Homemade Shea Butter & Witch Hazel Soap Recipe

Homemade Shea Butter and Witch Hazel Soap Recipe

Witch Hazel has been used as a home remedy for centuries by the Japanese, Chinese and Native Americans. It is a natural astringent and possesses antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. It’s commonly used to help ease itchy and irritated skin, acne, dermatitis, and eczema making it great choice as a homemade soap ingredient.

My natural shea butter and witch hazel soap makes a wonderful homemade Christmas gift idea for any of your friends or family who may suffer from easily irritated skin. It’s a natural choice that you’ll feel good about gifting. And, of course, you get to keep and use the extra bars!

Homemade Shea Butter and Witch Hazel Soap Recipe

Homemade Shea Butter & Witch Hazel Soap Recipe

© Rebecca’s Soap Delicatessen

Ingredients:

2.8 oz. castor oil
7.2 oz. (76°) refined coconut oil
11 oz. palm oil
7 oz. rice bran oil
5 oz. sesame oil
3 oz. shea butter

8 fluid oz. distilled water
4.8 oz. lye/sodium hydroxide

3 fluid oz. witch hazel extract (86%)
2.5 oz. Aspen Winter fragrance oil, optional
4 Tablespoons oil soluble titanium dioxide, optional
1 Tablespoon ultramarine blue pigment powder, optional

Instructions:

This witch hazel soap recipe will yield approximately 10-12 homemade soap bars depending on how they are cut and fits inside on of my DIY wooden loaf soap molds. This homemade soap recipe is not recommended for beginners. The witch hazel does significantly increase trace which may prove overly challenging to someone who doesn’t have cold process soapmaking experience under her belt. If this is your first time making homemade soap I recommend you begin with my cold process soapmaking tutorial and a simple cold process soap recipe to get you started on the path into the world of soapmaking.

I specifically chose the Witch Hazel Extract from Mountain Rose Herbs for this homemade witch hazel soap recipe as it leads in both quality and potency. Unlike most store brands with are distilled only once and often contain more alcohol than witch hazel, the witch hazel extract from Mountain Rose Herbs has been double distilled and contains 86% witch hazel extract and only 14% alcohol. This makes it more soothing than the version found in your local store, and lacks the alcohol sting and scent. I do not know and cannot offer advice on how witch hazel with a higher alcohol content will react.

Alternately, if you prefer not to work with traditional witch hazel you can make an oil infusion instead. Simply infuse witch hazel bark in one of the carrier oils you’ll be using with this recipe beforehand.

Begin by measuring out the distilled water with a large measuring cup. Pour into a pitcher or other heat safe, non-aluminum container. Set aside. Now weigh out the lye using a digital scale. Slowly pour the lye into the water and mix well until all of the lye has dissolved. (Don’t forget to take proper safety precautions including gloves, goggles and a well-ventilated area!) Now set the lye-water aside to cool.

Next weigh out the soapmaking oils and combine in a large stainless steel pot. Heat on the stove top over medium heat until all the oils have melted then remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Once the ingredients reach around 85°-90°F you can begin the soapmaking process. (Alternately you can also wait for the ingredients to reach room temperature.) If you are using colorant begin by adding the titanium dioxide to the soapmaking oils then mix with a stick blender to combine.

Now add the witch hazel and lye-water to the oils. Mix by hand or very slowly on low with the stick blender to combine. Add the fragrance oil and mix again. It will begin to trace very fast.

To get the marbled blue and white look like I have I then removed a small portion of the soap and added the blue pigment, mixed, then poured back into the pot and mixed lightly to disperse some of the color but not so much that it become uniform.

Now spoon – as your soap will likely be rather thick at this point – the soap into your prepared mold. The white top, if desired, can be achieved by dusting the top of the soap loaf with a white or pearl mica as soon as it’s poured into the mold. Finally, set a piece of cardboard on top of the mold then set aside for 24 hours.

Homemade Shea Butter and Witch Hazel Soap Recipe

Once the saponification period has passed you can now unmold the soap loaf and cut it into bars. Set the bars aside to cure 3-6 weeks then wrap and label as desired.

Homemade Shea Butter and Witch Hazel Soap Recipe

If you like the Christmas tree tag I used on one bar of my homemade witch hazel soap be sure to check out the DIY for making your own here. Or explore more of my homemade soap recipes by visiting Rebecca’s Soap Delicatessen You can also follow my DIY Bath and Body Pinterest board for additional recipes from both myself and other great soapmakers across the web.

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Easy DIY Christmas Ornaments

These easy DIY Christmas ornaments are made from Shrinky Dink paper. Not only do they look great on the tree but they make fun necklaces for kids too!

Create these easy DIY Christmas ornaments using Shrinky Dink Shrinkable Plastic! Not only do they look great on the tree but they also can be used as fun holiday necklaces for the kids!

Easy DIY Christmas Tree Ornaments Kids Can Make!

How to make easy DIY Christmas Ornaments

© Rebecca’s Soap Delicatessen

What you’ll need:

Rough & Ready Shrinky Dinks Shrinkable Plastic
embroidery floss
kraft paper or parchment paper
cookie sheet or baking pan
markers and/or paint pens
colored pencils
hole punch
copy paper, optional
scissors

Instructions:

Begin by drawing out Christmas tree shapes onto a plain sheet of copy paper until you get a design you like. Alternately you can search for Christmas tree clip art online. I drew all of my Christmas tree shapes free hand.

You’ll want your trees to take up anywhere from half to three-quarters of the page.

Now place one sheet of Shrinky Dink plastic on top of your design with the rough side up. Trace the outline of the tree with a marker.

How to Make Shrinky Dink Christmas Tree Ornaments

Now use markers or colored pencils to color in the trees. I used Prismacolor Colored Pencils for their bold pigments and ability to blend easily. If you like you can use gold and silver paint pens to add accents to your trees once they are colored.

How to Make Easy DIY Christmas Ornaments

Now use a pair of scissors to cut out the Christmas tree shapes. Punch holes in the top of each tree using a hold punch, then place the shapes rough/colored side up on a baking or cookie sheet on top of either Kraft paper or parchment paper. Place in a preheated 350°F oven for approximately 3-3 1/2 minutes or until the trees have completely shrunk.

If your trees start to curl while in the oven, use a spatula to flatten them back out as they shrink.

Now remove your Christmas tree ornaments from the oven and allow to cool. Remove them from the baking sheet then thread embroidery floss through the holes at the top. Use shorter pieces of floss for ornaments or longer pieces of embroidery floss for Christmas necklaces. Alternately you could also use these as gift tags for your homemade Christmas gifts.

These easy DIY Christmas ornaments are made from Shrinky Dink paper. Not only do they look great on the tree but they make fun necklaces for kids too!

Now all that’s left is to enjoy your new creations!

For more easy DIY Christmas ornaments and ideas for your Christmas tree this holiday season, be sure to check out and follow my For the Tree Pinterest board. You can also follow my other Pinterest boards for homemade Christmas gift ideas as well as bath and beauty recipes and more.

You can also find me on Blog Lovin’, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Natural Pear Soap Recipe

This natural homemade Pear Soap Recipe is made with real pear and the finished soap bars make lovely homemade Christmas gifts!

Seasonal fruit can commonly be found at a great price and that sometimes makes it a little too easy to overbuy. Recently this was the case for me with pears. Rather than tossing my overripe and easily bruised pears, however, I decided to use them to make homemade pear soap. Similar to my previous homemade soap recipes for both a natural tomato soap recipe and my homemade pumpkin soap recipe I used real fruit in this pear soap recipe, discounting the water for the amount of pear used.

For a more perfect looking homemade soap remove the skin first from your overripe pear and run through a food processor. Otherwise simply chop and mash both the flesh and skin of the pear together and let your stick blender do the work for you. This may result in some darker spots but this in no way effects the final quality of the soap. Add a pear fragrance oil to add to the fun or leave these homemade pear soaps unscented for a completely natural end product.

Natural Pear Soap Recipe

© Rebecca’s Soap Delicatessen

Ingredients:

8 oz. 76° coconut oil
11 oz. sustainable palm oil
3.5 oz. grapeseed oil
4.5 oz. sesame oil
3.5 oz. walnut oil
5.5 oz. castor oil

7 fl. oz. distilled water
4.8 oz. lye

4 oz. extra ripe pear, mashed
2.5 oz. fragrance oil, optional
nutmeg to suit, optional

Instructions:

You’ll need to follow my cold process soapmaking instructions to make this homemade pear soap recipe. This recipe will fit inside my DIY wooden loaf soap mold and yields approximately 10-12 bars depending on how they are cut.

Begin by measuring out the distilled water in a pitcher. Then, using a digital scale, weigh out the lye and stir into the water until it has fully dissolved. Set aside to cool.

In a large stainless steel pot weigh out and combine the coconut oil, palm oil, grapeseed oil, sesame oil, walnut oil and castor oil. Heat over medium heat until all the oils have melted and blended together then remove from heat.

While the oils and lye-water cool weigh out the pear and fragrance oil if desired. (I used a Caramelized Crimson Pear fragrance oil for my batch.)

Once the ingredients have cooled to around 95°-100°F you’re ready to start making soap.

Start by combining the mashed pear to the soapmaking oils. Mix well with a stick blender until thoroughly combined then slowly pour in the lye-water. Continue to mix until you reach a light trace then add your fragrance oil if you are scenting your soap. Use your stick blender to fully incorporate the fragrance and bring the soap to full trace.

Pour half of the soap into your prepared loaf mold then sprinkle an even layer of nutmeg across the top of the soap. Next, pour the remaining soap on top of the nutmeg dusted soap. Use a knife to level out the top then lightly cover the mold with a piece of cardboard.

Allow the soap to sit overnight. After a full day has passed you can unmold your soap and cut it into bars.

Let your soap cure for 4 –  6 weeks before use then wrap and label as desired.

To make this soap a little more luxurious, trying this recipe using an ounce less water and add 1 oz. of lanolin to your oils when you melt them.

Your final soaps from this natural pear soap recipe will make great homemade Christmas gifts. For more homemade soap recipes as well as seasonal DIY Christmas gift ideas be sure to follow my boards on Pinterest. You can also follow me on Blog Lovin’, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.