DIY Intermediate, The Scrub Me Down Kitchen, Trying Something New

DIY: Lavenaloe Face Bliss

The oils of this lotion have been playing in my head for quite some time now. I’ve told you all about how I kind of missed the whole shea butter love affair when I first started this “hobby”. And to be honest, I am kind of happy about it! It means that now that it is slowly being introduced to various products at a small amount to be effective but not with the KAPOW grease ick factor.

Winter in Northern China is all about dryness. And at the moment my face is slowly healing from a fairly few amount of issues. I can’t eat chocolate, peanuts or too much cheese without the whole world seeing that I’ve been snacking, and these spots I get? They are so badly itchy that all night I tear at them while sleeping. And then to add insult to my poor face? It’s now winter so scarves, high neck sweaters and that means all those issues too. So add all these things together and my face is taking a huge beating.

Beaker A- Liquids

So I needed to make things that can help combat the dry environment, help sooth the itch, soften and try to just to keep my hands busy for a short time so my hands would be kept busy.

And I had a box full of new ingredients that were just begging to be played with! So I went to hang out in The Kitchen. I decided to swap out my usual ewax: Emulsifying Wax NF, and try out Olivem 1000 which is an emulsifying wax made from olive oil and which has made me very happy with a ph range of 3-12 so can handle all the fun additives and cosmeceuticals I can toss at it. All the research I’ve seen on Olivem 1000 say it is highly moisturising, provides deep moisturization with fantastic spreadability (my new favourite word by the way) with no soapy effect. It’s plant derived so if you are vegan, this is a good choice! It is also biodegradable.

Beaker B- Oils to be melted. Look at those flakes! 

And it is sold in flakes! Not the dandruff kind, but the kind you want around. For your face!

So that’s my new ingredient I’ve been playing with. I’ve made maybe five or six different products with Olivem 1000 just to see how it reacts compared to what I’m used to. I’ve a nice little line-up of 20g pots, labeled and dated to observe over the next few months to see how they test differently than my other ewaxes I use. Olivem 1000 is notorious for it’s stability issues and dislike of hydrolats, temperatures and more! So I’m putting it through the battery of tests! And so far, I have to say my face is enjoying the effects! Next up with Olivem 1000? A body lotion. Maybe. More face lotions!

I also added in a lot of aloe juice, lavender hydrolat, silk, vitamins B3 & 5 and some Vitamin E.  For my oils, I added in cranberry seed oil (I’m on a serious cranberry oil kick these days), argan oil, shea butter and some cetyl alcohol for some oomph. I do like the way cetyl alcohol makes everything feel so powdery and soft. I actually forgot to add allantoin into this formula, so if you want to add some in, I’d suggest adding it at 1% and dropping the water by 1%

Adding in the contents from Beaker C- ingredients that are volatile that cannot be heated without losing their properties 

To make lotions with Olivem 1000, it is just like making lotion with say BTMS 225/50 or others. I had three beakers set up; A, B, C. Beaker A held the liquid phase to heat (water, aloe, hydrolat, silk, Vitamin B3), Beaker B had all the oils+Olivem 1000 for melting, and Beaker C had all my volatile ingredients like Vitamin E, Vitamin B5, preservative and if you’d like, a few drops of lavender essential oil.

My work space.

Beaker A and Beaker B got tossed into the double boiler for about twenty or so minutes on a low simmer. There is a lot of discussion on if the heat and hold is actually necessary. While I don’t think that the heat and hold method kills any of the possible nasties that may or may not be present, I do feel that bringing my beakers to the same temperatures is better safe than sorry. And I know in this day and age that the chances of things not working the way they should be are slim when it comes to ewaxes, but as I said, better to be safe than waste ingredients! And this being a new ingredient, go for it it!

The end result is something decadent and fast absorbing! My face was left with an almost powdery feel and very touchable. I did find that with all the spots on my face, this lotion helped to soften them for a more even feel on my skin.

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Prepare your work space by wiping everything down with a 10% Bleach solution. Wipe all your equipment, tools, beakers down with isopropyl alcohol. Don’t forget your immersion blender, countertop AND your scales. Using an immersion blender is very important when working with Olivem 1000 as you need that high sheer.

  1. Place all Phase A ingredients (water, aloe, hydrolat, vitamin B3 and silk) into one beaker. Place all Phase B ingredients into a second beaker (Olivem 1000, argan, cranberry, shea, and cetyl alcohol). Place all Phase C ingredients into Beaker C (Vitamin B5, Vitamin E, preservative, essential oils if you choose)
  2. Place Beaker A and Beaker B into a barely there simmer in your double boiler and allow to sit for approximately 20 minutes.
  3. Once everything is melted, remove Beaker A from the double boiler and wipe down the outside of the beaker. Pour contents into Beaker B.
  4. Using your immersion blender, beat the contents of Beaker B until you get a nice smooth consistency. If your work space is warm, this will take a lot longer, but my kitchen area is quite cold these days, so lotion making is wicked fast now. It took less than thirty seconds for me to get to lotion consistency.
  5. Once Beaker B has cooled down to the touch, add in the contents of Beaker C and stir incorporating everything.
  6. Decant and enjoy! This lotion is thin enough to be in a pump bottle and thick enough to be in a pot without worry.


No everyone is an exotic oil junkie. So if you don’t have cranberry oil, feel free to sub in any liquid oil your skin likes. Here are a few I’d consider subbing:

  • moringa oil
  • sea buckthorn seed oil
  • macadamia nut oil
  • evening primrose oil
  • abyssinian oil
  • borage oil
I love the look of argan oil and cranberry oil… so pretty



This lotion will pump easily, or hold neatly in a pot. 
DIY Intermediate, MsBarb, The Scrub Me Down Kitchen

DIY: Fragrant Bombs

I know. What an original name.

We’ve been thinking of ways to put a bunch of fragrance in a bottle so it is safe to apply to hair and skin without worry of skin safety and spillage. Originally I was thinking about putting it into a roller bottle, but then nixed that idea when I learnt just how messy they kind of are. One of my favourite FUGLY purses suffered the consequences of a roller bottle. And, roller bottles how would I apply that to my hair?

So dropper bottles for the win! And that also means a little more versatility. You can apply it to your hair brush, your comb, a drop in you palm and feel up the ends of your hair. You can add a drop or two to your regular body lotion to enhance the scent, add to the existing scent or apply this neat to your skin. I wouldn’t suggest it on the face as some people find too much fragrance on the face annoying or sensitive to fragrance oils on the face.


I have had a lovely bottle of dimethicone (silicone) that I’ve been jonesing to play with for the past month and I finally gave in and played with it. I’ve needed a new hair balm or oil or hair lotion to help my ends and give my hair some extra TLC as it’s summer, so that means my hair is always up in a ponytail so breakage is more than likely. And since Sonia is learning all about hair balms and various ingredients, I decided to try my hand at a hair oil with my newest ingredient… silicone, as hair is on the mind here in The Scrub Me Down Kitchen.

3And with any new ingredient, you actually have to use it first before you know how your skin and hair reacts to it. I know right? How weird is that concept!

And this recipe is really easy. I picked argan oil and fractionated coconut oil, added in some fragrance oils, poured directly into my dropper bottle, capped, shake shake shake and used. All while my hair was up in a towel. It took about five minutes to gather all the ingredients, weigh, cap and shake. But it took about twenty minutes to get the right picture.

I’ve never really been a fan of argan oil because it is outrageously (albeit well deserved for the price, I am not arguing with that) expensive, so I’ve just been weary of using it based on the price alone. I’m petrified that it would be wasted in any product I made or I wouldn’t like the end product. Then I knew I’d feel guilty about wasting something so expensive so always played it safe and just didn’t play with it. Then, the oil would go rancid then I’d have to throw it out and then I’d feel worse, but then for sure would order it again just in case I’d come across a recipe where I might need it. Then never use it. Toss it. Buy again. And repeat. So this time around I finally decided to use it.

Argan oil is always said to be great for the hair, fast absorbing into the skin, and the United States National Library of Medicine National Institute of Health concludes that argan oil does indeed have antiaging properties and can improve skin elasticity in postmenopausal skin. So my thought rational is, if it is good for postmenopausal skin, it should be good for middle aged skin as well. We’re getting up there in age, our hair is not as strong as it once was so the ends dry and break willy nilly.

6I decided to use fractionated coconut oil as I’ve never used it before on my hair. I’ve used it in soaps, I’ve used it in lotions, but never in hair care. So this being a new new new recipe, why not give it a go go go? Fractionated coconut oil is a liquid coconut oil that won’t solidify when cold. To make fractionated coconut oil, they have removed the long chain triglycerides… so if you are asking if it is natural, in my opinion no. It’s one of those neat natural plus ingredients.

I’ve been using it for a couple days now, and I have to say, I’m quite keen on it. I know right? Argan oil, where have you been? My too stubborn mind refused to play with you for years and I was so missing out!

If you store your argan oil in the fridge, it can solidify slightly and sink to the bottom of your container. Just warm between your hands and shake! You’ll be grand!

So how to use this neat little bottle of pretty? I take one drop, rub between my palms, then feel up the ends of my hair. I sandwich my hair between my hands, and use a back and forth motion while my hands travel down the hair shaft. I take another drop and do the hair around the front/long fringe/bangs as those ends seem to never want to be undamaged. I then give a war cry and attack my hair with my boar bristle brush to help disperse the oil throughout my hair. I also like to add a drop or two to a handful of lotion and give it an extra OOMPH in the smell department. I like lots of citrus smelling goodness on me.

I used fragrance oils to make this as I find most citrus essential oils are like most kids and vegetables. The vegetables seem to be invisible, I’ve watched kids eat egg fried rice and leave the vegetables. Now that takes not only commitment, but talent too! An essential oil like grapefruit can help with shine, but then you have to worry about photosensitivity and did you wash your hands and get it all off? I save myself the worry and just used Ruby Red Grapefruit from NDA. But, you can use any scent you’d like. I cannot wait to try different oils and try out coconut fragrance oil in the cooler weather. Coconuty goodness. Mmmmmm!

Swish your hair around throughout the day and get a whiff of something other than kid farts! Maybe I should have put it like this; swish your hair around throughout the day and catch a whiff of bright, cheery and happy thoughts!

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  1. place your new dropper bottle onto your digital scale and tare
  2. measure out your argan oil and your fractionated coconut oil
  3. using a pipet, count out your drops. I found 8 to be not enough grapefruit and ten was plenty. But if I were to use something like coconut, I’d probably only use four or five drops. Do not exceed your fragrance oils useage rating.
  4. cap and shake!
  5. and use! Swish and feel like a hair model.