Tuesday, July 8, 2014

One ingredient, ten products: Sunflower oil in a body oil

Making a body oil is a super easy project. Assemble your oils, grab a bottle, pour the oils into the bottle, rejoice. You can use one oil or a number of different oils - it's up to you. In today's project, the focus will be the sunflower oil.

This post is partially taken from this post -  Newbie Tuesday: Creating a body oil.

I'm posting a generic template recipe you can try at home and see which one you like best. My suggestion is to make something like 20 grams or so (should make about 1 tablespoon) for the two oil combination and maybe 30 grams for the three oil combinations. Keep really great records about what you did so you can make larger containers. Don't worry about adding a fragrance yet - we'll do that when you know which one you want to make into a larger batch.

If you want something that contains a lot of linoleic acid, I suggest using the sunflower oil at 50%, then add some other oils that you think you'd like. As sunflower oil can be quite greasy, you might want to choose some less greasy oils, like hazelnut oil, macadamia nut oil, fractionated coconut oil, or some of the exotic oils, like evening primrose oil, pomegranate oil, or camellia oil, to name a few.

If you're really not a fan of greasiness but want all the goodness of sunflower oil, consider using an ester with it. For instance, something like IPM (isopropyl myristate) or IPP (isopropyl palmitate) at up to 10%, or maybe something like C12-15 alkyl benzoate in place of one of the oils at up to 50%.

If you really aren't a fan of the greasiness, consider using sunflower seed oil at up to 20% of the amount, then a less greasy oil for the rest of it. The problem with the less greasy oils is that they tend not to contain a lot of linoleic acid. The more exotic oils contain lots of linoleic acid, it seems, but they tend to be really expensive. By adding a bit of this and a bit of that, you are creating a product with all kinds of interesting features for not a lot of money.

50% one oil
49% another oil
1% fragrance or essential oil


33% oil
33% another oil
33% yet another oil
1% fragrance or essential oil

Things to consider...
  • If you want to make something that doesn't stain your clothing or sheets, you'll want to consider fractionated coconut oil and sesame seed oil. 
  • If you want something clear, you'll want to choose clear oils. Remember that your fragrance or essential oil could change the colour. 
  • If you want something less greasy feeling, then add less greasy feeling oils. If you want something more greasy feeling, then add more greasy feeling oils. Just keep records of how much you added to the mix. 
  • It is okay to hate a combination and throw it out! That's why we start with small batches - it's not so bad to throw out 20 grams of oil. 100 grams is a bit much! Keep records of what you hated! 
The shelf life of this product is the shelf life of the shortest lived oil. If you're using grapeseed oil or unrefined hemp seed oil, you have three months. For every other oil, consider it to be as high as 6 months, but this will depend upon the age of the oils. If you have a bottle of olive oil that is 6 months old, then you have 6 months left.

This product will not need to have a preservative, although you could use an anti-oxidant. Preservatives are intended for products that contain water or might be around water, like sugar scrubs. Anti-oxidants are all about retarding the rancidity of the oils, so you could include something like 0.5% Vitamin E to the final batch you intend to use, but I don't think you'll have it around for more than six months!

Related posts:
Bath oil and after bath moisturizers
Back to basics: Oil based body sprays
Duplicating products: Neutrogena body oil

Join me tomorrow as we take a look at how to create a blooming or emulsified bath oil!


SkinnyB*tch said...

i enjoyed the feel of the oil i made but found the scent (frangrance oil) did not linger on my skin for very long after aplication... is there something i could be using to make the scent stick? appreciate any response you may have, thank you:-)

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

This is the failing of the fragrance oil, so you'll want a fragrance fixative. There are water and oil soluble ones. In this case, look into C12-15 alkyl benzoate (search or go to the emollients section as I can't link right now), which is a great fragrance fixative that will also make the product feel less greasy, if that's what you want.

SkinnyB*tch said...

thanks susan! the addition of c12-15 provided a noticeable difference in the scent sticking around a little longer... i didnt know what percentage to use it at so i added only a small amount. would the scent last even longer by adding a higher amount or by pairing it with another ingredient that also performs as a fragrance fixative?