The last months of the calendar year offer us many joys; snow days, winter sports, and crackling fires to name a few. The cooler, cleaner air is refreshing, but it is also hard on the skin.
Dry, winter skin needs extra attention—a new regimen. One of the best ways I know to keep my skin from becoming dry is to apply a bath and body oil before stepping out of the shower. Many over the counter brands contain ingredients that are not helpful for the skin—they just fill the bottle. So I decided to share with you a recipe for making you own body oil. By the way, men can use this too—and it makes a great gift!
What you will need:
A dark-colored bottle, either blue or amber, usually purchased at a natural products store. The dark glass keeps out the light. You may re-use a small bottle already on hand; simply wash well and sterilize.
Sweet Almond Oil–contains vitamins, minerals, protein and sooths the itchy sensation.
Carrot Seed Oil (optional)—reaches the deeper skin layers (also safe to use on face)
Look for organic, first press or virgin oils.
Lavender—healing and antibacterial properties
German Chamomile—soothing and has anti-inflammatory properties
Rose—soothing and has antiseptic properties
Ginger (optional)—good for circulation because it draws blood to area
Benzoin (optional)—good for circulation, heals wounds, and sooths eczema
If you choose to add the optional oils I suggest using either one or the other but not both. Not only is it unnecessary to use both but you may not like the way they smell together.
Lavender and Chamomile are safe for children over 12 and elderly. Their use on small children requires a very dilute mixture. If your small child has dry skin I suggest the baby product line from Burt’s Bees. (If pregnant or nursing, consult with your health care professional before using essential oils.)
Look for good quality essential oils such as Aura Cacia.
Here is the basic recipe; you may adjust the ingredients according to the size of your bottle. Most bottles have the size stamped on the bottom. For conversion, there are 5ml to 1 teaspoon and 15ml to one tablespoon.
Carrier Oil= 90% Sweet Almond to 10% Carrot Seed
Up to 1 drop per ml of carrier oil
In other words, for 1 tablespoon of oil you may have up to 15 drops of essential oil. More is not necessarily better, though, when it comes to essential oils so use a light hand.
For each tablespoon of oil I suggest starting with:
3-4 drops Lavender
3-4 drops German Chamomile
2 drops Rose
1 drop either Ginger or Benzoin (optional)
- Begin with dropping the essential oils into your bottle. Replace the cap and roll the bottle between the palms of your hands to mix.
- Turn the bottle upside down once, then back upright.
- Add your carrier oils to this bottle.Replace the cap and blend again in the same way.
I suggest beginning with one small test batch; you may decide to increase or reduce the ingredients to suit your own skin (and nose).
After shower, massage into wet skin to seal in moisture. May also be added to bath water for soaking.
Store all oils in a cool, dark place such as a cabinet
Use your body oil mixture within 30 days (before the carrier oil turns rancid)