Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Massage Bar Recipe

The Basic Recipe for these bars are:

One part beeswax
One part butter - cocoa, shea or other nut butter
One part oil - any oil soft at room temperature

The goal in creating the recipe is to have a bar that melts at skin temperature. The beeswax melts at about 160 degrees, the cocoa butter at about 120, and the oils are soft at room the combination will create your bar. The butter you use will also determine any adjustments to the ratio. That is...cocoa butter has a higher melting point than shea butter - so if you make these bars with shea, you will need to decrease the amount of liquid oil.

For these bars, I used:

4 ounces of Natural Yellow Beeswax
4 ounces of Natural Cocoa Butter
4 ounces of Fractionated Coconut Oil (a very absorbable oil - great for skin applications!)
1 ounce (total) of Lavender, Eucalyptus and Patchouli essential oils - or whatever fragrance or essential oil you want.

Note: You may want to try this with no fragrance - just with the natural beeswax and natural cocoa butter - the honey scent from the wax and the chocolate scent from the cocoa butter are heavenly in a subtle way.

Measure and Melt

Measure out your oils and start melting the beeswax first.
I melt the beeswax first because it has the highest melt point. Once it's completely melted, I take it off the heat and add the cocoa butter. The cocoa butter will mostly melt with no additional heat. Put it back on the heat briefly to melt the rest of the cocoa butter.

Finish Melting - Add the Liquid Oils and Fragrance

Once the cocoa butter is completely melted, add in your liquid oils and fragrance. Stir well.

Pour into the Mold

Once everything is melted and mixed together, pour the mix into your molds. As you can see, I'm using the molds I used for my Melt and Pour Valentine Hearts from Brambleberry. Slowly pour the liquid wax & oils into the molds and set them aside to cool.

As they cool, depending on your combination of wax and oils, you may get small sink holes like this one - since they're on the back of the bar, I didn't bother fixing them - but you could, if you wanted, pour a bit more melted wax/oil into the sink hole after it's cooled - just like you would a candle that had a sink hole.

Finished Bars

Once the bars have completely cooled, gently pop them out of the molds. Since they are formulated to melt at skin temperature, be sure to keep them in a cool place like a cupboard or the refrigerator.

Use them as solid massage-oil bars...or they are also really great to use after you get out of the shower on legs and arms. You do need to wait a few minutes for the oil to soak in - they are almost pure oil, remember - but once it's soaked in, your skin will love you for it!

Lotion Tube Variation

Instead of pouring the bars into regular soap molds, pour them into a push up lotion bar tube. Much easier and cleaner - though somewhat less romantic, I suppose. These are great if you're using the balm as a handy body butter, bug-off balm, or solid perfume.


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