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How to Get Started with DIY Skincare & 30+ Highly Effective DIY Recipes!

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Would you like to learn how to make your own skincare products but don’t know where to start? Do you want to make homemade, natural remedies that will address specific skin issues using common ingredients from nature? Taking care of our skin using diy skin care recipes is a great way to rid your skincare routine of harmful ingredients while still addressing you skin concerns. In this blog post, I’ll clear the confusion and share with you my favorite recipes that will address the specific needs of all skin types from sensitive skin to acne-prone skin. Natural skincare recipes are not only effective-making your own products saves you money without letting go of high quality, luxurious skincare.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. Learn more

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DIY skincare can be as simple or as complicated as you want to make it.

I believe skin care is best when it is simple and as close to nature as possible. I also believe that harnessing all that nature has to offer can only be done via DIY skincare. 

Simple is a good thing when it comes to homemade skin care recipes because it means you don’t have to be a professional skin care formulating chemist to make effective products that your skin will love and respond positively to!

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To reap the benefits of making your own beauty product all you need are a few time tested, organic, simple ingredients and common kitchen accessories and you can make homemade products that can change your skin for the better. 

The Beauty Industry Myth.

First off, let me debunk the beauty industry myth.

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It is simply untrue that the beauty industry is regulated to the point that a company can not sell a product that is harmful.

In fact, a skin care and/or makeup company does not even have to list every single ingredient on it’s bottles. Did you know that Europe has banned thousands of ingredients to be used in beauty products yet the U.S. has banned only a handful?

Many products on the market contain ingredients that can cause substantial hormone disruptions, skin irritations and even cancer. 

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Cleaning up your skin care routine is so vitally important because what you apply to the skin doesn’t just penetrate the skin. It actually reaches the blood stream and circulates through the body. A study was done in 2009 that showed over 200 chemicals were found in the new born umbilical chord blood. What we apply to our skin is so much more than skin deep. 

As women, many of us use a large plethora of beauty products a day. If you aren’t selecting safe products, the toxic load you are exposed to daily could be a substantial detriment to your overall health. 

Is DIY Skincare Better?

DIY skin care’s power depends on the quality of the ingredients you use as well as the efficiency of the recipe. Soon after venturing into making my own skincare products, I realized that I can make a high quality, effective and indulgent beauty product that can rival conventional products found in a high end department store.

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Something I love about making my own skin care is that I have complete control over what is in the bottle and where and how the ingredients are sourced. I know that what I make is of the upmost quality minus the harmful, unnatural ingredients.

We now know that skincare companies are not held accountable to list every single ingredient on their labels. Unfortunately many, many ingredients have to be added to over the counter products to extend shelf life and make consistency uniform since those products could possibly set on a shelf for a prolonged amount of time. These added ingredients have nothing to do with beautifying the skin. In fact, they often are harmful to the skin. 

So to answer the question, is DIY skin care better? Absolutely! YES YES YES as long as you commit to sourcing organic, pure ingredients and pay attention to the freshness of your products.

Is it Safe to Use DIY Skincare?

There are a few ingredients I recommend not adding to your DIY skincare regime. Baking soda, citrus fruits, undiluted vinegars and spices can all irritate the skin. 

One of the biggest pitfalls when it comes to the safety of DIY Skin Care can be homemade scrubs. Often a homemade scrub is too harsh. Over exfoliating the skin can cause big issues and so often, we think less is more and end up over scrubbing. I rarely recommend scrubs for the face. 

Also, as we’ve mentioned above and will mention again below, bacteria can be a big issue in DIY skincare and there is much confusion and a lot of bad advice about properly stabilizing your products. It is imperative to address bacteria growth in your DIY products. Luckily, there are many DIY skincare recipes that don’t require a preservative and have a long shelf life.

Remember, if your recipe only contains oil based ingredients, you don’t need a preservative and in my opinion, oil based beauty products are the most effective.

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However, as long as you have a good source for safe recipes (Hello, me!) and stick to nourishing, gentle ingredients, DIY skincare can be much safer than most store bought skincare products. 

How Do You Make Homemade Skincare?

When someone comes to me overwhelmed with ridding their beauty routine of toxic products, one of my best tips is to start with the most toxic product used on a daily basis and work your way down. Don’t immediately get bogged down with beauty rituals done on a weekly or monthly basis. Address the daily culprits first. 

First-ditch perfume. It is the most toxic product you use. Next, tackle deodorant and toothpaste. I have DIYs for both or find more natural options at your grocer. I’m happy to say these 2 products are very easy to swap. Even Walmart and Dollar General have a wide natural variety. 

Next is skin care and that’s where I come in…

DIY Facial Cleansers:

When I first began experimenting with homemade skin care, I was very excited to make a facial cleanser. I researched and researched and finally came up with a recipe that consisted of Castile soap, glycerin, sweet almond oil, guar gum and a ton of water. It was runny, burned my skin and eyes and separated without a thorough shake before each use. It was also a bacteria trap since I didn’t add a proper preservative. I remember thinking, if this is what homemade skin care is, forget it.

I’ve since found a better way. Oil cleansing is a more gentle and effective way to cleanse the skin no matter what your skin type. Remember, if you’re oily and concerned about oil cleansing-like dissolves like. I’ve seen oily skin transform just from ditching the soap and oil cleansing once a day. If you don’t know about oil cleansing, be sure to read my oil cleansing guide first. 

Making an oil cleanser is a much more effective homemade product than attempting a soap and water based formula. It’s much simpler to make and does not require a preservative. Below are a list of my top 5 cleanser recipes for each skin type. 

If you’d rather not oil cleanse but are still interested in creating a homemade cleanser, you might enjoy looking into cleansing grains. Cleansing grains contain ingredients like oatmeal, dried herbs, activated charcoal, clay, powdered milk etc. You grind these ingredients into a powder. To use, scoop out about a tablespoon for each cleanse, add enough water (or aloe) to make a paste and you have an exfoliating cleanser that is gentle, yet detoxing. Without adding water to your product, your grains stay at the upmost freshness!

Cleansing grains aren’t the best when it comes to removing eye makeup so you might also be interested in pairing your grains with my makeup remove recipe. 

DIY Face Toners: 

Homemade Toners are one of the easiest skin care DIYs you can make and they are one of my favorite beauty products to use!

Toners are meant to further the cleansing process, restore the skin’s pH, tighten the pores as well as act as a vehicle to drive serums and moisturizers deeper into the skin! Wet skin is more permeable therefore applying a toner before a serum and/or facial oil is necessary in order to get the most out of your entire skin care routine. 

Typically, a DIY toner consists of water based ingredients like hydrosols (flower water), witch hazel, apple cider vinegar, Aloe Vera and glycerine. I’ve customized my recipes by adding essential oils and herbal extracts depending on what your skin needs. 

Below are a few of my favorite toner recipes:

DIY Facial Moisturizers: 

Moisturizers are often the most important part of our beauty routine. This is where we nourish our skin. Well hydrated skin glows. It’s radiant and dewy and reflects good health. 

There are 2 types of facial moisturizers. The first is a cream or lotion. The second is a facial oil. I have recipes for both but there are several things to consider before choosing which is right for you. 

A facial oil consists of a blend of organic plant based oils and a blend of essential oils. Anti aging ingredients like coQ10 and vitamin E can be added to increase the firming abilities of the products.

A facial oil does not contain water. It is completely oil based therefore it does not require a preservative. No heat is involved so it is a very basic recipe to make and the properties of the plant based ingredients are left intact.

In my opinion, there is nothing basic about the efficiency of using a simple facial oil. They are powerful moisturizers and can revive and support the skin during the natural aging process. Below are a few of my favorite face oil recipes.

Face creams contain over 50% water. They are more time consuming and difficult to make and involve more equipment and require heat.

They can contain everything I mentioned above but you must keep in mind that all of those ingredients are diluted by the water and some of their properties are lost due to the requirement of heating the oils. Also, don’t forget products that contain water must be properly preserved so they don’t become a trap for bacteria. 

However, I’ve never had so much DIY fun and excitement! Making a cream is so rewarding. It’s incredibly exciting to take water and oil and turn it into something luxuriously light, fluffy and creamy! I have created a step by step guide where I give you a 3 ingredient extremely simple recipe you can make successfully at home.

Below are my favorite cream recipes.

PRO SKIN CARE TIP: Oils are your new best friend. Oils can be used to remove makeup and cleanse your face as well as moisturize, treat and heal your body and facial skin! If you’re a minimalist looking to detox your beauty routine, grab a bottle of rosehip seed oil and use it from head to toe!

Using a facial oil

DIY Face Masks: 

I always say making face masks at home are the gateway to DIYing your entire beauty routine! Making masks is fun, quick and rewarding. 

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If you’ve ever taken to the pantry to slather items like bananas, pumpkin puree, yogurt or honey on your skin, you know how fun and effective natural, homemade face masks can be!

But what if we took masking to the next level and used ingredients like clays, seaweed, dried herbs, oatmeal, activated charcoal etc.? There are so many skin perfecting dry ingredients we can mix with liquids such as aloe, coconut milk, yogurt or flower waters that will take your DIY mask making up about 20 notches! Below are several of my favorite DIY masks!

Recently, I just discovered how to make a variety of sheet masks. This fun, new DIY has proven simple and effective! Not to mention a huge money saver if you love this type of masking!

DIY Lip Treatments:

DIY lip balm is one of the most basic diy skincare recipes you can make. They are often the product many people start with. It’s where I started!

Lip balms simply consist of heating oil and beeswax together and then allowing to cool. The beeswax will harden the oil making the concoction a balm consistency. You can play with different amounts of beeswax to make a soft, medium or hard balm. Butters, essential oils and vitamin E can be added to customize the lip treatment. 

You might want to read my guide on how to make lip balm which includes a few fun, custom labels and an in-depth picture tutorial. 

Below are a few fun diy lip balm recipes

balm in a flip top glass jar

DIY Eye Treatments:

The eye area is a delicate area of the skin that should be addressed in your diy beauty regimen.

Eye treatments can be balms, creams or gels. A balm or gel is the easiest diy beauty product you can make. 

Despite eye treatments being an extra, specialty item in your skin care routine, DIYing an effective eye product can be very easy. Don’t shy away from eye products if you’re worried the recipe will be too complicated.

Below are a few of my most popular (and effective) eye products.  

DIY Skin Serums:

Skin serums are extremely important when it comes to fighting signs of aging. DIY serums often contain powerhouse ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, vitamin C and botanical extracts that can pack a large punch when fighting age causing free radicals. 

Skin serums are typically water based so they’ll be easy to make quickly. However, they will typically need an appropriate preservative. 

Below are a few of my most effective skin serum recipes.

Dropper bottle with hand dropping eye serum

Where to Buy Natural Ingredients:

When it comes to buying natural, plant based ingredients it is important to buy organic. I love to buy my ingredients from Mountain Rose Herbs. They have high quality, organic carrier oils, Aloe Vera, essential oils and herbs. I also love free, fast shipping from Plant Therapy for essential oils. Their oils are great quality and they offer organic.

I find specialty items such as preservatives, coQ10 and botanical extracts from Lotion Crafter. They are very affordable and ship lightening speed fast.

Specialty Bottle is my go to for glass bottles and jars. They don’t make you buy in bulk and are very affordable. 

I’ve also created an Amazon Storefront that lists ingredients I trust as well as equipment I use including unique container options.

Trust me when I say, making your own skin care can be more simple then you think. It can save you 100’s of dollars and the best part is that you have total control over what you are putting on your skin. 

Getting started with natural beauty can be daunting if you don’t have a solid place to start! My hope is to be your guide in this new and exciting venture into the natural and gratifying world of DIY skin care!

What About Preservatives?

In the DIY Skincare world, there are a few pitfalls. The last thing you want to do is spend money on quality ingredients only to make a product filled with bacteria after a few days!

There is much confusion surrounding when preservatives are needed and when they aren’t necessary. 

Believe it or not-to preserve or not to preserve is a very simple question I can easily answer.

If you are making a product that does not contain water or water based ingredients (Aloe Vera, hydrosol, witch hazel, glycerin, botanical extracts, honey) then you do not need a preservative. Oils typically have a shelf life of around 6 months as long as they are not combined with water. 

Recipes like toners, hyaluronic acid serums and lotions and creams need a preservative. In my recipes, I keep the recipe small enough that you should use them in 2 months or less and I add broad spectrum, paraben free natural preservatives to ensure safety. 

If you are not willing to use a preservative, you must make a fresh batch of your homemade skincare product on a biweekly basis.

Now you have a fantastic foundation for how to get started making your own, beautifully effective and natural skincare products!

Congratulation, making your own skincare is a fantastic way to take charge of your skin as well as your health! DIY skincare is not only beneficial for your skin, it’s also so fun and rewarding! It’s a hobby that can perfect your skin! 

xx, Jenni

P.S. Wondering About Makeup?

Many of us wear makeup daily. While I DIY makeup to some degree, I prefer to leave most of my makeup products to the professionals. My favorite safe makeup lines are 100% Pure, Hynt Beauty and Lily Lolo. I have written many product reviews for 100% Pure and I recommend starting with them. 

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