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Homemade Muscle Rub Recipe – Magnesium Body Butter Rub for Sore Muscles (with free printable jar toppers!)

I’ve been using essential oils to help with small discomforts and injuries for years. This essential oil roll on blend for bumps and bruises was even featured in Willow & Sage magazine!

Lately I’ve also been incorporating more topical magnesium into my routine. I mix up my own magnesium oil and keep it in a glass spray bottle on the bathroom counter so I can spritz my feet at night.

This recipe for homemade muscle rub combines the two ideas to create a soothing, relaxing body butter for sore muscles that’s delightful to use and great for your body!

Discover this homemade muscle rub recipe! Homemade muscle rub with essential oils.

This post may include affiliate links, which means I may make a commission on purchases made through these links at no additional cost to you. 

Why is magnesium good for sore muscles?

Magnesium is an essential mineral that is necessary to over 300 processes in your body.

According to the CDC, most Americans do not consume enough dietary magnesium.

Magnesium deficiency and magnesium inadequacy can result in a variety of problems, including fatigue, weakness, and muscle cramps. Chronic low magnesium intake may also contribute to the development of several illnesses. Please take a look at the CDC information on magnesium if you’d like to learn more!

Magnesium can help your muscles relax, and it may also help ease muscle soreness.

Luckily, magnesium can be absorbed orally and transdermally (through the skin). That’s why this rub for sore muscles contains magnesium.

magnesium flakes for foot soak

Essential oils for sore muscles

There are many essential oils for muscle soreness and skin health. A few of my favorites are:

  • Frankencense
  • Lavender
  • Geranium
  • Chamomile
  • Copobia
  • Eucalyptus 
  • Peppermint
  • Marjoram
  • Rosemary

If you’re looking for stronger, more “hot” oils, black pepper, ginger, and clove can all help relieve muscle pain. Be careful with these oils, though – they are potent! 

You do not need to put all of these oils in your muscle rub! Pick two or three of your favorites that you find most personally effective. You can follow the recipe below or mix things up with a custom blend.

For common topical use, a 2% essential oil dilution is considered safe for most oils on adults. Some people are more sensitive to oils that others, so always make sure to test a small area of your skin first!

Because the overall volume of the muscle rub is very large, as long as you use less than 1/3 ounce total of essential oil you will be less than 2% strength. This is a whole lot of essential oil so unless you dump the entire bottle in, you should be good!

essential oils for homemade muscle rub

Ingredients for homemade muscle rub with essential oils

This recipe makes approximately 2 cups of muscle rub. You can halve the recipe, if you’d like, but I’d just make the whole batch! You can gift half of it to a friend or coworker, if you’d like. 

This rub is so great for aching feet at the end of a long day! 

Whether you’re making this magnesium body butter for yourself or as gifts, make sure to grab the free printable jar toppers! There’s more info on them below the tutorial. There’s also a printable recipe card for the muscle rub towards the bottom of the post!

Homemade muscle rub/magnesium body butter ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup magnesium oil
    • You can make your own magnesium oil with 1/2 cup magnesium flakes and 3 tablespoons of water. In fact, I highly recommend making your own because it’s more affordable and the flakes are versatile!
  • 5 grams beeswax (pellets or pastilles are far easier to work with than a block)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 100 grams raw shea butter
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder (optional, helps it feel a bit less ‘greasy’)
  • Essential oils. I used Lavender, geranium, and frankincense. All of the oils listed above are good choices, so use what you have and what you like!
    • I avoided peppermint and eucalyptus, which are both excellent choices, because I have a young toddler and try to avoid using products that might be dangerous for her. 
  • Pyrex measuring cup
  • A double boiler or small/medium pot and a quart glass mason jar -or- a Pyrex bowl
  • Two clean cup mason jars or a pint mason jar. You can also fill a bunch of smaller glass jars and give them out as favors!
  • A stick/immersion blender.

How to make your own sore muscle rub with magnesium

How to make your own magnesium oil:

Place the magnesium flakes in a Pyrex measuring cup and add three tablespoons of very hot water.

  • The magnesium will dissolve more quickly if you use boiling hot water, but I hate measuring water that hot! Simply very hot tap water will suffice with a bit of swirling.
  • Swirl or stir to combine but don’t stress every little bit. It will have time to mix while you make the rest of the muscle rub.
  • I use NOW Foods magnesium flakes and they dissolve quite easily.

Yes, magnesium oil is water based! It feels oily, but it isn’t actually oil. That’s why the muscle rub/body butter has to be emulsified using a blender.

How to make muscle rub body butter:

Place the coconut oil, beeswax, and shea butter in a mason jar, large Pyrex measuring cup, or Pyrex bowl.

Put a two or three inches of water in a small pot, place the mason jar in the pot, and place over medium heat on the stove/range. Attractive photo, right? 😉 But it shows you the setup! (This picture is actually from this beeswax wrap tutorial.)

double boiler melting wax for beeswax wraps

Stir occasionally and keep an eye on the water. Once it approaches the point of a simmer, turn it down.

Once the mixture has melted completely, carefully remove the mason jar from the double boiler (and turn off your stove!).

Allow the mixture to cool until it becomes slightly cloudy looking. This may take some time, depending on the temperature in your house. You can pop the jar in the fridge for a little while to speed up the process – check on it ever 15 minutes or so.

Insert your immersion blender into the jar and start mixing. You can also use a hand mixer on medium speed. You could probably also use a ‘normal’ blender, though I haven’t tried it!

Carefully and slowly add the magnesium oil. Keep blending until it is fully combined with the butter mixture.

Add the arrowroot powder, if using, and your essential oils and mix to combine. I used about 30 drops of lavender, 15 of geranium, and 10 of frankincense. You may want to use more (or less). You could safely add about four times as much for this volume of body butter so go based on your personal preferences and needs! As I mentioned above, adding peppermint, eucalyptus, or even clove could be a good choice for you. I just didn’t use any of those oils because of my baby girl.

I’ve seen some body butter recipes suggest re-blending in a few minutes, but personally I haven’t found that it makes much of a difference. If you notice any separation in your body butter, emulsify it some more. If you don’t, then you’er good to go!

Lastly, transfer your muscle rub to your final jars. It should fit in two cup jars or one pint jar. Make sure to grab your free printable sloth mason jar toppers!

Magnesium has a very distinct mineral taste so you may want to avoid applying this to your hands right before eating or preparing food! Also, it is very moisturizing – a little goes a long way.

homemade rub for sore muscles with magnesium

How to clean up after making body butter

The butter/wax mixture can be kind of stubborn to clean up. Here’s what I do:

  • Wipe out as much as possible with paper towels.
  • Heat water to boiling and pour it in your working mason jar. Insert the immersion blender and let it soak.
  • In a few minutes, pour of the water and wipe down again with paper towels.
  • Repeat, if necessary.
  • Wash everything as normal.

Free printable sloth mason jar toppers

I know this is the part you’ve all been waiting for, right? 😉

Check out these super cute sloth free printable mason jar toppers! There's also a recipe for homemade muscle rub with magnesium. So perfect for relaxing!

These mason jar toppers are 2″ to fit nicely in the flat portion of a regular mason jar lid. If you don’t have sticker paper, no problem! Just hold the topper in place with a piece of double sided tape or a spot of glue. Eileen’s Original Tacky Glue and hot glue are my two favorites!

You can cut the toppers out with scissors, but a 2″ circle punch makes life so much easier.

Here’s a quick preview of the mason jar toppers. They are sloth themed! There are several different versions with and without text so you have plenty of options.

free printable sloth jar toppers preview. Visit the post to find out how to download the PDF printable mason jar toppers!

Why sloths? Apparently sloths are going to be the new unicorn. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I read it on the internet, so it must be true! Sloths are adorable and super fascinating animals (did you know their fur is an entire ecosystem?), plus their calm demeanor seemed so perfect for this relaxing body butter! I created these cuties in Illustrator specially for this project!

The high resolution PDF lives in the member’s Resource Library along with other awesome free printables! Just put your password in and get downloading!

Don’t have the resource library password? Become an Artisan Life member using the form below and let me know where to send your password!

 

Homemade Muscle Rub Recipe - Magnesium Body Butter Rub for Sore Muscles

This homemade muscle rub contains magnesium and essential oils to help soothe sore muscles!

Materials

  • 1/2 cup magnesium oil
  • You can make your own magnesium oil with 1/2 cup magnesium flakes and 3 tablespoons of water. In fact, I highly recommend making your own because it's more affordable and the flakes are versatile!
  • 5 grams beeswax (pellets or pastilles are far easier to work with than a block)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 100 grams shea butter
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder (optional, helps it feel a bit less 'greasy')
  • Lavender essential oil
  • Eucalyptus essential oil
  • Frankincense essential oil
  • I know this is a pricier one. If you don't have frank, you could use peppermint or marjoram.

Tools

  • Pyrex measuring cup
  • Double boiler or pot + a jar (or glass bowl) to make a double boiler
  • Scale and measuring cups
  • Immersion blender
  • Two cup mason jars or a pint mason jar

Instructions

How to make your own magnesium oil:

Place the magnesium flakes in a Pyrex measuring cup and add three tablespoons of very hot water.

  • The magnesium will dissolve more quickly if you use boiling hot water, but I hate measuring water that hot! Simply very hot tap water will suffice with a bit of swirling.
  • Swirl or stir to combine but don't stress every little bit. It will have time to mix while you make the rest of the muscle rub.

Yes, magnesium oil is water based! It feels oily, but it isn't actually oil. That's why the muscle rub body butter has to be emulsified using a blender.

How to make muscle rub body butter:

Place the coconut oil, beeswax, and shea butter in a mason ja (or your Pyrex bowl, if you don't have a quart jar).

Put a two or three inches of water in a small pot, place the mason jar in the pot, and place over medium heat on the stove/range. 

Stir occasionally and keep an eye on the water. Once it approaches the point of a simmer, turn it down.

Once the mixture has melted completely, carefully remove the mason jar from the double boiler (and turn off your stove!).

Allow the mixture to cool to room until it becomes cloudy looking.

Insert your immersion blender into the jar and start mixing. You can also use a hand mixer on medium speed. You could probably also use a 'normal' blender, though I haven't tried it!

Carefully and slowly add the magnesium oil. Keep blending until it is fully combined with the butter mixture.

Add your essential oils and mix to combine.

At this point, your muscle rub is essential ready to use! I've seen some body butter recipes suggest re-blending in a few minutes, but personally I haven't found that it makes much of a difference. If you notice any separation in your body butter, emulsify it some more. If you don't, then you'er good to go!

Lastly, transfer your muscle rub to your final jars. It should fit in two cup jars or one pint jar.

Don’t lose track of this tutorial! Make sure to Pin it! 

These sloth jar toppers are so cute! Homemade muscle rub with free printable mason jar toppers

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Please remember that all posts on The Artisan Life based on my personal experience and are not medical advice. The information contained on this blog should not be used to diagnose, treat or prevent any disease or health illness. Please consult with a qualified health care professional before acting on any information presented here. Any statements or claims about the possible health benefits conferred by any foods, essential oils, or lifestyle changes have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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