I’ve always loved the smell of orange and vanilla together. It must go back to my childhood love of creamsicle popsicles and orange sherbet. So I knew I wanted to create a body lotion with those poignant smells in mind. I was also thinking of natural ways to make it a nice golden color, when I finally came up with the idea of adding a calendula tisane to the mix.
Calendula is soothing to the skin and it give this lotion a lovely golden hue. Luckily, it’s not so golden as to tint your skin, so no worries there. I’ve been using this lotion every day for 1 month now, and not only is my skin the absolute softest it’s ever been. It’s also definitely not been tinted yellow in the least. But I really wanted to be sure about this, which is why I’ve held off putting out this recipe until 30 days had went by.
Calendula is anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory, which is the perfect combination for skin in my opinion. It’s said to not only be soothing to your skin, but it’s also is thought to bring a nice even toned youthful look as well. I don’t think there’s any hard science to back this up, but in my 30 days of experience thus far – my skin has never looked better.
But I also just want to say a word of caution, some people can have an allergic reaction to calendula, especially if they’re allergic to anything in the daisy or aster family. It’s also not recommended for anyone pregnant or nursing, so there’s that to keep in mind as well. If you have very sensitive skin, I always suggest consulting your doctor before trying anything like this.
I happen to have extremely sensitive skin, and I always test new things out on myself in small areas in case my skin isn’t crazy about it. This recipe also contains citrus essential oils, which some people find troublesome for their skin. So again, consult your doctor for any concerns about what might be right for your particular skin.
There are 2 ways to make an herbal tisane for this recipe:
- If you have powdered calendula, steep it as directed in the recipe, then filter it through a coffee filter. Because the powdered calendula will clog up the coffee filter after a few minutes, you’ll need to keep stirring it until you get the 1/4 cup needed for the recipe.
- The easier way is to have dried calendula flowers, (I could only find powdered) but I have made tisanes this way. For flowers, or dried petals, you’ll need a tea ball to steep the the tisane with. From there, once the tisane has cooled you can strain it quickly through a fine mesh sieve just to remove any bits of petal that have escaped the tea ball.
I have a gigantic block of beeswax I’m working on using up, but grating beeswax is definitely the harder way. If you can find beeswax pellets, I’ve included the weight measurement in the recipe for that purpose. That way you can just weigh them out, with no grating involved.
Tip for how to clean your grater: As you might imagine, grating wax leaves a sticky residue that just won’t come off on your grater. But it will melt off easily if you carefully pour boiling water over the surface.
Before adding the liquids, I like to melt the oil and beeswax together just until the wax melts. You want to be careful not to get the oil too hot before adding liquid, or it can sputter when the calendula tisane is added.
Once the wax is melted, carefully whisk in the calendula tisane and the essential oils if you’re using them.
Then it’s time to let the lotion cool to room temperature. It takes about 30 minutes for the lotion to cool enough to start to become thick. From there you’ll want to transfer it to an airtight container for storage.
I placed mine in a small soap pump which works really well for dispensing the lotion. It’s also great for keeping the lotion for longer because you’re not touching it daily with your hands.
If you are using a dispenser for the lotion, it’s easiest to pour it through a funnel and into the container right away. It’s still possible to transfer it after it thickens, you’ll just have to work at it quite a bit more.
- 2 Tablespoons ground calendula flowers
- ¾ cup boiling water
- ¼ cup grated beeswax, 11 grams
- ½ cup jojoba oil
- 2 Tablespoons vanilla jojoba oil
- ¼ cup calendula tisane
- ½ Teaspoon orange essential oil
- ¼ Teaspoon tangerine essentail oil
- To make the calendula tisane, place the ground calendula in a heat proof jar/glass. Pour the boiling water over the top, and stir to combine. Let the mixture steep for 30 minutes, then strain it through a coffee filter into another container. I use my pour over coffee set up for this where the filter sets nicely in the plastic funnel. The ground calendula will clog up the coffee filter quickly, so mix it often with a spoon to stir up the settled herb and allow it to drain. Continue this process until you have ¼ of a cup, discarding any extra.
- Place a small saucepan over medium heat and add the beeswax. Let the beeswax fully melt, then add the jojoba oil and melt again just until liquid, being careful not to heat the mixture too much. If the mixture becomes too hot, it may splatter when the calendula tisane is added.
- When the wax/oil mixture is just melted, remove the mixture from the heat, and carefully stir in the vanilla jojoba oil, calendula tisane and essential oil.
- Whisk until the mixture is thoroughly combined. Then if you're using a lotion/soap dispenser use a funnel to transfer the lotion while it's still liquid.
- If you're transferring the lotion to a wide mouthed container, you can transfer it right away, or wait until it cools and blend it in a blender to make it fluffier. I have done this with a lotion dispenser too, but it's much more difficult to get the blended fluffy lotion tamped down through a funnel, and into the container.
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