|Whip that sucker! Whip it into a frenzy!|
Aqua (Water) (Solvent/Diluent), Butyrospermum parkii (Shea Butter) (Emollient), Cyclomethicone (Emollient), Theobroma cacao (Cocoa Butter) (Emollient), Glycerin (Humectant), Glyceryl Stearate (Emulsifier), PEG-100 Stearate (Surfactant), Cetearyl Alcohol (Emulsifier), Cera Alba (Beeswax) (Emulsifier/Emollient), Orbignya oleifera (Babassu Oil) (Emollient), Lanolin Alcohol (Stabiliser/Emollient), Phenoxyethanol (Preservative), Parfum (Fragrance), Methylparaben (Preservative), Propylparaben (Preservative), Xanthan Gum (Viscosity Modifier), Benzyl Alcohol (Preservative), Disodium EDTA (Chelating Agent), Linalool (Fragrance Ingredient), Coumarin (Fragrance Ingredient), Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone (Fragrance Ingredient), Limonene (Fragrance Ingredient), Butylphenyl Methylpropional (Fragrance Ingredient), Sodium Hydroxide (pH Adjuster), Citronellol (Fragrance Ingredient), Citral (Fragrance Ingredient), Geraniol (Fragrance Ingredient), Eugenol (Fragrance Ingredient), Caramel (Colour), CI 19140 (Colour).
And this is what the cosmetics database says about its toxicity. The other Body Shop body butters get higher toxicity scores (I’m not singling out The Body Shop here, I’m using it as an example because they had their ingredients online – I suspect the ones which don’t have their ingredients online are worse!). Now, I will be honest with you and say that I do not understand chemistry on any deep level, and I can’t pronounce convincingly on the cumulative effect of using parabens & things day after day. My rule in life, though, is the less commercial processing, the better, and anyway I think it’s nice to have an alternative so you don’t have to use commercial products all the time if you don’t want to. So here is my alternative body butter, and I hope it’s useful. The advantage of this is that if you make soap or lipbalm you are liable to have these ingredients hanging about, if not and you are in the UK I use The Soap Kitchen or Fresholi and they have both been very good. (I have also used Aromantic, they were good too).
* Unless you are allergic/ sensitive to any of them. I’ll trust you to know if you are!
Makes about 2 small pots (easily doubled/ halved/ trebled whatever).
100g Shea Butter
30 ml Jojoba Oil (you can buy this in health food shops. It is cheap)
50ml Olive Oil (I just use whatever’s in the house)
1/2 tsp Vitamin E (I add this for extra preserving power – you can leave it out if you want. You can buy it in health food shops too)
Essential oil, probably around 20 – 30 drops or whatever you think. (I tend to use a mix of lavender and patchouli. Also, if you’re pregnant, you need to check the essential oils you’re using are safe).
Melt the shea butter in a pyrex bowl in the microwave (keep an eye on it). When just melted, add the oils, and the vitamin E, and stir thoroughly. Then put in the fridge. When it is starting to cool and thicken up, take it out of the fridge, and whisk for a few minutes with an electric mixer. Whisk until it’s thickened a bit and isn’t thickening any more, then, put it back in the fridge to cool further. After 20 mins or so, get it out again, whisk again, then put it back in the fridge and wait a bit longer if necessary. What you are aiming at is a whipped cream texture – just try to get as much air as possible into it in the cooling process (if it never looks like whipped cream, it will still work fine, it will just be a bit heavy). When you have whisked it up to your satisfaction, or alternatively until you want to bang your head against the wall, add the essential oils, put in little pots or jars, and store in a coolish place.
Happy anti-corporate moisturising. What effect will this have on Aunty Kath? I hope it won’t be too inconvenient! ;-).