Tuesday, June 11, 2013

DIY Luminizer

After hearing pretty much universal raves about RMS Living Luminizer, I finally got my hands on some to give it a whirl. It is indeed a pretty awesome product- it adds just a slight shimmer to your skin, extremely subtle so you don't look like a glittery rave kid, but enough to make you look, well, luminescent, I guess. Healthy and glow-y.

But, clocking in at almost $40 for a .02 oz pot, this stuff doesn't come cheap. I got mine through Dermstore which was kind enough to throw in some free gifts and a 2 year subscription to Better Homes & Gardens, which made it a little less painful (no, I'm not affiliated, but I do like free stuff.) Still, though, it's a big investment when your beauty budget is as piddly as mine. Update: That subscription never came, BH&G says it never existed, and Dermstore never told me. Thanks a lot, jerks. 

So I took a look at the ingredients:

Castor seed oil, coconut oil, beeswax, tocopherol, rosemary extract, May Contain titanium dioxide, mica. 

So... two oils, beeswax, vitamin E (another oil and a preservative), rosemary extract which I'm assuming is for scent, and basically...mineral make-up. Titanium is generally a whitish powder and mica adds sparkle. So it's essentially like putting on a light coat of mineral shimmer, and using wax and oil to moisturize and glue it to your skin.

Hmm. I can do that. Commence experimental luminizer!

(But first a warning: melted waxyoil is not particularily easy to clean up! Cover your workspace and be prepared to soak the dishes for awhile. Very hot water helps melt it off, obviously.)

DIY Luminizer


Coconut oil
Fine-grain, shimmery mineral eyeshadow (1/4 teaspoon total shown, but I recommend more more more!)
A little pot to put it in
Microwave and microwave safe bowl
Oven mitt

I figured castor seed oil was probably used as a cost-saving measure more than a necessity, but you could use it if you wanted. Grapeseed would also probably work. I left out the vitamin E since I didn't have any handy, and coconut oil/beeswax don't exactly spoil quickly anyway. If you want a little scent, you could put a tiny droplet of essential oil in- just make sure it's not one that will irritate your skin. Mine just smells like coconut and honey, it's kind of lovely. I used 1 part beeswax and 2 parts oil, which gave me a fairly creamy texture, a bit softer than the original. To make it harder, use more beeswax; for softer, use more oil.

The mineral eyeshadows I used were two sample size pots from Bad Bitch Cosmetics (LOVE, btw) in Miranda and Yuki-onna (similar, but Yuki is a bit more sparkly.) You could use anything fine and shimmery- use a cooler, silver-based shimmer if your skin is cool toned, and a warmer, gold-based shimmer if you're warm toned. I thought I would need just a tiny bit of eyeshadow but I ended up dumping both whole containers in, and could've still done with more. If I make this again I think I will use twice as much, at least- unfortunately I've exhausted my supply of white-ish shimmer powders for now. In any case remember that the eyeshadow can really make or break it- go for a super-fine texture to keep from looking glittery.

DIY Luminizer Tutorial

Start by measuring out your wax and oil.

DIY Luminizer Recipe

Chop or cheese-grate the wax into little bits, which will make it easier to melt. Put the wax in the microwave safe bowl and start heating it up in 20-second intervals, stirring in between. (You could also use a double boiler for this- it would probably be easier, but with such a small amount of stuff it seemed a little silly.)

DIY Luminizer

When the wax is almost totally melted, add in the coconut oil and put it in for just a little bit longer, until it's all nice and uniformly liquid. (If you're using liquid oils, I think you can probably add them after the heating-up step. Be wary of heating any oils with a low smoke point.)

DIY Luminizer

Take the bowl out very carefully (it will probably be insanely hot at this point- use the oven mitts) and pour the mineral eyeshadow in. Stir it up well and dole into little containers.

DIY Luminizer
Attempt NOT to make a huge mess out of it. Seriously, it's like I'm 5.

Set them aside to cool.

**This part is key! **

Periodically as they are cooling, you need to go stir them up again! Otherwise, the sparkle will sink to the bottom. Eventually they will get too hard to stir, so it's imperative to hit that sweet spot when it's viscous enough to hold the shimmer in place, but warm enough to manipulate, and really mash it up.

DIY Luminizer


DIY Luminizer

My version is a bit creamier and a bit more sheer, but it does the job! It's actually perfect as a slightly-luminizing hand cream or lip balm, at this texture. (Also, great for clavicles and other areas that you want to highlight, but where you really don't want it to look like you've got make-up on.) To truly match the original, you'd want it a little harder and with more eyeshadow- I may also try a little translucent powder to give it a drier texture. On the other hand, with a bit more oil and a yummy smelling EO, it would be a fantastically rich body lotion that would give you just a little bit of glow all over. Adding some flavor oils would make it extra awesome as a lip balm, too. Go nuts! I'd love to hear what you guys can come up with!

It's also worth noting that even though I had silvery shimmer, mine came out more warmly-toned, probably because I used yellow beeswax (white beeswax wasn't readily available locally- you can order it online though!* ) Given the ease and price, though, I'd say it's a win- you could experiment with the ratios all day and be sparkly head to toe, given that each batch probably costs about $3-5, depending on how much eyeshadow you throw in there ;-) I smell Christmas presents for every chick I know coming on... assuming I figure out how to put things in a jar without sloshing it everywhere.

*Just FYI that's an affiliate link, which means I get a little kickback if you use it, but no pressure! 

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