1/4 tsp of vitamin E oil and 10-15 drops of lavender essential oil and stir. Pour the mixture into the soap mold filling only one half of the mold. Lightly spray rubbing alcohol over the surface of the soap to remove any air bubbles. Let the mixture cool completely and harden (about 3-4 hours). Once completely hardened, follow the same process for the second layer except this time you will not add dye. Instead add 1/4 tsp vitamin E oil and 10-15 drops lemon essential. Once mixed, pour the second layer into the mold covering the lavender layer. Sprinkle the lemon zest over the bars and allow to completely cool again. Once cooled, remove your bars from the mold and store for later use.
5) Bubblegum Lip Scrub
I must admit that I initially only wanted to make this lip scrub because my girls wanted to try it but I am officially hooked. Chapped lips are one of my biggest pet peeves so I love a good cheap product that helps to combat it. This scrub aids in removing dry skin and soothes and moisturizes the lips.
3 tsp sugar
1 1/2 almond oil
3 drops bubblegum extract (craft & baking supply stores, some grocery stores)
3-5 drops pink food coloring
*Yields 3-4 small pots (ie. lip gloss container)
In a large bowl add the sugar, almond oil, and bubblegum extract. Mix the ingredients together until the sugar has absorbed all of the oil. Add a few drops of pink food coloring until you reach your desired color. Scoop scrub into small pots and seal for future use. To use apply a small amount of product to lips and gently scrub. Rinse with warm water. Repeat as necessary.
6) Coconut Oil Body Butter
I am a huge fan of the body butters from places like The Body Shop and Bath & Body Works, however I am not a huge fan of paying upwards of $20 a container for these products. Not to mention all the unknown chemicals that go into those products. This body butter is not only cheap but really easy to make and the results are well worth it.
1 cup coconut oil
1 tsp vitamin E oil
5 – 10 drops of your choice of essential oil (optional*)
*Yields about 2 small (4 oz) mason jars or containers
Place all ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Do not melt the coconut oil first or it will not whip. Mix on high speed with a wire whisk for about 7 minutes until the mixture is light and fluffy. Spoon the mixture into a container and seal until ready for use. Tip: Store in the refrigerator if the temperature inside your home is warm enough to melt the oil.
7) One Minute Miracle Hand Scrub
Let’s face it, our hands take a beating throughout the day. From the endless hand washing to home maintenance tasks such as cleaning and gardening, our hands are constantly being exposed to the elements and harsh chemicals. But…we’ve got you covered! Try this awesome hand scrub made with lemon, sugar, and coconut oil for hands that are soft and smooth.
1/2 tsp lemon juice
zest of one lemon
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 1/2 cups raw sugar
1/2 cup liquid dish soap
5-10 drops tea tree essential oil
5-10 drops peppermint essential oil
*Yields about 4 small (4 oz) mason jars or containers
Zest one lemon and mix together with the lemon juice and coconut oil. Add the sugar and dish soap and mix together until the ingredients form a paste. Add any desired essential oils. We chose peppermint oil because we love the smell and tea tree oil for its natural disinfectant properties. Scoop the mixture into a container and seal. To use, apply a small amount of scrub on to your hands. Gently massage the scrub on your hands for 1 minute. Rinse with warm water and pat dry.
8) Rosewater Facial Spray
The best way to ensure that you have gorgeous glowing skin is to make sure it is hydrated and rose water is probably one of the ways to hydrate. Rose water is a natural toner and will leave your skin refreshed and moist. In addition, the witch hazel has antiseptic properties which are calming to irritated and broken out skin. Use it after sunburn, before or after shaving, or even to set make-up.
1 1/2 cups distilled water
petals from one rose (no leaves, stems, thorns, etc)
1 tsp witch hazel
small spray bottle
*Yields about 4 small (2 oz.) spray bottles
Please the rose petals in a small pot and add 1 cup of distilled water. Cover and simmer on low for 30-40 minutes. Do not allow the mixture to boil. You will notice that the petals will begin to lose color and there will be a residue on the surface of the water in the pot. Strain the flower petals from the rose water. Allow the rose water to cool completely before moving forward. Once completely cooled, combine 1/2 cup of the rose water with 1/2 cup of cool distilled water and 1 tsp of witch hazel. Use a funnel to pour the mixture into the spray bottles. Use when needed.
9) Cocoa Butter Oatmeal Bath Melts
Experiencing dry or irritated skin? Treat yourself to a bath time treat with these melts made with moisturizing cocoa butter and soothing oatmeal. They melt quickly in the bath and leave your skin feeling fantastic.
1/2 cup cocoa butter
1/4 cup coconut oil
6 drops vanilla essential oil
1 silicone mold (use shapes like hearts or flowers for a personalized touch)
*Yields 6-12 bath melts depending on size
Melt the cocoa butter in a small pan over low heat or microwave until melted. Add coconut oil and stir until melted. Add the vanilla essential oil and allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes. While the mixture is cooling, sprinkle 1 tsp. of oatmeal into each mold (or you may also use lavender or rose buds instead). Pour the mixture over the oatmeal in the molds. Allow the molds to cool for at least 24 hours before removing the bath melts. To use, drop 1-2 melts directly into a hot bath and enjoy!
10) Tropical Hair Mask
This hair mask will have you craving summer..in addition to infusing your hair with moisture and shine! Coconut oil is great for hair, helping to nourish it and leave it shiny. The bananas have vitamins which moisturize and protect hair while the honey promotes new hair growth.
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp honey
1/2 ripe banana
2 -3 drops vitamin E oil (*optional)
*Yields – 1 Mask
Puree banana in a blender until all chunks have been removed. Add the coconut oil, honey, and vitamin E oil*, and blend well. Apply the mixture to your hair paying special attention to roots and ends. Allow the mask to set for 20 minutes then rinse completely.