One of my favorite facial products is a coconut & honey face mask. My not so favorite part is the cost; at about $40 for less than 1.5 ounces, it can break the bank. So, off to formulate this hydrating treat myself.
Coconut oil and honey are a super combo as they both contain antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and hydrating components that benefit the skin. For this DIY production, you will need just a few things: coconut oil (Virgin coconut oil is recommended--more on this in a minute), honey, beeswax (If you don't have any beeswax on hand, don’t sweat it; you can leave this out), a small whisk, and microwave-safe containers (or a double boiler if you have it).
Why Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO)? Regular coconut oil is pressed from the dried coconut kernel while VCO is from the fresh meat of the coconut, and it is unrefined. Some coconut oil benefits for the skin include, VCO has seven times the amount of polyphenols (superb antioxidants that fight oxidative stress and may prevent premature aging). VCO also has a genuine coconut fragrance. The main fatty acids in VCO are 47.5% lauric acid, 18.1% mystic acid, 5-10% oleic acid, and 8.8% palmitic acid. Lauric acid is the main fatty acid here. Fun fact, lauric acid has demonstrated antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activity against P. acnes, which is the bacterium proposed to contribute to inflammatory acne. Although, overall, VCO is moderately comedogenic (can clog pores). So, this mask is for me. My teenagers prefer the rose clay facial mask. As a side note, fractionated coconut oil is different from VCO and regular coconut oil as the long-chain fatty acids have been removed, including most of the lauric acid, so that it remains in a liquid state.
Honey is not just a sweet treat, Honey has benefits for the skin. It contains a powerhouse of antioxidants and also antimicrobial activity. Honey is a humectant; it draws moisture to skin. There have been some studies showing that Manuka honey can eradicate biofilms (slimy layer of bacteria that adheres to surfaces) and accelerate wound healing. I didn’t use Manuka honey in this recipe, but you could substitute some of it in. Manuka honey comes with a higher price tag. If you use it, let me know how it went.
Beeswax is the last ingredient. I wasn’t going to add it to the product as many people don’t have beeswax readily on-hand, but it made a smoother and more homogeneous product. It was a texture thing for me; however, you will still get the benefits of the VCO and honey without the beeswax.
Step 1: Measure honey into a clean container.
Step 2: Melt the 2 ½ Tablespoons of VCO in the microwave, if needed (If it is hot outside, it may already be melted) start with 10-20 seconds intervals.
Step 3: Combine VCO with honey and mix with small whisk until combined. (It may be grainy if you are not adding beeswax.)
Step 4: Melt beeswax in a double boiler, preferably. I was in a hurry and used a microwave on high for 3 minutes. Beeswax melts slowly.
Step 5: Mix beeswax into honey and VCO. Place in refrigerator to set up. I checked on mine in 5 minutes and had to re-whisk as the coconut oil had set up on top. Leave in refrigerator for 5-10 more minutes, whisking until combined.
VCO has a shelf life of 18-24 months and honey is indefinite, so this should last you a long time.
For application, first wash face with mild cleanser. We have two facial soaps available that do a wonderful job of gently cleansing the skin: Dead Sea Mud Facial Soap & Oatmeal & Milk Facial Soap.
If you have time, place a warm washcloth onto the face to open up the pores. Next, apply a quarter size amount to face and relax for about 10-15 minutes. Remove product with a warm, wet washcloth, and enjoy your glowing skin.
As a side benefit, you could also put this on your toast ;) It tastes yummy.
I estimated that this cost me less than $2 to make--that’s $37 in savings, and more with shipping.
We love creating handmade products and we want you to love them too. Check out our products at www.latheringlotus.com
Live at ease like the lotus in the muddy waters,
Jamie & Andra
*Reposted from 2/12/2018
So, what is a bath bomb? And, why would you want to use one anyway? If you google “who created the bath bomb,” you will be directed to a famous cosmetic retail company that starts with the letter “L”. (Sadly, it’s not Lathering Lotus.) “L” declares that their co-founder created the bath bomb. If you dig deeper – a lot deeper, you can find references in the Merck Report, a practical journal of pharmacy as a profession and a business, to effervescent bath tablets being formulated as far back as 1902. The formula in the Merck report is even replete with a blend of natural fragrances. Pretty cool, right? Soaking in a bath in the early 1900s was a luxury and, consequently, I can see why the trend did not catch on at that time.
Fast forward 115 years, and the bath bomb has been perfected to provide a relaxing and aromatic bathing experience; sometimes the vibrant colors and effervescent fizzing and foaming create a work of art in the bath tub.
The basic composition of a bath bomb is pretty simple. It is a 2:1 ratio of baking soda to citric acid; this combination reacts when placed in water and produces sodium citrate and carbon dioxide when it hits the water – voilá, fizzing ensues. Manufacturers can include a myriad of other ingredients, but, generally speaking, they include: butters, oils, salts, foaming agents, emulsifiers, colorants, and fragrances. Once dissolved, these additional ingredients are released into the bath water.
Why use one of these fizzy delights? Well, in addition to just plain enjoyment, they can include skin-enhancing ingredients such as butters, oils, salts, and essential oils. After soaking in the tub with a dissolved bath bomb, you may discover that your skin feels replenished.
Are there any risks with using a bath bomb? Risks are pretty low, but keep in mind that you can have a sensitivity to just about anything. The culprits in bath bombs that could lead to skin irritation are typically citric acid, fragrances, essential oils, or foaming agents. Also, these are not for use on open cuts or wounds. And, freshly shaved legs are open wounds. It is also a good idea to use caution when exiting the tub as surfaces can get slippery due to oil residue. We use polysorbate 80 as an emulsifier to help with dispersion of oils, minimize tub staining, and help reduce slimy surfaces. You should still give the tub a rinse or scrub after using a bath bomb.
You can find bath bombs in a variety of colors, fragrances, and packed with skin-loving ingredients. Just pop one in the tub and relax as you enjoy its effervescent qualities, aromatherapy, and skin-nourishing benefits. And, really, they are just plain fun!
*reposted from 8/2/2017
Weicker, T. (Ed.). (1902). Merck’s report a practical journal of pharmacy as a profession and a business. New York, NY: Merck. Retrieved from https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=mdp.39015084678351;view=1up;seq=9
Jamie is a serendipitous soapmaker with a love for all things DIY, health, and wellness. She is an Advanced CP-HP Soapmaker with certification from the Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild. She holds a Diploma in Advanced Organic Cosmetic Science from Formula Botanica. Before starting Lathering Lotus, she worked as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, Registered Yoga Teacher, and Professional Yoga Therapist. She lives with her husband, two daughters and her labradoodle near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.