How to Add Papain to Lotion
Papain is an enzyme extract of the papaya plant found in the leaves and thick, green skin of the fruit. In lotion, papain is commonly used to soften skin and treat acne. Because of concerns about some individuals experiencing adverse allergic reactions to topical (external) use of papain, including a drop in blood pressure and skin rashes, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2008 ordered companies to stop marketing ointments containing papain. This does not prevent individuals from preparing their own lotions with papain, although it is not a wise idea to use the enzyme if you are unsure of your reaction to it. People with allergic reactions to latex should definitely not use papain, which contains chemical compounds like those of latex rubber.
Buy powdered papain from a grocery, health-food store or online retailer. In a pinch, buy a plastic container of Adolph’s Meat Tenderizer. The principle ingredient is papain.
Add your favorite hand or body lotion to a squeeze bottle or container with a pump dispenser, taking care to measure the amount in ounces.
Add 2 to 5 percent powdered papain by weight to the hand lotion (double the amount to 4 to 10 percent if using Adolph’s Meat Tenderizer). For example, with 20 oz. of hand lotion, you would add 1 oz. of powdered papain for a 5 percent concentration, or 2 oz. of Adolph’s Mean Tenderizer for approximately the same concentration.
Mix the papain thoroughly with the lotion using a metal spoon.
Use the lotion on hands and skin as an exfoliant to remove dead skin cells and to soften the skin. Lotion can also be used to clean and dry out acne, taking care not to get the lotion in the eyes.