What Are Lotion Bars?
Lotion bars are a very moisturizing body lotion in solid form. They look like a bar of soap but are used on dry skin. My original lotion bars recipe is one of my more popular recipes and I’ve shared several variations of the basic recipe:
An Easier Way
The one complaint I’ve gotten about the lotion bars is that they can be hard to apply and store. After I started making my own deodorant in deodorant containers, I realized that those containers would work wonderfully for lotion bars and solve both problems.
Now, I make lotion bars in deodorant tubes to make them easier to store and use. They are also much easier to give as gifts this way and there are so many ways to customize them.
A Word On Ingredients
For this recipe, I order:
I order in at least 5 pound quantities which makes these ingredients much cheaper, but only about 4 ounces of each is needed for this recipe (I already have coconut oil on hand). If you don’t live close, MRH shipping can be expensive. I’ve found that there are now also good options on Amazon for the ingredients, so for this recipe, I order:
- Unrefined Shea Butter or Cocoa Butter
- Beeswax Pastilles
- 5-Pack plastic deodorant containers
- essential oils: I like Grapefruit and Basil
Whatever ingredients you choose, just make sure they are unrefined and organically sourced.
Equipment & Tools Needed for Lotion Bar Sticks
- A double boiler or a glass mason jar sitting on a wash cloth in the bottom of a small saucepan
- a plastic or wooden spoon for mixing
- Plastic deodorant containers – You can reuse deodorant containers, but some of them are not solid on the bottom and it will leak through so check this before you start. I used these and they worked really well but if I’d seen them, I would have ordered these since they come with cute labels.
- Paper towels, old newspaper or rags that can be thrown away (to clean out pan/jar- see instructions below recipe)
Lotion Bar Stick Recipe
- ⅓ cup shea butter (or cocoa butter, mango butter, or a mix)
- ¼ cup beeswax pellets
- ⅓ cup coconut oil (or ¼ cup liquid oil such as olive, hazelnut, or almond)
- essential oils (optional)
- Combine the butters, beeswax pellets, and coconut oil in the top of the double boiler or in a mason jar sitting on a washcloth in a small saucepan.
- Put about an inch of water in the bottom of the double boiler or in the saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to simmer and stir the mixture carefully until all the ingredients have melted. NOTE: Be careful not to get any water in to the butters/oil mixture as it will ruin the bars.
- Once all ingredients have melted, remove them from the heat.
- Stir in essential oils.
- Quickly and carefully pour into the plastic deodorant molds. If possible, transfer to the refrigerator to harden or let sit on the counter for 4-6 hours or until completely cooled.
How to Use Lotion Bars
Use lotion bars on dry skin only. They are not meant to be used in the bath or shower. Rub a thin layer over skin as often as needed.
These lotion bars are not sunscreen but they do have a natural SPF of about 5 and are great for mild sun exposure.
The tubes make this easy to apply to children or babies.
Prefer to Purchase Pre-Made Lotion Bars?
If you want to use lotion bars but don’t have the time/ingredients to make them yourself, I found a great small business, Made On, that makes all kinds of lotion bars, soaps, natural baby products and hair products that are up to my standards. Their website is HardLotion.com (Note: Affiliate link… the price is discounted for you and I get a small commission to support my blog!)
Ever made your own lotion bars at home? Ready to give it a try? Share below!
Discussion (90 Comments)
Hi, I am trying to add arnica/ginger, any suggestion on amount to add? Thank you, love your website!!
Pamela Sue Parvati
I have infused my oils with arnica and it seems to work! I have infused the coconut oil as well as grape seed and use them as otherwise directed in several recipes.
If I am having to chop or grate beeswax how much would I use? I have a HUGE wheel of beeswax from a local organic maker. It’s almost too pretty to chop up lol
I am trying to avoid plastic containers. Any suggestions for different containers and where to purchase them?
Katie - Wellness Mama
hi there I really need to buy some of the empty deodorant tubes but im in the uk and cannot get them. have you any suggestions on what to put them in many thanks paula x
I get my favorites from SKS-Bottle.com
Will these melt if not kept in the frig?
Katie - Wellness Mama
Only at inside temperatures above 80-85 degrees
Could you use Grapeseed oil? I use that in my salt scrubs so I already have it on hand
How much essential oil do you put in? I am making it with ginger and/or arnica for sore muscles.
Can I use beeswax in my home made deodorant, too?
I have made deodorant using beeswax. It worked quite well.
Could you use the deodorant sticks to make suncreen too?
This would be perfect for dry cracked feet/ heels. What Essential oils / recipe would you reccomend for that ?
Thanks for your recipe. I’m really interested in making my own moisturising lotion. Is there any way to make this moisturiser in more of a cream form rather than a solid block?
Try adding Aloe Vera gel. I use twice as much gel as the solid butters/oils in the recipe e.g. if your total oils and butters is 1/2cup, add 1 cup aloe vera gel to the double boiler. Let the whole mixture cool and harden and then whip it. You’ll need jars for storage.
Sharan, what brand of aloe gel do you use? Is it unscented? Is it like a gel, rather than the liquid you drink?