Lotion Bar Recipe: Make Natural Lotion Bars that Smell Like Summer

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Lotion Bar Recipe

This lotion bar recipe is simple, natural, and easily customizable. Make lotion bars that are great for moisturizing skin and gift-giving.

While we may still be in the throes of winter, I am already seeing little glimpses of spring. Little rays of the sun are already peeking through the clouds. Garden catalogs have begun to collect in my mailbox. Spring is on the horizon!

However, most days seem to be quite dull and gray here. It is still cold with alternating snow and rain and my skin is drier than ever.

All-Natural Lotion Bar Recipe

In an attempt to lift my spirits, I decided to make this lotion bar recipe. If you are unfamiliar with lotion bars, they are a wonderful and convenient way to moisturize skin with little hassle. They are normally made from a mix of oils, butters, and waxes. I prefer beeswax and nourishing oils for my lotion bars.

Ingredients to Remind You of Summer

I’ve been experimenting with mango butter a lot lately. Mango butter is slightly grainy, light in texture, and smells slightly of mango. It is high in vitamins A, C, and E which are wonderfully nourishing for the skin. Mango butter works well to combat dry skin and smooth rough patches. Plus, mangoes make me think of summer, so of course, I had to include this butter in my blend.

Another go-to oil I use for dry skin is sweet almond oil. It is light, great for sensitive skin, and also moisturizing. Sweet almond oil is affordable too! It is odorless which makes it a great addition to any recipe.

As I stated before, I prefer to use beeswax in my lotion bar recipe. It is such a wonderful wax and gives them a nice honey yellow color. Not to mention that beeswax has numerous benefits for the skin.

To make this recipe smell like summer I chose three citrus oils that also compliment the scent of the mango butter. Lime, bergamot, and sweet orange essential oils all have bright, summery qualities.  Since it is winter here and it is very unlikely that I’ll be encountering much sun, I feel comfortable putting the citrus oils into this lotion bar recipe.

IMPORTANT: Sweet Orange and Lime, if cold-pressed are not phototoxic, however, if they are expressed Lime, Lemon, and Bitter Orange are phototoxic. The recommendation is to stay out of the sun for 24 hours after using phototoxic oils per the NAHA. [source]

Lotion Bar Recipe Tips

This recipe is super easy to make and can really be customized to your needs. Feel free to swap the mango butter for another hard butter or oil that is solid at room temperature. (Shea butter, coconut oil, cocoa butter, etc.) You can also use another liquid oil like olive or jojoba. You can also exchange the citrus oils for another suitable essential oil like lavender or juniper berry.

I prefer to use smaller molds for my bars as it makes them easier to handle. I normally choose 1 ounce or smaller silicone molds. Silicone molds definitely make it easier to remove the lotion bars.

Lotion Bar Recipe

Lotion Bar Recipe: Summer Scent

This lotion bar recipe is simple, natural, and easily customizable. Make lotion bars that are great for moisturizing skin and gift-giving.

Prep Time
15 minutes
Active Time
15 minutes
Cooling Time
1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time
2 hours
4 ounces
Estimated Cost


  1. In a double boiler, melt mango butter, sweet almond oil, and beeswax.
  2. Once melted, remove from heat and stir.
  3. Slowly stir in essential oils, mixing well.
  4. Pour into small molds. (I used silicone flower molds.)

  5. Allow to cool and harden (1-2 hours or pop yours in the freezer for a few minutes).
  6. Remove from molds.

To Use

  1. Wash and pat skin dry.
  2. Gently massage area with lotion bar.
  3. As body heat warms the bar, it will melt and coat the skin.
  4. Massage in excess lotion.
  5. Avoid exposure to direct sunlight or tanning beds for a few hours since these contain citrus oils. (See “IMPORTANT” note above for more information.)


This lotion bar recipe smells like summer but can be adjusted for your favorite scents any time of year.

Made this recipe?

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More Lotion Bar Recipes


About Katie Vance

Katie is a wife, mother, aromatherapist, and lover of all things DIY. She offers consultations and gives simple aromatherapy advice at Katie Vance, Aromatherapy Simplified. You can also find Katie on Facebook.

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  1. Sarah says

    Is it possible to treat these bars as a concentrate that you can give to people as plastic-free / package-free lotion, and then they can melt down and mix with water to create a liquid lotion at home? Thinking that this could be a good option for people who are resistant to the idea of lotion bars, but would like a plastic-free option.

  2. Geraldine Kendrick says

    Love your website and all the wonderful natural recipes. Thank you for caring and sharing ❤️💚❤️

  3. Carol L says

    Just FYI: Mangos are related to poison oak. If, like me, you have a severe toxicity to poison oak, I suggest that you be careful using Mango butter. I have never used it, because I’m afraid that it will cause the horrible weeping blisters I get when exposed to mango juice. Having said that, I don’t know FOR SURE that it will cause problems, but I don’t want to find out the hard way!
    Just thought it should be said for safety sake.

  4. kim says

    How do I measure a hard butter and hard beeswax in tablespoons? Do you have an equivalent in weight for these two ingredients?

    • Katie Vance says

      Mango butter is quite soft, though you can melt or soften over a double boiler or microwave. I used beeswax pellets, so they are easy to measure out in tablespoons. Hope that helps!

    • Katie Vance says

      You can make them without the essential oils, though they will not have very much of a scent other than what naturally occurs from the mango butter (very subtle).

  5. GC says

    The only citrus oil here that is photo toxic is bergamot(and lime if cold pressed).

    Orange EO is not photo toxic.

    I believe the recommendation for avoid sun exposure is 18 hours for photo toxic effects to diminish unless the skin area is covered by clothing.