Tuesday, December 11, 2012

All Natural Shea Butter Lotion Recipe

Homemade lotions are pretty easy to make. 

Here is a recipe that I started out with and have since modified to my own liking.  

TIP: Because we often have a bit of anxiety making a recipe for the first time I suggest to have all the ingredients pre-weighed in advance. This tip helps me even today!

Shea Butter Lotion

3/4 tsp. citric acid 
2 ¼ tsp glycerin
2-3/4 tsp. Stearic acid
5.5 oz. Shea butter
1.5 oz. emulsifying wax
36.25 oz. distilled water (do not use tap or regular bottled water) 
2  teaspoon essential oil (or whatever amount to your own liking)
.40 oz. Cosmocil CQ (optional preservative) 

STEP 1: Weigh out the water and place in a stainless steel pot over medium high heat. Heat until very hot, but not boiling. While this is heating, do step 2.
(pan looks dirty, but it is steam rising!)

STEP 2: In a second pan or double boiler, add the weighed out Shea Butter and glycerin and melt them together over very low heat until just warm to the touch and fully melted. Stir to blend and remove from heat source.

STEP 3: Once the water from step 1 has come to very hot (but not boiling), add the citric acid, emulsifying wax and Stearic Acid.

Stir until ALL the Stearic Acid, Citric Acid and Emulsifying Wax bits have dissolved. This stage is very important... the water will have a milk-y appearance with absolutely NO wax bits.

STEP 4: When all of the Emulsifying Wax & Stearic Acid have melted remove the pan from the heat, get your stick blender ready (or whisk, or free standing blender), and add the warm oils/butters from step 2 into this pan. Stir with your stick blender ON HIGH for several minutes or until you get a good emulsion between the oils and water - if they separate, continue to stir. 

Allow your lotion to rest for a few minutes to check for separation, and stick blend as needed. Continue doing this in cycles (resting and mixing at high speed), until it barely begins to set-up and has come down in temp to just under 100 degrees, then do step #5.

STEP 5: Add your essential/fragrance oils & preservative(s) and blend well.

Your lotion will be thin & runny but as it continues to cools it will begin to set up. While still warm, pour into  your desired jars before it becomes too thick to pour. 

Makes approximately 45 ounces.

Note: However you decide to blend your lotion, it is VERY important that you blend very well. Stick blenders work the best, hand blending takes a very long time and generally doesn't have as good of results.  

Remember the water is near boiling so use CAUTION! You simply cannot over blend a lotion batch, but you can certainly under blend. Under blended batches are gritty, or may never set correctly.

*Use less water for a thicker lotion, add more for a thinner consistency. 

Enjoy! Let me know your results!



  1. Your lotion looks heavenly. Love it. I was wondering, is there any substitute you can use for the emulsifying wax?
    thanks, Anna

  2. Hey Anna, I have heard of using beeswax, but I have never tried it before. Thanks for stopping by! Valerie