Hi! Few questions about body butters and lotions :)

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emmamulhall

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I have been making body butters and really enjoy how moisturizing they are, but they feel so greasy if I use any more than (less than) a dime size of it on any given area of my body. This makes sense, it’s oils after all! But I’m wondering how I can cut the greasiness. Arrowroot powder? Tapioca starch? Oat powder? Less liquid oils? I’ve heard a billion things, but don’t know where to start.

And for lotion making, I know lotions are lighter generally. Should I try to make an emulsion? It just seems SO much more complex with the emulsifiers and preservatives. I also like to be all natural and have very sensitive skin, so I don’t know what emulsifying wax is more “natural.” Also, detergents and alcohols can hurt my skin and I think I read somewhere that the emulsifiers are essentially alcohols and detergents. Am I misinformed?

Any advice would be awesome!! :))
 
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What oils are you using for your body butter? Some of them are greasier than others. I find coconut oil and olive oil intolerably greasy even in the smallest amounts, and even when I add arrowroot powder or other softeners.

Personally, for a non-greasy feel, I prefer mango butter, shea butter, jojoba oil, and argan oil. Expensive taste, unfortunately, but my body butter is non-greasy, absorbs quickly, and does a fantastic job on the skin. Other non-greasy oils are sweet almond oil, meadowfoam seed oil, and apricot kernel oil.
 

emmamulhall

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What oils are you using for your body butter? Some of them are greasier than others. I find coconut oil and olive oil intolerably greasy even in the smallest amounts, and even when I add arrowroot powder or other softeners.

Personally, for a non-greasy feel, I prefer mango butter, shea butter, jojoba oil, and argan oil. Expensive taste, unfortunately, but my body butter is non-greasy, absorbs quickly, and does a fantastic job on the skin. Other non-greasy oils are sweet almond oil, meadowfoam seed oil, and apricot kernel oil.
I use mango butter, grapeseed oil, and walnut oil. Both of the oils are linoleic, which I believe means lighter and easier to absorb. (I have expensive taste too!! Lol)
 
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Mango and grapeseed are fast absorbing, but walnut is average so it could contribute to that greasy feeling. You can try adding in an ester like Isopropyl Myristate, but that doesn't really fit in with the "natural" vibe. Just because your skin doesn't like certain detergents doesn't mean that it will react the same to all detergents. Yes, essentially emulsifiers are "alcohols mixed with detergents" but the chemical makeup of the alcohol is nothing like ethyl or isopropyl alcohol (except for the alcohol functional group) and the detergents aren't your standard cleansing detergents. Other options are (like you said) adding tapioca or arrowroot starch.
 
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I agree that the walnut oil is probably contributing to the greasy feeling. I also prefer 2 parts hard butters to one part liquid oil.

For instance, my go-to recipe for a long time has been 1 part mango, 1 part shea, and 1 part jojoba. You could substitute your grapeseed for the jojoba and see what you think.

At the 2:1 ratio, it makes for a very firm butter, but also cuts down on the grease. If you want a light, whipped texture, try using a 1.5:1 hard butter:soft oil ratio. A lot depends on your local temperatures and humidity.
 

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Another option to consider for a lighter feeling oil is liquid coconut oil. Not the solid coconut oil -- this stuff is water clear and liquid at room temperature. You can find it in the grocery store. Other names for this are medium chain triglycerides (MCT) and fractionated coconut oil (FCO).
 

emmamulhall

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Mango and grapeseed are fast absorbing, but walnut is average so it could contribute to that greasy feeling. You can try adding in an ester like Isopropyl Myristate, but that doesn't really fit in with the "natural" vibe. Just because your skin doesn't like certain detergents doesn't mean that it will react the same to all detergents. Yes, essentially emulsifiers are "alcohols mixed with detergents" but the chemical makeup of the alcohol is nothing like ethyl or isopropyl alcohol (except for the alcohol functional group) and the detergents aren't your standard cleansing detergents. Other options are (like you said) adding tapioca or arrowroot starch.
Thanks for your input! And sorry for my late reply. That’s such a good point! I kind of wrote off all alcohols and detergents as bad, so I’ll just give it a shot! Are there any other fast absorbing oils you could recommend?

I agree that the walnut oil is probably contributing to the greasy feeling. I also prefer 2 parts hard butters to one part liquid oil.

For instance, my go-to recipe for a long time has been 1 part mango, 1 part shea, and 1 part jojoba. You could substitute your grapeseed for the jojoba and see what you think.

At the 2:1 ratio, it makes for a very firm butter, but also cuts down on the grease. If you want a light, whipped texture, try using a 1.5:1 hard butter:soft oil ratio. A lot depends on your local temperatures and humidity.
Thanks so much! I’ll use these ideas!!! :)

Another option to consider for a lighter feeling oil is liquid coconut oil. Not the solid coconut oil -- this stuff is water clear and liquid at room temperature. You can find it in the grocery store. Other names for this are medium chain triglycerides (MCT) and fractionated coconut oil (FCO).
Thank you!!
 
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Humblebee and me has a good chart on absorption rates, as does Swift Crafty Monkey (requires a subscription, but it doesn't break the bank).
 
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