Peppy Living

Peppy Living for the Eco-Anxious

Month: November 2014

handmade body mousse

Homemade Body Butter

Difficulty: Fairly easy
Makes: 4 x 200ml pots
Time: 1 hour + 5 hours for cooling
Storage: 6-9 months

Body Mousse


Ahh the body mousse, one of Peppy Galore’s most popular and most loved products. This handmade body butter version of the body mousse is wonderful for very dry skin or for any skin during the dull winter months.

The body mousse is a bit of a tricky product, which is why you can’t get it from just any shop out there – it really needs to be handmade. The success of your handmade body butter really depends on the quality of it’s main ingredient – the mango butter. As a natural product mango butter can vary in texture and colour. Sometimes it can be very creamy, and doesn’t want to fluff up easily. At other times it can be very dry and feel grainy to the touch. It doesn’t have a strong scent in itself, but sometimes it can absorb the scent of your essential oils. Talking about a moody ingredient!

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Homemade Diva Face Moisturiser for Sensitive Skin

  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Makes: 4 x 50ml pump bottles or jars
  • Time: 1 hour
  • Stores for 1 year

Homemade Diva Moisturiser for sensitive skin

If you’ve never made lotions before, then this may take a couple of attempts to get right. However, this is not rocket science so once you get the few basics right, it’s going to be pretty straight forward.

Now, why would you want to make your own moisturisers when the shops are full of pots filled with promises of eternal youth? It’s a bit like cooking. When you make your own you know exactly what goes in them, and you can always adjust them to your own liking.

The Diva Face Moisturiser was one of Peppy Galore’s best sellers, and I keep making it for my own skin. It has top quality ingredients which make the skin feel amazing.

There are two ingredients which are a must when you make lotions – an emulsifier (which mixes the oil with the water) and a preservative (which keeps your lotion from growing mold and fungus). I’m using Olivem 1000 as an emulsifier and Geogard Ultra as a preservative. These may be tricky for you to find, so you can also use the more commonly available Emulsifying Wax and Optiphen Preservative. Both work fine, and if you already have your favourites, then feel free to use them instead.


  • 128g of boiled water
  • 16g Macadamia Oil
  • 16g Evening Primrose Oil
  • 16g Calendula Oil
  • 14g Olivem 1000 (Emulsifier)
  • 6g Vegetable Glycerin
  • 2g Geogard Ultra (preservative)
  • 2g Vanilla Extract

Oils and emulsifier

Measure the macadamia oil, the evening primrose oil, the calendula oil and the emulsifier in a heatproof container. Place in a double boiler and heat until the emulsifying wax has completely melted into the oils.


While the oils are melting, measure the glycerin in another heat proof container. If you are using Geogard Ultra, measure that in a separate container. Boil the water and let it cool a little.

When your oils have melted, add the hot water into the glycerine, then add Geogard Ultra in the water. Mix well. If you are using another preservative, don’t add it at this point. You probably need to add it as the very last step, as it can’t handle very hot temperatures.

Next comes the exciting part! You’ll need a whisker. For this amount of lotion, a milk frother is ideal. Start your whisker and start whisking the oils. Then pour the water into the oil slooowly.

Your lotion will turn lumpy and look quite weird for a while, but just keep whisking. It takes at least 3 minutes for the lotion to form and for the lumps and bumps to smooth out. Keep whisking. I usually go for at least 5 minutes, if not longer. When do you know it’s time to stop whisking? Simply stop whisking and wait for a minute or so. If the oils seem to rise to the top of the mixture, that means they are not properly mixed with the water and you need to keep going. Once you have a smooth white cream in your jar, you know you’re done.

Your lotion may start to thicken as it cools, although this may take quite some time. If you are using Optiphen, then you need to wait until your lotion is about body temperature before adding it to the mix. Otherwise the heat will kill its preservative powers.

This is also the point when you can add your vanilla oil. Vanilla is not very delicate, so it can be added before the lotion has properly cooled.

Once your lotion is ready, it’s time to bottle it. I’m using pump bottles, but you can use jars as well. Bottles are better because you don’t have to stick your finger into them in order to get your cream out. That means, you won’t be adding germs from your finger into the lotion, and that way your face moisturiser will stay fresher for longer.

You don’t need to sterilise your bottles or jars, but do give them a good wash first.

Fill the bottles or jars with a spoon, or if your lotion is still warm and runny, simply pour it in. This can be tricky, and jars are definitely easier here! Add the pumps and let the moisturisers cool completely before using.


Handmade Body Buffer Bar

  • Level: Easy
  • Makes: 1 large or 2 smaller bars
  • Time: 15 mins for preparation + 1-2hrs to set
  • Stores for 6-9 months


At winter time the skin gets easily dry and dull, especially my legs tend to get really itchy and scaly. Not a good look. I created this body buffer bar to tackle just that! It’s super moisturising, with tons of cocoa and shea butter. It also contains a few oats, which give a gentle exfoliation and have skin calming properties. To make it extra delish I scented it with chocolate, so that shower times can now be a gorgeous indulgence for all senses.


  • 55g Cocoa Butter
  • 25g Shea Butter
  • 10g Oatmeal
  • 10g Polysorbate 80 (optional)
  • 10 drops of chocolate fragrance oil (optional)



Cocoa butter is widely sold in undeodorised and deodorised form. The undeodorised cocoa butter has a yellowish colour and smells faintly of chocolate. It’s actually exactly the same stuff that’s used in making chocolate. The deodorised cocoa butter has been treated to remove the colour and the scent. It’s a better choice if you don’t want that chocolatey scent in your product. I’m using undeodorised cocoa butter, as this buffer bar can smell as much of cocoa as possible. I also think that the undeodorised cocoa butter is a bit richer.

Take your cocoa butter, chop it roughly and place it in a heat proof container. Also add the shea butter to the mix. Shea butter is also available in undeodorised form, but it’s more rare. Usually you’ll get a deodorised version if you buy it from the usual outlets and that’s fine for this recipe. Place the jug in a double boiler and melt the butters until they have become completely liquid.

Give the oats a quick whizz to make them a bit finer. Just a quick one or you’ll end up with oat porridge!

Add the oats, the polysorbate and the fragrance oil into the melted butters. Polysorbate is a liquid emulsifier. It helps oils mix with water. So when you’re using your body buffer bar in the shower, it will wash off much easier and not leave your shower or tub deadly slippery. (Caution is still adviced, though). If you want to keep you body buffer bars completely natural, then feel free to leave the polysorbate and the fragrance oil out. You’ll still get a lovely buffer bar, but with just a hint of a chocolatey scent.


Pour the mixture into a mold. You can use any mold that you have around, but I’d recommend a silicone mould. It’s really easy to pop the buffer bar out of a silicone mold without breaking it. Cake molds work really well, and that’s what I’m using.

Let the mixture set until the butters have completely solidified. You can put the mold in the fridge to speed the process, but if you have a cool pantry or a particularly drafty window, I think these work better. I find that sometimes the fridge doesn’t cool the bar evenly, so it crumbles or caves in the middle, as it solidifies quicker on the outside than in the middle. But try it out if you are impatient, often it works fine. Once the butters are completely solid, pop the buffer bar out of its mold. It smells beautiful and will make your skin feel equally lovely.

To use, simply wet the buffer bar in the shower, then rub all over those scaly legs and anywhere else that your skin needs a bit of buffing and pampering. Then wash off. The butters will turn milky on your skin, as the polysorbate mixes them with water. You’ll still be left with softly moisturised skin.

Homemade Facial Toner

Natural floral waters can be used to make lovely homemade facial toners. They contain all the wonderful skin loving properties of the flowers and herbs that were used to make them. Use floral water toners to finish your skin cleansing routine, to remove any remaining cleanser or makeup, and to calm and tone the skin.

Many shop bought toners include all sorts of ingredients that might irritate your skin. They also often include alcohol, because of it’s astringent properties, but alcohol can really dry your skin.

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