Beauty/Grooming, Health/Life

How to make hand cream: DIY recipes

make hand cream

What is the best way to make hand cream at home? Our guide outlines the simple ingredients and process to make hand cream yourself, natural and money-saving.

Find more health, beauty and personal care guides, tips and advice

What ingredients are needed to make a high-quality hand cream yourself? In principle, you only need 2 ingredients. You can use shea or cocoa butter as well as almond or jojoba oil.

Do I need a lot of time to make my own hand cream? Luckily, it’s very quick to make a hand cream yourself. In 5 minutes the individual mixture is ready.

Does it make sense to add a fragrance? This depends on your personal preferences. However, don’t overdo it and take just a few drops of essential oil if you choose a fragrance.

Dry and brittle skin is happy about additional care. But it is not only in winter that the hands suffer, because frequent hand washing and constant disinfection cause the natural skin barrier to be attacked. We will show you how to make a natural hand cream yourself and which fragrances are best suited for the DIY cream.

1. Ingredients you need to make hand cream

There is more than just a recipe with which you can make hand cream yourself. However, most variants are similar in terms of basic ingredients.

We would like to introduce you to some typical basic ingredients in the next sections. All ingredients (except beeswax) are completely vegan. In doing so, we deliberately refrain from presenting typical petroleum-based home remedies, such as Vaseline.

If you are in a hurry, jump directly to the second pointwhere we present you recipes with which you can quickly and easily produce your very own natural cosmetics.

If you want to make hand cream yourself, pay attention to high-quality ingredients and use only organic products. Please also keep in mind that the deliberate renunciation of water in the preparation means that it is not a fast-moving cream.
Instead, your skinis supplied with valuable nutrients for a longer period of time in order to benefit more from it.

Tip: The great advantage of a home-made cream is that it does not contain any artificial additives that do more harm than good to the skin.

1.1. Cocoa butter

The cocoa butter is obtained from the seeds of the cocoa tree. The extract melts already at normal body temperature,so that a pleasantly soft skin feeling remains.
Due to the very high fat content, cocoa butter is ideally suited for skin care.
In the case of finished products, cocoa butter is often only contained in small proportions.

1.2. Shea butter

Preferable to use unrefined shea butter. This natural product is obtained from the nut of the vitellartia paradoxa tree. Shea butter is often refined, which loses the characteristic smell and colour. In its original state, shea butter is rather yellowish,sometimes with a slight green bite, while refined shea butter shines white. A greasy, nutty or fruity smell is typical of the unrefined variant.

1.3. Coconut oil

The whitish oil, which becomes solid at just under 23 degrees Celsius, not only provides the skin with plenty of fat, but also ensures a pleasant natural fragrance.
Depending on the odour sensation, you can already dispense with other fragrance additives. Coconut oil moisturizes, but only superficially penetrates the skin.

1.4. Beeswax

This natural product is produced when bees build their honeycombs. It is water-repellent, but does not close the skin,so that it can be constantly moisturized.
In addition, beeswax has an antibacterial effect.

Unfortunately, beeswax is often counterfeited due to the high price, so that many products contain cheap paraffin.
The typical smell is replaced with the help of Propolis.

1.5.Jojoba oil

In contrast to other types of wax, jojoba oil is already liquid at 7 degrees Celsius and is ideal as an addition if you want to make hand cream yourself. The wax pressed from the seeds of the jojoba tree is very oxidation-resistant,which allows it to be used for a long time without becoming rancid.

1.6. Almond oil

The pressing of sweet and bitter almonds produces almond oil. The oil penetrates well into the skin and ensures sufficient fattening.
Due to its tolerability and comparatively low price, it is often also used in baby oils.

2. Recipes and process

Before you can start preparing your own cosmetics, it is best to put all the utensils at your disposal.
You need:

  • a small heat-resistant bowl (preferably with suspension for a pot)
  • a stirring rod
  • a kitchen scale (this should be able to accurately measure even very small gram numbers)
  • Cosmetic tins for storage

Now it’s time to get started. The following ingredients are required for the basic recipe:

  • 25 g cocoa butter
  • 25 g shea butter
  • 20 g coconut oil
  • 20 g jojoba oil (or almond oil)

Good to know: Making your own hand cream is not only suitable if you have dry skin. Even in skin diseases such as neurodermatitis, a hand cream with high-quality organic ingredients provides relief. 

  • First, measure the cocoa butter, shea butter and coconut oil and place all 3 ingredients in a heat-resistant bowl.
  • Place a pot of water on the stove, bring the water to the boil, remove it from the cooking place and melt the 3 ingredients in the water bath.
  • Afterwards, add the already liquid jojoba oil,mix everything and fill it into suitable containers.
  • For these simple steps it is not worth using the Thermomix.
  • The mixture then becomes firm again when cooled down.

Tip: Depending on your wishes, you can refine the basic recipe by adding 5 to 7 drops of essential oil.
You can do this at the end before letting the cream cool down.

Alternatively, replace the above amount of cocoa butter with beeswax,which makes the mixture smell a little more. If you live vegan, you can also use canauba wax instead of beeswax. Note, however, that the amount is reduced to about one third, as canauba wax is very firm. In addition, it has a comparatively high melting point at about 87 degrees Celsius.

3. Refine hand cream with fragrances – these are suitable

In principle, it is not necessary to refine the homemade hand cream with fragrances. Coconut oil and beeswax in particular have a comparatively strong, very pleasant odour. You only need a few drops of essential oil.

Nevertheless, it is sometimes simply nicer when the hand cream still smells of something else. It is best to use essential oils to give your hand cream the finishing touches. Add a few drops to the still liquid mixture and mix before filling.
The following essential oils are very popular:

  • Lavender oil: The lavender scent is especially useful when applying the cream before you go to sleep. Lavender has a calming and relaxing effect.
  • Citrus oil: If you still have a lot to do and want to start the day motivated, a hand cream with fresh lemon scent is a good time.
  • Rose oil: The scent of a rose is said to have an aphrodisiac effect. Perhaps it is worth trying on yourself.

Please do not use any alternative home remedies or perfumes to add fragrance.

4. Shelf life of home-made hand cream

It is best to avoid water if you make hand cream yourself. Although the cream does not absorb easily into the skin, it is much longer-lasting. On average, you can use your own hand cream for the next 6 months without any problems.

As a rule, the shelf life is given even longer. Coconut oil, however, tends to become rancid,which affects the whole mixture.

If you want to extend the shelf life additionally, you can add vitamin E. However, this is not necessary for creams without water content per se.