Whipped Hair and Body Butter

I don’t often get the chance to make whipped body butter because I really don’t have any patience for the cleanup. If you have never heard of a whipped body butter, you are not alone 🙂 I’m surprised how often I’m asked to explain what it is.

Hard and soft oils are combined and whipped till its the consistency of frosting (depending on how hot it is where you are, in my experience)

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Whipping in progress. Picture courtest holosticsquid via Google

Its best to start whipping when the mixture is firm and cold but if that’s not possible, you can still impart beautiful fluffy melty texture to your whipped butter. It can be used all ovev the body and also in the hair based on the oils you add to the butters.

Here’s half of a very recent custom order I made. I can’t tell you exactly what’s in it because the client supplied the recipe. But I can tell you its goooooood.

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Custom order of whipped butter. Melty goodness ❤

Would you believe you are looking at just under 4kg of whipped butter?!! Thank you beautiful lady customer 😉 for the opportunity to serve your business.

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Aloe Vera Hair Styling Creme

I harvested 3 large leaves from one of my aloe vera plants to make soap with but somewhere along the line, that plan was totally abandoned for a styling cream.

What I did different this time is that I allowed most of the aloin (the bitter part of AV, also used as a laxative) in the plant to mix with the gel because I’ve read many research papers that showed that topical applications of aloin for skin issues and wound healing have been documented for decades.

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Aloe vera turned purple gel ❤ ❤

I added a little preservative becsuse the strong enzymes in AV start to break it down very quickly once its cut, and stuck it in the fridge while I sanitized my other utensils. One hour later it had turned this lovely purple gel colour.

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Emulsifying with a stick blender

The colour didn’t make it through the emulsion stage though. This hue is mostly from the unrefined shea butter and unrefined PKO. I used conditioning emulsifier because its essentially a very thick cream for hair and while you can actually apply this mixture to skin, using a regular emulsifier for body lotion in my hair has not been a hit. Ask me how I know 🙂

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Just what my dry hair ordered 🙂

The resulting creme is thick and fluffy with good non-sticky slip, just what my dry kinky hair ordered. Essential oils of rosemary and tea tree add the final touch to what is now a staple for my family’s daily hair care.

Lotions

I started making salves and lotion bars last year because I liked the ease of putting everything {oil, butter, beeswax} together and the many types that could be made by tweaking additives – bug repellent, intensive moisturizer, baby bum balm, lip balm, etc.

At Christmas I made body butters as part of gift sets but not everyone was a fan of thick emollient body butter mainly because they were used to thin store bought lotion. The people that liked it have been back for more repeatedly though.

I decided to take the plunge and made some lotion. If you make soap, it’s almost a natural progression 😉

20141031-155559.jpg I made this lotion mainly for my little ones but I’ve used up one of the smaller tubs on myself already. It sinks in very quick and leaves silky feeling lightly fragranced skin behind. This formulation has calendula infused olive oil and Shea butter as main ingredients.

Now I’m wondering why I waited this long to make lotion…and it’s no mystery what type of moisturizer will be going into my gift sets this Christmas… 😀

Coffee Honey HP Soap

I came by some good quality ground coffee beans recently and since I no longer have a coffee maker, I immediately thought of making soap with it.

I brewed the coffee by scooping the grounds into tea bags and steeping them in boiling hot water. When the mixture cooled to room temperature, I put it in the fridge overnight.

For this 1kg recipe, I brewed 6 heaping tea spoons of coffee in 330grams of water. That’s strong stuff!!!

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The coffee lye solution turned the creamy batter into chocolate brown (a bit lighter than the picture) which immediately had me thinking about cuppaccinos 😀

Coffee is supposed to help boost blood circulation and it’s touted to help reduce the appearance of cellulite. Honey is a humectant that helps keep skin moisturized so this should be a great all over body soap in addition to the coconut oil and Shea butter base.

The coffee and honey scent came through ever so subtly after the cook but the lady I was making this for likes fragrance so I used the closest complementary fragrance I had: oatmeal milk and honey. I think the kitchen now smells like an exotic cafe!

As this soap was going to be just one colour, I decided to give it some interest by using a round mould and giving it a honeycomb effect. I’ve wanted to do this for a while but *inserts excuse*

Here’s how it looked out of the mould:

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Cut:

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All in all I’m quite pleased with how this soap turned out and it’s reinforced my leaning toward making more hot process soap.
Picture update:

20140914-230152.jpgAll wrapped up and ready to go!

Hot Process Soap

Here it is….my first soap in my DIY tall skinny mould. I’m totally sold on it! 20140717-104808.jpg

This soap is made with Virgin coconut oil and unrefined Shea butter. I added coconut milk for even more lush lather. Pink and poppy seeds for visual interest. Fragranced with a citrusy blend that had my LO sniffing around in the kitchen yesterday and this morning.

Re hot process, I like it more every time I do it. It might just become my ‘thing’ 😀

I made this whole batch for a very supportive friend and customer so I cut them extra chunky. Hope she likes them!

Tweaking soap recipes

There are many rules in soapmaking, some that are non-negotiable e.g using the right amount of lye and taking safety precautions, and there are other rules that are flexible if you are the experimenting type.

One of the firmest held rules for decades of soapmaking was that although coconut oil is brilliant for making large bubbles, anything more than 30% would take one’s hide off. Now it’s commonplace that with a large enough super fat (at least 20%), a 100% coconut oil soap can be very moisturizing.

I’ve made a very decent 100% Shea butter soap and the person I made it for loved the gentle creamy lather and super hard long lasting bar. I live in West Africa so this also has the advantage of being an affordable recipe to make! I would choose this over Castile soap (gasp!)

Another recipe I’ve been successful with (lather, mildness, etc) is a combination of 80% coconut oil and 20% Shea butter with a 10% superfat.

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This is the most recent one I’ve made with that recipe. It’s for a guy so i used a blend of smoky patchouli and spiced mahogany from Brambleberry. Very masculine. The brown portion is colored with dark cocoa powder. Luxe!

Insect repellent lotion bar

I recently gave my tub of insect repellent to my young cousins as the headed to the village for the Christmas season.

Yesterday as I was prepping dinner outside, enjoying the cool hammartan breeze, I was attacked by a legion of sand flies!!! In seconds I was covered in hot bites totally killing the moment.

I decided to try to make a lotion bar from a book I bought {my buttered life} because I had everything I needed to hand.

A lotion bar is essentially an oil based ‘lotion’ that stays solid at room temp, held together by a high amount of beeswax. It also helps to use hard oils and butters. Actually it’s like using a bar of soap to moisturise the body.

Here it is just poured:

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And after hand washing the dishes and pots:

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And a few hours later:

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To use a lotion bar, simply grab one and rub directly on your body. You can also rub it in your hands and then rub on your body. It leaves a very light coating on the skin. It’s super cool.

What makes this lotion bug/insect repellent is the addition of Citronella essential oil to the coconut oil, Shea butter, beeswax mix. You can add any essential oil of choice to make it a regular lotion bar, some zinc oxide for sun protection, etc.

I think it’s the best thing that’s happend to my hands in a while…lol