Witch Hazel Cold and Flu Remedy

Witch Hazel Cold and Flu Remedy

It’s cold and flu season, and we all know someone suffering from the symptoms. This week we will try to provide natural remedies to help alleviate your symptoms. Many people find that aromatherapy can be quite helpful when dealing with the nasty sickness. Specific scents can uplift your spirits even if they can’t clear those sinuses. Aside from aromatherapy, you can also try something like the Neti Pot. Below is a recipe for those of you using the Neti Pot and are still extremely congested or have a sinus infection already. The mixture is meant to break up the mucus on the sinus walls that has hardened.

As always, please use with caution. If you are sensitive, please consult with your physician first. The regular sea salt mixture that is used in a Neti Pot can be quite strong for a lot of people, so if THAT is too strong for you, we don’t recommend the following. However, the below recipe can be great for those of you unable to clear those sinus passages!

Ingredients:

Neti Pot

Warm Water

1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt

1 teaspoon Baking Soda (also known as Sodium Bicarbonate)

1 Tablespoon of Witch Hazel

Steps:

Fill Neti Pot 3/4 of the way with warm water (not too hot). Add sea salt, baking soda and witch hazel. Follow the Neti Pot instructions when using.

Witch Hazel Cold and Flu Remedy

Finally, drink plenty of fluids and get lots of rest! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

Witch Hazel Cold and Flu Remedy

 

Shea Butter Hand Cream Recipe

Shea Butter Hand Cream Recipe

They say that the hands are the first to age. For those of us getting older, it’s clear to see the wrinkles appearing every time we look down. To help curb the aging, we recommend finding a solid hand cream or lotion. Shea butter is so great for your skin, and mixed with essential oils and cocoa butter, you really can’t go wrong! You can certainly pick up an already-created base, or you can try the recipe below for an all-natural, homemade product. Package them up, label them and give them to your friends. They will thank you later!

Ingredients:

6 ounces of Unrefined Shea Butter (softened)

1/4 ounce of Cocoa Butter (softened)

6 ounces of Sweet Almond Oil

1 tsp. Cornstarch

1/4 ounce of Essential Oil (Lavender Oil or Peppermint Oil work best)

Large bowl

Medium Metal Bowl

2- 6 oz. Jars with Lid

Ice

Hand Mixer

 

Steps:

Fill large bowl with ice. Place metal bowl in larger bowl.

Mix all ingredients in the metal bowl. Stir.

Sift cornstarch over the essential oils.

Use a hand mixer to mix ingredients together. Whip.

Put into jar and use at night. It’s a great way to rejuvenate your hands for the next morning!

*Store in cool, dry place and it will keep for quite some time!

Shea Butter Hand Cream Recipe

You can alter the recipe by using different essential oils. Lavender and Peppermint tend to be the most popular, and have soothing scents. I also really like the smell of Jasmine Essential Oil as it is pretty unisex and fresh. Either way you can customize this to your audience – manly scent for men, floral scent for women and give as gifts. Or you can be greedy and keep it for yourself!

If you have any hand cream recipes please share in the comments below!

Shea Butter Hand Cream Recipe

Essential Oil Spotlight Tea Tree Oil

Essential Oil Spotlight Tea Tree Oil

We are wrapping up this weeks blog with a spotlight on a wonderful essential oil, a personal favorite, Tea Tree Essential Oil. There are countless uses for this oil, but it is most known for assisting in clearing up acne. The oil fights against bacteria, viruses, and assists the immune system in warding off disease. It’s no wonder it’s known as a medicine cabinet in a bottle. Below are just some of the many uses of the oil.

Acne– This oil is one of the few that can be applied directly to the skin for most all skin types. You can dab it onto acne-affected areas with a cotton ball, or massage into skin as a face wash at night. Be careful around the eyes, and be sure to wash off after cleaning a specific area. Your skin will feel fantastic after washing. Apply some lotion directly after, and you have a wonderful, all-natural face wash.

Antiseptic– If you have a cut or burn, use tea trea oil as an anti-septic.

Cold– If you have chest congestion from a cold or flu, add a few drops to a vaporizer to loosen! Perfect home remedy for flu season.

Lice– Add a few drops to your shampoo to assist in getting rid of head lice.

Body Odor– Add a few drops to your bath. It will help get rid of body odor.

Aromatherapy– It can help treat coughs, and other cold systems through it’s aroma.

Cleaning– Since it is an antiseptic, it can be mixed with water and soap to create homemade cleaners.

Laundry– Similar to helping to rid body odor, a few drops mixed into your load of laundry will get your clothes smelling cleaner!

Bug Bites– Going camping? Bring some tea tree oil to treat bug bites AND mix with water as an insect repellant!

Essential Oil Spotlight Tea Tree Oil

There really are countless uses for Tea Tree Essential Oil. As an acne treatment/face wash, it is great because it is all-natural and doesn’t contain many of the harmful chemicals found in popular over-the-counter acne meds. As always, we recommend going as pure as possible, and tea tree oil is one way to go green and pure.

Try Tea Tree Essential Oil today!

 

 

Essential Oil Room and Linen Spray

Essential Oil Room and Linen Spray

Today we have a quick update for a room spray! This recipe is great for scenting your living room or kitchen, and it can also be used on linens.

1) The easiest method is to buy a room spray base that is already mixed. Bulk Apothecary has an unscented base available in various quantities. All you have to do it mix in your essential oil (or fragrance oil), put into a spray bottle and you are ready to go! We recommend starting with 1/2 ounce of fragrance or essential oil PER gallon of base. This is a starting point, and you can also mix in more or less depending on the strength of scent you are looking for. You can also use the base as a body mist by adding your favorite fragrance oil to it.

2) The second method is for those of you that want to create your own. This recipe calls for rubbing alcohol, so just be aware if you are using it on surfaces or furniture in which you don’t want affected.

Let’s get started with this essential oil room and linen spray!

Ingredients:

Distilled Water

Spray Bottle– Be sure it is a new bottle as old ones will be filled with residue. Bulk Apothecary has bottles and sprayers available as well.

Rubbing Alcohol

Essential Oil/Fragrance Oil — You can use whatever oil you prefer. Lemon oils tend to be great for the kitchen, and they are known to scare off fruit flies. If you are looking for a fall scent, you can mix in pumpkin, OR use orange and cinnamon together for a spicy/seasonal fragrance. This is the part where you get creative with the oils!

Steps:

Fill spray bottle 3/4 of the way with distilled water and 1/4 rubbing alcohol, with just a tiny bit of room at the top for the oils.

Add 8-10 drops of essential oil/fragrance oil. Mix and spray. Be sure to mix before each use and do not spray it around food! You can alter by JUST using distilled water without any rubbing alcohol if you prefer, but the texture will vary.

Essential Oil Room and Linen Spray

 

Essential Oil Room and Linen Spray

Essential Oil Aphrodisiacs

Essential Oil Aphrodisiacs

Essential Oil Aphrodisiacs

Yesterday we provided an infographic with some helpful information on a variety of essential oils. Today, we are getting a bit more specific. After all, Valentine’s Day is around the corner, and we want everyone to know the best essential oil aphrodisiacs when it comes to aromatherapy. So pour the champagne and light the (hopefully homemade) candles, because we are about to break down the best oils to get the romance blossoming!

Before we get into the oil, please note that aromatherapy works in a variety of ways. The idea is that the aroma will ignite certain feelings within. For instance, citronella oil is used as a bug repellant. The scent will chase away nasty bugs. When it comes to aphrodisiacs, the following scents are known to spark up endorphins when inhaled. These oils can be mixed into your homemade soaps, candles, or put into your diffusers to make the room smell great. When dealing with igniting the love, I recommend adding a few drops to a bath or the end of a shower. If you are flying solo, you can also put a few drops into a wet washcloth and apply to your head for a relaxing night in. However you decide to use these oils, just note that they will put you in the romantic mood, so plan accordingly!

Jasmine Essential Oil (Absolution 3%)— This is a floral aroma, also known to fight depression as it is a mood enhancer. You will notice many of the hotels you stay at around the country use jasmine in their amenities because the smell enhances your mood, making you feel like you had a great time even if the hotel was less than stellar. Personally, it’s my favorite because it is floral, without being too feminine.

Lavender Essential Oil (Population)— Another floral aroma, this one is often thought of as the antiseptic oil, but it can be very soothing and romantic. When the scent fills the air, you are often reminded of a bouquet of flowers. It can be described as a bit more feminine than Jasmine, but it is a wonderful all-around scent nonetheless.

Bergamot Essential Oil— This oil is also known for treating depression and anxiety because it is a mood enhancer. It’s more citrus scented than the others, so if you have an aversion to floral scents, this may be your best bet! After you infuse it into your romantic night, you can use it to help treat acne and other skin disorders, so it’s versatility is definitely a plus!

Peppermint Essential Oil (Supreme)— For those that don’t want citrus or floral, try the peppermint essential oil. This is a proven aphrodisiac and a very versatile essential oil. The mint aroma will make you feel clean, and is a fantastic year-round scent in candles and soaps. The oil also has a cooling technique when applied directly, so it will make the skin cool down after a steamy night!

There are countless other essential oils that will enhance the mood! You can even mix a few to get a unique flavor. Everyone tends to react differently to scents, so try them out before your Valentine’s Day celebration. See which ones you like best so you can plan the perfect romantic evening! There are countless ways to use these oils as aphrodisiacs, so get creative! You may want to try your hand at candle making, or just purchase the oil, unscrew the top and let the scent fill the air!

Enjoy! 🙂

 

Essential Oil Aphrodisiacs

Spotlight on Essential Oils by Bulk Apothecary – Infographic

We always have people asking for more information about our essential oils. There are so many various oils, as well as so many various uses that it can be incredibly confusing for the average consumer. Essential oils can be used for aromatherapy, scenting product or even cleaning. Since everyone tends to use them differently, it’s important to know a bit more about your product before using. Furthermore, you want to make sure to find 100% pure oils. What you will find in doing research, is that many companies cut the essential oil with what is called a ‘carrier’ oil. The company then drives up the cost on a synthetic product that will not have all the benefits you need. Finally, from a marketing standpoint, it is a great benefit to you, the seller, to provide a product with 100% pure ingredients as much as possible.

Below you will find an informative graphic that will help clear up some of the confusion you may have. If you’re in need of essential oils, let us be your guide! You can click the link for a bigger image.

Spotlight on Essential Oils - Infographic

Embed our Spotlight on Essential Oils – Infographic:

 

 

Recipe: Valentine’s Soaps Using Rose Essential Oil

Valentine’s Day is coming up, so get prepared for the season of love by creating some homemade soaps! The recipe below can easily be altered, depending on the scent you want and the mold you want to use. Bulk Apothecary has fantastic heart and rose-shaped molds that are great for the holiday. These are great for spicing up the shower/bath with a little added romance, or packaging them up to give to friends and family as a Valentine! They are useful and easily customizable! Get creative! 🙂

 

How to get started:

Buy a?melt and pour soap.

Your melt and pour soap can be one of many. ?All of Bulk Apothecary?s melt and pour soaps?are different. ?Low sweat refers to the way the final product reacts in water. ?Organic means that all of the ingredients are certified organic. ?All natural is free of harmful added chemicals. ?You can choose your color, decide between glycerin, oatmeal or olive oil bases. ?The possibilities are endless. ?I recommend if you?re creating soap for the first time, start with an SFIC clear glycerin. ?It is a basic base that will be easy to work with. ?Furthermore, if you want a wonderful natural coloring that will absorb the essential flavoring, I recommend the shea butter base.

Once you have your melt and pour base picked out, you will need either mitre box or soap cutter, or you can get one of the square/rectangle trays.

Other ingredients:

2-3 Drops Rose Absolute 3% Dillution Essential Oil. You can substitute with other oils? use?peppermint oil?if you have some leftover from the holidays. The mint flavoring smells great on the skin, year round! You can also just use a simple Rose fragrance oil, if you want a stronger scent and you aren’t looking for the added benefits of an essential oil.

Heart/Rose Soap Mold— there are a variety of molds available that fit into a Valentine’s theme. If you want to make a bunch of tiny heart soaps, you can also use those heart ice trays they sell at the grocery store. Those make wonderful, small soaps that can be put in a basket for the perfect Valentine.

Soap Colorants (Optional)– Add these if you want your soap to be a specific color. The red hues look great for this recipe!

 

 

Steps:

1. Cut melt and pour base into small cubes. ?Place in microwave safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds. ?Mix base, heat for another 30 seconds.

2. Once melted, add approximately 2-3 drops of rose essential oil.

Note: This is the step where you would add colors if you wanted something more vibrant. Add a pink, a red, or split the base into two containers. ?Add white colorant to one, and red to another. ?Then mix together for the swirl effect. ?Just be familiar with mixing so it doesn?t turn out muddy color. ?You can also skip the colorant to give the soap a simple, natural coloring.

3. Pour soap into Valentine mold.

Note: Spray the top of the soap with rubbing alcohol to reduce bubbling.

4. Let sit for 3 hours.

Note? some people put the soap into the freezer to harden.

Now your soap is ready to use! It?s very simple to create your own soap, and you will find that you can get incredibly creative over time. ?More advanced soapmakers can add two colorants, and swirl for a wonderful swirling effect that looks GREAT with your other Valentine’s decorations. ?As stated above, if you want the entire soap to be all-natural, skip the colorants. ?It won?t be as vibrant, but it will be all-natural and still have some coloring. ?The shea butter soap base has a great natural coloring, and looks wonderful when mixed with things like cocoa powder. ?Either way, this soap will put you in the mood when you lather up in the mornings, or simply add a special holiday touch to your kitchen or bathroom!

**Due to the ingredients, the soap has a shorter shelf life. You will notice the product loses much of it?s scent after about 5 months or so. Be sure to get use out of it before the holidays are over!? 🙂

Winter Skincare Using Essential Oils

Winter Skincare Using Essential Oils

Winter Skincare Using Essential Oils

Yesterday we gave you some recipes for facial cleansers, and today we continue our skincare advice with some tips on taking care of yourself during the cold winter months. Making your own skincare products is great for the budget, and it also allows you to control what you are using. Oftentimes we go to the store and purchase products with tons of ingredients, many we’ve never heard of and can’t pronounce. At Bulk Apothecary, we always recommend using as few ingredients as possible, and if you can get away with using only natural ingredients, it is worth it in the long run. Below you will find a few recipes to keep yourself hydrated and glowing!

For Dry, Mature Skin:

100 ml of Rose Water

90 ml Vegetable Glycerin

90 ml Aloe Vera

8 Drops Palmarosa Essential Oil

5 Drops Rose Essential Oil

Mix all of the ingredients into a bottle and apply. If you have sensitive skin, we recommend reducing the amount of Palmarosa oil to 4-6 drops.

Nighttime, Dry Skin Makeup Remover:

75 ml Almond Oil

75 ml Jojoba Oil

10 Drops Carrot Seed Essential Oil

Mix and apply with a cotton ball.

Carrot seed oil is fantastic for the skin, and something many people forget about. It’s not as popular as some of the other essential oils on the market, but when mixed with carrier oils, it can be very beneficial for your skin.

Other skin tips:

After showering or taking a bath, massage coconut oil into the skin. It is extremely moisturizing, and great to use in the winter.

Avocado oil is also perfect for the winter. Just mix with a carrier oil, like sweet almond, sunflower or jojoba and massage into the skin after bathing.

Enjoy!

Winter Skincare Using Essential Oils

Homemade Facial Cleanser Using Cocoa Butter Grapeseed and More

Homemade Facial Cleanser Using Cocoa Butter Grapeseed and More

I know SO many people who got one of those Home Cleansing Systems…you know, those fancy facial tools that clear the pores and make your skin look fresh? I think Clarisonic’s Mia is the most popular brand, and works the best, but there are countless others on the market. Anyway, they were quite the popular gift this last holiday season. Most of the systems come with a small sample of facial cleansing product that is to be used in conjunction with the system, but if you run out or if you are looking to create your own formula to adjust to your skin, you came to the right place! Below are a few different recipes for homemade facial cleansers that are easy, cheap and can be designed to work for YOUR skin! Enjoy!

1) Rose Facial Cleanser:

Ingredients:

6 Tablespoons Each of Sweet Almond, Grapeseed and Jojoba Oil

9 Drops Bergamot Essential Oil

9 Drops Rose Essential Oil

6 Drops Lavender Essential Oil

Steps: Mix together in a clean glass bottle. Shake before each use.

 

2) Olive Oil Scrub

Ingredients:

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

2 Tablespoons Dark Brown Sugar

Steps: Mix in a bowl. Apply in circular motion, rinse.

*This recipe works best for direct application. If using a cleansing device, add less brown sugar and the device will help with exfoliation.

 

3) Cocoa Butter Cleanser

Ingredients:

6 Tablespoons Cocoa Butter (pure natural butter works best)

2 1/2 Tablespoons Grapeseed Oil

2 1/2 Tablespoons Water

5 Drops Sandalwood Essential Oil

Steps: Melt butter in microwave, mix in water and grapeseed oil. Once room temperature, add essential oils. Store in glass.

Homemade Facial Cleanser Using Cocoa Butter Grapeseed and More

These products are amazing and make great gifts. Simply add decorative ribbon and a gift tag and you’re ready to go!

If you have any great facial cleansing recipes feel free to comment below 🙂

Homemade Facial Cleanser Using Cocoa Butter Grapeseed and More

Recipe: Aloe Vera Shaving Soap Bars

Are you off to the beach this holiday season? I’m sure you’ll be soaking up plenty of sun. Don’t forget to pack the Aloe Vera. Aloe Vera has many wonderful benefits. It’s used to treat sunburn, cuts, and even acne prone skin. Aloe Vera helps give your skin that beautiful glow, while it smooths and moisturizers.

 

Today I have the perfect soap bar recipe to make for your sunny vacation!

 

Aloe Vera Soap Bar Recipe:

 

2 lb block of soap base of your choice (I used the Shaving Soap Bar)

2 Cubes of Blue Soap Colorant

“Homemade” Soap mold

Aloe Vera Essential Oil– 4 Drops

Spray bottle of rubbing alcohol

Soap Box/Label/Packaging (Optional)

Step 1: Cut or shave glycerin soap base into tiny pieces. Place into a microwave safe glass mixing bowl (you can always melt soap base on stove if you prefer). Microwave until soap base is almost completely melted. Add the 2 blue cubes and microwave for another 20 seconds or until smooth.

 

Step 2: Let cool for a few minutes, then add Aloe Vera Essential Oil. Stir into soap mixture. Your soap mixture should have a blue stain glass look if your using ?the shaving soap bar base.

 

Step 3: Slowly Pour mixture into the “homemade” soap mold or mold of your choice. Spray the top of the mold with rubbing alcohol to remove any air bubbles. Let soap mold sit for at least 3 hours before removing. (tip: place mold into freezer for 30 minutes before removing, this will make it easier to remove and cut soap bars)

 

If you’re taking these soap bars on vacation with you, I suggest purchasing a soap box container. It will extend the life of your soap bar and it’s easy to travel with.

 

Hope you enjoy making these great bars!

 

Recipe: Gingerbread Soap

We’ve been inundating our customers with Peppermint recipes, we forgot about another favorite: Gingerbread. This is another flavor we all love this time of year, and Gingerbread soaps make FANTASTIC housewarming gifts for your holiday parties. The recipe below can be altered. You can use another fragrance or essential oil with the Gingerbread mold if you want it to look one way and smell another. As always, get creative! These are great for kids and stocking stuffers! 🙂

 

 

How to get started:

Buy a?melt and pour soap.

Your melt and pour soap can be one of many. ?All of Bulk Apothecary?s melt and pour soaps?are different. ?Low sweat refers to the way the final product reacts in water. ?Organic means that all of the ingredients are certified organic. ?All natural is free of harmful added chemicals. ?You can choose your color, decide between glycerin, oatmeal or olive oil bases. ?The possibilities are endless. ?I recommend if you?re creating soap for the first time, start with an SFIC clear glycerin. ?It is a basic base that will be easy to work with. ?Furthermore, if you want a wonderful natural coloring that will absorb the peppermint flavoring, I recommend the shea butter base.

Once you have your melt and pour base picked out, you will need either mitre box or soap cutter, or you can get one of the square/rectangle trays.

Other ingredients:

2-3 Drops Gingerbread Fragrance Oil. This can be purchased in the seasonal section of your craft/grocery store. You can substitute with other oils– use peppermint oil for a wonderful peppermint soap!

Gingerbread Soap Mold

 

 

 

Steps:

1. Cut melt and pour base into small cubes. ?Place in microwave safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds. ?Mix base, heat for another 30 seconds.

2. Once melted, add approximately 2-3 drops of gingerbread/other essential oil.

Note: This is the step where you would add colors if you wanted something more vibrant. Add a brown, a red, or split the base into two containers. ?Add brown colorant to one, and red to another. ?Then mix together for the swirl effect. ?Just be familiar with mixing so it doesn?t turn out muddy color. ?You can also skip the colorant and let the puree give the soap a simple, natural coloring.

3. Pour soap into gingerbread mold.

Note: Spray the top of the soap with rubbing alcohol to reduce bubbling.

4. Let sit for 3 hours.

Note— some people put the soap into the freezer to harden.

Now your soap is ready to use! It?s very simple to create your own soap, and you will find that you can get incredibly creative over time. ?More advanced soapmakers can add black and red colorants, and swirl for a wonderful swirling effect that looks GREAT with your other Christmas decorations. ?As stated above, if you want the entire soap to be all-natural, skip the colorants. ?It won?t be as vibrant, but it will be all-natural and still have some coloring. ?The shea butter soap base has a great natural coloring, and looks wonderful when mixed with things like cocoa powder. ?Either way, this soap will put you in the mood when you lather up in the mornings, or simply add a special holiday touch to your kitchen or bathroom!

**Due to the ingredients, the soap has a shorter shelf life. You will notice the product loses much of it?s scent after about 5 months or so. Be sure to get use out of it before the holidays are over!? 🙂
 

 

Packaging Your Holiday Soaps!

So you’ve made the soaps, mixed some peppermint oil in and created that fancy swirl technique to “wow” your friends and family. Now what? They say don’t judge a book by it’s cover, but we all do. So you need your homemade products to be packaged in something nice. That’s where Bulk Apothecary comes in! We now have various packaging options available for your soaps and other homemade goodies.

 

Choose shrink-wrap if you want to package a couple items together. All you need to do is wrap the items and heat. The heat will shrink the wrapping and the package will be see-thru. Shrink wrap your items and put them in a gift basket with other homemade goodies!

If you are packaging bar soap, use one of our boxes with the window. You can still see the product, but the soap will be protected. Plus, you can write on the package, put some holiday stickers or ribbon on it, and it’s ready to give!

Tea Bags are also a great way to protect the items and they look super-cute! Just tie them together with a colorful ribbon!

 

There are obviously many ways to pack up your homemade gifts. Whatever method you choose, just get creative and the receiver will be anxious to use the product!

 

"

Happy Holidays! 🙂

 

Peppermint Shower Cubes

Those shower cubes are all the rage this holiday season and they make an EXCELLENT gift. It’s pretty easy to make your own, AND you can customize with seasonal flavorings like peppermint. Pair them with your soaps, candles and more for a wonderful gift that people can use! Happy Holidays!

 

 

**The ingredients you will be using will be all natural, chemical free and gentle enough for your whole body.

Ingredients:

8 oz of All Natural SFIC White Glycerin Melt and Pour Soap Base
1 cup of White Sugar
1 cup of Sweet Almond Oil?
Peppermint?Essential Oil– 2 Tablespoons (feel free to use any essential oil, we prefer the Supreme Peppermint oil for this recipe)
Ice Cube Tray
Bar of 6 Clear Red Cubes– you will only need 1 cube

 

 

Step 1:
Cut white?glycerin soap base?into small chunks, place into glass mixing bowl and microwave at 20-30 intervals.??The glass bowl will be very hot. Please use caution. Add the 1 clear red cube into the soap mixture, microwave and stir until completely melted and smooth. Next add the Peppermint Essential Oil. 2 Tablespoons is all you need.

Step 2:
Add 1 cup of the Sweet Almond Oil to 1 cup of White Sugar. Pour into soap mixture and blend. The mixture should have a wet sand like feel. Next, spoon mixture into ice cube tray and press down.??The mixture will harden within a few hours and pop right out of the tray leaving you with those adorable little cubes.

Store your Peppermint Sugar and Soap cubes in cute containers or mason jars.

To use just take into shower gently rub on body to exfoliate your skin and rinse clean. These cubes are great for dry knees and elbows. They even have a great effect on people who have skin conditions such as psoriasis.

Wrap with festive bows or label with a homemade holiday label and you have the perfect housewarming gift! Enjoy!

Recipe: Peppermint Mocha Soap

Confession: I love everything peppermint. This time of year screams peppermint, and why not make a soap to go along with my latte? The recipe below can be altered in so many ways. It’s a basic soapmaking recipe using our peppermint essential oil and some cocoa powder for effect. You can use cocoa butter if you prefer, or just leave it out completely and just make a peppermint soap. The point is to get creative! These make great housewarming gifts for the holiday party you’re going to, or stocking stuffers for your loved ones!

How to get started:

Buy a melt and pour soap.

Your melt and pour soap can be one of many. ?All of Bulk Apothecary?s melt and pour soaps?are different. ?Low sweat refers to the way the final product reacts in water. ?Organic means that all of the ingredients are certified organic. ?All natural is free of harmful added chemicals. ?You can choose your color, decide between glycerin, oatmeal or olive oil bases. ?The possibilities are endless. ?I recommend if you?re creating soap for the first time, start with an SFIC clear glycerin. ?It is a basic base that will be easy to work with. ?Furthermore, if you want a wonderful natural coloring that will absorb the peppermint flavoring, I recommend the shea butter base.

Once you have your melt and pour base picked out, you will need either mitre box or soap cutter, or you can get one of the square/rectangle trays.

Other ingredients:

2-3 Drops Peppermint Essential Oil

2 teaspoons cocoa powder– can substitute with cocoa butter, the scent will be weaker, but the feel of the soap will be smoother.

1 cup Ground Coffee (optional)

Steps:

1. Cut melt and pour base into small cubes. ?Place in microwave safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds. ?Mix base, heat for another 30 seconds.

2. Once melted, add your cocoa powder. ?Also add approximately 2-3 drops of peppermint essential oil. You can also coffee beans during this step if you are comfortable working with extra ingredients. ?You can ground up the beans and it will give the soap a darker coloring, or you can add to the top of soap in full bean form for an added dimension to the final product.

Note: This is the step where you would add colors if you wanted something more vibrant. Add a red, or split the base into two containers. ?Add black colorant to one, and red to another. ?Then mix together for the peppermint swirl effect. ?Just be familiar with mixing so it doesn?t turn out muddy color. ?You can also skip the colorant and let the puree give the soap a simple, natural coloring.

3. Pour soap into tray.

Note: Spray the top of the soap with rubbing alcohol to reduce bubbling.

4. Let sit for 3 hours.

5. Put the product into a mitre box and cut with the soap cutter if you want the soap to be smaller.

Note: After letting soap sit for at least 3 hours, put the product in the freezer for 10-15 minutes. ?This will make the cutting easier.

Now your soap is ready to use! It?s very simple to create your own soap, and you will find that you can get incredibly creative over time. ?More advanced soapmakers can add black and red colorants, and swirl for a wonderful swirling effect that looks GREAT with your other Christmas decorations. ?As stated above, if you want the entire soap to be all-natural, allow the coffee to color the soap naturally and skip the colorants. ?It won?t be as vibrant, but it will be all-natural and still have some coloring. ?The shea butter soap base has a great natural coloring, and looks wonderful when mixed with cocoa powder. ?Either way, this soap will put you in the mood when you lather up in the mornings, or simply add a special holiday touch to your kitchen or bathroom!

**Due to the ingredients, the soap has a shorter shelf life. You will notice the product loses much of it’s scent after about 5 months or so. Be sure to get use out of it before the holidays are over! 🙂

 

**The pictures below were done with the swirling effects using colorants to get a festive look!

Gift Idea: Bath & Body Inspired Lotions

Bath and body lotions make a great gift for just about everyone. Teachers, kids, adults…everyone loves a flavored lotion. At holiday time, you see seasonal flavors available at ridiculous prices in just about every corner of the department store. So how about making your own bottles of lotion, packaging them up with some nice ribbon and giving them to all the people on your list that you just don’t know what else to get. At Bulk Apothecary, we have bath and body-inspired lotions, pre-mixed with your favorite seasonal and not-seasonal scents. Our 64 oz. quantities are big enough to fill into quite a few smaller bottles. Just purchase some of the empty bottles and caps and you are ready to go. You can even print a fancy label at home, apply, and you have the perfect homemade gift, while saving money! You can even package up some extra, sell them on eBay and Etsy for a little extra holiday cash.

 

What you need:

64 oz. Bath and Body Inspired Lotion?– Choose a seasonal flavor like Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin or Eucalyptus.

1 Gallon Jug Pump— You will need to cut this down to fit into the 64 oz. size container. This will help you pump into your individual containers.

Empty Bottles— I recommend the clear since they showcase the color of the lotion

Closures— You can use a pump or a dispensing cap. Depending on the type of label you are making, choose white or black

Ribbon

Gift Bag

Blank Labels– These can be purchased at your nearest office supply store. If you visit one of the office supply stores with a printing center attached, they can even help you design and print.

Now you’re ready to go. Just fill your bottles (the 2 oz. size make great stocking stuffers, and convenient for the purse) using the gallon jug pump. Top with your pump or dispensing cap, apply your label and wrap/repeat. These make great gifts/stocking stuffers, and you can get the same expensive flavors you would at retail, without having to spend the money or go thru the trouble of mixing your own flavored lotion. Enjoy! 🙂

Gifting Homemade Products for the Holidays– Lip Balm, Candles and More!

It’s late November, the snow is falling and you’re being bombarded with the thought of gift-giving. You haven’t even finished the Halloween candy and every commercial, billboard and mailing is suggesting the perfect gift for your mom, mailman and child’s teacher. The problem is, your finances are tight and your trying to start up a company, so what do you do?

The holiday season can be very stressful on your wallet. This year, why not make your gifts? Better yet, why not make your gifts with your company logo so people know what you’re up to and have a fantastic product to use year-round. The best homemade gifts are things that people use. Being in the health and beauty industry, I say you can’t go wrong with things like lip balm, lotion and body products. Many companies offer these products in bulk, and bottles, caps, labels and closures can be purchased at ridiculously low prices. Put together a small gift basket for everyone on your shopping lists and you can save yourself hundreds of dollars, plus everyone will feel special getting something that you put time and effort to make. Furthermore, you can decorate labels with your business’ label. If you are starting a new company, or thinking about it, it is the perfect opportunity to announce your brand, get the word out and see how people like the product.

In past, we’ve discussed starting your own bath and body product line. Sites like eBay and Etsy are great for people to test out sales and market their products at low costs. To start even smaller, you can make your product and send it out in gift bags over the holidays. This is truly living by the ‘two birds, one stone’ philosophy. You see, by giving the product out as gifts, the recipient can try the products, pass word along to their friends and you don’t have to bother spending extra cash on another gift.

One more bit of advice. If you are starting your own bath and body product line, think about getting the products up and running online before the holiday season is over. More and more people are getting their holiday shopping done online. If you have a lip balm line or lotion products that you are selling, the holiday season is a perfect time to start. Specifically, those niche line of items (i.e. the root beer flavored lip balm or the goldfish-inspired lotion). These items might not always have high sales during the year, but holiday time is when people are most likely to buy a niche or gag gift for that special someone in their life.

At Bulk Apothecary, we can help make a specialty product, like a?lip balm, that can, in turn, help you make some extra holiday cash. Purchase the unlabeled lip balm along with the blank label sheets, and you are ready to go! We even have specialty lotions in wholesale quantities. Just fill into empty bottles, slap a label on and you have the perfect gift that is just like the expensive product you would find at retail.

Or, try your hand at candle making. EVERYONE loves candles, and you can save so much money making them yourself!

Be smart this year! Happy Holidays!

Bulk Apothecary is a full service provider and industry leader of unscented lotion base and other unscented bases along with plastic bottles, lip balm and any other soap making supplies. We pride ourselves on offering the absolute best quality and best prices in the USA.