If ever I’ve wished for a ‘scratch and sniff’ functionality on my blog, now would be the time. I’ve submerged myself in the depths of my kitchen over the past few weeks, mixing together a bit of this and a bit of that to bring you yet another DIY beauty product. I’ve experimented with lip scrubs, hair masks and even home-made blushers. It wasn’t until I took myself out of the kitchen and into my bathroom that I discovered what I’m truly after.
I’ve been obsessed with the Laura Mercier bath and body range longer than my bank account wishes to admit. I’ve always been a fan of sweet smelling scents and the Laura Mercier range provides me just that. Along with its delicious aroma, the products offer an air of glamour and elegance, something that is rarely associated with sweet smelling products. The body butters, in particular, are my personal fave. Not only are they incredibly moisturising for my dry skin, but they leave a delicate scent that sticks with me throughout the day. It was then, in the midst of slathering myself with the velvety texture of Laura Mercier’s Almond Coconut Milk Souffle, that it dawned on me – I could make this at home. Out came the whisk and away I went…
What You’ll Need
1/2 cup Shea Butter
Shea Butter is nature’s super food for the skin. This ivory-coloured fat is extracted from the nut of an African Shea tree. Widely used across regions of Africa, Shea Butter is naturally rich in vitamins A, E and F. It offers natural SPF protection as well as essential fatty acids for collagen production. It has a naturally thick consistency; which can be difficult to apply on its own. However, when melted with a carrier oil it offers extreme hydration for parched skin as well as anti-ageing benefits. No wonder why it’s an integral ingredient in most of the body moisturisers on the market today. It picked mine up from a cute little store called The Soapery on Amazon; which offer a great deal of raw and unrefined products.
1/2 cup Cacao Butter (mango butter can be used as a replacement)
Cacao Butter provides this whipped body butter with a delicious aroma of melted chocolate. Cacao Butter is offered in shards of solids (often called ‘nibs’), but is in fact the oil extracted from cocoa beans. Cacao Butter, much like Shea Butter, is rich in antioxidants and is ultra-hydrating. It has natural emollient properties; which makes it a popular choice ingredient for many beauty products such as lip glosses, lip balms, and skin lotions. I picked mine up from Amazon (I honestly think Amazon Prime has ruined my life) and if you don’t use it all for this cream, it could be a great addition for your next chocolate dessert recipe.
1/2 cup Coconut Oil (organic and unrefined)
No skincare blog post of mine would be complete without the inclusion of coconut oil. Coconut oil to me is what Windex is to the Dad in ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’. Coconut oil has an array of benefits, far too many to include in this post. For this whipped body butter it adds extra hydration, a heavenly scent and a base for the butters mentioned above to work their magic. You can pick up coconut oil from pretty much anywhere now, but I got mine from here.
1/2 cup Almond Oil (organic and unrefined)
In all honesty, much like the coconut oil, almond oil acts purely as a carrier for the other ingredients. You could swap it out for another like olive oil, but I wanted to add a delicious fragrance of almond to my body butter. Almond oil is rich in Vitamin E, monounsaturated fatty acids, proteins, potassium and zinc; which makes it INCREDIBLE for your skin, hair and nails. I chose a sweet almond oil from Amazon.
Optional – A few drops of essential oil (Vitamin E can be used for extra nourishment or a scented oil like Lavender can be used if you’re looking for a night time treat)
You’ll also need:
Storage jar – I wanted my body butter to look as special as it feels so I chose to store mine away in a clip-top preserving jar that I picked up for a mere £2.50 at Tescos. You can of course store it in any container you wish, but keep it pretty – no one likes boring skincare!
Whisk – if you have slightly more sense than I do you will use an electric whisk or a stand mixer. I can’t tell you how much my arms felt like they were going to drop off.
Double boil system – doesn’t need to be fancy. Just a saucepan with boiling water and a heat-proof mixing bowl placed on top.
*Word of warning to anyone with allergies or any form of skin conditions – this body butter contains a shit ton of nut based ingredients. If you have fairly problematic skin or you plan on being in close contact with anyone who does, keep in mind that this is probably not the product for you. My skin is pretty normal with the odd spell of dryness so I’ve had no worries in using this cream.
Boil water in a saucepan and place a glass mixing bowl on top. Ensure that the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Once water has boiled, reduce the gas to a medium flame.
Place all of the ingredients into the bowl, leaving out the essential oils (should you wish to include it)
Grab a whisk or a wooden spoon and mix together the ingredients. At this point the ingredients would have already begun to melt so you won’t need to accelerate the process with vigorous whisking.
Once completely melted your mixture will begin to resemble something that you wouldn’t necessarily want to put on your body, unless you’ve had a jellyfish sting (that will make no sense to people who aren’t a fan of ‘Friends‘).
Once it gets to this stage, remove the bowl from the heat (careful, it will be hot) and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes. After this time, add in your drops of essential oil and place the mixing bowl into the fridge for an hour to allow for further cooling and solidifying. I’m a little impatient so I placed mine in the freezer for around 20-30 minutes.
You’ll notice that your mixture would have turned into an off-white emolliant (somewhat like goose fat). Don’t allow for your mixture to completely solidify. You’ll want it at a stage where it’s soft enough to whisk, but not liquid. Grab your electric whisk/mixing stand and begin to whisk. If you’re stupid enough (like me) to use a manual whisker – good luck! Whisk until the mixture resembles whipped cream (in colour and in texture).
Place the mixture back into the fridge/freezer for a further 10 minutes so that it can firm up again. Repeat the process of whisking and cooling a further 2 times. Once the mixture is able to create ‘soft peaks’ it’s then good to go.
Grab spoon-fulls of the butter and place in your chosen jar, topped off with a nice ribbon (just for dramatic effect).
Your new-found whipped body butter will last for several months. I would suggest storing in the fridge if you live in a warm climate, but otherwise it will keep its texture pretty well in the jar.
Now I’m not being biased, but this whipped body butter smells pretty darn good! It resembles that of Palmer’s Cocoa Butter, but with a slight marzipan twist. Not only is it incredibly moisturising in the winter, but if you do choose to store it in the fridge, it makes for a wonderful cooling treat in the summer.
The ingredients list above will make a fair bit of body butter. I chose a 500ml jar to store it in, but in all honesty, I had enough to fill one more. You can of course reduce the amount of each ingredient (as long as they are equal parts) or find a bigger jar. I slather myself in body cream so there’s no such thing as too much in my books.
The cost of the ingredients came to a grand total of £25.92 plus £2.50 for the jar. Seeing as I could get two jars out of the mixture, it effectively cost me around £12.96 a pot. Can you get cheaper body lotions on the market? Of course! Can you get something as organic, natural and luxurious as this? I think not! The Laura Mercier Body Butters retail at around £45 for 300ml. For £12.96 I got myself 500ml; which is an absolute bargain in my eyes. The texture, look, smell and effect of my homemade whipped body butter is almost identical to the Laura Mercier version. Although, I find the title ‘whipped body butter’ far more satisfying.