The world of DIY beauty products is very new to me, so I was thrilled when my dear friend Johanne from My Hope Jar told me she made her own body butter to use during her pregnancy! She graciously agreed to do a guest post about it here – so enjoy! If you have a favourite DIY body butter recipe to share, please link it up at the bottom of the post.
Early in my pregnancy, I got a copy of FitPregnancy magazine in my prenatal package from the nurse at my doctor’s office. Along with exercise and nutrition tips, the magazine also had a recipe for a body moisturizer. It wasn’t so much a recipe as a mention of the ingredients in a feature article on Stacy Keibler where she mentioned using pure shea butter, coconut oil and sweet almond oil as a body moisturizer during her pregnancy. This made me realize how easy it would be to make my own moisturizer rather then spend a lot of money on a good quality store bought one that was all natural and safe for baby.
I have already been using coconut oil both for cooking and for my skin for years, and was excited to find the other two ingredients on Amazon.com. With my US Amazon Prime account, I didn’t have to pay for shipping and they arrived on my doorstep 2 days later.
I was so excited to start using my homemade moisturizer, I unpacked the ingredients as soon as they arrived and started making it right away. The magazine article didn’t go into details about how to make it so I just melted everything down, mixed really well and then whipped it all together after it hardened. Simple enough, right? Yep, it was, but… I was disappointed. It was okay, but not great. The texture was okay, but it didn’t really smell great to me. The African shea butter doesn’t smell bad, but it has a woody, nutty smell that I wasn’t crazy about and actually made me feel a little nauseous. Not good at all. If I was going to use this every day during my pregnancy, I wanted it to smell nice, and definitely not make me feel sick every time I used it! So I decided to look at other recipes on Pinterest to see how I could improve the smell. Unsurprisingly, I found many, many recipes on Pinterest. However, most of them had ingredients that I didn’t want to use, since I’m not familiar with what essential oils may be safe during pregnancy. The one thing most of the recipes had in common that is completely safe during pregnancy was cocoa butter. So I decided to keep my recipe simple with the three ingredients from the FitPregnancy Magazine and then added cocoa butter, which I was also able to find on Amazon.com. The cocoa butter completely transformed the just okay recipe from FitPregnancy Magazine into an amazing recipe! The cocoa butter made it so luxurious and creamy and it’s natural chocolatey smell made me want to eat it.
Homemade Body Butter Recipe
- 100% Unrefined Organic African Grade A Ivory Shea Butter
- Raw Cocoa Butter (This is the magical ingredient because it gives the butter a luxurious feel and makes it smell delicious.)
- Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. I use coconut oil all the time so I already had this in the house. I purchased it at my local organic food market. Just purchase whichever one you prefer that’s for the best price. (note from Judith: this is the kind I get from Costco for the same price.)
- Sweet Almond Oil (Moisturizing Oil)
Combine equal parts of the shea butter, cocoa butter and coconut oil (I used 1/3 cup of each) in a double boiler. Add 2-3 tablespoons of sweet almond oil. Heat on low until the butters and oil are completely melted. Do not let it boil.
Remove from heat and stir until well combined.
Let cool. The mixture will harden to the texture of hard butter. Once cool, you can whip it with an electric mixer to get a smooth creamy texture. Use a spatula to transfer body butter to a container with a tight fitting lid.
That’s it! Apply a small, but generous amount to your belly, hips, thighs, breasts, arms, legs, feet and anywhere else you want extra moisturizing.
One small note: I live in Southern California, and during the really hot days, the body butter would soften and sometimes melt down. I suggest keeping your body butter at room temp but if you do have a really hot day, be careful opening your container as it might become more of a liquid and spill. The butter itself it still fine. It hardens back to the same texture during normal room temp conditions and still works great no matter how many times it softens and re-hardens.
I love my body butter so much; I have been using it as an all over body moisturizer instead of my usual body lotion. As an added bonus, the combined cost of the ingredients is about the same as one jar of organic belly butter at Whole Foods and I have enough to make many, many more batches. At 35 weeks pregnant, I’m still using my first jar! I’m pretty sure it will last me the entire pregnancy and this is with using it every day as an all over body butter/lotion.
So does it work to prevent stretch marks?
I honestly believe the reason why some people do or don’t get stretch marks during pregnancy has more to do with skin elasticity than any amount of creams or butters we slather on our skin, but for what it’s worth, at 35 weeks pregnant, I still don’t have a single stretch mark. And as an added bonus, the body butter has kept my skin hydrated and has really improved the other skin issues I have like eczema and other dry itchy skin issues I get from time to time. Stretch marks can also be reduced by cosmetic procedures such as microneedling, so do not worry if this body butter does not work for you straight away.
I hope you enjoyed this post and find the recipe as easy to make and as enjoyable to use as I do!
If you are interested in learning more about me, or my journey to motherhood, please visit my blog at www.myhopejar.com.
Do you have a favourite DIY body butter recipe?
(Disclosure: Judith is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and the Amazon.com.ca, Inc. Associates Program, affiliate advertising programs designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com & amazon.ca.)