Happy Accidents


I was almost finished my tin of homemade body butter, so I thought it would be a good idea to make a new batch before running completely out. I get so itchy and sad without this stuff! I took out my supplies and realized that I didn’t have quite enough cocoa butter, but I went ahead and made it anyway. I used a touch more almond oil which also finished that bottle and I figured all would be well.

The next day, I looked in my jar, expecting to see the beautiful solid but soft loveliness, and — it was still all liquid! Too much almond oil, not enough cocoa butter. What to do…

Then I remembered my tiny one ounce jar of failed solid perfume. Remember, this was the stuff that was so solid it was impossible to spread on my skin, and also had a sillage of, like, 3 seconds? I poured the contents of my body… liquid back into a pan and added this ounce of beeswax, all the while crossing my fingers. Since I was experimenting, once it was all melted I took it off the low heat, poured it back in the jar, and added some rose absolute, a few drops of rosewood, and a drop of vetiver.

I peeked at it in a few hours, and I was so pleased to see that it cooled to an amazing buttery texture. It also smelled like heaven — flowers and beeswax, which is so much more to my liking than the tropical cocoa butter/coconut oil fragrance the body butter had before. Either way, the smell only lasts a little while, but why not sigh and swoon for a half hour rather than tolerate?

So, through these seemingly troublesome trials of too liquid-y body butter plus a failed batch of solid perfume, I tweaked my body butter recipe into something I love even more. Here’s to happy accidents!

For my new concoction —

In a one cup glass measuring cup, add:

a touch more than 1/4 c almond oil or other light oil

1/4 c coconut oil

1/4 c shea butter

1/8 c cocoa butter

scant 1/8 c beeswax

If you add the oil to the cup first, it will rise as you add the other ingredients and measurement will be easier. Transfer to a pan or double boiler and slowly melt to all liquid, watching and stirring. Remove from heat, put in your container,  and add essential oils to your liking if desired. Stir. It still smells beeswax-y and lovely without if you prefer not to scent it. Cap. It will take a few hours to get completely cool and solid.

You’ll also notice that I didn’t whip it this time. I figured, why do the extra step which takes more time and wastes a bit of the product? I like the texture very much as a cooled but unwhipped butter.

No coupons used, and this batch should last me around 10 months if the last 1 cup I made in late March 2014 is any indication!


  1. Happy mishaps indeed! I can see that even a brief hint of rose absolute or rosewater makes it feel lusciously indulgent. On rubbish days I use rosewater instead of witch hazel in my evening routine and whenever I have a bath – a rare treat for achy joints – I always add a couple of drops of heady rose absolute. How I wish I had a garden large enough for some Damask roses. That would complete the rose trio!

    1. I didn’t have success with my roses. Aphids and black spot galore! If three or four bloom it’s a big deal. Maybe it is the location near the deck — too much dampness. I will get back on the horse someday, as I love them so much, and other neighbors seem to do well with theirs!

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