There are lots of benefits to making DIY body butters, creams, and soaps. You can use all-natural ingredients and avoid unwanted chemicals and fragrances. And what’s great is that you can substitute ingredients when making a recipe at home. So, if you’re missing something you need, there’s a good chance you have another ingredient you can use instead.

The key for the substitution of ingredients is to use similar ingredients that will have the same texture in different temperatures and the same effect on the skin. For example, using the wrong kind of oil in a lip balm could turn it into a lip gloss.

Here’s your quick reference guide to substituting ingredients.

Consistency

You shouldn’t substitute soft consistencies for hard consistencies unless you want your final product to be a different consistency. But you can swap out ingredients in the same categories.

Soft Butters

  • Mango Butter
  • Shea Butter

Hard Butters

  • Kokum Butter
  • Cocoa Butter
  • Cupuacu Butter

Just keep in mind that, if you substitute mango butter for cocoa butter, you’ll have the same consistency, but you’ll have a fruit-scented recipe instead of a chocolate-scented recipe.

Absorption Rate

If you want to make a recipe denser, you can switch to an ingredient that takes longer to absorb. Likewise, if you want a lighter recipe, you can trade a denser ingredient for a lighter one. Otherwise, stick an ingredient with the same absorption rate to keep your recipe close to the original.

Quick

  • Apricot Kernel
  • Argan
  • Baobab
  • Camelina
  • Camelia
  • Cranberry
  • Fractionated Coconut MCT
  • Macadamia
  • Marula Moringa
  • Safflower
  • Sunflower

Medium

  • Almond
  • Babassu
  • Black Cumin Seed
  • Chia Coconut
  • Grapeseed
  • Hemp Seed
  • Jojoba
  • Kokum
  • Kukui
  • Mango Butter
  • Moringa
  • Olive
  • Pomegranate
  • Pumpkin Seed
  • Sea Buckthorn
  • Sesame
  • Shea Nut Oil
  • Soybean
  • Tamanu

Slow

  • Avocado
  • Borage
  • Castor
  • Cocoa Butter
  • Evening Primrose
  • Neem
  • Shea Butter

Substituting Oils by Skin Type

Finally, you might want to substitute an ingredient based on your skin type.

Non-comedogenic

  • Argan
  • Hemp
  • Safflower
  • Castor
  • Camellia
  • Hazelnut
  • Pomegranate
  • Rosehip
  • Grapeseed
  • Apricot Kernel
  • Black Cumin Seed
  • Borage
  • Jojoba
  • Pumpkin
  • Tamanu
  • Olive

For Sensitive or Mature Skin

  • Argan
  • Camellia
  • Sesame
  • Sunflower
  • Safflower
  • Jojoba
  • Sea buckthorn

For Dry Skin

  • Argan
  • Jojoba
  • Hemp
  • Almond
  • Avocado
  • Cranberry
  • Macadamia
  • Marula
  • Neem
  • Shea Oil

For Oily Skin

  • Castor
  • Argan
  • Rosehip
  • Jojoba
  • Evening Primrose
  • Borage

We hope this guide helps you as you make skin care recipes at home. Feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions!