Do It Yourself: Body Butter

Making my own body butter (the kind you use instead of cream, not the kind you use to cook) was a foray into the unknown. It was scary. Terrifying, even.

Then I made my first batch.

And it was worth the effort.

You’re probably not going to be saving money making the creams yourself instead of buying them. The butter will also feel oily, especially if you compare it with lotions which contain quite a bit of water (while you can make homemade lotions, adding water makes them more prone to bacteria we won’t be exploring that here).

But the best part about making your own body butters and creams is that you choose what goes on your skin – and what doesn’t.

What you need


  • Mid-sized tempered glass bowl
  • Large pot or deep pan (the bowl should fit in said pot or pan)
  • Spatula
  • Kitchen gloves (ideally with good grip, like silicone)
  • Mixer
  • 120ml, wide-mouth container

Basic ingredients:

  • ¾ cup of solid oil or butter (either one or a mix of: Coconut oil, Shea butter or Cocoa butter)
  • ¼ cup of liquid oil (either one or a mix of: Sweet almond oil, Sunflower oil, Olive oil, Jojoba oil or Hemp oil)

Optional ingredients:

  • ⅓ cup beeswax pastilles: this helps keep the butter from separating
  • 1 tsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder: this helps with the oily feeling of the butter
  • 10 – 20 drops of essential oils: to smell nice

What you have to do

  • Add water (5 cm or 2” deep) to pot or pan; place on a burner set to high heat and let the water come to a boil
  • Meanwhile, place the ¾ cups of solid oil or butter in the mid-sized bowl
  • Once the water in the pan is boiling, lower the temperature to medium and carefully place the glass bowl into the boiling water to melt the oil or butter to a liquid state
  • Once the butter is completely melted, remove from heat and set it aside to cool
  • Optional step: Melt the Beeswax pastilles in another pan
  • Once the butter or oil you prepared has become opaque and can hold a finger mark if you touch it), add the ¼ cup of liquid oil, (this is also where you add the melted beeswax, cornstarch or arrowroot powder, and essential oils)
  • Using your mixer, blend everything together until it can hold its shape  
  • Place into the container – you’re done!

Quick reminder

A little goes a long way: make sure you start with tiny amounts (about the size of a chickpea or even smaller) and spread it evenly until it’s completely absorbed. If you want to make it more like a lotion and less like a butter, you can add 1 cup of aloe vera, and up to 2 tbsp of a liquid oil). Even so, it’ll be too thick to be used in a pump container.

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