4 DIY Shower Gels With Orange Essential Oil And Shea Butter

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soothing shower gel with a refreshing aroma promises the most satisfying bathing experience. The ideal cleanser removes the dirt and grime from the skin. It nourishes the skin while cleansing it and provides moisture so that your skin feels supple and invigorated after shower. If you are an admirer of homemade products and love creating your own skin care preparations, you can easily make a wonderful shower gel that your skin will love. Moisturizing ingredients that we usually find in the leave-on moisturizing products are often found in body washes, especially the products that target the dry skin that tend to become excessively dry after it is washed. Shea butter is one such moisturizing ingredient that enhances the moisturizing effect of the cleanser.

The fragrance of organic shower gels is usually attributed to the aromatic essential oils. Essential oils are also known for their beneficial effect on the skin. Orange essential oil is one such essential oil that is known to work wonders for the skin. You can make a delightful shower gel by incorporating shea butter and orange essential oil into your homemade body wash recipe. Your skin will thank you for this wonderful shower gel free from the harsh detergents and chemicals that are usually found in the commercial cleansers.


Benefits Of Orange Essential Oil

The essential oil of orange is extracted by cold pressing the orange rind. The aroma of the essential oil is known to lift the mood. When you are feeling depressed, the aroma of orange essential oil can help in boosting your spirits. It is therefore a popular ingredient in body care preparation such as lotions, soaps and deodorants. The essential oil obtained from different Citrus fruit varieties are broadly termed as orange oil. Most of these oils are known to be phototoxic. Topical application of these oils tends to increase the sensitivity of the skin to the sunlight. However, the essential oil obtained from Citrus sinensis, commonly known as sweet orange essential oil or wild orange essential oil, is believed to be  non-phototoxic and is considered safe for the skin. [1]

Sweet orange oil is known for a number of skin benefits. It assists in rejuvenating the skin and helps in reducing dermatitis, eczema, wrinkling of the skin due to exposure to sunlight and oiliness of the skin. Bitter orange oil is considered a better choice for fighting acne and healing wounds. [2] Orange oil is believed to be suitable for all types of skin. It helps in balancing the oily as well as the dry skin. It is known to stimulate collagen production, thereby helping in maintaining the healthy youthful appearance of the skin. It helps in improving blood circulation in the skin surface and also promotes circulation of lymphatic fluid, thereby eliminating the excess fluid trapped in the tissues and alleviating tissue swelling or puffiness. Orange essential oil helps in reducing the dryness of the skin and makes the rough skin soft. It is also considered effective in reducing blemishes and cellulite. [3]


Benefits Of Shea Butter

Shea butter is traditionally used in Africa as an emollient. Obtained from the nuts of the shea tree, it is used for reducing wrinkles and blemishes, and relieving eczema, sunburns, itching, insect bites, minor wounds, skin allergies and a number of other skin conditions. The moisturizing effect of shea butter is almost similar to that of the sebum secreted by the sebaceous glands of the skin. Hence, shea butter is considered more effective than most of the other moisturizing products for protecting the skin and healing skin injuries. Shea butter is also known for its antioxidant property and encourages microcirculation of blood in the skin, thereby helping in fighting skin aging. [4] Given the beneficial effects of orange essential oil and shea butter on the skin, a shower gel that contains these two ingredients can work wonders for the skin.


How To Make Orange Essential Oil And Shea Butter Shower Gel

The following are various methods to make shower gels using orange essential oil and shea butter:

1. Shea Butter, Jojoba Oil, Almond Oil, Coconut Oil And Orange Essential Oil

This body wash contains, in addition to shea butter and orange essential oil, jojoba oil, almond oil and coconut oil. These natural oils are known to keep the skin moisturized and supply nourishment to the skin. Jojoba oil helps in healing the skin. It minimizes transepidermal water loss without completely obstructing movement of water vapor and air. This property of jojoba oil helps in keeping the skin soft and supple. Furthermore, through the pores and hair follicles jojoba oil is easily absorbed into the skin. [5]

Coconut oil is widely used in the tropical countries to keep the skin healthy and to protect it from the sun. The medium chain fatty acids found in coconut oil inhibit moisture loss from the skin pores. Lauric acid and caprylic acid present in coconut oil are known for their antimicrobial effect. Moreover, protein and vitamin E found in coconut oil are good for the skin health. [6] Sweet almond oil is traditionally used for moisturizing the skin. It soothes itching and inflammation of the skin. As a major source of vitamin E and a number of essential fatty acids, almond oil helps with a number of skin conditions such as sunburn, atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, rosacea, eczema, dry skin and acne. [7]

Ingredients
Shea butter – two tablespoons
Jojoba oil – one tablespoon
Coconut oil – one teaspoon
Vegetable glycerin – one tablespoon
Xanthan gum – one teaspoon
Castile soap – ¼-cup
Warm distilled water – ¼ cup
Orange essential oil – Twelve drops

Method
Put the shea butter in a small pan and melt it on low heat. Add the oils and blend them with the shea butter. To thoroughly mix the oils and the butter, consider using an immersion hand blender. Remove the pan from the stove and pour the shea butter and oil mixture into a bowl. Mix xanthan gum with the mixture and leave the bowl aside for one to two minutes. Add liquid castile soap, warm water and glycerin and blend them with the mixture. Next add the sweet orange essential oil and use the hand blender to mix the ingredients. Continue blending until the consistency of the mixture becomes thick and creamy. Pour the body wash in a bottle and use as needed. This organic body wash can last for a few weeks. [8] Castile soap is the main cleansing ingredient in organic cleansers. It is a vegetable-based soap obtained from olive oil, coconut oil or hemp. You will find liquid castile soap as well as castile soap in the form of bar. The unscented castile soap is a gentle cleanser and is biodegradable. [9]

For your DIY body wash recipe you need liquid castile soap that can be easily prepared in the comforts of your home. Take one-third of a cup of olive oil and heat it to about 90 degree Fahrenheit temperature. Remove the hot oil from the oven and leave it aside to cool. Add two teaspoons of lye granules to one-third of a cup of cold water and keep stirring the solution until the lye dissolves in the water. When the olive oil cools to about 70 degrees Fahrenheit, slowly add the lye solution. Gently stir the mixture to combine the oil and the lye solution. After the mixture cools, pour it in a jar. The liquid castile soap is now ready for use. Remember to wear protective clothes and gloves while working with the lye solution. Lye is a caustic chemical and can burn your skin if used without taking proper precautions. [10] To inhibit the ingredients in the emulsion from separating, xanthan gum is added to the body wash recipe. It thickens and stabilizes the product and works as a foaming agent. [11]

2. Shea Butter, Aloe Vera Gel And Citrus Oils

Aloe vera gel is regarded as an excellent moisturizer for the skin. Apart from directly hydrating the skin tissues, it helps in regulating moisture and is known to protect the skin from the harmful effect of excessive sun exposure. It helps in relaxing the skin and is good for the sensitive, sun-exposed or sunburned skin. It cools, calms and soothes the irritated skin and is also known for its anti-inflammatory, healing and anti-microbial effects on the skin. [12] Aloe vera gel enhances the moisturizing and healing effects of your shower gel. For additional benefit add a mixture of citrus oils to the body wash.

Ingredients
Shea butter – one tablespoon
Aloe vera gel – ¼ cup
Unscented liquid castile soap or any soap base – ¾ cup
Xanthan gum – one teaspoon
Mixture of orange, lime and lemon essential oils – 25 drops

Method
Over low heat melt the shea butter. Mix aloe vera gel with the melted shea butter. Remove the mixture from the heat and add the gum. Instead of xanthan gum, you can add gum for similar result. Use a whisk to blend the ingredients well. Add the liquid soap and thoroughly mix the ingredients. Continue whisking until the gum is evenly distributed in the mixture. The blending process can be eased by using a blender. When the mixture becomes foamy, leave it aside for some time until it cools. Now, add the essential oils and once again whisk the mixture. Pour the body wash in a bottle and use as needed. [13]

3. Shea Butter, Aloe Vera, Honey, Vitamin E And Essential Oils

This is a variation of the shea butter, aloe vera gel and citrus oils body wash. It contains two additional moisturizing ingredients honey and vitamin E. Honey has been used for ages for skin care. Though best known for its moisturizing property, it is also regarded as a potent antibacterial and antioxidant ingredient. It also works as a natural cleanser. Because of its antibacterial property, honey helps in fighting the bacteria responsible for acne breakout. It also helps in repairing the skin damaged by exposure to sunlight and chemicals. [14] Vitamin E is a popular ingredient in skin care products. When used topically, it helps the skin to retain its natural oil and moisture. It is considered effective in alleviating skin problems such as acne and psoriasis and is also known to reduce appearance of scars and stretch marks. [15]

Ingredients
Shea butter – half a cup
Aloe vera gel – one tablespoon
Honey – one tablespoon
Glycerin – one tablespoon
Vitamin E – one capsule or one teaspoon
Castile soap – one cup
Sweet orange essential oil – four drops
Lavender essential oil – six drops
Lemon essential oil – fourteen drops

Method
Use a double boiler to melt the shea butter. Add honey, aloe vera gel, glycerin and vitamin E oil and mix the ingredients. Slowly pour the castile soap and stir to thoroughly blend it with the moisturizing ingredients. Add the essential oils and stir the mixture well. Store the body wash in a glass bottle. Before using the body wash, shake the bottle well. [16]

4. Shea Butter, Green Tea, Coconut Oil, Honey And Essential Oil

Green tea is not only a refreshing beverage. It is known to restore the skin health and is often added to skin care products including toners, creams, scrubs, lotions and cleansing solutions. It is known to promote microcirculation in the skin and helps in maintaining the healthy tone and function of the skin. It works as an astringent and protects the skin from the free radicals. It helps in keeping the skin elastic and firm, and inhibits skin damage due to exposure to solar radiation. [17] Including green tea in the shower gel recipe helps in enhancing the quality of the product.

Ingredients
Shea butter – two tablespoons
Green tea leaves – two tablespoons
Coconut Oil – ¼  cup
Raw Honey – ¼ cup
Liquid castile soap – ½ cup
Essential oil – 15 drops

Method
Put the coconut oil in a small pan and melt the oil. Add the tea leaves and simmer the oil for about 30 minutes on low heat. Keep stirring the mixture. Now add the shea butter and keep stirring the mixture until the shea butter melts and combines with the coconut oil. Remove the pan from the heat and allow it to cool slightly. Add honey and liquid castile soap and mix them well. Add your favorite essential oil and blend it with the body wash. Transfer the body wash to a bottle and use as needed. [18]