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How To Make Lotion Part 1- The Basics

How To Make Lotion Malaysia

This week will be dedicated to making lotion. If you are not sure about what lotions, creams or body butters are; click here to read our post on the difference.

Now that you know the difference; lets talk about the basic ingredients in Lotion making. In lotion making; the ingredients can be divided into 5 main category.
1) The Water Phase
2) The Oil Phase
3) Emulsifiers
4) Thickeners
5) Preservatives.

Thats it!, everything else thats added are additives. These additives can be scents from Essential oil or fragrance oils, Colors and Cosmeceuticals. I will talk more about this on the last day.

Water Phase

water phase is anything thats water soluble. Usually for lotion the water phase is about 70-80%. Water phase means distilled water, floral water or hydrosols etc.

Oil Phase:

Oil phase is all oil soluble ingredients. Usually the carrier oils like avocado oil, olive oil, coconut oil etc. You should choose your oils according to its application site, shelf life, the feel, skin type etc.
Ill be talking more about this in the next part of this series.


Water and oil dont mix. In order to mix it we will need to use an emulsifier. There are many emulsifiers you can choose from however, to make things easier and something that would cover almost all skincare we prefer to use Emulsifying Wax NF. This is one of the most versitile emulsifiers and it covers all.


Thickeners are usually added to make the lotion thicker. Sometimes you want thicker lotion depending on its application site. Example for face lotion you would want something that is ‘watery’ so usually we dont add thickeners into the lotion. However if you were making a lotion for body and hands; you would want your lotion to not be runny and slightly thicker therefore this is where the thickener comes in.


You will need roughly 0.5%-1% of preservatives in your lotion depending on the choice of preservatives. I usually use Germal Plus on all my lotions. You can always switch to DMDM hydantoin if you wanted to. Preservatives are not optional but its a must. Not adding preservatives will reduce your shelf life of product to 3 days at room temperature, 7 days in fridge. Click here to find out more about preservatives.


Additives are other than the 5 basic things i mentioned above.this includes fragrance, essential oils, cosmetceuticals and herbs. These are nice to have ingredients that are added into lotions but its not a must. You have an option to add them or not. Even if you dont add these; your lotions is still a lotion. Only; by adding it it will help you to market the lotion better and it also gives you a ‘feel good’ feeling when adding these

Over the next few days ill be explaining each and every categories and subsequently show you few recipes on how to make lotions so do come back for part 2 of this ‘How To Make Lotion’ series.
If you would like to watch a video of me explaining this; please click here.

Thank you for reading;

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