DIY Advanced, Lotions & Butters, The Scrub Me Down Kitchen

DIY: Better than Lingerie body butter

Let me tell you the happiest part about this butter. When you feel yourself up after putting it on? All I can say is, you’re welcome! Your skin will feel just… I don’t even know if there is an adjective adequately describe how this feels on my skin . And yup. I am so going to try to make this butter better in future attempts!

‘Tis that time of year where all this dry weather, heating systems are causing your skin to look like a pair of gross, old, worn out yoga pants. Oh yes. I so went there. Where regular body butter is still awesome and works wonders, but you’re a DIY junkie and can’t use the same body product for more than a few days in a row because you’re itching to make something new. And try out all those new ingredients! So you use crazy dry weather as an excuse to yourself to create something new.

img_2925.jpgAnd trying out new ingredients I did! Silk Amino Acids! Hydrolized wheat protein! A new panthenol that is more like an actual liquid not a clear sticky sticky mess that brings to mind molasses in January on crack! And, I had to try Olivem 1000 in a body butter with cetyl alcohol as it’s back up singer (for additional stability). Everyone talks about how awesome it is, I needed to try it out. I mean for a while there I was dead set against it because of the cost factor.

Cards down? More testing is needed. This is my third recipe in making a body butter with Olivem 1000 (needed to get that consistency just right! Thick, but not too thick. Thin, but not too thin. Scoopable, but not pourable. Then had to play with some oils and and and… I think I got it. Of course I will play with more it and properly compare Olivem 1000 to my emulsifier stash I’ve got going on.

Cause a girl can never have too many emulsifiers. Am I right? And they are all in competition.

img_2933.jpgLet’s talk a little about Olivem 1000. It is a fantastic product for a wide range of skin needs. Used in anti-aging products, great for oily skin, sensitive skin, normal or combination skin. It’s perfect in an eye cream, and great for cosmetic products that have a low to medium low oil phase. Want to know something neat about Olivem 1000? It kind of has a skin-like fatty acid so it can help to strengthen the lipid barrier of the skin and provide oodles of moisturization! It’s pretty dang cool in my books and I’m quickly finding it does live up to the hype!

What I find really neat about Olivem 1000, is that once you mix your liquid phase and oil phase together, you can whisk it together and you get a thinner consistency. But mix it with an immersion blender? and you get a much thicker consistency! But, the one issue I’ve discovered with the whisking, you do need to make sure you add in an ingredient like a cetyl alcohol or xanthan gum to aid in stability, or else you run the risk of losing your emulsion (this is kind of where I find Olivem 1000 fails me). And, if you blend with a whisk or something other than an immersion blender, your lotion/butter will take a good 24 hours to get to its full viscosity. I personally prefer the immersion blender. 

img_3046.jpgI really wanted to use liquid oils and to use oils that I know my skin likes. So that had me dusting off my last bottle of avocado oil I’ll ever buy in China and checking to make sure that it was still good to use! And one of my favourite oils, wheat germ oil. Wheat germ oil is an awesome oil for dry winter skin as it is naturally packed full of Vitamin E, which is one of the biggest reasons why you don’t see me add in extra Vitamin E when I make stuff with wheat germ oil for me. It’s said that wheat germ oil can help repair damaged skin, give you a boost of collagen, helps with blood circulations and replaces the kitchen sink. Unfortunately, wheat germ oil has received a negative reputation as being a pore clogger (Comedogenic rating of 5 which means you are guaranteed to break out).

IMG_3015Yeah. That comedogenic rating belongs with the dinosaurs. Extinct. I really like to thumb my nose at the rating system and live on the wild side by using ingredients like cocoa butter and wheat germ oil with amazing results. Don’t take one rating system that has been debunked often as your bible! Try out some fun oils!

Avocado oil is a fantastic oil and much loved for its spreadability and its ability to penetrate deep into skin. Perfect for giving dull winter skin a boost! I used refined avocado oil in my recipe, but unrefined would work well too!

IMG_3008My additives I went a little crazy. I know. My hydrolized wheat protein I think is  an awesome new ingredient to play with. Yup. This stuff is mainly for hair, I wanted to check out how it works on the skin, and I have to admit, I like the results. I used it in a hair brightening mask and I noticed the results immediately after washing it out. So far I’m liking it quite a bit!

The silk I used in this recipe is silk amino acids from The Soap Kitchen. I am really loving not tasting the silk peptides every time I open the bag!

IMG_2998So, this Body Butter leaves your skin feeling amazing. I’ve brought two different tubs of it to work, and both tubs grew some legs and walked out of my classroom.

I scented this with Garden Path from Gracefruit, which imparted a very light and delicate fresh scent of Springtime outdoors. I think next time I will be using some sort of grapefruit or citrus scent or even possibly something a wee bit sultry to match that amazing silky feeling left on the skin. I also added in some white mica (1/2tsp) and some pastel blue (a drop) to give this some shimmer. Let me tell you. You might think you need more shimmer, but PLEASE don’t. Even with these small amount there is more than enough shimmer going on here!

IMG_3034I decided to try the new preservatives I bought while in Ireland. Gracefruit POG  preservative (Phenoxyethanol and Ethylhexylglycerin) and give it a test. If you do not have the same preservative, feel free to use your usual preservative system.

Did you make it? What did you think?

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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! I like to use beakers when I make stuff, makes me feel all sciency! If you don’t have beakers, use some Pyrex or heat resistant glass cups. Wide mouth Mason jars will work too!

  1. Into Beaker A, weigh out all your liquid phase; water, aloe and glycerin. Place into your double boiler on a barely there simmer.
  2. Into Beaker B, weigh out all your oil phase; Olivem 1000, wheat germ oil. avocado oil and cetyl alcohol. Place into your double boiler on a barely there simmer.
  3. Into Beaker C, weight out your additives; panthenol, liquid wheat, liquid silk, preservative and fragrance oil and set aside.
  4. Let Beaker A and Beaker B sit in the double boiler for about 20 to 30 minutes. Once everything is melted, remover Beaker A (liquids), wipe off the outside, and gently pour the contents in Beaker B. Stir gently with your spatula for a moment before removing Beaker B from the double boiler.
  5. Using your immersion blender, blend the contents in short bursts until you see things thicken up a wee bit. Continue the short bursts, whilst using your spatula to scrape down the splatter.
  6. Once the Body Butter has cooled to below 40C, add the contents of Beaker C and stir.
  7. Decant your butter into three 100g pots, or a 250g (you’ll have a wee little bit left over though for immediate use!), leave the cap off while they fully cool down.
  8. Label your pots with the date, and enjoy!


My 250g pot of Butter grew legs and found a new home.


The other pot that grew legs and the new owner has demanded a face lotion that would make her face feel the same. Challenge accepted!
It’s a shame all the sounds I made while trying this lotion for the first time didn’t come through. There were plenty of ooohs and ahhs and holy coffee pots!


For some reason, this post was originally posted without pictures. Hopefully, the situation is sorted and all is well! One day soon, this blog will be in a country that will never need to use a VPN!

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.