Renowned herbalist Rosemary Gladstar provides safe and effective, time-tested natural therapies and herbal remedies in Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health (Storey Publishing, 2013). This comprehensive recipe collection offers a potent prescription for energy, health, and vitality at every age. This homemade face cream recipe was taken from chapter five, “Recipes for Radiant Beauty.”
You can purchase this book from the MOTHER EARTH NEWS store: Rosemary Gladstar’s Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health.
The following recipe makes the most wonderful facial cream I have ever experienced. I have used it in its many variations for many years, smoothing it over every inch of my body, and my skin — now heading into its sixth decade — is still soft and supple as a child’s. (Well, this may be stretching the truth a bit, but it still feels wonderful to me!)
The homemade face cream is rich with natural ingredients. Deeply moisturizing, it provides nourishment and moisture for the skin. And for the final stroke, it is relatively inexpensive to make. This basic formula, though excellent as is, can be further embellished with your own creative spirit. There is plenty of room for creative input. Feel free.
Rosemary’s Perfect Homemade Face Cream
Though this recipe appears easy, it is also a bit challenging. You are attempting to combine water and oil; they don’t normally mix. Follow the recipe closely. If it doesn’t turn out right the first time, don’t be discouraged. Try again; the luscious cream is well worth your time and effort.
Package your cream in glass jars. It doesn’t need to be stored in the refrigerator.
2/3 c cup distilled water (or rose water)
1/3 cup aloe vera gel
1 or 2 drops essential oil of choice
Vitamins A and E as desired
3/4 cup apricot, almond, or grapeseed oil
1/3 cup coconut oil or cocoa butter
1/4 teaspoon lanolin
1/2 to 1 ounce grated beeswax
1. Combine the waters in a glass measuring cup. (Tap water can be used instead of distilled water, but it will sometimes introduce bacteria and encourage the growth of mold.) Set aside.
2. In a double boiler over low heat, combine the oils. Heat them just enough to melt.
3. Pour the oils into a blender and let them cool to room temperature. The mixture should become thick, creamy, semisolid, and cream colored.
This cooling process can be hastened in the refrigerator, but keep an eye on it so it doesn’t become too hard.
4. When the mixture has cooled, turn on the blender at its highest speed. In a slow, thin
drizzle, pour the water mixture into the center
vortex of the whirling oil mixture.
5. When most of the water mixture has been added to the oils, listen to the blender and watch the cream. When the blender coughs and chokes and the cream looks thick and white, like buttercream frosting, turn off the blender. You can slowly add more water, beating it in by hand with a spoon, but don’t overbeat! The cream will thicken as it sets.
6. Pour into cream or lotion jars. Store in a cool location.
Tips for Making and Using Perfect Homemade Face Cream
For many years, I’d first put the waters into the blender and then add the oils, until one of my
students told me she had reversed the process and never had any more problems with separation. It is wonderfully simple suggestions like this that have made this cream so successful. So keep playing with the recipe, and keep me informed of your findings.
Unlike many commercial creams that only coat the surface of the skin, this cream penetrates the epidermal layer and moisturizes the dermal layer of the skin. Because it is extremely concentrated, a little goes a long way. Take a tiny drop on the end of your finger and gently massage it into your face. There will be a temporary feeling of oiliness, but it will disappear within a few minutes as the cream is quickly absorbed. Though I recommend just a small amount on your face, you can be generous on the rest of your body.
The only real “rule” about this cream is that it never can be used with any negative thoughts about the body it’s being used on. When smoothing it over the creases and maps of the skin, do so with love. Do it as if you’re anointing yourself with precious balm. You are! This is part of the cream’s magic.
Followed exactly, the cream recipe should work for you. If the waters and oils separate, it is most likely because they weren’t at the correct temperature; the waters must be at room temperature and the oils must be completely cooled. If the waters and oils separate, you can separate them entirely and begin the process again. Or just put a little note on your package that says shake before using.
Rosemary’s Perfect Homemade Face Cream should never become moldy or go bad. If it does, you’ll find it’s generally because of one or more of the following:
Recycled lids. If you reuse a container, be sure the inner cardboard ring in the lid has been removed. It’s a perfect host for bacteria.
Food ingredients. Many foods support bacterial growth. For instance, if you decided you wanted a strawberry-scented moisturizer and blended fresh strawberries in your cream base, you’d develop mold on your “Strawberry Delight” within days.
Improper storage. Don’t store the cream in a warm location. It’s best to store any extra in the refrigerator or a cool pantry.
Read more: For more on beauty recipes see Find Natural Beauty With Herbs.
Excerpted from Rosemary Gladstar's Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health © Rosemary Gladstar used with permission from Storey Publishing, 2013. Buy this book from our store: Rosemary Gladstar’s Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health.