DIY Beauty Forum

My homemade moisturizer keeps separating. Tips?


I’ve been making my own hair balm for the past year and it works GREAT!! But it tends to separate after a couple weeks. It still works fine, but there are bits of one of the ingredients floating around in it (I think it’s the cocoa butter). I’d like to find out if there’s a way to avoid this. I’m hoping to start selling a bit of this on the side to help pay the bills or give the hubbie and I some spending money, but don’t think the products I have now is “professional” enough. Here’s the recipe I’ve been using (feel free to use this yourself!). It’s weighed out in grams. Just melt it in the microwave, stir, and let it cool.

  • Refined coconut oil - 13.25 g
  • Refined shea butter - 6.5 g
  • Refined cocoa butter - 15.5 g (I think this is the ingredient that separates)
  • Lanolin - 3 g
  • White bee’s wax - 2g
  • Fragrance oil blend (not homemade, bought premixed online) - 2g

@ShavingMama welcome to the forum!!

So here’s what could have happpened, in my opinion. I’ve made a few creams and moisturizers before, and I found that if I didn’t stir enough while the liquids were still warm, that they would separate. So what I can suggest to you, is that you really stir them very very well WHILE they’re still warm and until the cream has cooled. So this might sound like hard work (it kind of is), but absolutely worth it in the end.

1 Like

@ShavingMama make sure that you’re also using good quality ingredients. Sometimes, a lesser quality ingredient will actually separate and make the lotion almost unusable. Additionally, you should also make sure that all the ingredients are really well whisked and incorporated, otherwise the shea butter and coconut oil could come up to the top.

1 Like

Thanks for the responses, @Georgia and @beehive67. I’ll definitely try that with my best batch. The weird part is that the separation happens after things have already cooled. Over the next week, bits will start coalescing on the top and it just gets worse as the balm sits there. After a couple weeks, it’s more like a thick jelly with bits of…something…suspended in it. Is this what you experienced?

The only thing I can think of that might have gone wrong is that the coconut oil or shea butter separated due to temperature. Coconut oil, for example, solidifies in cooler temperatures and melts in warmer temperatures. Unfortunately, this can happen when you make your own lotions and stuff. What I could say to you is that you should re-mix the whole thing again and see what happens. After that, I would probably keep it in the fridge. It may be a hard consistency, but it shouldn’t separate.

Hi there! So my thought for this is that the coconut oil is probably separating due to fluctuations in temperature. As someone mentioned, coconut oil will hard when it’s cooler and melt when it’s warmer, so that may be the case. In order for this not to happen, the coconut oil needs to be broken down very very well, meaning you might need to mix more.