A few nights ago I stood in the kitchen after taking turns with Andrew tucking our babes into bed with a newfound energy and unexpected vigor having it been so late. Musical beds has been a theme over here this week, if you have little ones, you get it. After pouring myself a nice red and turning on some holiday tunes, I found I had a bit of determination to make some holiday gifts with my oils. I’ve always loved a good homemade gift over something bought from a store, and I tend to think most people feel this way too, because deep down we all can agree little intention goes a long, long way these days. A homemade gift says, “Hey, I carved out some time for you and I made this. So enjoy, my dear.” Because I wholeheartedly believe in this sweet sentiment, I like to pass out lots of homemade goodies for Christmas. Almost everyone we are gifting to will get something DIY from the Watters family, whether it be a salt dough ornament, a Hand-Rolled Beeswax Candle, or an oily treat.
The best part of making oil-based gifts for me, aside from the fact that I get so much joy from concocting remedies from healthful, natural products, is that I get to make them at home without having to go to the store. I just head to my pantry, grab what I need, and soak up my mama time. Our kitchen is the place I most prefer when I need my mind to wander and when I want to create, so naturally, I gravitate towards this space when making homemade products for my family and friends.
We have amazon prime, which I highly recommend so many reasons, and so a few times each year I restock our natural goods pantry with all the basic things. I am putting together an oily pantry post for 2016, but for this specific post, you will need the following to make Rosemary Citrus Body Balm, Floral Bath Salt, and Lavender Spruce Linen Spray.
– beeswax pellets (stay away from the big bars, they are too much work)
– coconut oil (get the kind that is hard when cool, stay away from the liquid for this recipe)
– vitamin e oil
– shea butter
– epsom salts
– distilled water
– dried lavender flowers (optional, but really lovely)
– 100% pure essential oils (we use Young Living and I cannot say enough about the quality of their products)
It is best to buy organic when able. If you are going to all this work to make a nice natural product, it makes sense to ensure you are using quality ingredients every step of the way. It is also wonderful if you can purchases these items in bulk to both save money and stock your pantry for future creating. I do this and have a special cupboard where I keep everything stocked so when I am feeling inspired or simply need a natural remedy, I am all set ingredient wise.
After making many, many body butters and salves over the past several years I have stumbled on what I feel to be the best ratio for what I am calling a balm. You will need a double boiler or some glassware you won’t mind getting a bit of wax on. The beeswax is integral to these most of my oily recipes, and know it will ruin pretty much whatever you mix these ingredients in. I use a pot of water for boiling and a large glass pyrex mixing bowl with a handle and pour spout, that does the trick. Find what works for you and call it good. Now for the recipes.
Rosemary Citrus Body Balm (or butter, depending on what label you prefer)
To make this balm, melt together 1/2 cup organic coconut oil, 1/2 cup organic shea butter, 1/4 cup vitamin e oil, 1/4 cup organic beeswax pellets. Once translucent and melted together, pour this liquid into small glass containers, mason jars work well. Depending on the size of your jar, add several drops of quality essential oils to your liking. For the small mason jar I have in the photos above, I used 5 drops of orange oil, five drops of grapefruit oil, and five drops of rosemary oil so fifteen drops total. The combination of citrus and herb is one of my favorite. I usually lean towards pairing an citrus with an earth element when making lotions, balms, and butters because the result is usually uniquly uplifting, yet grounding.
Floral Bath Salts with Dried Lavender Flowers
This is the easiest recipe ever, yet it produces a really beautiful and spa quality product, one that is calming for bath time. Pour epsom salts into your preferred container filling it half way. Again, I use small mason jars for this because I always have them on hand. Add ten drops of a floral oil of your choice, I use the Young Living oil blend called joy. It is a blend of bergamot, ylang ylang, geranium, rose, lemon, coriander, tangerine, roman chamomile, and palmarosa. This oil blend is warm and sweet and joyful, hence its’ aptly chosen name. After adding your desired amount of essential oil, throw in a few dried lavender flowers. This not only adds a beautiful element to your salt mixture, but tell me, who doesn’t love taking a good soak in a steaming lavender bath? It’s luxurious! After this step, fill your jar the rest of the way with more epsom salt, leaving a little room at the top. Give it a good shake and you’re done! Tell your gift recipient to add a palmful to their warm bath time routine and enjoy.
Lavender Spruce Linen Spray
We adore linen sprays in this home. In fact, they have become part of our bedtime routine, and a fun one at that, as am always changing them up according to the season. I do however almost always add lavender oil as the base of my spray because it helps us sleep and is really soothing. For Winter, I prefer adding oils that reflect this season’s nature, such as pine, spruce, and fir. I chose idaho blue spruce for this blend and it smells ridiculously yummy. To make this linen spray, add a small pinch of fine sea salt to a small amber spray bottle. The essential oil needs something to hug and bind to, thus the salt. Then add ten drops of lavender oil and ten drops of spruce oil to the bottle, swirl that around so the oil and salt marry. Fill the rest with distilled water and shake. I like purchasing my amber bottles here, for the curious.
And for the final piece of this puzzle, labeling! One can go about this however they so choose, but I have quite enjoyed using my handy little embossing tool to give my homemade goodies a fun and original label. Make sure to get a few extra rolls of tape for when you inevitably run out. It’s a bummer when you’re mid-way through typing body butter and the tape expires, leaving you with the ever so lovely “b o d y b u t t” label. Come to think of it, some of your friends may favor your more clever label names.
I have linked all the oils I used for these recipes for your connivence and so you can read about them if you’re an oil user like me or if you’re a novice and simply want to know more. If by chance you’re wanting to incorporate essential oils into the rhythm of your everyday, give me a holler! I’d love to chat more about this with you. Happy crafting, friends, and don’t forget to make a few extra of these for yourself. 😉