dry hand lotion pin

Super Rich & Creamy Dry Hand Lotion {with essential oils}

This extremely cold winter weather has made hands very dry and chapped.  So it’s time to make my favorite super rich & creamy dry hand lotion.  Love this stuff!  My hands should be back to normal in no time.


Here’s what you’ll need to make this Super Rich & Creamy Dry Hand Lotion

1)  1/4 cup

shea butter  this is my favorite shea butter  It’s creamy, moisturizing, and has a nice, subtle scent.  Other brands of shea butter can have a strong, kind of “funny” smell, not this one.  If you’re not a fan of other shea butters, give this one a try.  I think you’ll love it!  I do.

2)  2 Tbsp.  moisturizing carrier oil (pick one of these)

Avocado Oil  – great for very dry skin, loaded with nourishing Vitamins A, B1, B2, D, E, and Beta Carotene

Jojoba Oil  – closely resembles the sebum in human skin, extremely rich in Vitamin E

Sweet Almond Oil  – one of the gentlest oils, extremely nourishing, rich in Vitamin D, and excellent emollient known for its ability to soften and recondition the skin

3)  1 Tbsp.  beeswax 

4)  glass jars

adorable little 2 oz jars

8 oz jars that are perfect for lotions, creams, sugar scrubs, and salves- because seals tight and you can easily reach into this jar

5) up to 10 drops of essential oils


How to make this Super Rich & Creamy Dry Hand Lotion

1.  Measure out the following ingredients into a glass bowl or Pyrex measuring cup (this will be the top of your double boiler)

1/4 cup shea butter 


2 Tbsp. Avocado Oil , Jojoba Oil , or Sweet Almond Oil 


1 Tbsp.  beeswax 


2.  Melt shea butter, moisturizing carrier oil, and beeswax together in a double boiler.  Be sure to take your time doing this.  You want to make sure that the beeswax completely melts so that your solidified lotion is super rich & creamy.  If you don’t melt the beeswax completely, then it could reform and your lotion would be grainy.  It usually takes about 15 minutes for the beeswax to melt.


3.  remove from heat

4.  pour into your glass jar – this recipe makes about 1/2 cup of lotion which is enough to fill either 1 of these glass jars or 2 of these little glass jars


5.  add up to 10 drops of essential oil (be sure you don’t do this until the mixture is off of the heat and has cooled slightly so that you don’t lose any of the therapeutic benefits of the essential oils.


here are some essential oil combinations to try:

5 drops eucalyptus and 5 drops spearmint

5 drops fir and 5 drops grapefruit

4 drops orange, 3 drops cedarwood, and 2 drops ylang ylang

3 drops patchouli and 6 drops tangerine

5 drops lavender and 5 drops lemon

3 drops helichrysum, 3 drops frankincense, 2 drops sandalwood, and 2 drops lavender

6.  Let cool and set


7.  Enjoy!!  Take a small, pea-sized amount of the lotion and rub it into each hand.  As with most natural lotions, creams, and body butters, it may take a minute or so to soak in.  Don’t use too much or it could feel greasy.  Start with a little and then use more if you need it.  You’ll probably be surprised how moisturizing it is and how just a little goes a long way.

Want some deep moisturizing quickly?  Just put on a pair of cotton gloves (or cotton socks) after you apply the lotion.  Leave the gloves on for 30 minutes or even overnight.  Your hands will be super soft and moisturized!



Interested in more recipes, tips, and ideas for how to use essential oils?

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Please note: Products mentioned in this article have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products and information on this page are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This website is not a substitute for professional care.  Always consult your medical doctor regarding your medical care. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

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By | 2017-04-19T11:03:11+00:00 January 18th, 2016|Essential Oils|40 Comments


  1. Stephanie January 19, 2016 at 9:44 pm - Reply

    Love this cream for a few reasons, one of which is that it is coconut oil-free! I’ve made with almond and avocado oil. Both are very emollient. A little goes a long way!

  2. Alicia January 21, 2016 at 12:49 am - Reply

    This sounds like a great recipe and I’m going to try it out! I do have a question, do you use 10 drops of EO total for the whole batch you are making, or is it per little glass jar?

    • Sarah Lewis January 21, 2016 at 7:24 am - Reply

      Hi, Alicia. I usually use 10 drops of EO for the entire batch of lotion. Occasionally, when my hands need a little extra TLC, I’ll use 15-20 drops of the EO blend with frankincense, helichrysum, sandalwood, and lavender, because those EOs have such great nourishing properties for my skin. – Sarah

      • Karen Cassetta February 19, 2016 at 6:44 am - Reply

        How long does this stay fresh in the jar?

        • Sarah Lewis March 2, 2016 at 12:56 pm - Reply

          Hi, Karen. It’s really important to make sure no dirt or water makes it’s way into the jar. If you use a clean spoon to scoop a little of the lotion out each time you use it, then the lotion should stay fresh for 3-6 months. – Sarah

  3. Kim February 18, 2016 at 5:38 pm - Reply

    What can I use instead of Shea Butter. I cannot use this allergic.


    • Sarah Lewis March 2, 2016 at 1:06 pm - Reply

      Hi, Kim. Have you tried mango butter before? Although mango is a little harder butter than shea, mango butter would be a great substitute in this recipe. – Sarah

  4. Dee Dee February 19, 2016 at 6:39 pm - Reply

    Can this recipe be whipped like a body butter?

    • Sarah Lewis March 2, 2016 at 12:54 pm - Reply

      Hi, Dee Dee. yes, it definitely could be. After you melt the oils and beeswax, chill the oil/wax mixture in the fridge for about 15-30 minutes until the mixture just starts to solidify on the sides of the bowl. The whip the mixture for 10-15 minutes until light and fluffy. Add your essential oils and whip for another minute or so to incorporate them into the body butter. – Sarah

  5. Jane March 8, 2016 at 2:46 pm - Reply

    Dear Sarah- fabulous recipe!!!
    Would you be so kind to post more skin care recipes here… facial cream, eye creams,toners …
    I am looking for a light day facial moisturizer recipe…
    Blessings, Jane

    • Sarah Lewis March 14, 2016 at 4:17 pm - Reply

      Hi, Jane. Thanks so much for letting me know what you’re interested in. Those sound like great ideas! Hope to have some to share with you soon. – Sarah

  6. Becky March 29, 2016 at 3:03 pm - Reply

    I just made my first batch using calm essential oils! I am very hopeful this will help my poor dry hands!

    • Sarah Lewis April 4, 2016 at 10:00 am - Reply

      Hi, Becky.
      I hope you loved it, and I hope your “poor dry hands” are feeling better! It doesn’t take much. Just about a pea-sized amount should do it. And if you want a super moisturizing experience, put it on and cover you hands with cotton gloves at night. When you wake in the morning, your hands should be baby soft. Works great for feet, too!

  7. Dawn April 14, 2016 at 4:02 pm - Reply

    Love your recipes but also would love a face CREAM, and not heavy).
    Thank you,

    • Sarah Lewis April 14, 2016 at 4:43 pm - Reply

      Hi, Dawn.
      I would love that too! Unfortunately, I haven’t found a diy face cream yet that I’m completely thrilled with.
      I have found a face serum that I love. Any interest in that?
      I’ll keep experimenting to try to figure out the face cream too– I love a good challenge!

      • MaryAnn February 17, 2017 at 6:35 am - Reply

        Do you have a face serum recipe for mature 50ish skin?

        • Sarah Lewis February 17, 2017 at 3:14 pm - Reply

          Hi MaryAnn,
          Yes, I do. Here’s a link to the full post where you can see all the best essential oils and carrier oils for mature skin (as well as other skin types, too, like oily, sensitive, acne-prone, dry, and normal).
          And here’s one of the face serum recipes for mature skin from that post:
          To a 2 ounce or larger glass bottle, add…
          2 oz. rose hip seed oil
          5 drops rose essential oil
          5 drops helichrysum essential oil
          5 drops frankincense essential oil
          5 drops geranium essential oil
          Put lid on bottle and gently roll the bottle in the palm of your hand for about 30 seconds to mix the essential oils in with carrier oil.
          To use: cleanse face then apply drop of serum to forehead, each cheek, and chin.  gently massage in using small, soft upward strokes.
          thanks for your note!

  8. Erin April 28, 2016 at 2:25 pm - Reply

    I just made this recipe..i was so excited to try this as i plan on giving lotions away as christmas next year..so this was a test run..followed the recipe exactly….let it cool..took a little out to try and my hands looked like id rubbed straight oil or vasaline on them..SUPER GREASY!! Doesnt resemble hand lotion in the slightest. Is there any adjustments i could make to help this be more like actual lotion?
    Ps.. I do love the smell..used lavender peppermint and ylang ylang.

    • Sarah Lewis April 28, 2016 at 3:46 pm - Reply

      Hi, Erin.
      I’m sorry you don’t like it. I agree, it is greasy. There’s not really a way to tweak the recipe to make it like store-bought lotion. You could add a tablespoon or so of arrowroot powder or cornstarch to cut down a little bit on the greasiness, but it will still be more greasy than it will be like a store-bought lotion.
      This is an intensive moisturizer. It only takes a little bit. About a pea-size amount is all I use for both hands. And even with that, I let it sit on my hands for a minute and then rub it in again before I continue on with my day.
      Sorry again that this wasn’t what you were expecting. I hope you’ll give me another chance.

    • Criesta January 31, 2017 at 4:44 pm - Reply

      It’s not going to…It’s all natural and is made with oils and butters. A little goes a long way.

  9. Sharon Bell May 2, 2016 at 3:23 am - Reply

    This sounds great. I made a batch today (lavender), but it’s for a gift, so I will need to make another jar next weekend for me. I already use home made lotion and am aware of the greasy couple of minutes after you first apply it. I also made a batch of lavender soap to go with my gift

  10. LeQuita Hicks July 19, 2016 at 10:30 pm - Reply

    To cut down on some of the greasyness, could we add 1/4 c coco butter? Would that help?

  11. Jill Krieg August 4, 2016 at 12:13 pm - Reply

    My son has a nut allergy. If I use almond oil do you think it will have the same effect?

    • Sarah Lewis August 6, 2016 at 11:50 am - Reply

      Hi, Jill.
      I’m not a medical professional, but as a mom, I would be extremely careful with nut allergies.
      If your son is allergic to tree nuts (like almonds), then I would not use sweet almond oil around him. You could substitute another oil like jojoba, apricot kernel oil, or rosehip seed oil in place of the sweet almond oil.
      As with food, make sure that the items you’re using aren’t made at a plant that also makes things with nuts so you don’t risk cross-contamination.
      And it’s also a good idea to check with your pediatrician or allergist to see what they’d recommend. They’ll know best.

  12. Trisha December 8, 2016 at 3:56 pm - Reply

    Sarah, my husband’s hands get terribly dry in winter. This sounds like something that would help him. Since I’ve never made anything like this before, any notes for a newbie?

  13. Claudia January 13, 2017 at 4:03 pm - Reply

    Thank you Sarah, i just tried the recipe and i absolutely love it. From now on the only hand cream i will use.

  14. Criesta January 31, 2017 at 4:40 pm - Reply

    To those who don’t like the greasy feel of a natural lotion just remember that this is all natural and you are using oils to make it so it will be some what greasy. Like she said it takes very little. I have made some and I’m a month in on using it had have barely used any of it, 8 oz jar so it’ll last a long time. Store bought lotion are made with water and other chemicals that are bad for your body. So when making all natural it takes some getting use to. Don’t give up and give it a chance

  15. Carley February 14, 2017 at 6:08 am - Reply

    Hello, I couldn’t find shea butter around me so I used coconut oil instead… I’m currently waiting for it to cool hopefully it will turn out good

    • Kim September 8, 2017 at 9:30 am - Reply

      Carley, how did it turn out with coconut oil? I’d like to try this too, as I have TONS on hand & no shea butter. Has anyone else used coconut oil? If so, were you happy with the results? Thanks!

  16. MaryAnn February 17, 2017 at 6:32 am - Reply

    Do you add the 10 drops to the recipe or are you adding 10 drops to each 2ounce jar? Thanks!

    • Sarah Lewis February 17, 2017 at 3:25 pm - Reply

      I added 10 drops to the entire batch. This is a very low dilution (<1%). If you'd like a stronger concentration, you could use up to 36 drops of essential oil in a batch for a 2% dilution (which is generally considered a safe topical dilution for a healthy adult). I use the lower dilution of 10 drops because I use this lotion often and I apply it all over my hands and feet. - Sarah

  17. Ray February 27, 2017 at 5:46 pm - Reply

    Hi Sarah. Is there a difference between almond oil and sweet almond oil? I saw that some recipes specify almond oil and in others state sweet almond oil. Hope to learn the difference.

    • Sarah Lewis March 2, 2017 at 3:53 pm - Reply

      Sorry about that. That is confusing. They are the same thing.
      Thanks for asking. I bet others have had the same question.

  18. Kimberly March 4, 2017 at 8:20 am - Reply

    I have all the ingredients except bees wax. Would it be ok to leave out the bees wax?

    • Sarah Lewis March 19, 2017 at 9:37 pm - Reply

      While it won’t be the same without the beeswax, it would still be a good moisturizer. The beeswax changes the consistency of the butter and oil to be more of a rich salve that stays on the skin longer. That’s partly why it makes such a great intense moisturizer.

  19. Leann March 13, 2017 at 11:51 am - Reply

    Is this mainly just for dry hands or is this good for all over the body ( besides the face)? Thanks!

    • Sarah Lewis March 18, 2017 at 3:56 pm - Reply

      Hi Leann,
      This is best for really dry skin. I use it on dey hands, cracked heels, and chapped skin. You could use it on other parts of the body (except the face like you said), too.
      But it is pretty thick and heavy. The texture is like a salve.
      I love it for really dry skin, but for all-over moisturizing I use a whipped body butter (here’s my favorite recipe).
      – Sarah

  20. Theresa May 30, 2017 at 6:37 am - Reply

    Hi Sarah,
    I was thinking of adding a bit more beeswax, and a little less shea butter so I can make it into a lip balm. Before I begin, will it already be thick enough without making those changes? I’m all about same ingredients for multiple uses because I live in such a small space, storage is a premium.
    Have a fantastic day!

    • Sarah Lewis June 1, 2017 at 6:36 pm - Reply

      Hi Theresa,
      I’m a big fan of reusing ingredients I already have, too.
      A basic lip balm recipe is equal parts shea butter, liquid oil, and beeswax. So 2 tablespoons shea butter, 2 Tbsp carrier oil of your choice, 2 Tbsp beeswax, and 10 drops essential oil will make a nice lip balm.
      Have fun experimenting. Hope you have a fantastic day, too!

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