When To Use Body Lotion
I grew up using lotion. My staple was the Aveeno brand, since it was the only one that didn’t make my skin feel like it was on fire. Yes, I have super sensitive skin. But now I know to look for healthier options in my lotions with more nourishing ingredients.
Lotion is lighter than body butter and has a non-greasy feel to it that absorbs quickly into the skin. It’s actually an emulsion blend of water and oils both, making it great for those with not so dry skin.
Lotion can be really tricky to make though, which is why you don’t see as many recipes for it. Getting the water and oil to combine without separating can be hard. Even if you do manage to combine them, they can separate hours, or even weeks later.
In her book Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health renowned herbalist Rosemary Gladstar reveals her secret to the lotion emulsion (learn more about Rosemary in our book review here). Most recipes call for adding the oil to the water, however in her Perfect Cream recipe, Rosemary says to add the water to the oil for the best success.
A shorter shelf life
The other issue with lotion, is that since it has a high amount of water in it, it’s going to mold much more quickly than a body butter. Unless you’re storing your creation in the fridge or using a small batch very quickly, you’re going to need a preservative. I know, I know, I said the dreaded P word. Conventional skincare has some pretty nasty preservatives, and even the more natural brands often contain some not so people friendly preservatives. There are, however, safer options that can keep your creations from growing funky (and dangerous) things. Rosemary antioxidant extract and vitamin E oil are both pure and 100% natural options that help prevent oxidation. While they won’t fight mold (so they aren’t technically classified as preservatives), they will extend the shelf-life of your lotion and help protect it.
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