Whether you’re stressed about work, a relationship, the state of the world—or just plain need a little time for yourself—there’s nothing better than a little home spa indulgence. Instead of buying something pre-made, why not try making a few easy, limited-ingredient, and chemical-free products of your own?
While the internet is rife with DIY beauty recipes, my go-to source is Natural Beauty which offers over 250 pages of recipes, makeup tutorials, and even pre-organized pampering routines. Though many of the recipes in Natural Beauty use ingredients found around the house (including rolled oats, sea salt, and fruits and vegetables), you will likely need a few additional ingredients—like essential oils or shea butter—that can be purchased at a health food store or online.
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Here is a list of some of my favorite cruelty-free brands to help you quickly, and in good conscience, source all your DIY beauty materials. By using natural, cruelty-free ingredients, you can truly relax knowing you aren’t harming any bunny—or the planet.
|ESSENTIAL OILS||RAW SHEA/COCOA BUTTER||VEGETABLE GLYCERIN|
|Aura Cacia||SheaMoisture||Sports Research/SR Natural|
|Elais Oils||Sky Organics|
|Herbal Choice Mari|
|Pure + Simple|
|Sports Research/SR Natural|
From the pages of Natural Beauty, here are three simple, vegan recipes that anyone new to DIY beauty can make and enjoy in less than 15 minutes. Because when it comes to pampering yourself, who wants to waste time or get frustrated with a complicated recipe?
PEPPERMINT AND SEA SALT INVIGORATING BODY SCRUB
Makes 3.5 fl. oz.
This body scrub not only rids your skin of dead cells, leaving it silky smooth, but the circulation-stimulating properties of peppermint essential oil combined with the lymphatic-stimulating properties of grapefruit essential oil may aid in reducing water retention and the appearance of cellulite.
You will need:
4 TBSP sea salt
1 TSP fresh mint
4 TBSP almond oil
5 drops peppermint essential oil
2 drops grapefruit essential oil
Small airtight container
1. Place the sea salt, mint, and almond oil in a bowl.
2. Add the essential oils and mix together. Transfer to an airtight container and store in a cool, dry place for up to six months.
To use: Rub into the skin, massaging any areas of sluggish circulation. Rinse off in the shower or bath—as the sea salt dissolves in the water, you can enjoy a relaxing mineral bath. Do not use on freshly shaved skin.
NOURISHING BATH MELTS
Makes 10 small melts. Increase recipe for larger molds.
With super-moisturizing cocoa butter and insomnia-preventing neroli essential oil, these easy-to-make bath melts are a great treat before bed.
You will need:
1¾ ounces of cocoa butter (about 4 TBSP)
1 TBSP almond oil
10 drops neroli essential oil
An ice cube tray or soap/candy mold
1. Fill a small saucepan halfway with water and bring to a boil. In a glass bowl, add the cocoa butter and place the bowl in the pan to create a water bath. Heat the cocoa butter until it turns into a golden liquid. Remove from heat.
2. Add the almond and essential oils and mix well.
3. Pour the mixture into your mold or tray and allow it to cool and set in the fridge for at least an hour. Remove from the fridge and press the melts out of the mold. Store in a cool, dark place for up to three months.
To use: Add a bath melt to a warm bath and let it soften and moisturize your skin as you relax.
Been on your feet too long? Soak them in this soothing mixture of skin-softening oats, deep-cleansing sea salt, and muscle relaxing arnica and lavender oils. Not only will your feet feel refreshed, but they’ll smell great, too!
You will need:
2 TBSP sea salt
1 TBSP rolled oats (be sure to use gluten-free if you’re allergic!)
1 TSP arnica macerated oil
10 drops lavender essential oil
Small sterilized jar/airtight container
Food processor or blender
1. Process the sea salt and oats together in a blender or food processor until they form a fine powder.
2. Add the arnica oil and essential oils and mix together.
3. Transfer to a sterilized container and store in a cool, dark place for up to six months.
To use: Add a tablespoon of the mixture to a foot bath and leave feet to soak for 10 minutes. Remove from the water, pat dry, and apply a cruelty-free foot cream.
Excerpted from Natural Beauty reprinted by permission of DK, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. Copyright © 2017 by Susan Curtis, Fran Johnson, and Pat Thomas.
Photo Credits: DK and Moncherie/iStock