Homemade Body Wash: A Natural & Moisturizing DIY Body Wash Recipe

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Homemade Body Wash

A homemade body wash that is moisturizing and natural is simple to make. Also, DIY body wash saves money and is great for gift giving.

I always crack up at those chewing gum commercials that ask, “Feeling dirty?” And their answer to cleaning up is to pop a piece of gum in your mouth. Sparkling teeth, yes. But do I want a sparkling clean body? No, not so much.

So how about getting an all-over clean feeling with a little homemade body wash? I swear it’s simple, not nearly as simple as popping in a piece of gum, but the results will surely make you more presentable.

If you have simplified your personal products, you’re probably wondering why a bar of soap won’t cut it. It will. But some of us just like a little something we can squirt on a washrag or a bath pouf to scrub a-dub-dub with. Furthermore, and it takes only a few minutes to make this liquid DIY body wash. In contrast, a batch of homemade bar soap takes much more time to make!

With this combination of ingredients, this moisturizing homemade body wash is gentle enough to use on your face, and also makes a rich lathering shave soap. Because of this, on a recent camping trip, I used it as a facial cleanser, body wash, and shaving foam. So, it really cut down on the number of toiletries I had to pack!

Homemade Body Wash Ingredients


Honey is the secret ingredient in this recipe. Even more, we recently published an article about honey’s amazing benefits for the body, inside and out. In it, we note that honey helps your skin retain moisture and elasticity without drying it out. Which makes honey perfect for mature, dry, itchy, or damaged skin. Also, it can help speed the healing of blemished skin. Instead of making the homemade body wash sticky, honey just makes it nice and smooth. Lastly, be sure to use raw, unfiltered honey. (find raw honey here)

Liquid Castile Soap

Using a pure liquid castile soap will ensure your DIY body wash is sudsy, without the addition of chemical foaming agents. But feel free to use scented or unscented castile soap. Moreover, if using scented castile soap you can omit the essential oils, or keep them in for their added therapeutic benefits. (Note: Peppermint castile soap can be a little uncomfortably tingly on sensitive areas for some.) (find it here)

Carrier Oil

Adding an oil that is easily absorbed by the skin makes this body wash extra moisturizing. To list, two of my favorites are Jojoba and grapeseed oil. Because of the oil in this homemade body wash, you may find you don’t need to apply additional moisturizer afterward. (find it here)

Vitamin E Oil

First of all, vitamin E is repairing and moisturizing oil. Further, it is also an antioxidant that helps elongate the shelf life of this homemade body wash, and any other homemade personal care products. Perfect as an addition to products during the summer or winter months when our skin may be more stressed by extreme temperatures and weather. (find it here)

Essential Oils

Many essential oils are perfect for troublesome skin conditions. For example, some of them soothe, repair, heal, disinfect, or deodorize skin. With this in mind, we included a list of beneficial essential oils to use in your DIY body wash at the end of this article. (find 100% pure essential oils here)

Homemade Body Wash 1
Homemade Body Wash

Homemade Body Wash Recipe

4.8 from 10 votes

A homemade body wash that is moisturizing and natural is simple to make. Also, DIY body wash saves money and is great for gift giving.

Prep Time
10 minutes
Mixing Time
5 minutes
Total Time
15 minutes
8 ounces



  1. Measure out all ingredients.

  2. Combine in a bottle with a squirt top, shaking to mix. Shake gently before each use. To use, squirt onto a washcloth, bath pouf, or directly onto your body.

Recipe Video


Since this recipe doesn’t contain water, it has a long shelf life of up to a year.

If your raw honey is creamy and thick, warm it a bit to liquefy before combining with other ingredients. This will allow for thorough mixing of ingredients.

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Essential Oils in Homemade Body Wash

When making your DIY body wash, keep your particular skin type in mind, and find a scent you enjoy.

If you’re using this body wash for your baby, you may want to omit the essential oils altogether, or just add a few drops of chamomile or lavender essential oil. Also, if children will be using the homemade body wash, use half the suggested amount of essential oils.

To illustrate, my current favorite scent combination is 45 drops of lavender and 15 drops of geranium essential oil. So, this creates a sweet floral DIY body wash that reminds me of summer flower beds. Use a single essential oil or have fun blending a few. Here are some suggestions:

Chamomile (German and Roman)

Great for dry and sensitive skin, acne, eczema, and dermatitis.


Great for oily complexions, acne, mature skin, eczema, dermatitis, and other problematic skin conditions. It also brightens and revitalizes dull skin. A great addition to your homemade body wash.


This essential oil tones the skin and is extremely cleansing for oily skin. If using the amount suggested in the above recipe, there is no phototoxic concern.


Very gentle and good for all skin types, including very sensitive skin. Perfect for mature skin, acne, eczema, and psoriasis. Effective at soothing itchy skin.


Stimulates new cell growth, moisturizes skin, and regulates oil production. This makes it a valuable essential oil for use in this homemade body wash or any DIY skin product.


Antimicrobial, astringent, fungicidal, and deodorant. Great for acne, cracked and chapped skin, eczema, oily skin, and mature skin.


Since peppermint is very strong, use only half the amount of essential oil called for in this homemade body wash recipe (or less). Cooling, refreshing, and stimulating. Has astringent properties, making it perfect for acneic skin. (Note: Avoid during the first 4 months of pregnancy.)


Rosemary is stimulating and restorative. Useful for acne, eczema, and dermatitis. (Note: Avoid during pregnancy. Do not use if you are epileptic or have high blood pressure.)


Useful for acne, dry, cracked, and chapped skin. Also great for wrinkles and mature skin.

Sweet Orange

One of the only citrus essential oils that are not phototoxic, sweet orange is helpful for dull or oily skin. And how doesn’t love the smell of citrus in their homemade body wash?

Tea Tree

This antibacterial oil can be nicely blended with others like lavender and peppermint. Can be useful for acne, oily skin, rashes, and inflamed skin. Using too much may actually create a drying effect so you may need to experiment a little to find the right amount for your skin.

Ylang Ylang

Great for general skin care, irritated skin, oily skin, or acne. Since this oil is a strong scent, add a few drops at a time until the desired aroma is achieved. (You will need much less than the amount suggested in the above recipe.)

Make This Recipe Your Own

Don’t limit yourself to the essential oils or ingredients recommended in this recipe. Experiment with your favorite ingredients, and let us know how it turns out!

Have you ever made homemade body wash, what’s your favorite recipe?


About Betsy Jabs

Betsy holds a bachelor's degree in Psychology and a Master's degree in Counseling, and for nearly a decade worked as an elementary counselor. In 2011 she left her counseling career to pursue healthy living. She loves using DIY Natural as a way to educate people to depend on themselves to nourish their bodies and live happier healthier lives. Connect with Betsy on Facebookand Twitter.

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DISCLAIMER: Information on DIY Natural™ is not reviewed or endorsed by the FDA and is NOT intended to be substituted for the advice of your health care professional. If you rely solely upon this advice you do so at your own risk. Read full Disclaimer & Disclosure statements here.


  1. Lisa says

    Thank you for this recipe!

    Can we use this body wash on our hair also? I’ve been researching shampoo also and lots of different recipes out there, some with these same ingredients (not many I saw with honey though) and some with coconut milk, so I thought this could also be used as a shampoo.

  2. MapleX Naturals says

    Quite an informative piece on how to make a home made / DIY body wash… and yes, Castile Soaps are a good option to use…

  3. Sarah says

    Hello! Would like to use this recipe to make and sell my own body wash. Forgot to purchase vitamin E oil. Is it absolutely necessary to incorporate or will grapeseed oil be sufficient enough for antibacterial properties? Thank you in advance

  4. Sara says

    Hi Betsy. I love your site and am very interested in trying out this recipe. Is there a substitute for the honey?

    Thank you,
    Sara Y.

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Hi Sara,
      I have always used the honey in the recipe because I love how moisturizing and silky it is. You can always make substitutions, but you’ll just have to experiment to see what you like! A little bit of vegetable glycerine might be a good substitution.

  5. Bridget Bates says

    I made this the first time and it came out great nice and thin took color and scent great but second time I tried it, it gave off a weird smell and when I mixed it it was really thick and turned white and I could not get rid of the soapy weird smell

  6. Tina says

    Love all your tips! My bottle of vitamin E bottle says “with keratin”
    Will that work just as good or not quit as good?

  7. Ann says

    I absolutely LOVE this body wash! It feels so luxurious, my skin is baby soft and I feel so refreshed and clean. I made it with argan & jojoba oils and used lavender, chamomile & geranium EOs. Thank you for yet another wonderful recipe for us who are trying to eliminate chemicals from our lives. Love your blog, posts and recipes – wishing your family peace and happiness.

  8. Myers says

    I followed this recipe and absolutely love it!! My skin just loves it. Thank you for the great recipe. Your website is my go to for almost everything.

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Hi Van,

      Thanks for your comment. When coconut oil is an ingredient in soap it is saponified, and therefore turned into soap. It is no longer in its pure, comedogenic state once saponified, and won’t clog pores like pure coconut oil can if applied to skin.

  9. Ana Carolina says

    Can I substitute the Castile Soup for something else? I’m Brazilian and I couldn’t find it here. I would love to do some soup and shampoo but it seems like all the recipes need it!

    • Betsy Jabs says

      The liquid castile soap is a pretty integral ingredient for this body wash that can only be substituted with another liquid soap. You can use an organic baby shampoo or natural body wash, but then this defeats the purpose of making your own. 🙂

      • Prema says

        Hi. I do not believe I am wrong there but Castile soap is the worst thing for your skin as it has a PH of 9 and our skin has a PH of 3.4. I think you should adjust this receipt to add ACV somehow. Castile soap which I have used burns my tender skin because the PH is so overly alkaline.

  10. Laura says

    I made this today. Wow! I will never buy body wash again, I loved it. I went very simple with the essential oils and did 30 drops grapefruit and 30 drops rose. My skin feels incredible and I loved the scent.

  11. Laura says

    Ok I’ve got all my ingredients but I need help figuring out how much EO to use and if they pair well together. I’m very new at this. I would like to use grapefruit, a little rosemary and geranium EO. Or grapefruit, rosemary, and rose. How much if each if I want a more citrus floral smell?

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Great question Laura. If I want to make sure certain EOs go well together, I’ll put a few drops of each into a small glass bowl or vial, swirl to combine, and sniff. This way you can see what the resulting scent is without wasting too much. If you don’t like it at first, continue adding more of the different oils until it’s what you want, swirling and sniffing after each addition. Keep track of how much of each oil you use though – that way you can duplicate the same scent again and you’ll have the correct proportions documented.

  12. Kristen says

    I just made this yesterday. I did not have Vitamin E so I used jojoba instead.

    I used it this morning in the shower and a little bit surely goes a long way!

  13. Irene says

    Just wanted to say that I made this yesterday and really like it. I have been using a different recipe for body wash that I really like due to its consistency (it doesn’t foam up as much as I would like though, like this one does). However, have you tried thickening it with anything? I would love for a thicker consistency.

      • Irene says

        Okay, I have Steric Acid on hand but that gets tricky, considering you have to do the “leave the top off the blender and dump the hot steric acid in while it is going” thing. Therefore I have been playing with the idea of chunking out for guar gum. Do you know anything about it? I have heard nothing but good things and it is supposed to take very little to thicken things.

        Also, do you by chance know how hot I can get the honey without killing the “good” properties? (not sure exactly what I would be killing I just know heating raw honey can defeat the purpose of it being raw)


        • Betsy Jabs says

          I really can’t be of much help on the thickening issue. I like to add as few ingredients as possible to my recipes, so I don’t use thickeners. Sorry! Heating honey above 95 degrees Fahrenheit will start to kill some of the beneficial properties.

          • Irene says

            It’s totally okay! The body wash is great as it but I like a thicker body wash (just a texture thing) so was curious. Thank-you for the bit about the honey though, quite helpful to have an actual temperature.

  14. Tara Johnson says

    How long will this last with out going bad? I have a large family and would rather not make this every few days. Would this be appropriate for young kids? I also have a teenage boy, is there a “manly” oil that I can add to his?

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Since this recipe does not call for water the body wash has a very long shelf life – about a year. It’s appropriate for young kids, but you’ll want to decrease the amount of essential oils you use because their skin can be a little more sensitive. Some good oils for your teen boy include vetiver (my favorite for a “manly” scent – and also great for oily skin or acne), sandalwood, patchouli, bergamot, rosemary/tea tree, or whatever he likes. Hope you like this body wash!

  15. Tymikia says

    Hi guys! I just made a batch of this and used some last night. I absolutely live it!!! It made me skin feel so soft and smelled heavenly. I am done with store bought body wash. Winner winner chicken dinner!!! Thanks

  16. 4HungryBunnies says

    OK, you knew this would happen. Someone would have to ask, it might as well be me. (; Where did you get the Amber body wash bottle? Is it glass? Was it leftover from a store bought product. If so, what one? The picture just looks amazing and I feel I must have a matching bottle to go with your amazing recipe. (: Please enlighten me!

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Ha! I used to feel the same way when I saw recipes online, and had to search high and low for identical containers to store things in. 😉 I get amber and cobalt plastic squirt bottles (and you choose caps seperately) from http://www.specialtybottle.com. They have just about any kind of glass or plastic container you can imagine. Hope you like the body wash!

  17. Jessica says

    I’m a vegan who won’t buy or use honey. Is there something I could use instead? Could I omit it altogether?

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Jessica – you can omit the honey altogether. However, castile soap alone can be a little drying, so you may want to add a little extra oil, possibly increase the Vitamin E oil a bit, and vegetable glycerin can also be added for an extra moisturizing effect.

  18. Jon says

    Matt, my wife and I are making ours this weekend! We’re in the process of detoxifying our home…

  19. Carrie says

    I am going to try this today if I can find the Castile soap! However I use young living essential oils and may have to cut those in half that brand seems so much more powerful than other essentials also where can I find a good source of raw honey in bulk we will need a lot of body wash!

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Carrie, large chains like Target and WalMart have begun carrying Dr. Bronner’s liquid castile soap near their natural bath products. You could also check a health food store if you have one locally. Your best bet on finding raw honey in bulk is to check localharvest.com for a beekeeper near you who is willing to sell large amounts. We have also found large buckets of it at Amish bulk stores. Have fun making your body wash!

  20. dawn says

    Isnt 50-60 drops of essential oil way too much for 8oz? I can see if you were making several gallons. Its so concentrated….that much in 8oz could even be dangerous..

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Not necessarily. Have you seen recipes for homemade insect repellent? You need much more than 50-60 drops in 8oz. to make an effective repellent (which sits on your skin and is reapplied often). It’s also no more concentrated than getting a massage with diluted EOs. (Usually several drops to each TBSP of oil.) Some of the oils I listed can safely be applied to skin neat (undiluted). I purposely researched and suggested essential oils that are not known to have any safety concerns or cause skin irritation for most people. Additionally, this is being washed off the skin. However, if you feel like this is too concentrated, I encourage you to use only what you’re comfortable with. Thanks for asking this Dawn!

  21. Mary says

    Can I use fractionated coconut oil for the oil? Everybody always gives examples of oils ,but nobody mentions FCO is it okay to use?

  22. Sarah Campbell says

    I love using Argan oil in place of any needed oils, nowadays…..the real Argan oil can be pricy, but oh so rich and soft…totally worth it!!

  23. 4HungryBunnies says

    Wow! You had me at the word HONEY (OR hunny as Pooh spells it). I recently started using raw honey as my preferred facial cleanser and as a shampoo. I totally love using natural things and not having to mix up things. But I might give your recipe a try. I do make my own deoderent and we currently use Dr. Bronner’s Castile almond bar soap for body. My husband and children use it as shampoo too.

    • Betsy Jabs says

      It makes *almost* 8 oz. or 1 cup of body wash. The reason I don’t make a full cup is so there is room in the bottle to shake ingredients, but you can increase the measurements to make the amount you like. 🙂

  24. Kay Zeeh says

    Thanks so much for such a luscious recipe! I have been looking for some time for just the right body wash recipe,and I think this one is it.

    • Vanessa Ortegon-Ramirez says

      My husband really likes the benefits of this body wash. He didn’t even need deodorant all day (and he works a physically active job), but he doesn’t like the consistency. Is there a way to thicken it?

  25. Colleen says

    Do the oils and honey in this recipe make the bathtub or shower slippery? Have had issues before.

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Great question Colleen! The answer is no – the shower will not be slippery at all after using this body wash since it’s very sudsy.

  26. Sharon says

    Love your recipes but I like to use fresh herbs Could fresh herbs be used in this recipe as a substitute for the essential oils?

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Absolutely Sharon! You could make an herbal oil infusion with the herb of your choice, then use the oil infusion in place of the 2 teaspoons of plain oil the recipe calls for.

  27. Leslie says

    Perfect timing–this is just what I needed. I’ve been playing “mad scientist”, too, and have been experimenting with making body wash. I had three of your five ingredients, but not the jojoba oil or the raw honey. I think that adding those two items will give the results I’ve been trying for. Thanks so much!

  28. Brigette says

    Is there anything I can use to substitute for the Vit E? Vegetable Glycerin perhaps? Or would it be ok to just omit it?

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Sure Brigette, you can just omit the Vitamin E. Vegetable glycerin does not have the same antioxidant properties, although it will help soften skin.

    • Tammy R. says

      Jeni, I’m no expert but this recipe looks very much like the one I use for hair shampoo **with the exception of the 2 tsp. of oil** – so if you take that out you should have a nice shampoo! I use sweet orange essential oil in mine and along with the raw honey it smells yummy!

    • Betsy Jabs says

      Yes, this could work as a shampoo. However, castile-based shampoo tends to work better in normal or hard water. If you have very soft water I would not recommend it.

  29. Mandy @ Eat Pray Grow says

    Thanks for the recipe! I’ve been dragging my feet on buying more face wash because it’s either full of chemicals or super pricey. This summer heat and my pregnancy combined are working against my face, though, so it’s time I do something! I love the smell of chamomile, I can’t wait to try this out. I especially appreciate that you noted the shelf life!

    • Betsy Jabs says

      It’s especially wonderful if you already have all the ingredients! That’s how this formulation was born…I needed more soap in the shower and I looked around in my cupboards for some good ingredients I could throw together. You’ll love this body wash! 🙂

  30. Megan says

    Question, do you HAVE to use ORGANIC carrier oils or can you use the regular ones? Like the sweet almond, jojoba, grapeseed, etc.? I’m on a strict budget and the difference in price is pretty substantial (I’m going to order them from MRH like you suggest), so I was just wondering. Thanks so much. Love your posts!

  31. Kristin says

    I am in the transition process and would like to know if you could recommend some safe plastic bottles for shower soap, shampoo etc. Thank you!

  32. Emily K. says

    Is there any reason why I couldn’t use this as a face wash as well? I am currently making your face wash & have been using it as a body wash as well, but I find myself using it up so fast. I don’t want to make too large of a quantity because I don’t want it to go bad so I’m making face wash once & sometimes twice a week. If I could make a larger quantity of the body wash & use for both face & body that would be great! I love your all of your tips & recipes. Slowly but surely I am implementing them one at a time in my house. Keep up the good work. I know I really appreciate it!