This lotion bar recipe is great for everyone, especially those with dry or cracked skin. You only need 3 ingredients to make them!
The other day I posted a tutorial on how to make whipped Coconut Oil Moisturizer. I mentioned a few of the many health benefits of using coconut oil, like how it reduces skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis. It also softens the skin and relieves dryness and flaking. Applied topically it helps to prevent wrinkles, saggy skin, and age spots. Coconut Oil is truly amazing, and this lotion bar recipe is a perfect way to apply coconut oil to your skin!
Today I’m sharing a recipe for making Coconut Oil Lotion Bars. These bars are great for everyone, especially those who live in warmer areas and don’t want their moisturizer to melt! This lotion bar is easy to make and only has 3 ingredients! These make great gifts for the holidays and are always a favorite when I’ve gifted them to friends and teachers.
Most lotion bar recipes call for a hard butter like cocoa butter or shea butter, but I prefer to mix coconut oil into these solid lotion bars. Coconut oil adds an element to this recipe that makes these bars melt easily on the skin, but still stay solid at room temperature. Because these lotion bars are oil based, you don’t need to use preservatives.
How To Make Lotion Bars
You’re going to need coconut oil, shea butter or cocoa butter, beeswax (I like to use local beeswax), and essential oils for this recipe.
Next, measure equal parts in ounces for the oils and beeswax. For example, I used 4 oz of coconut oil, 4 oz of shea butter, and 4 oz of beeswax to make six 2-ounce lotion bars.
Then, melt the ingredients in a double boiler or a heat safe bowl over a saucepan of water. Once the oils and beeswax are melted, remove from the heat and let it cool for a few minutes.
Now, add essential oils to the mixture and stir. I added 35 drops of Lavender, which was perfect for me. You may add more or less, just smell as you go! Other scents you can use for lotion bars is peppermint, frankincense, lemon verbena, or your favorite skin-loving essential oil.
Pour the lotion into bar molds and refrigerate until the lotion bars are solid. Once the bars are solid, remove them from the molds and store them in an air-tight container or a metal tin.
FAQ & Substitutions
What can I use instead of coconut oil?
Shea butter, mango butter or cocoa butter are both great substitutes for coconut in this solid lotion bar recipe.
What other essential oils can I use in this lotion bar recipe?
Peppermint oil and vanilla are a great combo (use vanilla extract if you don’t have vanilla essential oil)!
Is there a vegan alternative to beeswax that can be used to make this hard lotion bar?
Yes, Carnauba wax is a great alternative to beeswax. It’s obtained from of a species of sustainably grown palm known as the “Tree of Life” or Copernica cerifera. The wax is derived from the leaf of this tree, and harvesting is done via manual pruning once a year, allowing the tree to continue growing for decades. Another vegan options is soy wax, which can be used in a 1:1 ratio for beeswax in this recipe.
Do you use a lotion bar mold?
Yes, I have used several different molds to make my lotion bars. I like to use a square silicone mold for this recipe, but you can use your favorite molds.
How To Use Lotion Bars
If you haven’t used a lotion bar before, you should read this first before making this recipe! The first time I used a lotion bar I had some trouble. No one explained to me how to use them. I ended up bringing it into the shower with me and used it like a bar of soap. It worked pretty well as a moisturizer, but a lot of it would wash off in the shower. Later I figured out that you’re not supposed to use it in the shower (though I still keep one in my shower because we like to use it the wrong way). Instead, you will use your body temperature to warm the lotion bar by rubbing it in your hands first. Then, apply it on your skin like regular lotion. I really like to use hard lotion on my elbows, knees and heels, since those are the areas where I have very dry skin that needs extra nourishment. Store the lotion bars out of direct sunlight to prevent them from melting.
If you LOVE this Lotion Bar Recipe, you may want to check my other DIYs like my DIY Whipped Body Butter Recipe, Homemade Lip Balm, DIY Lip Gloss, Coffee Body Scrub, and Homemade Bath Bombs! These all make for a great gift and pair well with these homemade lotion bars.Print
Easy Lotion Bar Recipe
These DIY Lotion Bars are great for everyone, especially those with dry or cracked skin. This recipe calls for organic ingredients, like natural oils, organic beeswax and essential oils.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 10 minutes
- Yield: 6 lotion bars 1x
- Category: DIY
- Method: Stovetop
- 1 part coconut oil (example: 4 ounces)
- 1 part organic shea butter or organic cocoa butter (example: 4 ounces)
- 1 part pure beeswax (example: 4 ounces) or carnauba wax (vegan)
- (optional) Essential Oils (lavender, frankincense, and orange essential oils are my favorite oils to use)
- Heat coconut oil, shea butter, and beeswax together in a saucepan over low heat. It helps if you break up the beeswax into small chunks because it takes a while for the wax to melt. You can also use beeswax pastilles, which will melt faster.
- Once the beeswax, coconut oil, and shea butter are melted, add essential oils. I like to use vanilla, sweet orange, and lavender. I’m sensitive to strong fragrances so I only add 10-15 drops of essential oil per 2 ounces of oil. Alternatively, you can make an unscented lotion bar and leave out all fragrance oils.
- Pour melted coconut oil and beeswax into lotion bar molds or muffin tins.
- Let them sit until cool. You can also place them in the refrigerator if you need to speed up the process.
This recipe will make six 2 oz bar or molds.
This recipe was originally published November 28th, 2012 and was updated with new images and a video tutorial on September 20th, 2020.