A guide to the most common ingredients used in DIY body care & cleaning recipes

So you’re inspired by my recipes but your head is spinning trying to work out what ingredients you need to get started, right?

Let me help you and give you a bit of a guide…

Bear in mind that if I was to include every single ingredient used in my recipes, your shopping list would have over 100 items on it. It’s also impossible for me to tell you exact quantities because it depends on whether your focus is on cleaning, body and skin care or both, and if you’re making full/half batches, one of every recipe or just a select few.

A great tip, if you’re new to DIY, is to pick two or three recipes you really want to try and tackling them first. I often hear of people getting all excited and buying everything to make everything and then, making nothing! That will not happen, do you hear me?

First, create a list of all ingredients.

Then write down quantities required and tally it up.

Over time, you’ll accumulate the ingredients that you use most often and it’ll become easier to add to that supply, and replenish when they run low. 

As a guide, I’ve noted down the most common ingredients you’ll need for each recipe category, and a few recipe examples. For detailed info on each ingredient, follow this link.

Common Ingredients in Body and Skin Care Recipes

Aloe vera gel – Hand Sanitising gel and Post Sun Cooling mist

Beeswax – Simple Beeswax CandlesBeeswax Wraps and Face Lotion

Bentonite clay – Sensitive Deodorant and Pit Detox

Carrier oil – Moisturising LotionZinc Cream and Whipped Magnesium Cream. Read more about choosing carrier oils here

Castile soap – Foaming Soap and Creamy Body Wash

Citric acid – Fizzy Bath Drops and Bath Salts

Coconut oil (the kind that you can pick up at the supermarket that solidifies in the cool weather) – Make-Up Remover, Healing Balm and Coconut & Lime Body Scrub

Epsom salt – Bath Soak and Foot Scrub

Magnesium chloride flakes – Magnesium Oil, Gel and Spray Deodorant

Shea butter – Whipped Body Butter, Lip Balm, and Baby Booty Balm

Sodium bicarbonate (aka bicarb) – DeodorantSkin Scrub and Bath Salts

Witch hazel – Spray Deodorant and Toner

Zinc oxide (make sure it’s non-nano) – Baby Booty Balm, Sunscreen and Zinc Cream

Common Ingredients in Cleaning Recipes

Borax – Washing Powder and Laundry Liquid. Sometimes controversial – read here for my thoughts and why I still use it

Castile soap – Cleaning Paste and Stain Paste

Citric acid – Cleaning Fizzies and Dishwasher Tablets

Coconut soap Washing Powder

Hydrogen peroxide – Stain Solution

Salt – Washing Powder and Fabric Softener

Sodium bicarbonate – Toilet and Shower Cleaner and Stain Paste

Sodium carbonate – WashingPowder and Stain Solution

Sodium percarbonate Dishcloth Deep Clean

Common Ingredients in Kids’ Recipes

These ingredients are handy if you’re making recipes from Make & Play.

Arrowroot flour – Goop

BeeswaxDoughnut Moisturising Bars

Castile soap – Wobbly Jelly Soap

Citric acid – Colour Explosion Bath Bombs

Melt & pour soap base – Treasure Soap

Olive Oil – Watermelon Sugar Scrub Cubes

Self-raising flour – Puffy Paint

Shea butter – Mess-Around Make-Up

White clay – Water Colour Paint

As for essential oils…

I recommend sourcing top quality, pure and potent essential oils. Click here for Essential Oils Inspiration.

Krissy Ballinger

author and passionate advocate for natural living and wellness

Krissy Ballinger is an accomplished author and passionate advocate for natural living and wellness. Her mission is to gently guide individuals towards holistic wellbeing by providing a wealth of resources and services, ranging from natural living guidance and DIY recipes, to healing therapies that nurture the mind, body, spirit and space. She envisions a world where conscious choices are made that honour the self, humanity and the environment.

With her roots in education and health promotion, Krissy continually expands her expertise. Recently, she obtained certifications in Zone Healing Technique and NeurOptimal Neurofeedback (brain training), qualified as a Reiki Healer, and completed an Undergraduate Certificate in Lifestyle Coaching from Endeavour College of Natural Health.

Krissy dedicates her time to managing her wellness room, offering services in Zone and Reiki Healing, Neurofeedback brain training, and Chemical Awareness Consulting. Additionally, she educates individuals about common and avoidable toxins through her various social platforms. Krissy’s books have collectively sold over 100,000 copies, including the award-winning Naturally Inspired – Simple DIY Recipes for Body Care and Cleaning, as well as Make & Play – Natural DIY Recipes for Kids, and The Lifestyle Edit.


  1. Hello,
    Somewhere recently on your website I noted you had a list of some of your suppliers and now I can’t find it. I do have your Naturally Inspired book but not sure where to start buying my ingredients from. Hopefully you can help. Many thanks.

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