Sunday, August 4, 2013

DIY Whipped Shea-Cocoa Body Scrub Recipe and Tutorial

I love a nice moisturizing body scrub.  It's exfoliating, it keeps your skin soft and smooth and it's easy to make at home!

Here's what you'll need:
100% Shea butter (raw)
Cocoa butter (raw)
Carrier oil, such as coconut oil, olive oil, sweet almond oil, etc.
Granulated sugar
A scale kitchen scale (if possible)
A measuring cup and tablespoon (if you don't have a kitchen scale)
A medium or large bowl
A larger bowl or 2-4 inch deep pan that your bowl will fit in
A mixer with whipping attachment
A scraping-type spatula
A need for speed (Oh, wait.  Wrong recipe, nevermind)
A plastic or glass container with a lid to store the finished product in

This is a quick, easy, and all-natural body scrub recipe.  There are very few ingredients, all of which can most likely be found at your local health food store or even a local grocery store.  This should only take you about 10 minutes to whip up, and you can enjoy it knowing there are no harsh chemicals or unknown ingredients inside.  It's also non-toxic, so it won't hurt anyone if your toddler takes a bite (though I wouldn't recommend eating it.)

The recipe:
Shea butter- 2 oz 
Cocoa butter- 2oz
Carrier oil- 2oz  You may need more or less carrier oil depending on how firm you want the finished product to be and which oil you are using
Sugar- 6oz
If you do not have a kitchen scale, you will need to do a bit of guestimating.  I found a tablespoon of butter or oil weighed about .3-.4 ounces, depending on what I was weighing.  So about 5 tablespoons of each is a good estimate, though it may not be exact.  The 6 oz of sugar is equal to about 2/3 cup.

Before you even start measuring, you will need your shea butter, cocoa butter and carrier oil in liquid form.  The easiest and safest way to do this is to fill your bowl or pan with hot water and place the container right into the water. (Please don't melt them in your microwave! ) Take a break, you've worked hard today.  Put your feet up, play with the dog, or feed your kids some lunch.  Your ingredients should start to melt quickly.  You might need to reheat the water once or twice if you are using very large containers of butter or oil.

When most of or all of your ingredients have melted, you can start your measuring.  Measure 2 ounces of shea butter, 2 ounces of cocoa butter and 2 ounces of your carrier oil (I used sweet almond oil) into your bowl.  I did this by zeroing out the weight of the bowl on my food scale, then adding 2 ounces of shea.  I then zeroed out the weight of the shea, and added my cocoa, which I zeroed out and added my oil.  If you don't have a food scale, you can guestimate with the 5 tablespoons of each that we discussed earlier.  If you want to add a little scent, you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil or vanilla extract into the mix right now.  I love the scent of the shea and cocoa, so I didn't add anything else.

Next, you will need to quickly cool your liquid while you are whipping it with your mixer to get it nice and light.  I did this by placing my bowl of liquid into a pan filled with cold water.  Get to mixing, because your liquid will harden quickly if you don't.  Just keep beating your liquid until it mixes up all nice and light and fluffy.  It should only take a minute or two.  Keep your scraping spatula handy to clean the sides of the bowl. 
If your mixture does not fluff up nice and light, and becomes hard to mix and chunky, you will most likely want to add another tablespoon or two of your carrier oil.

Once your liquid has turned into a shea/cocoa version of whipped cream, it's time to remove the bowl from the cold water and add the sugar.  This is the 'scrub' part of the shea-cocoa body scrub.  If you like a little more moisturizing and a little less scrubbing, add less sugar.  If you like more scrubbing, add more sugar.  None of this is an exact science, so feel free to mess around a bit and play with the ratios.  Make sure to add your sugar SLOWLY while whipping with your mixer.  If it becomes too hard and thick to mix, try using your scraping spatula to mix instead.  If your scrub is still too hard to mix, you need more oil.  Keep mixing until all of your sugar has been combined with the other ingredients.

Ta-da!  That's it!  You now have a light and fluffy all-natural body scrub that you made at home right in your very own kitchen.

A few last minute tips:
Because your scrub is made with all-natural ingredients and no chemicals, it may feel oily on your skin.  This doesn't bother me.  It only lasts a few minutes before it soaks in.  If this bothers you, you can try adding a little baking soda or arrowroot powder to your sugar and mix it into your scrub.  I did NOT try this so I don't know how it affects the scrub, but I've heard good things.
If you want your scrub to be very firm, cut the amount of carrier oil in half.  You will have a very firm and not exactly whipped scrub, but if that's what you like, go for it!
If your home is very warm or you leave your scrub in a steamy bathroom, you might find that it separates a little or begins to melt.  This is nothing to worry about, just give your scrub a quick mix with a spoon and it'll be fine.

Do you love a good body scrub?  What did you think of this recipe if you tried it at home?


  1. This looks awesome! I love the idea of making my own scrub. Thanks.

  2. I will definitely be making some of this! Perhaps one with some drops of lavender and maybe another with some sweet orange essential oils :-)

    1. mmmm Lavender sounds amazing with this!

      Thanks for sharing this recipe :) I can't wait to try it!

      And yes, I absolutely LOVE body scrubs. They make my skin feel SO smooth and soft.

  3. When I first tried a natural body scrub I was kind of put off by the oily feeling, but you're right - it goes away within minutes and then my skin feels wonderful afterwards!

  4. Sounds awesome and pretty easy! I love DIY stuff that is simple.

  5. Thanks for the tutorial. The only thing that would make it better is adding essential oils.