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Winter months can be taxing not only on our skin. Dry, itchy skin and seasonal changes can cause the mood to follow suit. That’s why I’ve put together a recipe for this Whipped Lemongrass Body Butter with a kiss of ylang-ylang. The beautiful, refreshing smell of lemongrass, accompanied by the sweet scent of ylang-ylang, is guaranteed to invigorate your body and mind.
- What is Lemongrass Body Butter?
- How to Use Lemongrass Body Butter?
- Ingredients You’ll Need for Whipped Lemongrass Body Butter
- Finding the Right Consistency
- Whipped Lemongrass Body Butter Recipe
What is Lemongrass Body Butter?
Lemongrass body butter is a thick, velvety moisturiser that can help to protect and nourish the skin. Used regularly, it can also help prevent moisture loss, smooth and soften the skin and protect it from environmental irritants that can cause dryness. Plus, essential oils add a divine smell to this body butter.
How to Use Lemongrass Body Butter?
The key to making the most out of the body butter lies in applying it to moist skin right after you have had your bath or shower. Shea butter and oils will help keep your skin moisturised throughout the day by locking the moisture in. Using body butter regularly will help moisturise the skin and protect it from harsh weather and other irritants.
Ingredients You’ll Need for Whipped Lemongrass Body Butter
Shea Butter: Highly emollient, soothing and anti-ageing, shea butter soaks into the skin, creating a thin film that helps to lock the moisture in, making it a perfect winter moisturiser.
Sweet Almond Oil: I have picked sweet almond oil for its light texture, ability to penetrate the skin, and high vitamin E and A content, which are vital for maintaining healthy skin. In addition, its sweet, subtle aroma complements the ingredients in the recipe really well.
Golden Jojoba Oil: A liquid gold, jojoba oil is a nourishing and regenerative emollient rich in vitamin A, E, D, and gondoic fatty acids. Believed to mimic sebum, our own natural oils jojoba oil is one of the most popular oils in natural skincare formulations. It spreads effortlessly and absorbs quickly into the skin.
Lemongrass Essential Oil: The refreshing and energising scent of lemongrass oil has an uplifting effect on the mind. If long winter months tire you out, give lemongrass a try, and it will help you reduce signs of tiredness and fatigue.
Ylang-Ylang Extra Essential Oil: Balancing, soothing, and often used for its sedative effect in traditional aromatherapy, ylang-ylang balances, harmonises and relaxes the mind, body and spirit.
Vitamin E: An antioxidant that slows down the ageing process and protects the skin from environmental damage. Vitamin E is often used to protect the oils from going rancid.
Arrowroot: A thickening agent, arrowroot helps to form a non-greasy product with a nice matte finish.
Finding the Right Consistency
The consistency of the final product depends on various factors, including the number of oils used, their absorption rate, the ratio between oils and butter, and so on. My preference is to use a slightly firmer consistency. When I apply body butter, I want to be able to spread it evenly across my skin without too much effort. This recipe yields a whipped body butter that is just perfect.
But what should you do if your body butter turns out too firm, too soft, or it’s just not fluffy enough? There are a few factors you need to consider.
If the butter turns out too firm to your liking, it could be due to weather, as the cold climate does affect consistency. You can try replacing a small percentage of shea butter with oil to get a softer texture.
However, if the butter turns out too soft and you live in a hot climate, you may want to increase the quantity of shea butter or add a small amount of wax, which will help to firm it up.
With whipped body butter, you’ll be aiming for a smooth, mouse-like consistency. And to achieve that, the electric whisk is a must!
Whipped Lemongrass Body Butter Recipe
To make 100g of body butter, you’ll need:
Shea butter: 55g
Sweet almond oil: 19g
Golden jojoba oil: 20.65g
Lemongrass essential oil: 0.3g
Ylang-Ylang Extra essential oil: 0.05g
Vitamin E: 1g
Arrowroot powder: 4g
Step 1: Prepare a hot water bath by bringing about 2-3 cm of water to a simmer over medium-low heat in a small saucepan.
Step 2: Weigh your butter (phase A) in a glass beaker, and place it into the hot water bath until melted. Set aside to cool down.
Step 3: Meantime, weigh the oils (phase B) in another glass beaker.
Step 4: Once the melted butter has cooled down, add the oils, stir well and set aside.
Step 5: Weigh essential oils and vitamin E (phase C) and add them to the cooled butter/oil mixture stirring well. Note: Essential oils are heat sensitive. Allow the butter/oil mixture temperature to drop below 40°C before you add in essential oils.
Step 6: Place the blend in an ice batch and stir until it thickens up and you can see a trace. At this point, you can add the arrowroot powder (phase D) and mix well to eliminate any lumps.
Step 7: Now that your butter is ready, you can start whipping it. To get a light, fluffy consistency, you’ll need to whip it 2-3 times. Place butter in the fridge for 5-10 mins in between.
Step 8: Transfer it into a jar and leave it in the fridge for the night. The butter will harden a bit.
Shelf life and storage
Body butter is an anhydrous (oil-based) product that will keep for up to 12 months stored in a cool, dry place. However, if you notice your butter starts to smell like old nuts, it is time to toss it and prepare a new batch.
Please remember that swapping the ingredients in the formula will alter the final product. Consider how the ingredient you switch will affect the final product’s scent, consistency, or absorbency when making changes.
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Shea butter: If you have a sensitive nose and find shea butter overpowering, you can substitute it with mango butter. It’s very mild with a similar fatty acid composition.
Sweet almond oil: It’s a stable, inexpensive oil that is not prone to oxidation. You can replace it with sunflower, or grapeseed oil, for example.
Jojoba oil: Just like jojoba oil, olive oil is a good moisturiser rich in vitamin E. Similar in composition to oils produced in our skin, olive oil absorbs well and suits dry skin in particular.
Essential oils: Although they can enhance our well-being, essential oils are potent substances that can cause adverse reactions if not used safely. I have used lemongrass and ylang-ylang within recommended dermal limits. If you’d like to swap them for another essential oil safely, check out Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals by R Tisserand and R Young.
- High Precision Digital Scale
- Glass beakers
- Bowl for whisking
- Hand mixer
- Pairing knife
- Glass jars with lids
What does lemongrass do for my skin?
Lemongrass is often used in skincare products to remove impurities from the skin, leaving it clean and refreshed. Known for its antibacterial properties, so it can help reduce the presence of acne-causing bacteria. Lemongrass is also a natural antioxidant that can help to neutralise the damaging effect of free radicals.
How can I make the butter feel less greasy?
Although this body butter is fluffy, don’t be fooled by that. It is an anhydrous product made of nourishing butter and oils with a slow absorption rate. It can leave an oily feeling after application. To improve absorption rate, you could switch shea butter for mango butter and substitute sweet almond oil for dry oil such as safflower, sunflower, or avocado oil.