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DIY Whipped Coconut Oil Body Butter with Magnesium Oil

You can go ahead and call it the "miracle mineral" if you want to, but all silly names and taglines aside, magnesium is a truly incredible nutrient. What more can you say about a mineral that is essential for the function of every single cell in your body? Learn how to make your own magnesium-infused body butter combining the healing benefits of lush cold-pressed coconut oil and organic cocoa butter, and scented with a splash of your favorite essential oils. Experience the benefits of transdermal magnesium therapy, while simultaneously replenishing the skin and delighting your senses: does it really get any better than that?

ancient minerals magnesium

Why Magnesium Oil?

As one of the seven nutrients placed on the U.S. Department of Health's list of concern, it is clear that the alarming issue of rampant magnesium deficiency has finally made it to the mainstream. If you aren't all too familiar with magnesium, check out our post Are You Magnesium Deficient? to decide if you might be among the 200 million Americans that struggle with inadequate levels of magnesium. There are many overlapping and intricately woven causes that contribute to the epidemic of magnesium deficiency witnessed across the population today. These include such omnipresent concerns as mineral-depleted soils, poor diet, caffeine intake, chronic low-level stress and perpetual exposure to synthetic chemicals in the environment.

Another factor that complicates magnesium intake is the issue of malabsorption. Not only do magnesium-rich foods like nuts, seeds and legumes need to be properly soaked and sprouted to enhance mineral bioavailability, but the digestive tract must also be functioning optimally to assimilate it correctly. Unfortunately, neither of these things are very common in our era of processed foods and frequent antibiotic use. Confounding this issue further is the unfortunate fact that magnesium salts tend to have a laxative effect when taken in more concentrated amounts, making oral supplementation both unpleasant and inadequate. As explained by Dr. Norm Shealy, MD, "magnesium needs to travel through the intestinal system slowly, so if the gut transit time is less than twelve hours, one is not likely to absorb the magnesium well." Because oral magnesium has been shown to be only 35-40% effective, experts often recommend using transdermal magnesium oil instead.

Magnesium oil is a super-concentrated form of magnesium chloride that is effectively absorbed through the skin. Drawn from the Ancient Zechstein Seabed in Northern Europe, it is an an all-natural raw from of magnesium that is known for its superior solubility and has been shown to be a highly valuable method for replenishing cellular magnesium stores in a way that is gentle, rapid and safe. It can be conveniently applied to the skin in a spray, gel, lotion, or flakes that dissolve in a warm bath. Unlike the more common magnesium sulfate found in epsom salts, magnesium chloride is very readily taken in through the skin and transported to the cells in a form that is highly bioavailable by the body. What's more, when magnesium chloride is applied transdermally, the body self-regulates- absorbing only the amount it needs and neutralizing risks of excess supplementation, mineral imbalance and GI upset.

Magnesium for Sensitive Skin

All this praise having been boldly sung, some people purchase magnesium oil and enthusiastically spritz it all up and down their bodies, only to find that it is irritating to the skin. Because a slight mineral residue is sometimes left after application, those with particularly sensitive skin can experience an itching or tingling sensation after using the full-strength magnesium oil spray. For ladies who shave their legs, or for little kids with oh-so-soft skin, this can be a bothersome situation. Never fear however! This can easily be remedied by tweaking your routine a bit with one of the solutions below:

1. Spray magnesium oil on areas where the skin is tough and resilient (such as the feet).

2. Apply 20 minutes before showering. This way most of the magnesium ions will have absorbed fully into the skin by the time you hop in. It is also acceptable to wipe the skin clean with a damp towel about 20 minutes after application too.

3. Dilute the magnesium oil by mixing with an equal part filtered water prior to spraying it on the skin. Filtered water is best here, as you don't want to be rubbing chlorine all over your skin either!

4. Use a soothing and replenishing magnesium oil lotion or gel. I like Ancient Minerals Magnesium Lotion and Gel, because they are fragrance free and use a skin-nourishing base of all certified organic oils.

5. Make your own magnesium oil body butter!

Because all of the other steps are relatively self explanatory...and because DIY is in the title of the blog post, let's focus on option #5. For all you crafty do-it-yourselfers out there, here is a fun DIY magnesium body butter to try. I make up a few batches of this super moisturizing stuff to keep on hand in the spring and summer when my skin is extra-loved by the sun and rough from being out in the garden. It also works great as a mild all natural muscle rub for stubborn aches and pains. I store it in a small violiv jar and keep it in the fridge, so that it is extra cooling on a hot day.

DIY Magnesium Body Butter

ancient minerals magnesium


1/4 cup organic extra virgin coconut oil

1/2 cup unrefined cocoa, mango and/or shea butter (You can find them at many health food stores or online. I use a blend of the different butters depending on what I have on hand.)

1/4 cup magnesium oil

essential oil of your choice (optional)

1. In a double boiler or over low heat, melt coconut oil and butters.

2. Pour into medium sized bowl and let cool at room temperature for about 30 minutes, or until it begins to get opaque.

3. Using a stand mixer or hand blender with the whipping attachment, start to whip together the oils.

4. Ever so slowly, begin to add in the magnesium oil until well combined. At this point you can also add essential oils of your choice. Keep in mind that not all essential oils are healthy for the skin or safe for kids and pregnant women to use.

5. Place in the refrigerator for about 15-20 minutes until it is semi-solid and then reblend. It is best to set the lotion in this way so that it whips up optimally- giving it a divinely fluffy texture.

6. Scoop into glass jars and store in the refrigerator. The body butter will be firm when you first start to apply, but melts nicely into the skin and absorbs rapidly. You can store out on the counter, however if the oils start to melt (usually occurring around 70 degrees or so) you will lose the whipped texture. Because the oils used are generally very stable, it should last for a few months.

If made by the above recipe, each tsp of lotion will contain somewhere around 250 mg of magnesium per tsp. Although history, diet, stress, physical exertion and other lifestyle factors all play a role in determining the amount of magnesium required by an individual at any given time, a general rule of thumb for daily supplementation is 3-4 mg of magnesium per pound of body weight. 


Transdermal Magnesium Therapy by Mark Sircus Ac, OMD

The Magnesium Miracle by Carolyn Dean MD, ND


Is this coconut oil body butter safe to use on infants? I currently rub just coconut oil on my 8-month olds feet, legs and scalp after bath, but this butter sounds awesome.
Posted @ Wednesday, May 29, 2013 4:26 PM by Michelle
I would think because it's diluted with the carrier/coconut oil it would be okay, but maybe not? Also, my first impulse was to add some orange essential oil to this for a citrus scent, but then I remembered that the citrus oils can make you photosensitive, so that's not a good idea for summer application...
Posted @ Monday, June 03, 2013 1:54 PM by Kinzie
Michelle- I have certainly heard of people using magnesium oil for their babies and coconut oil/butters are very gentle for the skin. As with anything however, it is always best to check with your provider prior to adding in new supplemental products. 
Kinzie- You are absolutely right! Some essential oils are more nourishing and safe for the skin than others. Lavender is one of my personal favorites.
Posted @ Monday, June 03, 2013 9:08 PM by Kayla Grossmann
I am making this today and after heating the coconut oil & Shea butter, they don't appear to be turning opaque. It's been over an hour and feels very cool yet not turning opaque. Any ideas on cause? 
I heated on lowest heat in glass Pyrex dish.
Posted @ Tuesday, July 09, 2013 5:17 PM by Candra
I would like to make this cream! In fact I purchased all the ingredients at Whole Foods last night! 
I have checked internet information on how much magnesium I would need. That amount of magnesium would be 320mg. How much of this lotion would I need to use in order to get that amount of magnesium? 
I know this post is somewhat older though I hope to still get a response!!! 
Thanks so much
Posted @ Sunday, December 29, 2013 10:30 AM by Cathy
Can't wait to make this. I use mag lotion and mag oil in addition to other oral forms like Jigsaw mag malate, Doctors Best magnesium chelate (both are very absorbable forms) and ReMag, a pico ionic form that's 100% absorbable.  
We need 5x our body weight every day according to Dr Carolyn Dean which is much more than the RDA.  
There's an amazing group on Facebook called Magnesium Advocacy Group and Dr Carolyn Dean even answers questions. Her site is also wonderfulwww.drcarolyndean.com.  
Magnesium is far more important than given credit for and can help reverse many illnesses and keep us healthy going into the future. Great stuff! Has changed my life!
Posted @ Saturday, January 04, 2014 1:20 AM by Cole
Hi Cathy! According to my calculations (which ended up being quite elaborate!) this recipe has roughly 140 mg of magnesium per tsp of body butter. For you, that would mean about 2 1/2 tsps to get your daily total of 320mg. The nice thing about getting magnesium topically in this way is that your skin will only absorb what it needs- so if you happen to go a bit over, there is little risk for over-supplementation. I hope you enjoy it!
Posted @ Saturday, January 04, 2014 12:04 PM by Kayla Grossmann
Thanks for your comment Cole! We work closely with Dr. Dean (who is just a fabulous individual!) so as to stay on top of the latest magnesium info. She has done a few guest posts on our blog, including one on Fluoride & Magnesiumand Magnesium Burn Rate. It makes me unbelievably happy to know that magnesium has been so helpful for you! Stay in touch and continue to spread the word!
Posted @ Saturday, January 04, 2014 12:09 PM by Kayla Grossmann
I have recently began supplementing Mag and making my own Mag oil. I'm gonna make this too! I made a shea butter/coconut oil/essential oil moisturizer before. WARNING! This stuff stains everything! All my PJ's and sheets now have oil stains. But it's worth it!  
Posted @ Sunday, January 05, 2014 12:08 PM by Sheila
Good reminder Shelia! Magnesium oil and homemade lotions aren't always the most friendly to fabrics. Luckily, this body butter absorbs very nicely and hopefully won't be too bad : )
Posted @ Monday, January 06, 2014 4:34 PM by Kayla Grossmann
Can I use this on my face instead of plain coconut oil, which I am using now?
Posted @ Tuesday, January 21, 2014 12:17 PM by Hibber
I just bought and received your Magnesium Gel. 
Can this be used instead of the Magnesium oil in the DIY Magnesium Body 
Butter recipe? 
Posted @ Sunday, January 26, 2014 7:39 PM by Beverly
I would usually refrain from putting this on the face, as the mineral-rich magnesium oil can be a bit strong for areas of sensitive skin. If you want to make a face-friendly version as an alternative to plain coconut oil, simply omit the magnesium.
Posted @ Monday, January 27, 2014 9:05 AM by Kayla Grossmann
You could certainly try using the magnesium gel in this recipe Beverly, however most people find that it is gentle enough on its own to apply directly to the skin. The Magnesium Gel is already diluted with nourishing aloe and absorbs well without added oils.
Posted @ Monday, January 27, 2014 9:08 AM by Kayla Grossmann
Thank you, Kayla.
Posted @ Monday, January 27, 2014 12:00 PM by Beverly
Pardon my confusion, but is it 1/2 cup total of the butters or is it 1-1/2 cups total? Thanks!
Posted @ Saturday, February 22, 2014 12:27 PM by SharonQ
Mmmm- that is confusing the way I wrote it out! 1/2 cup total. You can mix and match, or use just one butter, but keep it to 1/2 cup for this recipe. Thanks Sharon!
Posted @ Monday, February 24, 2014 8:47 AM by Kayla Grossmann
Thank you, Kayla!
Posted @ Monday, February 24, 2014 9:24 AM by SharonQ
I made a recipe very similiar with raw cocoa butter, magnesium oil and coconut oil. It whipped up nice and very easy to apply. The next day I went to use some and it was "hard/firm" but as I scraped it out, it melted while rubbing it in. Is this normal and if so, any way around it NOT being so firm like that. It is a lil messy to dig out and apply.
Posted @ Thursday, February 27, 2014 10:46 AM by michelle
Hi Michelle, I hear you on this one- it can be frustrating to mix something up all creamy and smooth, only to have it set over night. What usually happens is the lotion melts ever-so-slightly and then re-hardens, losing the air you have whipped into it. You may want to try keeping it in an area that is on the cooler side or even in the refrigerator. This way the body butter will become firmer, but hopefully still maintain scoopable/easily applied qualities that the whipping introduces.
Posted @ Thursday, February 27, 2014 11:14 AM by Kayla Grossmann
Love this recipe. I' have a lot people allergic to nuts .is there a substitute for the cocoa , shea butter ?
Posted @ Tuesday, April 01, 2014 7:48 PM by Laura
Hi Laura, 
So happy that you enjoy it! Depending on the allergy, individuals may be able to tolerate mango (made from kernel of mango) or kokum Butter. Mountain Rose Herbs has a list of cosmetic butters that you can find here. If none of those are suitable, you can try doubling the coconut oil and experimenting with a bit of beeswax to get desired firmness. It may come out a bit differently, but is worth a try!
Posted @ Wednesday, April 02, 2014 9:46 AM by Kayla Grossmann
Hi,I justed wanted to say I love this stuff. I do have a question though. I make my own magnesium oil at home with distilled water and magnesium flakes with a 1:1 ratio. It all whips up nicely but after it sets of course the water from the magnesium oil separates. But i know the store bought magnesium oil has water as well. So i guess im asking if this is normal? or ok or has it happened to anyone else? thanks
Posted @ Saturday, May 03, 2014 12:14 AM by Amanda Seery
A friend taught me to apply Mg transdermally and it has done wonders for me and my friends. I recall her warning not to mix it with other substances, since they will interfere with absorption. This is why she used gel forming algae which already have a lot of magnesium. Could you comment please? Thanks
Posted @ Saturday, May 31, 2014 4:15 PM by Danijel
Try using fractured coconut oil the liquid form of coconut oil. Warm in double boiler and then pour magnesium flakes in. Stir until they dissolve. Pour in glass bowl, let cool and put in body lotion bottle. Great for when you get out of shower. 
If you want more solid melt bees wax with fractured coconut oil, then ad magnesium flakes. 
The best is fractured coconut oil, sunflower oil, melted together , add magnesium flakes and once in glass bowl and cooled ad thieves essential oil, vitamin E 
Perfect for kids rashes, yucky feet, cradle cap. 
Thanks Nannonsha Naturals
Posted @ Friday, June 20, 2014 4:12 PM by Shannon
Great recipe! I'm having the same problem as Candra, however - my oils never resolidified or became opaque. It is quite cool to the touch but they are still just as liquid as they were when I melted them (in a Pyrex measuring cup in a low heat water bath). Any idea what caused this, and how to fix it? I'd hate for all those oils to go to waste.. Sad!
Posted @ Saturday, July 19, 2014 7:57 PM by Lauren
I notice Lauren and Candra both had the same problem in July. If your mix isn't firming up, it might be that your summer air-temperature is above the 'melting point'(a good, virgin coconut oil, for example, melts at 76*F or so). 
If you don't want to add beeswax, do the 'whipping/adding magnesium oil' step with the container in a cold-water-bath. That should take care of the problem. You'll probably need to refrigerate the butter until the high temps drop back below 76* though.
Posted @ Sunday, September 21, 2014 11:34 PM by Mona H.
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