Eco-Friendly Living, Recipes

3-ingredient homemade body lotion


3-ingredient homemade body lotion -

I’ve had a few people request this recipe over the past few weeks, and I’ll be talking about it on my upcoming Pure Green Magazine podcast, so I thought I’d publish it again here where people can find it!

It’s dead-simple, natural, and an absolutely delicious replacement for store-bought lotions. My skin has never felt smoother, and it uses just three ingredients! So, let’s cut the jibber-jabber and get down to business.

3-ingredient homemade body lotion -


3 1/2 Tbsp grated beeswax
3/4 cup olive oil
1 cup water



1. Gently warm the olive oil over medium heat in a small saucepan.

2. Add the grated beeswax and stir until just dissolved, then remove from heat.

3. Add water to a medium-sized mixing bowl, and start mixing with a whisk attachment (using a blender or immersion blender will also work, I’ve used all three, but a hand mixer seems to create the least mess).

4. While mixing, sloooowwwwly add the olive oil/beeswax to the water. It will look very strange at the beginning – some parts will be clumpy and yellow and others will be watery, and you will probably think you have ruined everything. You haven’t! Don’t worry! Just keep mixing and keep adding the oil reeeeally slowly. Maintaining a consistently slow pour will allow the oil and water to emulsify, and that’s the goal.

5. After a few minutes the mixture will begin to have a creamy mayonnaise-like texture. Mix for a few more minutes and then transfer the lotion into a sterile glass jar and refrigerate for an hour or so to let it set.

Optional:ย You can add 10-15 drops of essential oil for fragrance if you like (I love lavender, bergamot, or mint).

Boom! Done! You will be hooked, I swear.


I originally discovered this recipe fromย Annalea Magana, and I’ve made it a few times now and made a few modifications as I’ve gone. I like lotion that’s a little more rich and creamy- almost more of a body butter consistency – so I upped the grated beeswax to 3.5 tablespoons. I use the fine side of my cheese grater, and press it into the measuring spoon fairly firmly before adding to the olive oil, resulting in a thicker lotion.

I think the hardest part of this recipe is actually just tracking down some beeswax – typically Farmer’s Markets or health food stores will be your best bet – anywhere they sell fresh honey. And although it’s an easy process, there’s a fair bit of cleanup involved so I usually make a double batch because I keep giving little jars away to family and friends so I go through it fairly quickly.

I hope you like it!

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  • Reply Anke March 4, 2015 at 10:07 PM

    Hello Madeleine,

    Have you ever tried using beeswax pellets instead of grated beeswax? And do you have any idea how many of them to use for the lotion?
    They are just so much easier to get here ;-)!

    I am really hooked and want to make that body lotion soon!

    Alles Liebe


    • Reply sweetmadeleine March 4, 2015 at 10:37 PM

      Hi Anke! My sister-in-law actually got me beeswax pellets for Christmas, and I used them in several batches. I would use 3 tbsp max, the pellets seem to pack more of a punch than the grated stuff ๐Ÿ™‚
      Let me know how it goes!

  • Reply March 4, 2015 at 10:09 PM

    My last recipe was a fail but I will try this! Thanks for sharing! <3

  • Reply Sam March 4, 2015 at 11:21 PM

    Awesome! Very similar to lip balm (just without the water), which I’ve started making. Will have to give this a go…my poor skin is crying out for some love!

    • Reply sweetmadeleine March 9, 2015 at 7:56 AM

      oh my gosh. LIP BALM! Can you give me the recipe? I’d love to try it!

  • Reply Pritika March 5, 2015 at 9:57 PM

    Hello from India! Tried this and love it! Using it for baby too.

    • Reply sweetmadeleine March 5, 2015 at 10:36 PM

      I’m so glad it worked for you! Hello to India ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Penny March 9, 2015 at 6:09 AM

    Just been listening to your Pure Green interview. So weird to finally hear your voice, it’s not at all what I imagined. Anyway, I was listening whilst cleaning my daughter’s Beco potty with your marvellous all purpose cleaner, feeling all smug that we never have any nasty dirty nappies thanks to that book you mentioned…when it struck me quite how many of your ideas we’ve already implemented without really noticing. So thank you for your book and all your blog inspiration. Baby steps are easy and fun just like you said ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply sweetmadeleine March 9, 2015 at 7:55 AM

      Aw, thank you, Penny! I’m so glad you’ve been able to pick up some useful tips in etween all of my ramblings ๐Ÿ˜‰
      And I swear, my voice doesn’t really sound like that! I seem to lapse into this valley-girl intonation during inerviews, and I have no idea why! Or maybe that IS what I sound like, and I just had no idea until I started doing interviews? Oh god. My world view is shattering. I like to think I sound a little more calm, and have a little more gravitas when I speak. Maybe not ;).

  • Reply K March 10, 2015 at 10:27 AM

    I buy beeswax at under their craft supplies ๐Ÿ™‚ just incase anyone is still looking!

  • Reply staerling23 March 10, 2015 at 1:10 PM

    Hello from Virginia!

    I can’t wait to try this recipe soon! I do have a lotion related question for you though. I throughly enjoyed the first warm day of the season yesterday, maybe too much because my pale skinned daughter & I are both a bit pink today. What do you use for sunscreen?


    • Reply sweetmadeleine March 26, 2015 at 4:05 PM

      Sorry, just getting around to answering this now! Last summer we used a natural sunscreen called Badger, but it left quite a white residue and I wasn’t too happy with it. I’m going to go to our local health food store and try a few others. The issue is that most non-toxic sunscreens use zinc as a natural sun blocker rather than using a chemical sunscreen. and zinc is what makes it white and so hard to rub in. I’ll update the SweetMadeleine facebook page if I find a miracle solution!

  • Reply Lou March 23, 2015 at 1:21 AM

    After looking and looking for some beeswax, I finally got some from a random beauty/healthcare shop (no farmers’ market where I live :)) I tried this recipe a month ago and clearly got the proportions wrong (it was super watery) but I did it again yesterday and it’s amazing, I absolutely love it (and it’s worth the cleaning phase afterwards, which is not so amazing itself…) Thanks Madeleine ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply sweetmadeleine March 26, 2015 at 4:06 PM

      Oh yay! I am so glad it worked for you ๐Ÿ™‚ And yes, I hear you on the clean up…oy…the price of naturally soft skin I guess ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply Neko March 27, 2015 at 11:33 AM

    I made this a couple of nights ago and I love it. Yes, it was a weird watery/waxy mess for the first while and I really didn’t think it was going to get better. But it did. And now there’s a glass jar full of beautiful lemon yellow body butter in the bathroom THAT I MADE MYSELF (what?!).

    I’m buying your book.

    • Reply sweetmadeleine March 27, 2015 at 11:47 AM

      See! You are a wizard!! So glad you like it as much as I do ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Mary Ellen December 9, 2015 at 6:17 AM

    Madeleine, hi! Looking forward to trying this. How many small jars does this recipe fill? I’m looking to make seven (big family!) for Christmas gifts…

    • Reply sweetmadeleine December 16, 2015 at 2:23 AM

      I’m so sorry, I just saw this! I tripled this recipe today and it filled 5 – 250ml jars. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply staerling23 December 9, 2015 at 8:10 AM

    So glad Mary Ellen asked! I was wondering the same thing because I’m going to attempt this as a gift to friends & hoping to fill some pretty mason jars we have already.


    • Reply sweetmadeleine December 16, 2015 at 2:23 AM

      Tripling this recipe gave me five 250ml jars ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply lovelyoutliers December 16, 2015 at 2:50 AM

    Just whipped up a batch last night and I am totally hooked – the super soft skin I woke up to this morning worth the minor carpal tunnel from the stubborn hand mixer. Wondering how long it keeps for and if you recommend storing the jars you are not currently using in the fridge? Thanks! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply sweetmadeleine December 16, 2015 at 9:18 AM

      Oh I’m so glad you like it! It will definitely keep for a few months at least. I do keep my extras in the fridge to avoid any separating ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Homemade body lotion | lovelyoutliers December 21, 2015 at 4:06 AM

    […] got this recipe via the wonderfulย Sweet Madeline. Even though it really looked like I ruined everything, it totally worked in the […]

  • Reply Joy Shaughnessy January 7, 2016 at 7:48 PM

    OMG, I finally made this last week & I love it! Exactly what my nurse hands crave after 13 hours of constant washing/hand sanitizer. My skin has never felt better! The cleanup wasn’t even that bad either- I used my Ninja bender & whipped up the whole thing in 10 minutes. Filled it with Castile soap & very hot water, let it blend a couple minutes, dumped, then repeated twice & it was clean. Not too shabby! Thanks for another fabulous recipe/empowering activity!

  • Reply Night at the museum - Sweet Madeleine January 8, 2016 at 1:29 PM

    […] Use my homemade lotion to follow up for any stubbornly dry spotsย and on non-shower […]

  • Reply Corina Helen February 6, 2016 at 4:23 PM

    I just tried this for the first time and it was super easy! I used my immersion blender and it worked great. second batch I subbed some coconut oil for the olive (cause its my fave) and then in a GENIUS move I substituted rose water that a friend got in a Persian grocery store for the regular water. I mean really. Thank for sharing this recipe!!!

  • Reply Tried and true DIY beauty products – lovelyoutliers February 14, 2016 at 2:53 PM

    […] it on friends/family as gifts, who also seem to enjoy it a great deal. [Very lightly adapted fromย Sweet Madeline, including doubling the […]

  • Reply Natural Skin and Body Care 101 - Sweet Madeleine November 21, 2016 at 3:21 PM

    […] Body:ย I dry brush before I shower using one of these and then afterward while my skin is still damp I do a full-body coconut oil massage. My legs and hands typically need a heavier lotion, so I use my homemade body lotion, recipe here. […]

  • Reply Aisha May 28, 2020 at 6:08 AM

    Hey! Hello from Pakistan! I’d been wanting to recreate this for years ever since I came across your blog. Finally, found some beeswax here. I didn’t know the local name all these years. Today I whipped up the lotion with coconut oil instead of olive oil because thats what I had on hand. I definitely messed up the water proportion because it was slightly just slightly watery but I lifted off the cream from top and ladled into a glass jar. Super excited. Thank you! :))

    • Reply sweetmadeleine May 29, 2020 at 10:11 AM

      Heyy that’s wonderful! I’ve never tried it with coconut oil, and wondered how it would work. Sometimes mine ends up a tad watery, too, I think it has to do with how well it emulsifies – I do the same thing, just drain the extra water and you’re good to go. I’m so glad you finally got a chance to try it ๐Ÿ™‚

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