In a previous article we introduced the benefits of the bio lime liniment to treat babies’ bottoms and also as a body lotion in general, as it is a super greasy cream that absorbs very well and moisturises deeply.

In this article we would like to talk about a number of natural ingredients that are essential for natural health and for our homemade cosmetic preparations.

What do all these natural components have in common?

Not only are they all natural, unmanufactured ingredients with multiple properties for the care of our skin, but also, due to their intrinsic properties, they favour the final preservation of our homemade cosmetic products without the need to add synthetic preservatives.

Lime water, as explained in this previous article, is formed from slaked lime, or calcium hydroxide.

Lime is obtained from limestone rock extracted in quarries, which is transported to a factory where it is crushed and screened for subsequent calcination in kilns at a temperature of 900ºC. In this chemical reaction, CO2 is released and lime oxides remain. It is then cooled, stored and we have quicklime (lime oxide). This “quicklime” is then subjected to a hydration process, with the addition of water, to obtain hydrated lime powder, “slaked lime”, or calcium hydroxide.

For its cosmetic application, we add water to it again to form lime water.



Half a litre of demineralised water and

About 5 grams of calcium hydroxide.

*If you do not have demineralised water, you can boil drinking water and let it cool.


Add a spoonful of 5 grams of calcium hydroxide (slaked lime) to the demineralised water, stirring well. After a short time you will see that the lime will sink to the bottom of the bottle.

Let it stand for an hour and then transfer the mixture with a funnel and a paper filter into a glass container.

This lime water can be stored for several months in a cool place. A part of it (100 ml) will be used to prepare our homemade liniment.



100 ml lime water + 0.5 grams of borax (to be added to the lime water)

100 ml olive oil, lightly ozonised oil, or whatever oil you have available.

And about 6 grams of beeswax.

Procedure for preparing liniment:

Once the lime water is obtained, dilute the 0.5 grams of borax in 100 ml of the lime water.

*Without the addition of borax the phases will separate. We have also prepared it this way, without borax, which is how it was traditionally prepared and it is very good because, although it is out of phase, it is still very moisturising.

Then melt the beeswax in the olive oil in a bain-marie.

Remove from the heat and add the lime water, stirring constantly with an electric whisk. Leave to cool and then we can use our homemade liniment.



The web is full of blogs and recipes about natural homemade cosmetics that have very little to do with artisanal or sustainable cosmetics.

Mainly because the recipes they offer us are full of redundant or unnecessary, but expensive ingredients (here the suppliers of raw materials for natural cosmetics profit), synthetic preservatives (one gram or more is added per recipe) or, on the other hand, the miraculous essential oils.

And according to Ayurveda, Hippocrates’ maxim “let your food be your medicine” should also apply to the products we use to care for our skin and which, according to this age-old medical tradition, should also be food grade.

Your skin does not need medicines or essential oils, but nutrients, i.e. fats, oils and hydrolats, with a high capacity of absorption by our skin, and a high level of bioavailability.

We use essential oils* more with the idea of perfuming our preparations, always more advisable than a synthetic perfume for the properties they provide, and in minimal doses.  In any case, essential oils are a medicine with enormous antibiotic potential.

If we decide to use them, a few drops will suffice, as they have a high biocidal capacity and no one wants to take antibiotics as a preventive measure any more, as in the past. Not to mention the fact that they need to be used with great caution in young children or pregnant women.

As an alternative, we have the hydrolats, obtained in a similar way, but much milder and much more suitable for our daily cosmetic products.

And, furthermore, if it is a totally natural product, (as one of the great advantages of making homemade natural cosmetics is that we do not need to add legally established preservatives to it in order to market it), we do not need to add any type of aroma to it. It will probably smell like food, which is a wonderful smell because it is the smell of the nutrients our skin needs.

The following recipe, for example, smells of natural aloe.


Prior to making this recipe, you will need to cure the natural aloe gel obtained from an aloe stalk.

As you know, it is enough to soak the stalk overnight for a few hours to release a yellowish toxin that can be irritating. The next morning, cut the sides of the stalk with a knife and split it down the middle. This will make it easier to extract the gel from each half of the stalk with a teaspoon.



With some of these elements mentioned in the title of our article, such as borax and lime water, we have created our own natural aloe vera gel (as it does not contain added silicones or synthetic preservatives, like commercial aloe gels) for personal use.

It is possible to use it, as in this case, as an ingredient to prepare another recipe, or also, in general, as a lotion after intensive sun exposure, or even as a gel for the treatment of skin acne, etc…


3 parts natural aloe vera gel

1 part lightly ozonised vegetable oil

1 part lime water and, optionally, with the addition of 0.1 g of borax per 10 ml of water.

-A small teaspoon of honey if you are going to use it as an aftersun, given the reinforcing effect of honey in treating sunburn.

If you are not going to use it as a post-sun treatment lotion, our advice is to thicken it a little with natural vegetable glycerine, which will also add emolliency to the final result.

However, there are also other natural thickeners that you can use, for example:

1.- Xanthan gum, in a percentage of 1% of the total amount of gel you have.

2.- Sodium alginate, also used as a thickener in sauces and gelling agent in modern cuisine, in a percentage of 2-5%.

3.- Silica powder, or silicic acid, suitable for gelling both water and oil, as well as other types of liquids. In cosmetics, it is commonly used to make toothpaste, powder make-up and it is particularly suitable for oily skin as it increases the absorption capacity. It is used in a proportion of 5-10 %.



If you prepare this cream, you will find that the aloe it contains keeps all its properties intact for months, just like the rest of the cream. Just keep it in a glass jar at room temperature and away from heat sources.


45 gr coconut oil

15 grams of beeswax

80 grams of aloe gel cured in lime water, with the addition of 1 gram of borax, as we are going to emulsify it with natural beeswax.

25 grams of lightly ozonised olive oil


In a heat-resistant container, place the beeswax in a bain-marie until completely melted, and add the coconut oil and ozonised olive oil.

Next, add the 80 grams of aloe gel cured in lime water and borax and start to whisk the mixture.

Remove from the heat and pack. It’s as simple as that.

USES: You will find that this cream is almost an ointment with multiple uses that can be used daily without any contraindications.



In the context of nutrients and other dietary ingredients, bioavailability is similar to the absorption of the ingredient. You will find extensive information on this subject at this link.

Today, consumers of natural medicine are increasingly demanding the bioavailability of a product, which, in medical terms, refers to the ability of a drug or other substance to be absorbed and used by the body.

However, many of these consumers continue to consume commercial cosmetics and creams that, at the very least, leave the skin feeling “crusty”, if not irritated or reddened.

This often happens with the daily use (I want to clarify daily use because sometimes you try a cream one day and it seems to work well, but when you start using it daily then problems start to arise) of creams with a high load of synthetic ingredients whose bioavailability and therefore absorption level is low. What the skin cannot process, it expels in one way or another, as Hippocrates and Ayurvedic medicine explained thousands of years ago.

In addition, the use of toxic household cleaning products in our everyday environment, which are also likely to be inhaled, is also a major source of discomfort for people with asthma or allergies.

The success of the traditional calcareous bio-food based on lime water, beeswax and oil is undoubtedly due to the high bioavailability (and thus absorption and integration capacity) that results from the fusion of these three natural elements.


As we mentioned, it often happens that a product gives us problems when we apply it because its composition uses elements and ingredients of synthetic or plastic origin, which are the ones that our organism and our skin rejects to a greater extent because it does not recognise them.

This is the case, for example, with magnesium sprays prepared from the magnesium chloride flakes that are sold for this purpose and which are obtained by chemical processes, as you know.

What is magnesium chloride and why is it so important?

Magnesium chloride, formula MgCl2, is an ionic mineral compound based on negatively charged chlorine and positively charged magnesium. Magnesium chloride can be extracted from brine or seawater and is a great source of magnesium.

As we said, it is found in unrefined salt and in various foods, and is very necessary for health as it is an essential mineral for the proper nutrition of our body. According to one study, it is estimated to be involved in 300 biochemical reactions. It regulates muscle and nerve function, supports immune system function, maintains heart rhythm and helps bones remain strong. It also helps to balance blood glucose and the production of energy and protein.

And although the magnesium chloride sold to us to make homemade magnesium oil is obtained, in principle, from seawater, it involves an electrolysis process known as the Dow process in which magnesium chloride is regenerated from magnesium hydroxide using hydrochloric acid: Mg(OH) 2(s) + 2 HCl(aq) → MgCl 2(aq) + 2 H 2O(l); or also from magnesium carbonate by a similar reaction.

 On the other hand, if we use Nigari* salt, which is used not only as a coagulant in soya milk to make tofu in Japan, but also in the preparation of commercial breast milk formulas, we see that this salt is obtained completely naturally from the evaporation of seawater. It is therefore an all-natural magnesium chloride, so it is not fully refined (it contains up to 5% magnesium sulphate and various minerals).

*Nigari salt is a versatile product that can be used for a variety of purposes. It can be used as a food supplement, as a flavouring in food, as a bath salt, as a cleanser and as a medicine. It is also a good source of iodine, which is important for thyroid function.

The use of magnesium spray became extremely popular when it was realised that a large part of the population was deficient in this essential mineral element and that the use of a spray was more convenient and appropriate than taking supplements that did not always feel good.

However, if you have tried it, the commercial spray doesn’t feel good either and is itchy and sometimes tingling.

These sprays are prepared with magnesium chloride flakes, as follows, according to the “Mejor con salud” website:


 ½ cup magnesium chloride flakes.

 ½ cup water (125 ml).

 A spray bottle for storing the mixture.



Try now to prepare the same magnesium oil spray, but using Nigari salt.

It is recommended to dilute one part Nigari salt to about 10 parts water for topical application to the skin.

Pack it, if possible, in a glass spray bottle and you can apply it at your discretion. You will see the difference.

You can even include this water base enriched with magnesium to prepare other types of products in contact with the skin such as deodorants, mosquito sprays, etc. …. without any problem and with the benefits of enriching your DIY product with natural magnesium.



The cistern was traditionally a reservoir for the collection and storage of rainwater. Cisterns take their meaning from the Spanish Arabic “algúbb”, which in turn comes from a classical Arabic term meaning cistern or well. It is a large reservoir that is generally located underground and its main function is to collect and conserve rainwater. Traditionally, these cisterns were made using construction materials that prevented water contamination. For this reason, its interior had to be well waterproofed and without cracks, to avoid water leaks.

The walls were plastered with a mortar of sand, lime and water and then painted with slaked lime. This ensured that the walls of the cistern were highly breathable and insulated against damp, as well as preventing mould and bacteria.

Although cisterns originated in Arabia, the Greeks and Romans also made good use of this invention. These Mediterranean peoples covered the internal walls of the cistern, in addition to this mortar of sand, lime and water, with red clay, iron oxide and mastic resin, a shrub that is common in Mediterranean areas and whose disinfectant properties are widely known in the field of natural medicine.

The combination of all these elements prevented leaks and water from rotting inside. This invention, as we said, was used for centuries to collect rainwater and then use it for domestic use, even to provide drinking water for animals or even humans.

Several decades ago in rural areas there were few households that did not have this receptacle to store water and save it for times of need.

Today, on small islands that do not have rivers or other sources of fresh water, rainwater is still collected and used for all kinds of purposes, thanks to the lining of the cistern walls with this purifying water.


This is why lime has traditionally been used extensively:

-It was used as a caustic and disinfectant to prevent insects from climbing fruit trees by applying lime to the trunk with a brush. It was also used to cauterise wounds on trees after pruning.

– As mortar or plaster, used in the construction of popular buildings, taking advantage of the quality of lime to acquire great hardness on contact with air. The slaked lime powder is mixed with sand and water to make mortar. The lime used in the mortar recovers CO2 from the atmosphere, recovering its original hardness and returning the water it took in during the slaking process.

– Production of mural paintings using the fresco technique. The process is the same, the layer of fine mortar is applied and while it is still soft, the fresco is made. The hard limestone layer, with the paint inside, makes the fresco highly resistant to external agents and the passage of time.

– For plastering, as in fresco, slaked lime mixed with fine sand is used to plaster buildings and give them a more aesthetic appearance and great protection against the weather elements, as this lime slurry, once dry, becomes a waterproof layer.

– In addition to the aesthetic factor, the whitening of walls also took into account their disinfectant power, so much so that on many occasions frescoes in churches were covered with layers of lime to prevent the spread of disease.

– Infection prevention in the case of burial of dead bodies during epidemics.

– Waterproofing of ponds and cisterns.

– Correction of the acidity of some agricultural soils.



What we want to expose in this article is the fact that the pharmaceutical industry, the commercial cosmetics industry and, in general, commercial interests are not always aligned with our interests as consumers.

It is for this reason that today they try to sell us plastic cisterns as a measure for greater environmental sustainability of water resources when, as we have already seen, the Arabs, Greeks and Romans knew perfectly well how to build a cistern so that the water would be kept in the best conditions of healthiness.

It is for the same reason that the use of borax has been demonised, while boron (food grade) is allowed to be sold, as it has been shown to be of interest for the health of bones and teeth, and in the prevention of arthritis and osteoporosis.

In fact, there is already talk that boron is to the parathyroid what iodine is to the thyroid.

The idea that borax is toxic is a myth perpetuated by the medical establishment, and the pharmaceutical industry because of the profit incentive to suppress natural medicines while patenting things that can treat, but not cure, hooking you into the medical and pharmaceutical system with the idea of maximum profits.

Borax is safer in toxicity than salt, and Dr Newnham’s work shows that it can actually cure arthritis and osteoporosis. The problem is that it is very cheap, even commercially available boron supplements are cheap.

Theoretically, you should be able to get it through dietary intake, except that the use of chemical fertilisers inhibits the uptake of boron from the soil by plants. Anyone who says you can get it in food doesn’t understand soil depletion.

According to this researcher, boron deficiency causes the parathyroids to become overactive, releasing too much parathyroid hormone which raises the level of calcium in the blood by releasing calcium from bones and teeth. This leads to osteoarthritis and other forms of arthritis, osteoporosis and tooth decay.

With age, high blood calcium levels lead to calcification of soft tissues, causing muscle contractions and stiffness; calcification of endocrine glands, especially the pineal gland and ovaries; arteriosclerosis, kidney stones and calcification of the kidneys, ultimately leading to kidney failure. Boron deficiency combined with magnesium deficiency appears to be particularly damaging to bones and teeth.

In the past, boron was used as a food preservative in many countries. Today, people have stopped using it for reasons that are unclear, and in the United States and China they prefer to use chlorine and arsenic to preserve vegetables and rice. Both are much less good for health (to put it mildly) than boron.

And it is the same idea that every year old patents for medicines, which in their day fulfilled their functions perfectly, are discarded and replaced by new patents, which are much more expensive because they are new, and which comply with the excuse of being more effective. More effective for what? To treat us chronically for ulcers, cholesterol, sugar or allergies without curing us of anything because now it is said that, as these disorders are chronic, we have to continue taking the pills all our lives.

However, the best cream that can be prepared with an aqueous phase, and to which no preservatives need to be added, is made from the chemical emulsion of boron with beeswax.

Borax is the only natural element that makes it possible to use beeswax, together with water, without it going out of phase, as it produces a chemical emulsion of the beeswax. The small addition of borax therefore allows us to use the most natural emulsifier there is, beeswax, to prepare a particularly moisturising cream for the driest skins.



This cream, under a similar recipe, was in the Middle Ages a galenic preparation known as Cerate of Galen, the famous physician of antiquity.


53.50 g of a quality vegetable oil.

33 g of a hydrolat of your choice, or distilled water.

13 g beeswax.

0.5 g borax* (which acts as an emulsifier as well as a preservative).

Optionally, a few drops of tincture of benzoin, which, in addition to its properties, gives this cream an excellent aroma.


Melt the beeswax and the oil in a bain-marie. At the same time, heat the hydrosol to the same temperature and add the borax. Both phases should be at a maximum of 70 degrees.

When the wax and oil mixture is completely melted, add the water and borax mixture a little at a time, while whisking vigorously.

Finally, pour the cream into a glass container, if possible.

The only preservative, as well as co-emulsifier, in this aqueous phase preparation is borax, so using a glass container will extend its shelf life and keep our cream in better condition.


The other forgotten element of the natural pharmacopoeia is honey. Honey should never be missing in our natural cosmetic preparations.

Honey is a natural preservative, which means it can last a long time without spoiling. In fact, thousands of years old honey has been found in Egyptian tombs that have not lost their properties. The natural acidity and low moisture content of honey keeps it edible for a long time if it is properly sealed. Under the right conditions, even if it crystallises, a jar of honey could technically be edible forever.

Since ancient times, it has been used in many medicinal preparations. Hippocrates already spoke of herbal infusions in honey and vinegar, which he called “oxymeli”. “You will find that the drink called oxymeli is often very useful… because it promotes expectoration and respiratory freedom” (Hippocrates, 400 BC).

Derived from the Greek word oxymeli, which translates as ‘acid and honey’, the use of oxymel has been documented since the time of Hippocrates as a means of using and extracting herbs whose taste is unpleasant (Hippocrates, 400 BC). These herbs are often the more pungent aromatics, such as garlic (Allium sativa) and cayenne (Capsicum annuum), which also play a supportive role for the immune and respiratory systems (Green, 2000).

Both apple cider vinegar and raw honey are common kitchen allies that can be used to soothe the throat, calm a cough or boost the immune system in case of colds and flu. When combined with complementary herbs, oxymels offer potent – and tasty – support in times of illness or compromised immunity.

This is why many traditional oxymel recipes are known:



1 part herbal vinegar

1 part honey with herbal infusion

Instructions:  Combine the infused vinegar with the infused honey in a sterilised glass jar. Mix well with a clean, dry spoon until both preparations are completely combined. Label and store in a cool, dry place for 6 months.

Note: Oxymels should be stored in glass jars with plastic lids, as the vinegar in the mixture will corrode metal lids. If plastic lids are not available, a piece of parchment or wax paper can be placed between the jar and the lid.





Dried herb of choice

1 part apple cider vinegar

1 part raw honey

Instructions: In a clean, dry one-litre jar, place enough dried herb to fill ¼ of its capacity.

Cover the herbs with the vinegar and honey until the jar is full or slightly less full (ensuring that the ratio of herbs to vinegar and honey mixture is approximately 1:3).

Stir the mixture with a clean, dry spoon, screw on an airtight plastic lid and shake until well mixed.

Store the jar in a cool, dark place and shake it every two days.

After a few weeks, simply strain the mixture and store it in a glass jar.



Our daily use vaginal soap preparations based on honey and coconut betaine keep for months and months. Most importantly, they can be used daily without irritation.

In this previous article we showed you how to prepare a homemade daily intimate cleansing gel based on honey and coconut betaine.


2 parts raw honey

1 part coconut betaine surfactant.

Optionally, some people add a few tablespoons of vegetable oil, but since oil and honey are immiscible, you will have to shake the mixture each time.

USAGE: A few drops in a tub of hot water will be enough to make you feel clean.

Always bear in mind that, although washing with this gel prevents infections and problems, if you have a recognised vaginal infection, you will need to use biocidal washing gels.



Also, if you have problems with dermatitis or atopic skin, it is important that you do not use aggressive shower gels; therefore, this gel based on honey and coconut betaine can be an excellent alternative for you.

Honey and oil shower gel

As we said, natural honey is immiscible with vegetable oils, so if you decide to add oil to your honey and coconut betaine mixture, you will always have to shake it beforehand.

Personally, I have doubts that the addition of oil will actually be helpful in this mixture, so I simply use the familiar gel recipe with 2 parts honey to 1 part coconut betaine.

A few drops of this gel on the sponge bath will be enough to lather up without any problems, but if you find it sticky, you can adjust the quantities and add more of the surfactant betaine and less of the honey.

And while there are many other natural coconut oil-derived surfactants available today that lather better, coconut betaine is still the mildest and most natural surfactant I know of.




Again, this recipe may not appeal to someone with normal skin, but if you have sensitive or atopic skin, you need to use specially formulated gels and bath oils to avoid destroying your skin’s lipid barrier and exacerbating the problem.

This bath oil has honey in it, because of its enormous skin-loving properties and its probiotic capacity; but, as we said, honey is immiscible with oils. However, there is a little trick to integrate it by using stearic acid and the liquid surfactant betaine. Although, in principle, stearic acid is not an emulsifier, in some cases it can act as one.


One tablespoon of raw honey (about 15 g)

One teaspoon of stearic acid (about 10 g.)

About 150 ml of a mixture of oils of your choice. Example: 100 ml almond oil, 50 ml macadamia oil…

35 ml of coconut betaine. You can use another surfactant that produces more foam, but it must be liquid to emulsify the mixture of honey and oils.

Optionally, coconut C02 extract for its aroma and properties.


Start by heating the honey, in which we melt the tablespoon of stearic acid.

When everything is dissolved, add the oils and, finally, the coconut betaine, whisking well so that all the elements are integrated.

Optionally, add a few drops of the C02 extract of your choice.

USE: A few drops in the bath or on your bath sponge if you use it in the shower will suffice.




Green, J. (2000). The herbal medicine-maker’s handbook: A home manual. Berkley, CA: Crossing Press.

Hippocrates (400 B.C.E.). On regimen in acute diseases. Retrieved from


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