Saturday, July 24, 2010

Back to basics: Oil based body sprays - using exotic oils

Oil based sprays are a great way to play with exotic oils to see how you like the feeling of them on your skin. Most of these oils are expensive, so using them at 10% to 20% in a body spray with a carrier oil you already know and like gives you a chance to see if they live up to their promises.

Let's say I wanted to make an oil based moisturizer for my slightly sunburned shoulders. I might choose a light carrier oil - something like soybean oil, which contains a ton of great phytosterols and linoleic acid - and add my exotic oil to that at 10% to 20% (depending upon suggested usage). Pomegranate oil contains a ton of phytosterols that can reduce redness, inflammation, and itchiness as well as gallic acid, which can behave as a wound healer and cell regenerator. Or I might choose to use 10% sea buckthorn oil, which is showing great promise in treated burned skin. 

Although these oils tend to have long shelf lives, I like to include Vitamin E for the effects it has on my skin. You can leave it out if you want. 

This recipe is rated E for everyone, and is fantastic for beginners, those who don't wish to use preservatives, or those who are seeking an all natural product. The shelf life of this product is dependent upon the shelf life of your oils.

88% carrier oil
10% exotic oil
1% fragrance or essential oil
1% Vitamin E

Weigh each ingredient into a container, then pour into a mister bottle. Use. Rejoice.

As I've mentioned before, my husband gets very itchy legs and I've created this oil based spray in mind to help soothe the itchiness and possibly help heal his wounds. (Click if you want to see why I'm using each oil...) I'm not suggesting this recipe will help with bug bites, but it will help with itchiness caused by dry or damaged skin.

30% macadamia nut oil
25% soy bean oil
10% sea buckthorn oil
10% pomegranate oil
20% evening primrose oil
2% IPM
2% dimethicone
1% Vitamin E

Mix the oils together. Bottle in a spray bottle. You can add up to 1% fragrance oil and remove 1% of one of the oils. The Vitamin E is optional, but will increase the shelf life of your product.

If you like the idea of making an oil based moisturizer with exotic oils, then why not consider making a facial serum? Here's one for oily skin and another for dry skin.

Join me tomorrow for fun formulating solid scrub bars.


Mich said...

Hi Susan,
Speaking of experimenting with exotic oils, here's something I've long wondered...suppose I want to try evening primrose oil (or some such thing) in a formula...and I already have a bottle of evening primrose oil supplement capsules sitting around it okay to pop a bunch of them open and use them? Are the oils sold from our suppliers significantly different than the stuff from the health food store?

(I'd assume it would be safe, but I want some reassurance!)

Thanks for all your awesome information!

Harakas said...

Is Sea buckthorn oil an essential oil? I thought it's just sea buckthorn berries that are left over from making juice, then dried and finally soaked in sunflower oil for a couple of weeks?

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Mich. As far as I know, it's okay to use the capsules to get the evening primrose or other oils - I did this for a long time for my Vitamin E. The oils sold by our suppliers are cosmetic grade, whereas the oils from the capsules should be food grade. There shouldn't be a huge difference!

Great question!

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Harakas! Sea buckthorn is not an essential oil, it's a regular oil. Here's some information on how it's processed - the version I get isn't berries soaked in sunflower oil. You can get berry or seed oil. Where did you see that information?

Harakas said...

We have lots of sea buckthorn growing here. It's just the way my grandma makes the oil. The juice we drink and the leftovers (pulp) are dried and then soaked in sunflower oil. Later it's used for burns etc, especially sunburns. How is the oil made straight from berries? These are not oily berries per se. I thought that sunflower oil just absorbs all the good stuff out of the pulp, I never thought the berries would be oily enough to be pressed for oil. :)