Need a Non-toxic Moisturizer? How to Choose: Body Oil vs. Body Butter

It’s not just your face that depends on moisture to retain healthy, radiant skin.

The skin on your body relies on moisture just as much!

But we find that an organic moisturizer for the body is a topic often overlooked in the beauty industry. Not to mention the struggle of finding a non-toxic moisturizer that checks all your boxes. 

→ Should you go for a lotion? A whipped lotion? A body oil? A body butter? 
What's the difference? 

Well, for starters, we understand ingredients can get confusing. Aka, which to avoid and which are best for your skin.

Plus, when’s best to apply a non-toxic moisturizer – first thing in the morning or before bed? 

Moisturizing can quickly become a complicated subject. 

That’s why we’re here to help. ;)

We’re going to walk you through the differences + all the things to consider when deciding between our two non-toxic moisturizers. When choosing a non-toxic and organic moisturizer, we want you to have customized options.

Body Oil vs. Body Butter

Nothing is wrong with lotion, but we prefer to keep it simple and choose between body oil vs. body butter. In our experience, these are the two most effective ways to bring supple moisture to your skin. 

That’s why these two non-toxic moisturizers are our top choices for full-body hydration.

How Body Oil Works as a Non-toxic Moisturizer

  • Consistency

Yes, body oil is made of oils, as the name would imply. But it’s not greasy. Especially when applied on damp skin, this non-toxic moisturizer soaks in effortlessly. 

We created PP’s Body Oil to resemble the oils in your skin so it’s absorbed easily. No need to stress about oils staining your clothing or the feeling of greasy skin. (Not ideal.)

  • Content

Usually, body oil is made up of carrier oils (base oils) and sometimes combined with fragrance or other filler oils. At Primally Pure, this organic moisturizer only contains the highest quality oils – that are good for your skin and your overall health. 

On top of that, it’s fortified with a blend of organic and wildcrafted essential oils with specific healing + aromatherapy properties. We handpick all ingredients for their properties to repair parched skin, calm inflammation, and provide a punch of antioxidants. 

Our body oils contain the following carrier oils:

    • Fractionated Coconut Oil
    • Kukui Nut Oil
    • Organic Sweet Almond Oil
    • Organic Argan Oil
    • Organic Tamanu Oil
  • Moisture Level

Generally, body oil provides light to medium moisture. Surprised? While it absorbs easily, oil is actually a lighter form of moisture when comparing body oil vs. body butter.

The light consistency of this organic moisturizer makes it perfect for hydration maintenance. Use it daily as part of your routine to retain moisturized skin. Body oils leave your skin looking luminous.

  • Application

Body oil is best applied on damp skin. Water and oil work synergistically to dramatically change hydration levels. Damp skin absorbs and transports nutrients into your skin more easily to lock in hydration, just like a facial mist before applying serum. Generously apply this non-toxic moisturizer all over damp skin + let it sink in. 

→ Option #1: Apply your body oil after the shower (no need to towel off!). 

→ Option #2: If you’re not showering, generously spritz yourself with Everything Spray first to boost absorption. (Applying this mist after shaving will also prevent ingrown hairs!)

→ Tip: This non-toxic moisturizer sinks in quickly. You’ll be surprised at how easily it glides on. No rubbing is required – unless you want to stimulate your lymphatic system.

If body oil doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, or you need a more potent organic moisturizer, body butter might be the answer for you. 

Body Butter as Your Non-toxic Moisturizer of Choice

If you’re looking for a more luscious or deeper moisture level, body butter might be best. We love this non-toxic moisturizer option over a traditional lotion because it contains more bioavailable ingredients that are easily recognized + absorbed by your skin.

  • Consistency 

The consistency is very different in body oil vs. body butter. It’s the most occlusive option when choosing a non-toxic moisturizer. This means it’s thicker and creates a more occlusive protective barrier.

  • Content 

Most body butters are full of nourishing and moisture-rich oils + a creamy, luscious coverage to protect and lock moisture into your skin barrier. 

At Primally Pure, our formula for this organic moisturizer contains some of the most nutrient-dense ingredients available from botanical and animal-based sources. Each is packed with rich antioxidants, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, and critical vitamins for healthy skin. 

You’ll find ingredients like:

    • Tallow from grass-fed cows
    • Organic mango butter
    • Organic shea butter
    • Organic extra virgin coconut oil 
    • Sweet almond oil
    • Organic extra virgin olive oil
    • Organic + wildcrafted essential oils
  • Moisture Level 

This is your organic moisturizer if you’re looking for medium to deep moisture. It’s best for restoring skin hydration, repairing damage from the sun or free radicals, and soothing inflammation. If your skin is especially dry, this non-toxic moisturizer will absorb into your skin and provide an extra “layer” of protection to seal it all in.

  • Application

Body butter works best on damp skin (like after a shower or bath). Similar to body oil, the water content helps the oils absorb + spread easier over your skin’s surface. When applied overnight, the nutrients can work with your body’s natural “repair mode” during sleep.

→ Tip: Avoid getting water into the jar – it could cause bacteria growth.

→ Storage Tip: This organic moisturizer may melt when exposed to extreme heat. If it does, pop it in the fridge to restore its original texture.

Now that we’ve gone over the best conditions for using body butter as your non-toxic moisturizer, it’s time to take it a step further. Let’s compare body oil vs. body butter directly.

Comparing Body Oil vs. Body Butter

Truthfully, there’s no “better” answer. It all depends on what your body is asking for – which can change throughout the years. We actually love alternating both based on our ever-evolving skin needs!

So here’s how to know which non-toxic moisturizer you need depending on your body’s cues. If you’re looking for: 

A lighter, more routine non-toxic moisturizer, you may prefer a body oil.

Some serious TLC for dry, cracked, or damaged skin, body butter will do the trick. 

Here’s another thought: you could layer both for an intense moisture boost. 

Think of it like skin layering serum + cream on the face. Your routine could look like: 

Step1: Shower (or apply Everything Spray). 

Step 2: Apply Body Oil. 

Step 3: Then apply Body Butter to seal it all in.

It comes down to your preference for feel, application, and moisture level your skin needs at the time! Our recommendation? Keep both non-toxic moisturizers on hand so you can choose on demand. ;)

Criteria to Consider When Choosing a Non-toxic Moisturizer

Beyond choosing body oil vs. body butter, it’s essential to understand what’s in your non-toxic moisturizer + how it’s made. You want to feel confident you’re providing clean + nourishing moisture to your skin – not harmful chemicals or toxins. A clean, organic moisturizer is key – always do your research.

To save you some time, these standards are non-negotiables in our book for a non-toxic moisturizer. 

High-quality Carrier Oil/Base

A non-toxic moisturizer – whether body oil, body butter, or lotion – should contain oils that have been ethically + responsibly sourced. And it’s not just for sustainability reasons. By default, ethical ingredients are usually also clean + free from unnecessary additives.

You’ll also want to make sure the ingredients are all organic or at least mostly organic.

And it may take some extra research, but you want to be sure the oils you’re applying to your skin have not been chemically altered during purification or processing. Always opt for cold-pressed and non-chemically-filtered (or processed) oils in your non-toxic moisturizer.

Lastly, you want to choose an organic moisturizer with non-comedogenic ingredients. This means they won’t clog your pores. This is typically more of an issue with the face, but better safe than sorry. (Speaking of – coconut oil gets a bad rep for being pore-clogging. But fractionated coconut oil is perfectly fine for your face + body and coconut oil found in soaps.)

No “Fragrance” or “Parfum” Listed in the Ingredients

Scents are one of the most powerful forms of nostalgia. So if you’re itching for a scent that takes you back to memories of the beach, a trip to Greece, or gentle summers spent outside, you’re not alone. 

But “Fragrance” (also labeled as “parfum”) is a classic greenwashing marketing term used to hide chemicals + toxins in products. The FDA doesn’t require companies to disclose what’s in their “fragrance” because it’s considered proprietary info. 

This means fragrance is potentially one of the most dangerous ingredients in conventional moisturizing products. But you can still have a wonderfully aromatic moisturizer – just be sure that the label clearly states the origin of the scents. The easiest way to do so is by choosing products only scented with essential oils.

Avoid Toxins + Irritants

We talk about which ingredients to avoid in skincare all the time – and that includes what you put on your body. But here’s a refresher on what to avoid if you’re looking for a non-toxic moisturizer: 

  • Alcohols that dry the skin out (ironic to have these in a moisturizing product, right?).
  • Preservatives and fillers – like parabens, sulfates, and silicones that strip and provide your skin and the formula zero value.
  • Endocrine-disrupting chemicals that can cause hormonal imbalances.
  • Phthalates that make fragrance “stick on your skin” but are actually chemical plasticizers known to cause birth defects, respiratory issues, and infertility – no thanks. 

Tip: Check out this full list of ingredients to avoid in moisturizing products.

Stick these criteria in your back pocket – or just shop our non-toxic moisturizer options and know you’re making a clean choice. ;)

Other Ways to Support Hydrated Skin 

While applying topical moisture is definitely important, hydration isn’t just skin deep. Hydration and the moisture that follows are dependent on your lifestyle choices too. 

Here are a few quick tips for maintaining hydrated, supple, and youthful skin – from head to toe.

  • Dry brush regularly – removes dead cells (aka dry skin) and stimulates cell turnover for supple, soft skin. It also helps your non-toxic moisturizer absorb more deeply into the skin.
  • Sweat More – believe it or not, sweat actually lubricates/moisturizes the skin.
  • Internal hydration – don’t underestimate the power of hydration to soften skin and retain moisture. Gel water is an excellent addition to your diet to hydrate more effectively.
  • Moisturizing baths – we’ve created a special Epsom salt blend containing coconut milk for a decadent, moisturizing bath – any time you’d like. 
  • Avoid caffeine and alcoholthese cause the skin to dry out and counteract hydration in your body.
  • Avoid sugars – especially processed sugars that can cause glycation, aka premature aging (which is essentially dry skin). 

If any of these tips sound familiar, that’s because they are. Taking care of the skin all over your body includes many of the same basic principles for taking care of + hydrating (and healing!) the face. Hydration isn’t only about using a non-toxic moisturizer – though that doesn’t hurt. ;)

Non-toxic Moisturizer: Which Will You Choose? 

Now that you’ve learned the difference, it’s easy to see why there’s no one-size-fits-all when choosing a non-toxic moisturizer. But that’s a good thing! And lucky for you, we’ve got a variety of non-toxic moisturizers to fit your preferences + specific skin needs.

Soak in the deep, restorative moisture from body butter after time in the sun or while experiencing a particularly stubborn dry spell with your skin. Or your body oil could be the perfect lightweight consistency for a quick pick-me-up in the mornings before starting your day. 

No matter your skin’s hydration needs, now you know how to choose the best non-toxic moisturizer for your skin + support hydrated skin that lasts. 

Hydration is where it’s at, babe. 

Healthy skin = hydrated and moisturized skin.


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Choosing a  moisturizer for your body can be hard. These are two of the most popular (and, in our opinion, the best) options for a non-toxic moisturizer. | Primally Pure Skincare

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