For the last six months I’ve been on a journey into making my own skin care products. Before I get into how and why, I want to give you a little background… I am one of those people that tries new things. Even when something worked well for me, I would often try something new just to change things up. It is rare for me to use a product line for more than a few months, but I fell in love with a well-known brand of skin care and I LOVED it. Really LOVED it. I used it for nearly 10 years. Years not months. But the company started selling in the lucrative Chinese market which meant they had to subject their products to mandatory animal testing in China. I am so completely not ok with that and was horrified to find that out. I immediately stopped using the products… and thus began a frustrating and expensive six months of trying to find something that worked as well, was free of animal cruelty, and didn’t break the bank. I ended up swallowing my conscience and went back to that brand. But my conscience wouldn’t stay silent and I just Y do it for long. At the same time I started taking in an interest in the toxic load I was subjecting myself to around the home. I swore I would never be one of those people, but guess what? There’s actually something to it. So I started investigating all natural products for skin care and make-up. I found one brand I actually liked but it was just too expensive to keep it up. Then I met a friend who is really into Young Living essential oils. I tried their skin care range but for some reason I was sensitive to something in it. But it got me thinking…couldn’t I make my own? And thus began the journey.
I was first introduced to essential oils while on vacation in Mexico many years ago. I was feeling really nauseous and a local woman we had become friends with gave me some Doterra DigestZen in water. No more nausea. None. I was sold. However, I found the world of essential oils overwhelming – too many choices, too many things you can do with them, not enough time to figure it all out. I had a couple of favourites and stuck to that and went no further.
When I decided it was time to start learning again, my friend here introduced me to Young Living and gave me some excellent advice…. go slowly. Investigate what interests you and buy what you need for that when you need it. Don’t look at all the options at once. Go in baby steps. So that’s what I did. And so far, it’s working for me. I started with easy things – foaming hand soap, foaming shower gel, household cleaner. then I graduated on to trying to make my own skin care.
In November, 2019, I made my first batch of face cleanser, eye serum and anti-aging moistursing oil . I did a lot of reading, a lot of research, asked my friend endless questions (sorry, for that!) and did a lot of trial and error. Using preservatives, emulsifiers, etc just seemed too complicated for this beginner, so I ended up using moisturising oil rather than a cream. Like most people, the thought of using an oil kind of bothered me but enough research showed me that some oils are perfect as facial moisturisers as they are bio-identical (like jojoba oil) or easily absorbed without clogging pores. I worked on perfecting the recipes to tweak how they felt on my skin and how they smelt. Note: don’t use carrot seed oil unless it is a single drop in a very large batch of moisturiser. Yes, it’s brilliant for your skin but it stinks really bad and turns everything orange. Including your skin. You don’t want to look like an oompa-loompa and reek like a skunk. Your family, friends and co-workers won’t appreciate it. Ask me how I know. Yeah. Moving on.
I’ve been really happy with the results so far and recently branched out into making the moisturiser into a cream using raw shea butter. Oh my goodness! I love love love it. It smells nutty/earthy at first and feels like it’s really greasy but the smell disappears and the cream soaks into your skin and loses the ‘greasy’ feeling within just a few minutes. Shea is lighter than Cacao Butter or Mango Butter so it’s good to use for the face for most people. I’ve even used it on my very dry hands and decolletage to cope with the Ballarat winter…which came early this year with a once-in-twenty-year snow fall on 29 May.
Because I am a woman of a ‘certain’ age – ok, let’s be honest… I turned 50 this year (and became a grandmother!) – I wanted a moisturiser and eye serum that was ‘anti-aging’. Here is where I need to put a disclaimer… I am not going to claim this stuff works for reducing wrinkles. I am just going to say that theoretically, the essential oils I have used are ones that research says are good for that. However, I have also been blessed with really good genetics (thanks Mom!) so even at 50 (and don’t forget, a grandmother) I don’t have many wrinkles. I cannot claim that my skin care is responsible. I just think it gives a little help to the genes my momma gave me. As for the expense, two of the essential oils I use are pretty expensive. However, I paid less for all of the essential oils and carrier oils to make months and months (maybe years) of homemade product than I have for one set of branded skin care that lasted two to three months. So in the long-term, it’s much less expensive to DIY.
Here are the photos I took over the journey – Day 1 on 8 November 2018, then in January, 2019 and a few days ago (May, 2019). The photos are with no make-up, before fixing my hair in the morning, and without any touch-ups to the photographs themselves. I’m not sure the skin care has ‘improved’ my skin, but my skin doesn’t look any worse and it certainly feels better! I do get a lot of red on my face in winter (see the May photo) so I’m considering upping the amount of lavender and frankincense in my moisturiser to try to combat this.
In addition to hand soap and face care, I’ve also made a deoderant (not anti-perspirant – that’s a totally different thing and not really great for your body) and a sugar scrub that I adore! I’ve included all the recipes below. Experiment with them yourself and try different essential oils for different scents or usage. Remember, everyone’s skin is different and people have different sensitivities. It’s always best to try a patch test on your arm to see if you’re sensitive before rubbing it all over your face!
Finally, I want to say something about Doterra vs Young Living. Mainly that I don’t want to say anything about these two competing companies. I have used both Doterra and Young Living and I am not going to engage in an argument about the merits of either company. You can decide for yourself. The important thing is, use one of them. Do not, under any circumstances, use essential oils that you got at the Reject Shop, Dollar Tree Store, or whatever brand of cheap-as-chips discount store is near you. You have no idea what those oils really are or if they’ve been adulterated with something toxic. Your skin is your largest organ and you do not want to put anything toxic on it… after all, isn’t that why you’re reading this post? Only use high quality, therapeutic grade essential oils, preferably ones that are responsibly and sustainably farmed and do not involve animal testing. Do not trust oils you get at supermarkets, department stores or discount shops. You can’t go wrong with these two major companies (and if you want to become a member to buy at wholesale prices, message me and I’ll help you…but note: I do not do multi-level marketing so it’s your choice totally).
Click on the photos below to enlarge and print the recipe.
Don’t forget to comment here or on the Facebook page about what you’ve tried and how it worked for you. Let us know your own variations!