There’s always something special about the love, effort, and time that go into homemade Christmas gifts. Well, what babysitter, teacher, grandma, or auntie can’t put some DIY spa treatments to good use?
Especially when you’ve got little ones who want to be generous but are short on cash, DIY is a fun, thoughtful way to go. In an ideal world, though, DIY gifts should also be something the recipient can actually USE. DIY spa treatments are easy to make and fit the bill.
Kimmie and I first learned how to make bath salts, sugar scrub, and lip balm last spring at a STEM day for Girl Scouts at our local science museum. With the holidays approaching, it’s occurred to us that these recipes would make super Christmas gift ideas.
So with that in mind, here’s a fun morning of DIY spa treatments you can make for holiday gifting! (Be sure to make some extras to keep and enjoy when you’re done!)
Homemade Christmas Gifts: DIY Spa Treatments
1) Homemade Lip Balm
Who doesn’t get chapped lips in winter? Winter’s cooler, drier air can really do a number on our lips. But slathering on some of this lip balm before bed (or whenever you need it) will help keep your lips soft and moisturized!
- 4 tsp. coconut oil, melted in a microwave-safe bowl
- 3 tsp. petroleum jelly
- 1 packet flavored drink mix (like Kool-Aid)
- a small jar with a tight-fitting lid for storing
In a small bowl, combine all three ingredients thoroughly with a spoon, before the coconut oil cools and solidifies. Once cooled, store in a small airtight jar. To use, dab a small amount on your lips and spread evenly with your finger.
2) DIY Sugar Scrub
This is a perfect recipe for winter gift-giving because it helps battle that dry winter skin. And the best part is you probably already have everything you need to make it!
All you need for this easy gift is
- white granulated sugar
- your favorite liquid dish soap in your preferred scent (preferably a moisturizing variety)
- a small bowl to mix it in
- a wide-mouth jar to store it in
In a small bowl, mix equal amounts of sugar and dish soap thoroughly. If the final product seems too liquid, you can mix in more sugar as needed. Too granular? Add a little more dish soap and mix thoroughly.
Store in an airtight wide-mouth jar, and use a small dab whenever you wash your hands. The soap will clean your hands, the sugar will help scrub off the dead skin cells, and your hands will feel softer and smoother.
Another idea you can try is running some plain uncooked oats (either quick-cooking or old-fashioned is fine) through the blender. Once they’re ground into a fine powder, stir some of the powder into your hand scrub. Oatmeal is renowned for its ability to lock in moisture, so this can give your scrub an extra moisturizing boost.
3. DIY Bath Salts
With the craziness of the holiday season, who couldn’t use a good excuse to relax for awhile? A gift of homemade bath salts may be just the excuse someone needs to block off a little “me time” for a relaxing soak. And this super-easy DIY gift is so easy to mix up for even the littlest hands!
All you’ll need is
- 1 cup sea salt (coarse kosher salt will work and is less expensive) or pure rock salt
- 1 cup Epsom salt
- 2 Tbsp. baking soda
Mix all three ingredients thoroughly in a large heavy-duty zip-top bag. For fun, you can also add a few drops each of
so your bath salts have a nice scent and color. My personal favorite is lavender for its ability to promote quality sleep.
4. Packaging your DIY spa treatments:
- Unless you regularly save glass jars to reuse, you’ll probably want to buy some clear matching jars to package your homemade goodies into. 2-4 oz jars are perfect for lip gloss; 4-8 oz jars are great for sugar scrub; and for bath salts, you can do anything from 4 oz (1-2 baths’ worth) to 16 oz (4-8 baths’ worth).
- If you’re reusing jars, be sure to leave enough time to prepare them for use. You’ll need to carefully clean off the old labels, either with Goo-Gone or by soaking in hot water. (Be careful not to scratch the glass when scrubbing off labels!)
- If the jars have time/date/lot codes stamped on them, moisten a paper towel with rubbing alcohol and rub until the ink disappears.
- For recycled jars with ugly lids, you can either paint the lids (spray paint is quick and fast!), or cover them with a circle of colored card stock or a small circle of pretty fabric.
- Be sure to label all your products clearly. For the larger jars in this basket, I used some decorative removable sticky labels that I already had. But since the jar was smaller, for the lip balm I used my label maker.
5. Making your baskets:
For gift-giving, all you’ll need is a nice gift bag or basket, some filler, and some pretty ribbon.
- If you’re using fabric to cover jar lids, secure the fabric with a rubber band, and cover the band with a festive ribbon.
- I have good luck finding empty baskets at thrift stores and secondhand craft stores for practically nothing. In a pinch, you could even use a plastic bin from the dollar store, or a gift bag.
- I got the ribbon, sparkly filler, and basket I used for this basket from our local secondhand crafting supply store for less than $2 total. (This directory will help you locate a similar store near you!).
That’s it! Wasn’t that easy?
Have fun making these super-easy homemade Christmas gifts with your littles this weekend, and enjoy trying them out yourself after the holidays are behind you!
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