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Making Expired Breast Milk Lotion (Revised)

A year ago I posted a very exciting and popular article that detailed how to make expired breast milk lotion. I received several inquiries on separation issues. Since I’m such a nice person, I wanted to fix this for my mama friends. I want those of you making this recipe to enjoy it fully with as little issues as possible. I did more research and I’ve revised my recipe to account for some issues.

making expired breast milk lotion revised

Breast milk is a great resource for healing skin ailments. Paired with shea butter, coconut oil, and honey this concoction is sure to leave your skin feeling healthy and new. This lotion is great for eczema, rashes, and dry skin.

In my research, the first thing I realized that needed changing is converting everything to weight. You’ll need a kitchen scale to complete this recipe. I love my Mira scale (truly), but there are other options on the market, of course.

breast milk lotion ingredients

Ingredients for making your own breast milk lotion:

  • 2.5 oz breast milk
  • 2 grams borax (read below *)
  • 0.5 ounces beeswax
  • 0.5 ounces shea butter
  • 3 oz carrier oil (I used 1 ounce coconut and 2 ounces almond)
  • 0.7 ounces raw honey
  • 3 drops lavender essential oil
  • 2 grams optiphen

I first put a medium pot on medium heat with a double boiler and added my beeswax and shea butter to melt together. In a smaller pot, add your thawed breast milk and turn to a low heat. It’s okay if your breast milk is cold. Expired milk is okay! (Fresh milk is okay, too, of course.) Once the breast milk was warm, I added the borax to dissolve.

* Borax is found in the laundry isle at supermarkets. Because this recipe is using beeswax, we’re using borax to help emulsify (hold together) the whole thing. There are other emulsifiers on the market for lotion making, but I like beeswax so I am using borax.

making expired breast milk lotion

Once your wax/butter mixture is melted and the borax is dissolved in your breast milk turn off your burners. Pour the breast milk into the wax and whip. I kept everything in my double boiler until the end, and at this point whipping by hand is perfectly fine.

Add your oils and honey. When warm the mixture may smell especially milk-like. I promise you 3-4 drops of lavender will pay off in the end. Don’t overdo it. Add a few drops and continue whipping by hand. Once your mixture is smooth, transfer to a tall glass jar.ย  I use a salsa jar because I have tons of them. You can use a quart jar or whichever you prefer.

Now this is where you might want to dig out the emulsion blender if you have one. My mom got me one at a yard sale and it is amazing. It has this fancy whip attachment and makes blending lotions so much more fun! If you don’t have one, just use a smaller whisk and whip by hand. Continue whipping until the lotion starts to solidify.

breast milk lotion preservative

Once your mixture has cooled a little, add in your preservative. My last recipe did not have a preservative, but breast milk lotion is considered a water based lotion and so you need one to ward of mold and other yuckiness. Also, in revising this recipe I learned vitamin E oil is not a preservative. I feel lied to… but I’m happy to produce safe products on my own now. You know better you do better, right?

You should continue to whip sporadically as your lotion cools. I used this time to clean up my space.

** PRO TIP: If you wipe everything with a paper towel first, they will wash up quickly. Oils and wax can be stubborn in the sink.

whipping  breast milk lotion

Your lotion will get all light and fluffy as you whip it and it cools. Once your lotion is complete, transfer it to a pretty container. There are tons of options on Amazon. I got a whole set of unused jars and such at a yard sale for super cheap. I seriously lucked out and am totally excited about it!

expired breast milk lotion

Make sure to add a label and date it. I just put September because I’m lazy today, but whatever works for you is fine. This breast milk lotion was made for a friend with her milk, so I wanted to make sure it was labeled clearly so she could have confidence in using it.

breast milk lotion

And there you have it! I know this recipe is slightly more involved, but I promise you it’s so worth it to have aย  fully functional and safe lotion. When made correctly using the preservative, this lotion should last about 6 months. You can keep it in the fridge to extend the life, though the wax will make it harden slightly. Discard at the first sign of spoilage.

Thanks for reading! Let me know how you like the new recipe!



  1. Can you use coco butter instead of Shea butter?

  2. Is there anything else that would work just as well as borax? Thanks!

    • If you use beeswax you need borax to help make the lotion stay together and not separate. Instead of beeswax/borax you can use any other emulsifier.

  3. Can you leave out the Beeswax and just use emulsifying wax?

  4. I would like to make this for my 3 month old who has severe chapped skin/ezema. What can I use in place of raw honey?

  5. This is fantastic!!
    Thanks for doing the work for us! ๐Ÿ™‚

    I’d read,.somewhere, to be cautious about borax on little’s skin…*shrug*
    Thoughts? Is it even an issue after everything is all mixed together!?

    Ohhh!!!! :/ Vit E is not a preservative!!!? :/

    Lastly,.just to verify the wording…beeswax & borax IS, basically, an emulsifying wax? Just handmade?

    • Yes, beeswax plus borax makes things stay together.

      Borax is used in many natural laundry soaps. This is a very tiny quantity. I have used it on my littles with no ill side effects. I understand you taking caution though. Try a little at a time and make sure you test the waters with your own child.

  6. I am wondering if you have any insight. I have quiet a bit of milk frozen in our deep freezer. I pumped like a mad woman during my maternity leave, made it four days at work, and quit my job to stay home with my daughter. Well, after all the pumping and freezing, I realized that my milk has a strong soapy/metallicy scent to it. I stopped using it to feed her or mix with food bc I really didn’t need it and the odor was so strong.

    However, I hate to see it all go to waste. I’m embarrassed to donate it because I think someone would think it had soured. I’d like to try making some lotion. Do you think my thawed, smelly milk will work?

    Thank you!

  7. Hi ! How expired can the breastmilk be ? I have breastmilk in the fridge since about one month, is it too old now … ?

  8. Courtney says:

    Thanks for posting this! I was disappointed when the other recipe left me with separated milk and wax/oil. I have borax, could I add it to the mixture now, with heating and mixing?

    • Oh I don’t know! Good question. You should experiment and let me know how it goes ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Courtney says:

        I tried it and it didn’t work. Also, I tried your recipe a second time with borax, following the directions carefully and it still separated. I give up ๐Ÿ˜”

        • I’m sorry you had such issues! I struggled with the first until I did research on emulsifying lotions. I’ve made this several times without failure. Did you whip it real good as it cooled?

  9. Can I use vitamin e oil instead of almond oil??

    • Large quantities of vit E is not recommended. You cna use any other oil though: olive, jajoba, grapeseed, etc.

  10. I have a lotion emulsifier. How much do i need to add in? Do I still need to use beeswax? I bought both lotion emulsifier n beeswax.

  11. Hi Shary !

    I want to make this and I’m in need of a bit of advice. I still have around 5 liters of breastmilk in the freezer. According to you, what is better? Prepair all at onces? Or prepair by ……. ?

    Thanks in advance,

    Milan, Italy

    • I would do small batches personally. You can use expired milk, so it doesn’t hurt to just leave the milk in your freezer until you’re ready.

      • Susan Novack says:

        I need to fly home with milk – can I add the preservative ahead of time and prevent spoiling?

        • The preservative is for the lotion, not drinkable milk. Please do not ingest optiphen purposefully or put it in milk for a child.

  12. I tried your old recipe today and then saw the link to this new one to help with the separating ๐Ÿ™ but I have a question for you. Isn’t borax toxic? I saw on Wikipedia that Borax may damage fertility and damage the unborn child.”

    • This a very small quantity and should not affect you or your child in small doses. Borax is used in many “natural” laundry detergents and those crazy hippy people use it all the time (joking, that’s sarcasm) and their children are fine. As an alternative, you can buy emulsion wax.

  13. Hi.
    In my hometown do not have beeswax borax sheabutter. Can i still made this?
    Lavender is only for the smell?

    • You can make it with just the oils, but it’ll be quite liquid. I suggest looking into an emulsifier of some kind.

  14. Candice says:

    Where do I get optiphen??? What is that???? And since it has honey in it can I use it on the skin of my infant???? I am gonna try the emulsifier wax.

    • Optiphen is a preservative and you need a preservative in water (or in this case milk) based lotions. Honey on the skin is fine.

  15. Hi, isit a must to add borax if i am using beewax? also, it is a must to add vit e oil if i am using grapeseed oil? Thanks

    • Vit E is optional, but the borax will help keep it mixed. You’d have to mix it every time you want to use it otherwise.

  16. I just made this for the first time today but I just realized I forgot to add the coconut oil! ๐Ÿ™ Is it okay, or do I need to make a new batch tomorrow?

  17. Sommer Welling says:

    How long will this last before expiring? Or is it fine until mold appears?
    Also, what do you recommend as a preservative?

  18. Amee Ciardo says:

    Does the half ounce of beeswax need to be measured on a scale? Or do I melt it and measure it out to be a half ounce. Do you know how many teaspoons or tablespoons that is?

  19. Michelle says:

    What is the purpose for the lavender oil? The only raw honey I can find is “raw and unfiltered” is that okay?

  20. Michelle says:

    Is the raw honey necessary for the recipe? Thank you for this recipe btw! :]

  21. Susan Novack says:

    Hi Sherry. Can I use optioned plus which has citric acid? Thanks

    • Optiphen plus? I think that’d be okay. Trial and error, baby; you got this! (Let me know how it holds up!)

  22. So excited to try this! If I use an emulsifier what would the amount be? Versus the wax and borax…. Thanks!

  23. How “expired” can it be before it’s not safe?

  24. Cassidy Harper says:

    Where did you buy the Optiphen?

  25. Just tried this recipe and it came out especially oily. It also wouldnโ€™t solidify while I whipped it, I needed too let it almost completely cool and it hen turned into a runny lotion. Measurements and ingredients were exact as well. Anything you can say to help me figure out what went wrong?

  26. Briana savago says:

    Question about the honey and the consistency. Itโ€™s a bit sticky so could I use a smidge less honey and also the texture right now is a bit clumpy like itโ€™s tryi to separate.

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