Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Oatmeal and Lavander Soap

There are various ways to make soap. The easiest and safest method is called 'melt and mold'. This is when you buy a ready made soap base and literally melt it and mold it into any shape you like. You can also add herbs, colourant and essentials oils to customize your own soap.

Make sure you buy high quality melt and mold bases for a good quality handcrafted soap. For SLS & Paraben Free soap bases visit 
200grams Opaque SLS free soap base
1 tablespoon Oat flakes
6ml Lavender Essential oil
Empty butter container to use as mold.
Rubbing Alcohol

1. Melt the soap base in a microwave or a double boiler. Make sure you cover properly to keep the moisture from evaporating. It takes only a minute and a stir or two when using a microwave. When using a double boiler, you simply bring the water to a boil then add the base. Set the heat to low then check periodically to see if everything has melted.
2. As soon as everything is melted, add oatmeal and essential oil then stir well (slowly).
3. Make sure you get rid of bubbles forming by spraying with alcohol.
4. Pour your final melted base into the mold . Spray with alcohol to remove excess bubbles.
5. Wait for the soap to harden, unmold then enjoy lathering onto your skin.

For more advance techniques, join us at SoapCafe` during our Soap Making Workshops. For more info, click on the link. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

How to make Bath Fizzies!

Bath fizzies or bath bombs are relatively easy to make...if you have the right recipe that is! The following recipe has always given me great results. Check it out.
All ingredients can be bought from under the section ''DIY COSMETIC SUPPLIES''

1 ½ Cup Baking Soda
½ Cup Citric Acid
2 teaspoons base oil (Can be Grapeseed or Almond oil)
Few sprits of water
Colour, perfume, Petals (optional)

Mix dry ingredients together (i.e. Citric Acid and Baking soda). Break any lumps.

Add just 1 drop of food coloring into the mix. Do not put more or it will stain your bath!

Add 2 tablespoon of base oil and half a tablespoon of fragrance/essential oil of your choice. Mix together well.

Start spraying some water to the mix until it feels like wet sand. The mix should hold together when you squeeze it in your hands. Make sure that the mix is not too wet or it will start to fizz.

Place in molds and make sure you squeeze and press as much as possible. Leave it to set for a couple of minutes then release slowly from the mold.

Leave to cure for 24 hours before use. Use within 2 months

SoapCafe` also offers Bath Bomb workshops to guarantee great looking bath bombs every single time! Click on the link for more details.

"Sweet Dreams" Linen Spray

Aside from being able to create your favorite linen spray scents is the added benefit of adjusting the level of scent that permeates your home. If you prefer a stronger-smelling spray, you have the flexibility of adding additional drops of essential oils. On the other hand, if you prefer a soft, barely noticeable hint of fragrance, fewer drops of the essential oil will be required. In addition, you will have the luxury of mixing oil scents together, creating your own signature fragrances for your homemade linen sprays.

60ml Floral water (Lavender or Rose Water)
40ml *Ethanol or Vodka
15-20 drops of Essential oils

Suggested Essential oils:
Choose non-staining essential oils for white linens, try any of the following: Lavender, Eucalyptus, Rosemary, Peppermint, Petitgrain

Mix all ingredients together. Shake well before using. Store in a cool dark place. Product is best kept in a dark glass bottle

*Ethanol is often sold as "Rubbing Alcohol." Do not use Isopropyl as it is derived from petroleum.

All materials can be bought online from under the category ''DIY Cosmetic Supplies''

Deodorising Foot Soak

For all those who suffer from tired feet and need a quick pick me up treat. It softens dry and cracked heals and soften cuticle. This formula is also a good way to natural deodorize feet which are prone to excessive sweat and thus stinky feet. (Great for both men and women) 

1/4 cup Epsom Salts
1/4 cup sea salt
1/2 cup Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda)
5 Drops Lavander Essential oil
5 Drops Tea Tree oil Essential oil
5 Drops Eucalptus Essential oil
5 Drops Peppermint Essential oil
1 tsp peppermint leaves
1 tsp thyme leaves

1. Mix Salts and Baking soda together in a stainless steel bowl, add essential oils and mix well with fork.Add herbs and mix again.
2. Place in air tight glass jar (dark is best). Store in a dark cool area.

Use 2 full Tbsp’s of mixture per approx 4 Liters amount of water.

All materials can be bought online from under the category ''DIY Cosmetic Supplies''

Chamomile and Oatmeal Bath Tea

The following recipe is a great relief for itchy and irritated skin. It's also a great treatment for sunburned skin. Safe to use on children and for rashes.The relaxing qualities and lavender make and excellent remedies for insomnia sufferers. Just immerse yourself in a warm bath infused with these beautiful bath treats.
4 Tbsp Chamomile Flowers
4 Tbsp Oatmeal flakes
2 Tbsp Calendula leaves
2 Tbsp Lavender buds 
2 Tbsp Sodium Bicarbonate
5 Drops Lavender Essential oil.

Mix all dry ingredients together. Store in an air tight container until ready to use . Keep in a cool dry place. Use 2 Tbsp blended Tub Tea per bath.
Place Tub Tea in mesh or fabric bag. Fill tub with water allow Tub Tea to gently infuse bath water while you relax.

(The fabric keeps all the little pieces from blocking the drain)

All materials can be bought online from under the category ''DIY Cosmetic Supplies''

Clear Skin Herbal Toner

If you want a natural alternative to toners, and a remedy for oily type and acne prone skin, you should check out this recipe.

1 tsp each Lavender and rose leaves
125ml (1/2 cup) Distilled or filtered water
50 ml (3 Tbsp) Witch Hazel
20ml (4 tsps) Aloe Vera gel
30ml (2 Tbsp) Lavender water
8 drops Lavender Essential oil
8 drops Tea Tree Essential oil
4 Drops Lemon Essential oil


1) Infuse herbs in boiled water. Allow to steep for 15 minutes, strain and keep liquid, allow to cool .
2) Blend liquid and remaining ingredients together
3) Pour into a clean container.

Shake before use. Store in a cool dark location, refrigerate for up to 8 months. Unrefrigerated shelf life approx 3 months.

Apply with a cotton wool.

All materials can be bought online from under the category ''DIY Cosmetic Supplies''

Friday, April 15, 2011

General Guidelines for Using Essential Oils Safely

Essential Oils are volatile and are highly flammable. I know many people who make wrong use of such products because they underestimate the power of natural remedies. Never assume that because a product is natural, then it's safe to 'use and abuse'.

When using essential oils, please follow these general safety guidelines:

• Keep away from fire or open flame
• Store in a cool place
• Keep out of sunlight
• Plastic bottles are a no as they allow the essential oil to evaporate and take on the plastic smell; additionally, plastic bottles generally collapse as they start to absorbed the essential oil
• Expensive essential oils should be kept in the fridge
• Wash your hands after using essential oils
• If you mix your essential oil with a fixed oil to make it skin safe, keep in mind that your fixed oil has a shorter shelf life than your essential oil and may go rancid. Always mix in small batches.
• Essential oils can stain and also remove nail polish and furniture finish
• Have an eye rinse station nearby. If you get essential oils in your eyes, use milk or a carrier oil first to help neutralize the oil and then move on to water
• Essential oils are generally not soluble in water
• Essential oils do not mix well with computers, pets, children, furniture, carpet and even indoor plants
• Make sure your bottles are labeled correctly
• Use caution when working around essential oils if you have any open cuts or wounds
• Essential oils can negate the effect of sensitive homeopathy remedies
• Some essential oils are photo sensiziers, like bergamot, orange eo and most citrus essential oils
• Only buy your essential oils from a reputable place.
• If you are pregnant, be extra careful with essential oils during your first trimester
• When working with undiluted essential oils, keep a good air flow in the room
• Always have a fire extinguisher near by. Essential oils are volatile, flammable liquids.