Creating Simple Skin Care Lotions

Lately, we have been looking at making your own skincare products.

Yesterday we discussed what ingredient goes with what phase, which is a really important part of the formulating process.

Tomorrow you can also join us here for step 7, where we bring you more lessons, on making your very own homemade skin cream,

However, for the purpose of today’s article, we are going to recap on the ingredients you will be using in your formulas.

So you will be more familiar with the key ingredients, before you starting experimenting.

Ingredients in skincare lotions


This makes up to 60 to 70% of a product; it is usually the main ingredient by volume in a lotion, the water must be distilled, alternatively, you can choose to use a water-based ingredient such as Aloe Vera or a hydrosol.

Depending on the consistency of the lotion you want, you can play around with the percentages, until you achieve the desired texture.

Understanding the properties of water, you may find a useful read.


This is usually the second most common ingredient within a lotion base.

Body butters or oils that come from nuts, grains, and seeds can be used, we have put together a glossary on botanical oils, which you can find here.


Oil and water repel each other, in order to make them more compatible, you will need to add an emulsifier to your formula, helping to combine ingredients.

The total amount of emulsifier you use ideally needs to always stay the same,

Although you can alter the ratio of emulsifying wax to conditioning wax, in order to create a different texture.


There is a large range of these available on the market, which all come down to personal preference, both Xanthan Gum and Guar Gum make a nice consistency.


The same applies to essential oils and fragrances as they do have a flashpoint, adding a scent whilst the lotion is above flash point will cause the scent to evaporate.

Fragrance tends to be more stable than essential oils.


This is really one list that is endless from silk amino acids, pH adjusters such as citric acid to humectants, which all fall under this category.

Antioxidants are also a popular additive the most common one being vitamin E, which helps to prevent fats from going rancid due to a chemical reaction.

Vitamin E is not to be confused with preservatives, which causes a biological reaction.


Even simple skincare products can go bad without you even noticing, so unless you want your formula to become contaminated you will need to preserve it, usually with parabens.

Parabens are something we have written about in greater detail here, which is a useful read.

It is important to note that some preservatives are more pH-sensitive than others, so be sure to test your formulas.

Check with your supplier to ensure that the pH meets the requirements of the preservative.

When making lotion, ensure the temperature is not too hot, as preservatives can lose some of their effectiveness.

Ideally, you want a preservative you can work with at a hotter temperature, so you can pour your lotion whilst it’s not too thick Contact your supplier for information on the maximum temperature required for your preservative.

Opiten is a preservative that has a higher maximum temperature.

What will make the difference when it comes to the shelf life and preserving your product is sanitization and personal hygiene, which is something you really need to take into consideration.

Look out for tomorrow’s article, when we look at what is involved when creating simple skincare lotions.


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