What you’ll need:
1 sanitized spray bottle
96 grams of distilled water
4 grams of glycerin
How to make it
Pour the 4 grams of Glycerin in to your bottle (make sure it can hold 100 ml of liquid or more) and then pour in the 96 grams of Distilled water. Shake vigorously.
Glycerin is inexpensively found at a health food store or online. It can sometimes also be labelled ‘Glycerine’ or ‘Glycerol’. You shouldn’t pay more than $10 USD for 500 ml (half a litre).
This recipe doesn’t contain a preservative, so keep it stored in a cool and dry place. Make a new batch if you notice any changes in smell or color – or every 2 weeks if you want to be extra cautious.
How to use it
1 spray is more than enough for the face, applying too much can leave your skin slightly sticky.
Glycerin takes time to moisturize the skin, so if your skin still feels dry right after application, give it about 5 minutes before applying more.
You can spray it directly on to the skin and then pat in, or spray it in to the palms of your hand and then apply to the skin.
It’s best used after cleansing the face, though you can use it whenever you need to.
The spray can be used for the face, lips, and body.
How it works
Glycerin works by binding moisture from the atmosphere and deeper layers of the skin, bringing it to the stratum corneum (surface layer of the skin). Glycerin absorbs moisture from the atmosphere best when the humidity is greater than 70%.
Glycerin is also slightly sticky allowing it to stick down any flaking skin. This slight stickiness is also why it’s used in setting and adhering powders (such as powder foundation) to the skin.
Glycerin is generally well-tolerated, though there are people who are allergic or sensitive to the ingredient.
Some people have also had bad luck with high glycerin lotions, this may be because emulsifiers (that keep oil and water in a lotion from seperating) can enhance skin penetration of glycerin. As the glycerin moves in to deeper layers of skin, it brings moisture from the surface deeper down, making the surface skin dryer. This recipe is emulsifier free and will stay on the surface of the skin.
A study examining the effect of glycerin vs. water on skin plasticity found that glycerin was faster acting.
A study also found that glycerin helped reduced the irritation caused by washing the skin with a sodium lauryl sulfate based cleanser.
One thing to keep in mind, is that while glycerin can help moisturize the skin, it won’t prevent moisture from evaporating out of the skin – such an occlusive emollient like an oil or a wax may still be needed if your skin is very dry.