One simple recipe gives you two lovely homemade beauty products. Pour a teaspoon in the palm of your hand and massage this DIY bath and body oil into your skin with your fingertips.
Or add a tablespoon in your bath water and let your mind drift away as you soak in this beautifully spiced bath oil.
Treat yourself or double, triple or quadruple the recipe below and you have an easy and original Holiday gift!
This luxurious oil delights all the senses. Screw the cap from the bottle, bring your nose close to the edge and take a deep breath in. Its scent is like a warm, cozy night by the fire, while snow is swirling around outside.
This sneaky 2-for-1 beauty product can be used as a Body AND as a Bath Oil.
The unique blend of winter spices, including cinnamon, vanilla and cardamom, take this ‘plain’ carrier oil to a whole new level.
As my base for this DIY bath and body oil I chose fractionated coconut oil.
Fractionated coconut oil differs slightly from its better know sibling cold-pressed coconut oil. They are similar in nature since they’re both made from the same product: coconuts (not very surprising, hey).
Their only difference is that fractionated coconut oil is processed to remain liquid at room temperature.
I like this oil for a body lotion as it’s clear in color and doesn’t have a distinct smell.
Other carrier oils that work great as a base for infusions are sweet almond oil, olive oil and argan oil.
How To Infuse Carrier Oils
There are two methods to infuse carrier oils with dried herbs and spices. One of them is called the hot infusion method, and the other is called the cold infusion method.
You might remember the cold infusion method from the coffee-infused oil I used in my anti-cellulite body cream recipe. I love cold-infused oils, because with time you get a gorgeous fragrant, concentrated infusion.
Its only downside: you need A LOT of patience. 6 to 8 weeks to be exact. And for a DIY enthusiast like me that’s a long, long time to wait.
Alternatively, you can use the much faster hot infusion method. With this method you use heat to reduce the infusion time to a couple of hours.
I love this quick method, and have used it for example in my DIY dry body oil mist recipe.
For this recipe I combined the hot and cold infusion method, to get the best of both techniques.
Winter Spice Blend to Infuse your Bath & Body Oil
Now that we’ve got our method and base oil sorted, its time to look at what we’ll infuse our oil with.
For this Holiday/Winter inspired gift idea I decided to go with warm spices that remind me of the Holiday season and winter vibes.
Make sure you always use dried herbs and spices, as you don’t want to introduce water to your oil!
My top picks for a winter spice infusion are:
- cinnamon stick or ground cinnamon
- vanilla bean or vanilla powder
- cardamom seeds
- star anise
- black tea leaves
- ginger or ginger bread spices
- all spice
- black pepper
And I’m sure you can think of a lot more spices to include. Choose a handful of spices that you believe will work well together.
Use them to infuse your carrier oil following the recipe below and you have a great personalized gift idea!
Bonus ingredient for Bath Oil: polysorbate 80
Polysorbate 80 is one of those ingredients that I’ve always wanted to try but never found a reason to.
This ‘chemically sounding’ ingredient is often added to bath bomb recipes, and I talk about its use in my bath bomb Q & A article.
But I like to keep my recipes quick and easy, using only natural ingredients you can pronounce. Polysorbate 80 (also called poly 80 or tween-80) doesn’t really seem to fit into that at all.
However, this solubilizing agent fixes a common problem you get with lots of homemade bath products. This substance helps disperse the oil into your bath water, which keeps it from floating to the top in small blobs and from clinging to your bath tub.
I’ve never found this to be a huge problem with bath bombs, but since this is a bath oil I thought this would be the perfect occasion to try it out!
Handful of winter spices - see article above for more ingredient suggestions
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3 star anise seeds
- 3 cardamom pods
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla powder
- 3 black pepper seeds
- First, we'll use the hot infusion method to infuse the carrier oil with the spices. Bring the water of your double boiler to a simmer. Add the carrier oil and spices to the top part of the double boiler.
- Let the double boiler sit over medium heat for 2 to 6 hours. Stir the oil and spices occasionally and adjust the heat underneath if necessary.
- Take the double boiler from the heat. At this point you can strain the oil, using a cheese cloth or coffee filter. I recommend doing this if you're using ground spices, as they will make your final product gritty. I prefer to do this in a separate container first before pouring the oil into the bottle. Drape the cheese cloth or coffee filter over the opening of the container and secure with an elastic band or piece of string. Carefully pour the oil on top and let it drip.
- Pour the (filtered) oil into a dark pump or cap bottle. Using a small funnel will make this process a lot easier. Leave about half an inch at the top.
- Optional: I added a couple of whole dried seeds to the final bottle as well. This way the oil can continue to cold infuse while the bath and body oil sits in your bathroom. If you feel the scent has gotten strong enough you can filter it again after a few weeks.
- Also optional: add 1/2 teaspoon of polysorbate 80 to the bottle. Screw the cap back on and give the mixture a good shake.
- Shake the bottle lightly before each use. Pour about a teaspoon in the palm of your hand to use a body moisturizer and massage it in with your fingertips. If you want to use it as a bath oil, scatter about 1 tablespoon of oil (or to preference) in warm bath water.
- Store the bottle in a cool and dry space and keep all water out. Use within six months.
- Always patch test before using a new beauty product.
- Keep in mind that oils can make your bath tub slippery, even if you're using a solubiliser. Be careful when getting in and out of the bath tub and clean up for the person after you.
If you like this DIY than don’t forget to put a pin on it!