Good Morning Twinery fans! Angelica here today - and I'm SO SO excited to be back on the blog with a gift idea that would be perfect for anyone (even yourself!) - especially those with super sensitive skin, like my kiddos!
My kids both started developing little patches of eczema shortly after they were born. After trying countless over-the-counter treatments and even discussing with our pediatrician, I found an all-natural baby brand that had zero fragrances, zero chemicals, and was plant based. It worked! My kids' skin cleared right up and stayed nice and soft. However, it was close to $9 for body wash, $20-something for a small bottle of plant-based laundry soap, and even more for lotions and potions. I knew there had to be a better way, and little did I know, I was planting the seed of an adventure I'm totally committed to now - making my own household cleansers and skincare products! (Quick note: if you're interested in more recipes and ways to live more sustainably, on a realistic level, check out my new blog, Sweet Baby Mae's, launching in July! You will see LOTS of the Twinery being used on my homemade goodies there!)
Now here's what I love - Mother Nature develops everything we need to thrive and survive, right? Well, what if I told you that making your own plant-based skincare was not only possible, cheaper, and more sustainable, but it was really, really, really easy?
Hand Milled (sometimes called French Milled or Triple Milled) soaps are a great way to start if you're looking to create your own soaps. What you start with is something called "Rebatch Soap" - unscented, uncolored soap that's been made, cured for 4-6 weeks, and then grated into shavings. Once you melt the soap in a double boiler, you can add your scents of choice (I only use essential oils as my kids are super sensitive to most fragrances), and pour into molds to harden once again.
Once I melted my rebatch down, I added my absolute favorite essential oil - lavender - and mixed in some lemon to create one of my most loved combos - lemon/lavender! I then mixed in some dried marigold (calendula) which has excellent skin soothing properties. If you have or your kids have eczema, you totally know the wonderful things calendula can do for your skin! This soap is the one that is pictured in the front and back of the soap row above. It has a very rustic look to it, which I LOVE. Here's a closer look:
The second batch I decided to get a little crazy and add in just 2 Tbsp of extra coconut butter. YUMMY - it lathers up so rich, I actually have been using it in place of shaving cream on my legs. So so simple. For my fragrance, I used orange and lavender essential oils which is such a wonderful way to wake up in the morning! You'll notice I didn't even need to use any color because both soaps colored naturally with the addition of essential oils and herbs.
There are many ways you could color your soaps naturally, most include infusing oils with different herbs, and I highly recommend getting The Soapmaker's Companion by Susan Miller Cavitch if you are interested in learning more!
I followed this general tutorial the first time I made rebatch soap and it was very useful. You'll notice I altered the recipe just slightly in my lemon/lavender bar by using lemon instead of orange and not adding in any infused oil. It still lathers nicely and smells divine!
These soaps are textured, homespun, and gorgeous - which makes them so easy to accent - I simply wrapped in kraft paper and added some Lilac and Honeydew twine around the soaps stacked on top of each other (like a stack of gifts)! They make excellent favors for showers, pretty presents, and for new moms. The eco-luxe twine adds a natural, rustic finishing touch for a gift that's handmade, inexpensive, and from the heart.
I hope you enjoyed this project, and if you'd like to see more recipes and projects like this in the future I would love for you to hop on the list to be the first to know when Sweet Baby Mae's launches next month!! You'll receive a fun recipe card printable that you can enjoy right away.
Have a wonderful week!