DIY SCENTED GIFTS & BODY PRODUCTS
Make Your Own Scented Products
featuring Natural Essential Oils
Copyright Aroma Queen 2018
You may also be interested in our "DIY TAKE-ANYWHERE AROMATHERAPY BLENDS" Learn More Page.
Around Christmas time in particular - but also throughout the year - we start to think about buying gifts for people. It's easy to forget that gifts don't need to be expensive, or about how much you paid for them. The ultimate gift is something thoughtful, that says you care - and there's a real joy in giving something you made yourself, with someone special in mind. Why not distil those creative juices you've been bottling up and create your own personalised scented products - for gifts, or for using yourself?
We've put together a few ideas to get you thinking, which also include some instructions and recipes - some a lot easier than you may think. Scroll down to read more about:
* Personalised Massage Oils
* Unique Natural Perfumes
* Scented Inhaler Sticks
* Natural Skincare Creams
* Easy to make Aromatherapy Skin Serums
* Scented Bath Salts
* Soy Candles
* Lip Balms
* Bath Bombs and other handmade ideas
* Some of our Favourite Oil Blend Recipes, for use in DIY scented projects
PERSONALISED MASSAGE OILS
A specially made massage oil can be an excellent gift, as you can tailor it to suit the person you're giving it to. Think about what might appeal or help them, whether oils to help stress or anxiety, to relax, to help sleep, for back or muscle pain, or perhaps something romantic for your partner.
All you need to make your own special massage oil blend is:
1) A bottle. Recycle something quirky and unique, or use a pet bottle - darker colours help the oils last longer, plus if you add a pump or disc cap it makes dispensing much easier as well. Pet can be easier to use than glass as there's no the danger of it shattering when the bottle gets slippery.
2) Massage oil - you can use either a purpose-made massage blend (you can even get water soluble types to save getting greasy sheets/clothes/towels), or some light carrier oil (sweet almond, apricot kernel, coconut or grapeseed are best - or olive oil at a pinch).
3) Add some essential oils - around 3% max, so 3ml (60drops) total essential oil per 100ml of massage oil. Think about what might suit the person you're giving it to, whether it's a pleasant scent or a therapeutic blend to treat a certain issue. We've added a list of recipes at the bottom of the page for some ideas.
4) A label with their name or your 'brand', or even a voucher to claim a free massage, back or foot rub finishes it off nicely!
HOW CAN WE HELP?
If you're a bit short on time we already offer a range of pre-made massage oils from RELAX to SPORTS. We also stock massage & carrier oils, bottles, and a full range of inexpensive essential oils and oil blends, which take the guesswork out of which oils to use.
NATURAL HANDMADE PERFUMES
Handmade perfumes featuring essential oils also make excellent gifts as you can tailor them to suit their tastes. Choose an oil that's a personal favourite, or try creating a luscious perfume blend that is absolutely unique. You can also make therapeutic roll-ons that can be really helpful, to treat anything from stress and anxiety, to helping focus and concentrate on work or exams.
Perfumes can be used in oil-based roll-ons, water-based spritzers or spray bottles, or as a pure essential oil blend that can be used with a piece of Aromatherapy Jewellery.
MAKE AN OIL-BASED ROLL-ON
To create an oil-based roll-on perfume, all you need is:
1) A roll-on (roller ball) bottle like the one in the photo (that's our 'premium' version - we have a variety of other bottles available in smaller 5ml up to 30ml sizes, in clear, amber or coloured versions.
2) Jojoba oil is the best carrier oil to use as the base oil as it has little scent plus absorbs into the skin without leaving it greasy.
3) Add your essential oils - around 8 drops total EO per 10-15ml roll-on bottle (our bottles all come with instructions for their size). The scent will often develop and 'mellow' after being blended for a while, giving a smooth, complex natural fragrance.
4) Label it with your own 'brand' if you like, and present clear bottles in a solid (ie not see through) gift bag to keep it stored away from direct sunlight, which will protect the oils from UV light.
You can also make water-based perfumes instead of oil-based, substituting the roller bottle with an atomiser (see pic right), water or rosewater instead of oil, and add equal parts essential oils and Solubiliser, which helps the oils blend into water instead of sitting as a slick on top - just bear in mind that solubiliser can make the solution go a little cloudy. Water based blends also don't tend to last as long as oil-based. We offer various DIY Perfume Kits to make things easy.
HOW CAN WE HELP?
AQ stocks roll-on bottles in various sizes and finishes; we also list a range of gorgeous atomiser bottles, plus DIY Perfume Kits in either oil or water bases - all you need to add are your essential oils, which are available separately. We also stock a range of bottles, fittings, and DIY ingredients such as Rosewater and carrier oils.
You can also simply create your own perfume blend out of pure essential oils, and pair it with a piece of Aroma Jewellery (see pic right) - available in dozens of different styles and designs.
SCENTED INHALER STICKS
If you know someone who has a specific issue that can be treated with aromatherapy, a really simple way to help is to create an INHALER STICK, using oils that are known to be beneficial for that problem. It can be as simple as getting an inexpensive plastic inhaler and adding some pre-made essential oil blend to the wick; or you could make it a little more elaborate by using an aluminium inhaler stick and creating your own unique personalised blend from your pure essential oil collection. Either way, an inhaler stick becomes an easy to use treatment that anybody can understand, whether they have experience in aromatherapy or not.
Use your imagination to come up with helpful uses - you can try oils that are helpful for stress or anxiety; oils that assist peaceful sleep; oils for germs or travel sickness, for study and concentration, or to just help relax. Any oils you would usually use in an oil burner (rather than on the skin) can be used in an inhaler stick, to create a lightweight personal and portable diffuser that can be unobtrusively taken wherever it is needed - in a purse or schoolbag, or even while travelling.
All you need to make your own personalised inhaler stick is:
1) A blank (unscented) inhaler stick, whether it's in simple plastic or long lasting aluminium. Each inhaler comes with a textile wick, and an airtight cover to keep your oils fresh as long as possible.
2) Essential oil or an oil blend, to suit whatever purpose you're looking to treat. We've added a list of recipes at the bottom of the page for some ideas, or visit our PURE BLENDS or OILS 4 KIDS sections to see some of the pre-made oil blends we have listed.
3) Add your essential oils - up to around 20 drops (add 10 drops to each end of the wick), and seal it in the inhaler stick casing, ensuring it's screwed tightly to stop the oils from drying out.
4) Add a label if you like, describing the blend that's inside. You can also colour co-ordinate your stick depending on its use.
HOW CAN WE HELP?
Visit our INHALER STICK section for plastic inhaler sticks in 10 different colours, or aluminium sticks in 5 colour choices (if you're short on time we also list a number of pre-made inhaler sticks). You can find our full range of pure essential oils and oil blends in our AROMATHERAPY section.
NATURAL SKINCARE CREAMS, BUTTERS and LOTIONS
Making your own skincare products can be a lot of fun, as well as being able to enjoy the wonderful end products. Most aromatherapy books will have a few recipes and some basic info on which carrier and essential oils, and other natural ingredients, are of benefit to the skin. There are also plenty of recipes and instructions available on the internet if you do a quick search. Creams, lotions and butters mostly follow the same principle: various oil based components (carrier oil, shea butter etc), plus water based components (water, rosewater etc), bound together using a binding agent. The higher the amount of water, the thinner the end result (ie a lotion, rather than a butter). Add scent near the end of the process by adding essential oils that are nourishing to the skin, or pleasant to wear - do this towards the end so they don't have a chance to overheat, which will destroy their therapeutic qualities. Other ingredients such as natural preservatives etc will also help your product last longer, or be of benefit to the skin.
We won't list any recipes here as there's way too many to choose from - try asking Mr Google, or for anyone wanting to get into making your own skincare products there are plenty of books devoted to the subject - once you get into it you can then adapt your own recipes and experiment to your heart's content!
HOW CAN WE HELP?
While we no longer offer pre-made natural skincare products, we do stock a number of ingredients, such as Glycerin or Rosewater. AQ also stocks a range of carrier oils, plus 100+ essential oils and oil blends.
AROMATHERAPY SKIN SERUMS & ROOM SPRAYS
Moisturising skin serums are one of the easiest products to make as there's no heating or blending involved: they just use a carrier oil (or a blend of a couple) to suit the skin type or condition of the person you are making it for, scented with essential oils that also benefit the skin. For a gift version, you can create a purpose made skin serum in an upcycled bottle, or a bottle with a serum pump to make dispensing nice and easy. Add your own label and you have a really thoughtful gift that will be of real benefit.
Many carrier and essential oils are excellent for the skin, and there are options available for each skin type or condition.
CARRIER OILS for each skin type:
DRY SKIN – Apricot Kernel or Jojoba Oil. You can also add small amounts of Avocado, Rosehip or Wheatgerm (a good preservative). Rosehip can be a little sticky, though many people swear by it and are happy to apply it straight to the skin, undiluted.
NORMAL SKIN – Apricot Kernel, Jojoba or Sweet Almond. A small amount of additional Wheatgerm or Rosehip is also useful.
OILY SKIN – Jojoba or Sweet Almond oil. Jojoba is also ideal for combination skin.
SENSITIVE SKIN – Sweet Almond oil. Apricot Kernel and Avocado oils are also useful.
MATURE SKIN - Avocado or Jojoba oil. Rosehip and Wheatgerm are also useful in small additional amounts.
ESSENTIAL OILS for each skin type:
DRY SKIN – Carrot seed, chamomile, clary sage, frankincense, geranium, jasmine, lavender, neroli, rose, rosewood, sandalwood, ylang ylang
NORMAL SKIN – Bergamot, carrot seed, chamomile, clary sage, geranium, jasmine, lavender, lemon, patchouli, rose, rosewood, sandalwood, ylang ylang
OILY SKIN – Bergamot, cedarwood, chamomile, cypress, frankincense, geramium, juniper, lavender, lemon, mandarin, melissa, palmarosa, patchouli, petitgrain, rose, vetiver, ylang ylang
SENSITIVE SKIN – Chamomile, jasmine, lavender, neroli, rose, rosewood, sandalwood
MATURE SKIN – Carrot seed, clary sage, cypress, frankincense, geranium, jasmine, myrrh, neroli, palmarosa, patchouli, petitgrain, rose, rosewood, sandalwood, ylang ylang
Bear in mind that some oils (mainly citrus) cause ‘PHOTOSENSITIVITY’, meaning that if you apply them to the skin before exposure to UV light, they’ll encourage your skin to burn. Only use these oils if there’s no likelihood of exposure to the sun in the following 24 hours. Oils that cause photosensitivity include: Angelica, Bergamot (unless 'Bergaptene Free'), Cumin, Lemon, Lime (unless 'Distilled' rather than 'Cold Pressed'), Orange & Verbena. Citrus oils ok to use on the skin include Mandarin and Grapefruit.
When CALCULATING how much essential oil to use in a blend for any natural product (water or oil), use no more than 1% total essential oils for use on your face, or 3% for your body. So for 100ml of carrier oil, use 1ml essential oils for use on the face: 1ml = approx 20 drops. Add the essential oil (or oil blend) to your bottle of carrier oil, and gently upend it a few times to blend them together, and your serum is ready to go - it's as easy as that.
HOW TO USE
Apply your serum to damp skin after cleansing and toning, to lock in the moisture and give the added benefits of the carrier and essential oils. Only use a small amount at a time (a little goes a long way), and wipe off any excess after gently rubbing in to your skin - most natural carrier oils absorb easily in to the skin without leaving a 'greasy' feel.
TRY ALSO: Make your own water-based SPRITZER or ROOM SPRAY in a similar way - add 1% essential oils to suit your skin type with equal (or slightly less) amount of SOLUBILISER (to help the oils blend with the water), then add water or a hydrosol like rosewater, into an atomiser / spray bottle. Use the spritzer on your face before you add the serum, which locks in the water to help moisturise your skin. Spritzers are an excellent pick me up in the heat of summer as well - there's nothing like a spray of cool rosewater from the fridge on a stinking hot summer's day!
HOW CAN WE HELP?
While we no longer stock pre-made skincare products, we do stock everything you need to make your own serums, including bottles and pumps, carrier oils, and a full range of inexpensive essential oils. Rosewater and atomiser bottles also available, as well as a ROOM SPRAY KIT (pictured).
SCENTED BATH SALTS
Who doesn't love a scented bath? It's really easy to make your own bath salts, scented with natural essential oils which will not only smell delicious, they also carry benefits such as de-stressing, relaxing, or even muscle soothing qualities.
There are plenty of recipes available but as a basic guide try:
1) A container - recycled jars or wide mouthed bottles, mason jars etc, can look gorgeous filled with homemade bath salts - add a 'label', tie with ribbon and they look fabulous without costing a bomb.
2) 500g or so of suitable bath salt - eg Himalayan salt, epsom salt, dead sea salt etc. Chunky salt types always looks great as a gift.
3) Add your essential oils - around 15 - 30 drops should work fine (some oils have a stronger scent than others but don't forget the heat of the bath will also bring out the scent). Choose oils that are relaxing, smell luxurious or even have a beneficial effect on the body. Do avoid oils that cause skin sensitivity - you're best avoiding peppermint, cinnamon or frankincense, plus oils that cause photosensitivity (burning of the skin under uv light / sunlight). Oils that cause photosensitivity include: Angelica, Bergamot (unless 'Bergaptene Free'), Cumin, Lemon, Lime (unless 'Distilled' rather than 'Cold Pressed'), Orange & Verbena. Citrus oils ok to use on the skin include Mandarin and Grapefruit. Mix your oils through thoroughly in a larger bowl before adding to your jar, to avoid clumps of concentrated oils.
4) Other optional additives:
* A little bit of food colouring - don't go overboard!
* Dried botanicals such as rosemary leaves, rose petals or lavender flowers - they look great in the jar as well as in the bath, and give your product a touch of luxury.
* A little liquid glycerin will add a moisturising effect to your product.
HOW CAN WE HELP?
We no longer stock pre-made bath salts like the ones pictured, but we do have a full range of essential oils and oil blends, as well as natural glycerin. Natural salts can usually be found in your local health food shop.
As much as everyone loves a scented bath, scented candles would have to be another popular item that you can never have enough of - plus are very easy to make. Soy Wax is considered by many to be one of the safest and environmentally friendly options for current use in candles. Soy wax is a relatively new natural - and renewable - alternative to paraffin, based on soy bean oil which is hydrogenated to solidify the wax at room temperature. Soy wax is generally believed to be very clean burning, with no soot and fewer CO2 emissions in comparison to candles made of paraffin wax. Soy wax also lasts up to 50% longer in burning time over paraffin wax candles of the same size, making it better value for money when buying or making candles. On top of all this good news, it's also really easy to work with - as it doesn't take much heat to liquify, you can easily melt soy wax in your microwave; and it cleans up afterwards with soap and water.
All you need:
1) A container - for a personalised gift try recycling an old vintage jar, or even a teacup or other container for a one-of-a-kind piece. Votive holders, mosaic jars, candle tins and tealight cups are also readily available from candle supply stockists.
2) Soy wax - there are plenty of natural candle supply stores in Australia, or try your local health food store. Melt your wax in a double boiler (a jar in a saucepan of shallow water will work) or microwave.
3) A wick to suit the dimensions of your container - the wider your jar, the thicker the wick needs to be or it won't burn hot enough to melt the wax at the sides; too thick a wick and it'll burn too quickly. Obviously you also need a wick long enough for the depth of your jar - if the wick is too long just cut off the extra length once it's set. Add the wick before pouring your wax - ensure it's nice and centred before the wax sets.
4) Add your essential oils to the wax just before you pour it, so the oils don't overheat. You may need to experiment with how much oil to use to get the perfect throw, as oils vary greatly in strength.
Optional - add a colour chip to your wax as you heat it, to give your candle a coloured tint. These are available from natural candle suppliers.
For more detailed info there are plenty of recipes and instructions available on the net.
HOW CAN WE HELP?
Natural soy wax can generally be found at specialised candle suppliers, or in some local health food shops. AQ stocks a full range of essential oils suitable for scenting your candles - we personally don't recommend using synthetic 'fragrant oils' designed for candles as they tend to give people headaches, and that's the last thing you want when you're giving a gift. Using natural essential oils also means you're getting the added therapeutic benefits of the oils, which you won't get with synthetic fragrances.
EASY TO MAKE LIP BALMS
Another simple skincare product is lip balm, which can be as easy as oil and beeswax heated together and poured into a suitable container. While you can use essential oils to 'flavour' a lip balm (and a lot of recipes suggest that you do), we would personally avoid it as essential oils are generally TOXIC if ingested. Most don't taste too good either! There's a lot of confusion over this at the moment as some companies are advocating cooking with and ingesting essential oils: within the Australian health industry it is recommended that NO essential oil should be ingested unless specifically prescribed for your condition by a qualified aromatherapist.
There's plenty of lip balm recipes available on the net, but here's an easy one:
1) A container - either a small jar you can dip your finger into for application, or a purpose made lip balm tube.
2) Natural ingredients:
1 tablespoon grated beeswax or beeswax pastilles
1 tablespoon virgin coconut oil, or sweet almond oil
A dash of organic raw honey
2 vitamin e capsules (optional)
In a double boiler melt down the beeswax, adding in the coconut (or sweet almond) oil and honey when about half of the beeswax is no longer solid. After it’s all melted and blended together, stir in the contents of the vitamin E capsules (optional). Pour into container or a tube and let cool.
HOW CAN WE HELP?
AQ stocks a range of natural carrier oils such as sweet almond, jojoba, and apricot kernel - which work beautifully in lip balm recipes.
OTHER DIY IDEAS - Inhalers, Blends, Bath Bombs, Face & Body Scrubs, Personalised Bath Oils, Pamper Packs etc
There's all kinds of other ideas out there for making your own gift products (or for yourself - they don't need to be gifts!). Many are really easy and once you start making a few you'll find that the ingredient list overlaps so you're ready to try the next one, with items you already have. We can't list all the recipes here, but head to our PINTEREST page (link in comments below) where we share all manner of recipes and natural ideas.
Hopefully we've helped your imagination get moving, if you're stuck for some gift ideas or just want to 'play', but here's a little more food for thought:
PERSONALISED ESSENTIAL OIL BURNER / BATH BLEND - create a unique burner blend, or a blend of oils that targets the person you're giving it to (eg relaxing, de-stressing, help with insomnia, or even their favourite perfume). Use up to 3 or 4 different oils blended in a dripolator bottle, and label with their name - an excellent and thoughtful gift. They don't even need to already by into aromatherapy - tell them to use 8 drops in their bath or burner and it will relax them, and that's all they need to know.
PERSONALISED INHALERS - If you know somebody may benefit from certain oils, or you want to try some yourself, INHALER STICKS are an excellent, inexpensive way to use them and don't require any knowledge once they're made. See our other LEARN MORE pages for full instructions.
FACE OR BODY SCRUBS featuring natural ingredients such as sugar, salt, coffee grounds, fruit etc are really easy to make and there are dozens of great recipes floating around the net to start playing with. Present in a nice jar or recycled wide-mouthed bottle for a luscious gift. See our PINTEREST page for plenty of recipes.
BATH BOMBS scented with essential oils can be really easy to make and are a gift that everyone loves. Decorate with botanicals like rose petals for an extra-lush finish, and present in a cello bag tied with ribbon, or a gift box scattered with petals. See our PINTEREST page for plenty of recipes.
PAMPER PACKS - make a few simple little handmade gifts, or create a little package with some candles, bath oils and perhaps inexpensive organic clay for a face mask to suit their skin type, for the ultimate pampering session! Give them a voucher from you, offering to mind the kids for a couple of hours while they have some 'me time' in the bath and you've got a gift money just can't buy.
OIL BLEND RECIPES
Here's some of our favourite oil blend recipes to get your imagination going. Essential oils can be used in the bath, in skincare products, bath bombs, anything you'd like to scent. Just make sure you use PURE NATURAL ESSENTIAL OILS, not cheapie $2-shop 'fragrant oils' as those are synthetic versions that don't actually have any therapeutic benefits.
See our other LEARN MORE pages for more information about Aromatherapy, its' uses and benefits.