Healing Emollient Cream Recipes
If you have a problem with your skin like eczema or psoriasis, you have probably tried many emollient creams that have proven to be ineffective.
This author suffers from hand eczema which depends upon certain times of the year or skin irritants such as cleaning products, foods used in cooking, or even soaps and lotions, which can be easily flared into the red alarm phase.
Many over-the-counter emollient creams while boasting that they contain "all-natural" ingredients are made with additives and preservatives, dyes and perfumes (even some of the products claiming to be unscented). These can aggravate skin conditions overnight.
For people with skin problems, there is nothing worse under the sun than having dry, itchy, flaking or cracked skin and not being able to find skincare products that help rather than hurt the condition.
In the do-it-yourself world, however, there is a solution. You can make your own emollient creams very quickly and affordably and cut out all the extra ingredients in between. You can also discover which products work best for your skin.
This author would advise caution and trying one type of skin product for a few weeks before moving on to another type of cream. Not all eczema is created equal; likewise not every skin condition responds to the ingredients the same way.
For instance, some people will have good luck with cocoa butter while this author does not. It acts as an irritant for my type of eczema whereas coconut oil products work better for me. As in all things, start slowly and measure your response when using any emollient cream.
Mineral oil is also said to be a great skin product, however, I did not mention it in creams because it has a downside--it blocks pores. All the emollient cream ingredient products can be found online but you can also purchase them in stores like Michaels or other crafter do-it-yourself stores.
Properties of Natural Ingredients for Skin Creams
Use in Treatment of
Keeps in moisture and provides barrier
Anti-inflammatory and antibacterial
Eczema or psoriasis
Provides moisture; skin softener; non-greasy; high in fatty acids
Works on dry or chapped skin; anti-irritant
Irritation, rashes or burns
Helps cells repair, blocks free radicals, moisturizing
Anti-aging, vitamins A and E, skin repair
Wound healing or scars
Provides moisture and protectant barrier
Anti-irritant and anti-inflammatory
Reduces scars or stretch marks, eczema
Vitamin E oil
Blocks free radicals and creates new cell growth
Anti-aging and antioxidant; boosts collagen production
Scar treatment; keeps skin soft and supple
Repairs wrinkled skin or dry, flaky skin
Anti-inflammatory and skin firming
Psoriasis, eczema, dermatitis, wrinkles
Keeps in moisture and provides barrier; blocks free radicals
Anti-aging and skin elasticity, vitamin E, antioxidant
Rosacea, eczema, psoriasis
Healing Additions to Emollient Creams
Again it's important to note that some people will benefit from some types of ingredients while others may find that it worsens their skin condition. Try one product at a time to see which provides the most relief dependent on your skin's needs.
- Add lanolin for added moisturizing--but caution is required. Many people have an allergy to lanolin which can cause reactive dermatitis or inflammation of the skin.
- Aloe vera gel--add for its healing properties but watch for signs of drying of the skin. While aloe vera gel has many healing properties, it can dry the skin quickly.
- Add water for dilution and also for moisture.
- Essential oils can be added in small amounts to give aromatherapy properties and will also help preserve homemade hand creams.
- Other oils can be used such as grapeseed, avocado, apricot, etc. However, they are heavier oils than those listed above.
- Vitamin E capsules can be opened and added to the creams to provide more healing properties.
- Borax (1/4 teaspoon usually) can be added to help water and oil emulsions to mix appropriately.
- Glycerin is used as well for blending properties.
Cocoa Butter and Almond Oil Emollient Cream Recipe
4 ounces cocoa butter
- 4 ounces almond oil
- 2 ounces shaved beeswax
- Melt beeswax and cocoa butter in a double boiler until thoroughly melted.
- Stir in the almond oil.
- Remove from heat. Pour into a heatproof clean glass container.
- Let cool before covering.
Coconut and Olive Oil Emollient Cream With Vitamin E
- 4 ounces extra virgin olive oil
- 2 ounces Trader Joe organic coconut oil
- 1 ounce vitamin E oil
- 1 ounce shaved beeswax
- Heat beeswax in a double boiler over medium heat.
- Lower heat and stir in coconut oil, olive oil, and vitamin E oil.
- Pour into a clean heatproof glass jar. Cool before covering.
Do-It-Yourself Eczema Cream Recipe
During a recent flare of my hand eczema due to some cleaning product use, this author made the following homemade eczema cream.
The important thing to remember about this cream is that unlike most hand creams, it's a very thin cream and used for covering the affected skin temporarily. You leave on (up to half an hour) and then rinse off.
This author can attest to the fact that it did heal up the inflamed areas quickly. Honey actually has antibacterial properties so it's okay to use on even open or raw areas of eczema.
The only downside to this cream is having to wait for a half-hour for it to sit on your skin and then wash it off.
Note: It also can be used as a skin facial mask--and you can add more egg whites to enhance the liquidy cream's skin softening abilities.
- 1/2 cup ground whole oats--grind in the blender or food processor until powdery
- 1/2 cup lukewarm water
- 1/2 cup of organic unflavored honey
- 1 beaten egg white (or add extra)
- Grind oats to a powdery consistency.
- Mix in water, egg white(s) and honey. (Blend in a food processor or blender or whisk quickly)
- Apply the cream to the affected area (or as a facial mask) for 30 minutes.
- Rinse off and pat dry affected areas.
Step-by-Step Guide to Making Your Own Emollient Cream
Step 1: Grind rolled oats into a powdery form in a food processor or blender.
Step 2: Add water, honey and egg white(s) to the powdered oat mixture. Blend by hand, in the food processor or blender until relatively smooth and well mixed.
Step 3: Mixture should be on the thin side and will be a little granular because of the oats but it should be well mixed together.
Step 4: Pour into a container with a lid. Store in a dark, cool place. Use as needed. Remember to rinse after a 30 minute application. Add extra egg whites for skin softening properties.
Obviously the best way to decrease the need for skin emollient creams and products is to not have problems with your skin. Look for common triggers such as foods, cleaning products, soaps and detergents.
Many people use aqueous creams or emulsifying ointments instead of hand and bath soaps because of the drying properties of soaps and body washes. This is a good alternative if you find an aqueous cream that soothes your skin rather than inflames it.
Remembering to use emollient creams or products right after bathing is crucial. This is when skin most needs additional moisture. Pat skin dry, then apply emollient creams and products.
Always test a product slowly, whether store-bought or homemade, to see how your skin will react. A best practice is to spot test a small area for a reaction before applying liberally. Especially if using essential oils, be sure that your skin will tolerate add-ins.
Emollient products are great for adding to the bathwater. Especially for children with skin problems, this can be an effective way to provide all-over coverage though have caution with slippery tubs when using emollients in the bathwater.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Questions & Answers
How long can these emollient creams last?
I have had some homemade ones that have lasted for over a year.Helpful 2