World Nutella day is the kind of holiday I can really get behind. I’ve loved Nutella since I was a kid, and I can still remember the first time I tried it—on a canoe trip with some of our Francophone family friends. Their kids were eating what looked like chocolate sandwiches, and understandably, my brother and I felt cheated as our sandwiches were definitely not filled with chocolate. That’s where the love affair began.
For years after that we ate toaster waffles with Nutella for breakfast every day, and I was a happy, happy child (for other reasons as well, of course). I eventually realized, in my later adolescence, that eating chocolate for breakfast every day was not a great idea from a nutritional standpoint, and Nutella was moved from breakfast food to occasional (and much beloved) treat.
I’ve frosted cakes with it, made it into cocoa, eaten it from a spoon, and attempted to swear off it forever (spoiler—that never works). It’s a perennial favorite of mine, and I thought it was high time to bring my love into the realm of body products. It’s an idea I remember tossing about years ago, but never executed for lack of hazelnut oil. Now that I’ve got hazelnut oil, there was nothing stopping me.
I decided to make a decadent chocolate hazelnut body lotion, with cocoa butter, hazelnut oil, benzoin essential oil, and cocoa absolute. The cocoa butter contributes its amazing, intoxicating scent—be sure to use the real, raw, fragrant stuff. You can use the dark stuff if you’d like, it’s diluted enough that you won’t end up with accidental tanning cream. I used the white stuff as my white cocoa butter is more fragrant than my dark cocoa butter.
Hazelnut oil pairs beautifully with the cocoa butter. It is a light carrier oil, known to tighten and tone skin. It penetrates deep into the skin, and is said to stimulate the circulatory system. Sadly it doesn’t smell wonderfully of hazelnuts, but it does absorb quickly and beautifully in the skin, so I suppose we can forgive that one shortcoming. If you’re allergic to nuts, grapeseed and safflower oil are both good alternatives.
Benzoin essential oil contributes a nice, mellow vanilla scent, and can easily be swapped out for vanilla essential oil or absolute. The cocoa absolute serves to amp up the cocoa scent. Yum! The resulting lotion is fragrant, lightweight, and fast-absorbing. It also smells wonderfully of chocolate, and is a delightful tribute to the ever fantastic Nutella. Just don’t lick yourself 😉
Chocolate Hazelnut Body Lotion
14g | 0.5oz cocoa butter (the more fragrant the better!)
22g | 0.77oz hazelnut oil (if you have food grade oil that might be the better choice as it’ll have a nuttier smell)
14g | 0.5oz emulsimulse/ritamulse (or other complete emulsifying wax—not beeswax!)
Weigh the emulsifying wax, hazelnut oil, and cocoa butter into a small saucepan and melt over medium heat. While they melt, measure out the required amount of water and vegetable glycerine (USA / Canada) into a small glass measuring cup. Warm in the microwave for about 30 seconds, stirring to combine.
Once the oils have melted, add the water mixture to the pan and heat through for at least three minutes to ensure everything is melted.
Remove the pan from the heat and whisk as the mixture cools, until you have a thick, creamy lotion. The thickening will take a few days if you are using a different emulsifying wax than emulsimulse/ritamulse, so don’t panic if yours doesn’t thicken up straight away!
Once the lotion is cool, whisk in the essential oils and preservative, and decant into a 240mL/8 oz pump-top bottle or jar.
To use, smooth over dry skin & enjoy!