Luxurious Homemade Lotion Recipe

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If you are still using store-bought lotion on yourself or your family, there are super easy natural alternatives that are fun to make! This homemade lotion recipe has three basic ingredients and takes only ten minutes to whip together.

The basic recipe is an ultra-moisturizing water-free version that lasts for years without preservatives.

NOTE: This is an improved recipe since many people were having trouble getting the temperatures exactly right to get the lotion to emulsify (as per the comments below). This recipe will not have any of those issues!

Making Custom Lotion Blends

Once you master the base recipe, have fun customizing your lotion to your skin type, skin conditions, and desired scent!

There are endless variations, but some of my favorites are:

  • Baby Lotion – Infuse the oil with calendula and chamomile before making the lotion.
  • Cooling Muscle Rub – Add peppermint, wintergreen, and ginger for sore muscles.
  • Anti-aging Face Lotion – Use argan oil and add lavender and patchouli essential oils.
  • Lavender and Vanilla Lotion – Add a few drops of lavender and a little natural vanilla extract.
homemade lotion
4.08 from 763 votes

Homemade Lotion Recipe

Make smooth, luxurious lotion at home with almond oil, coconut oil, beeswax, and optional essential oils.
Prep Time20 minutes
Yield: 1 cup
Author: Katie Wells



  • Combine the almond oil, coconut oil, beeswax, and shea or cocoa butter if using, in a double boiler or a glass bowl on top of a simmering pan of water.
  • Stir occasionally as the ingredients melt.
  • When all ingredients are completely melted, add the vitamin E oil if using and any essential oils or scents like vanilla.
  • Pour into a glass jar or tin for storage. Small mason jars work perfectly for this. Note: This will not pump well in a lotion pump!
  • Use as you would regular lotion. This lotion is ultra-moisturizing and more oily than water-based lotions so you won’t need to use as much. It also has a longer shelf life than some homemade lotion recipes since all ingredients are already shelf stable and no water is added. Use within 6 months for best moisturizing benefits.


A little goes a long way! This lotion is incredibly nourishing and is also great for diaper rash on baby, for eczema, and for preventing stretch marks.
See this recipe for a masculine-scented version (my hubby approves!)

Other Homemade Lotion Recipe Variations

There are lots of ways you can make your own lotion at home. Consider this easy men’s lotion with just a handful of ingredients, or see below for other ways to moisturize!

Lotion Bars

If you want an even easier solution, make these easy lotion bars! It only has three ingredients, takes less time to make, and lasts even longer.

Aloe-Based Homemade Lotion

If you’d prefer a lighter lotion recipe, this aloe-based version is much smoother and not as greasy. Unlike the version above, it does not have an indefinite shelf life and should be used within a month since it does not contain any preservatives.

This recipe is adapted from the recipe I’ve used for years from Frugally Sustainable.

Aloe Lotion Ingredients

Aloe Lotion Instructions

  1. Melt the beeswax, almond oil (or other liquid oil), and shea butter (if using) in a double boiler or glass bowl over a pan of water.
  2. Remove from heat and pour into a blender or mason jar (if using an immersion blender).
  3. Let cool to room temperature. You want it to be room temperature and just barely starting to harden around the edges. This will help make sure that the lotion emulsifies correctly.
  4. Add the vitamin E (if using) and any essential oils.
  5. Start blending on low using a blender or immersion blender. Very slowly, start adding the aloe vera gel until incorporated. Use a spatula to wipe down the sides and re-blend a few times until fully incorporated.
  6. Store in a glass jar in the fridge for up to six weeks.

Best Pre-Made Natural Lotions

If reading all that just convinced you that you’d rather just buy a natural lotion than go through the trouble of making one, there are also some great pre-made options. (And no judgment… that’s how I felt the first few times I tried making lotion and toothpaste too!).

These are lotions that I’ve personally used and love and that have safe ingredients and a good rating with the Environmental Working Group:

  1. Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Lotion – I’ve never found a product I didn’t like from this company
  2. Shea Moisture Head to Toe Ointment – Similar to the first recipe above- no liquid and very moisturizing
  3. Nourish Organic Body Lotion – Fragrance-free and very highly rated by EWG
  4. Shea Moisture Olive Oil and Marula – Smells amazing and works really well!
  5. Nature’s Baby Organic Unscented Lotion – Also very highly rated unscented lotion

Ever made your own lotion? How did it go? Let me know below!

Katie Wells Avatar

About Katie Wells

Katie Wells, CTNC, MCHC, Founder of Wellness Mama and Co-founder of Wellnesse, has a background in research, journalism, and nutrition. As a mom of six, she turned to research and took health into her own hands to find answers to her health problems. is the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and all posts are medically reviewed and verified by the Wellness Mama research team. Katie is also the author of the bestselling books The Wellness Mama Cookbook and The Wellness Mama 5-Step Lifestyle Detox.


1,333 responses to “Luxurious Homemade Lotion Recipe”

  1. Jo Avatar

    4 stars
    I quite liked this recipe! It was a little greasy on the skin though (unsurprising I suppose) but it does melt nicely . I think cocoa butter would be better to use than shea butter only because shea butter smells very strong (and not very pleasant), and tends to dominate despite the addition of essential oils. I actually cooled the mixture then whisked it for 10-15 minutes into a sort of mousse, which gives it a nice texture. I would recommend this recipe, I’ll definitely be using it again 🙂

  2. Mary Jo Braun Avatar
    Mary Jo Braun

    HI –
    I just discovered your post and plan to make the Homemade Lotion. Your suggestions for alternatives included AntiAging lotion with argan oil. Do I substitute the argan oil for the almond or coconut oil in the original recipe?
    Thank you so much !
    Warmly, Mary Jo

  3. Terie Avatar

    4 stars
    What am I doing wrong?
    My bee wax separates int tiny little balls once it cools. Kind of grainy and doesn’t want to melt in my hands

  4. Marina Avatar

    Hi! I wanted to know some details about the body lotion recipe… What is the final quantity of the ingredients given? And by saying cup, what kind of cup do you mean? Thank you in advance!

  5. Olivia Avatar

    5 stars
    At what tempurature do you add the essential oils and the vit E.? thanks!

  6. Kaylee Zito Avatar
    Kaylee Zito

    Any chance you still have the older recipe available with no beeswax? I loved that recipe and haven’t made it in a while – seems like it’s not listed in your site any longer? Thank you!

  7. Fiamma Avatar

    Hi! I want to buy a pre made base lotion and add almond oil, coconut oil and shea butter, how I add it? It would be thick? Sorry for my english

  8. Sri Alapati Avatar
    Sri Alapati

    Hi Katie,
    I made the lotion using jojoba oil and coconut oil. Following exact recipe I added 2 tbsp of shea butter and 7-8 drops of vitamin E oil. But the out come is more like harder side similar to Vaseline. Could you tell me what went wrong? I was super excited to try this for my infant, but it was not as expected.

  9. Jennifer Riley Avatar
    Jennifer Riley

    Do you have a recipe for one that will work in a pump?

  10. Gem Avatar

    Hi Kate – these recipes are fab. How many drops of essential oils do you recommend for the homemade lotion recipe? Thanks

  11. Oscar Avatar

    Hey, so I made the lotion but for some reason the lotion comes out as more solid than liquid which makes it hard to get to the lotion. Should I use less coconut oil or what can I do to not make it so hard ? Thanks!

    1. Katie Wells Avatar

      Reducing any of the harder ingredients (coconut oil, beeswax, etc) should help or adding more of a liquid oil

  12. Katelynn Avatar

    Hi! Out of curiosity, could I add a preservative to the aloe Vera one?

  13. Kim Avatar

    5 stars
    I made this and found that it came together into a lotion consistency which was great especially given the comments from some others! I put it in the freezer for 15 minutes before whipping as directed. I also put the oatmeal water in the fridge as it was very warm and humid in my house at the time and it whipped into a lotion very quickly with my hand mixer! i added 15 drops of lemon and 15 drops of lavender and it turned out great! Thank you for the recipe!

    Note: I had to throw out my first batch of oatmeal water as I had left it on the counter for a couple of days and it had started to ferment.

  14. Anthonia Avatar

    Do I have to dilute any essential oil I chose to use before mixing it with the rest of the recipes?

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