Thursday, November 09, 2006

How to: Create your own lip balm recipe.

A couple of years ago I saw a great lip balm tutorial at Not Martha. I was very inspired by it and decided to create my own recipe. It was a little difficult finding information about what works best. After a lot of research, I compiled a list of what to do.

The Basics:

For a firm lip balm that can be used in a tube or tub, you will need a ratio of about 2:4 solids to liquids. Solids meaning wax & butters, liquids meaning oils. If you find your final product too thick, add more oils. If it is too thin, add more solids.

For solids, I use bee’s wax & mango butter. Other solids are also available.

For liquids, I use sweet almond oil, olive oil, castor oil, and avocado oil. Other types of liquids are available.

Put all of your ingredients in a double boiler and let them melt. Make sure to stir the mixture. Add essential oils just before you are ready to fill your tubes or tubs. This way they will not have a chance to evaporate.

When creating a recipe, be sure to write down the ingredients you have added to each batch including the measurement. I add ingredients a half teaspoon at a time until I get it right. Once you get it right, you will know just how much of each item you used. There will be no need to figure it all out again.

Equipment Needed:

• Stovetop
• Double boiler to melt ingredients in

• Measuring spoons
• Plastic pipettes (droppers) to help you pour melted ingredients into your tubes or tubs without spilling.
• Tubes or tubs to hold lip balm. I prefer to use metal tins instead of plastic because they have less of an environmental impact.
• Labels, if you plan to sell or give as gifts.

Where to shop:

There is a big selection of recipe’s at the Ponte Vedra Soap Shoppe. I shop at Majestic Mountain Sage. They have many exotic oils and good prices. Be sure to check the net because there may be a new company that has popped up that worthy of attention too. If you can’t wait to get started, and good health food store or Whole Foods Market will carry most of the ingredients you need.

About ingredients:
Castor Oil will make your balm glossy

Shea butter can be stinky and needs to be melted at a certain temperature. If you do not pay attention to this it will become grainy. Use mango or another type of butter instead.

Stay away from hydrogenated oils because they are unhealthy.

Vitamin E Acetate is an antioxidant and extends the shelf life of your product. Make sure to use it in every recipe. I use vitamin E oil that comes in gelatin capsules. They are easy to puncture and squeeze into the mixture.

If you prefer a sweet lip balm, add some honey.

If you like tinted lip balm, add some of your favorite lipstick to the mixture. If you want to experiment with making your own colors you can purchase Iron Oxide, Mica Powder, or D&C colors to add to the mixture. Mica Powders will add a shimmer to you final product.

Avoid artificial flavors. There are many natural essential oils that can be used which will increase your lip balm's healing potential.

About Essential Oils:
Use essential oils such as tea tree oil, rosemary, sage, peppermint, spearmint, anise, vanilla, cinnamon oil, camphor oil, lavender or ginger. A combination of any of these can be nice as well.

Tea tree oil is known for its antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic qualities.

Camphor, and mints are cooling.

Cinnamon and ginger are warming.

Do not use any essential oils that are from the citrus family because they make the skin photosensitive.

About Labels:

If you want to make up your own labels, Dover Publications has a great selection of clip art available. You can sign up for free design samples that they e-mail to you about every other week.

Other uses for ‘lip balm’:
These balms are good for cuticles and hands, if you create one without color or sweetener. Balms are great if you work with PMC too, just as long as you do not use any petroleum products in your recipe.


Geo said...

Wow, I can't wait to try this! Thanks!

JavaJive said...

Nice! Chaptastic be definitely be linking to this post!

Steph D said...

Cool, thanks!

One thought: You can also use clear liquid stevia to sweeten the balm instead of honey. It's an herb that tastes very sweet, and you'd use much less of it than you would use of honey (therefore preventing a change in the consistency of the balm.) As an added benefit for some people, it's totally sugar-free.

Dot said...

This is a great post.. i was scouring the web to find some good instructions for trying this, and yours really helped. If you're interested, my results are posted here:

I really like your blog :)

Anonymous said...

OMG. Ur blog is like totally sik as!! Umm.. i cant wait to make some lippy!! =D

Lots of Luv!!! Soulja Gal Folkesy..
&&& Moosa Ranga!!

Danielle Loves Kirky

Moosa luvs sachomo

Anonymous said...

We take it back we dont like knowone!!! AHHHH!!!!!


Anonymous said...

This looks great! I'm going to try to make an alternative recipe for my favorite tinted chapstick Alba's Terra Tints. I'm so glad I can swap out the Hydrogenated coconut oil and use Mango butter. I also wanted to pass on a great site for mineral tints to anyone else who like to make their own tinted chapsticks. Madminerals dot org has an awesome selection at great prices.


michelle87 said...

hey fab recipies cant wait to try is jus a question i was told that they need to be certified is yours?

Anonymous said...

I like this lip balm recipe, I would love to experiment with the essential oils. I will use lavender and mint for two lip balms. I love those aromas.

Sherrie said...

This is a fantastic post! I just linked to it. Thanks for all of the great info!

Anonymous said...

Hi I just want to ask cause I'm going to use this pre soulution that has these ingredients FOR LIP BALM(below);

PRoblem:How will I make this in a liquid form and not the balm?. WHat to remove on the ingredients that would make it liquid and not balm or solid form?.Pls help.

Ingredients: Sweet Almond Oil, Coconut Oil, Beeswax, Avocado Oil, Cocoa Seed Butter, Lanolin

Anonymous said...

where do you get the metal tins at

Ansley Bleu said...

I do all my shopping at Majestic Mountain Sage which also carries the metal tins.

Kelly said...

Hey, anyone know a non-online store that carries metal (gives you a tinny taste)tins

AmyElyssa said...

I'm just getting started on making my own lip balm - I love the idea of using honey, but I can't keep it from separating while it cools - any suggestions?
I posted some photos of the lip-balm recipes I’ve tried on my blog at
Can someone tell me what I’m doing wrong?

Ansley Bleu said...

I have not experimented with honey. Was the honey you used raw? Maybe you could try a different type.
Good Luck!

Freda julius said...

Just want to say thank you very much for your tips and advice. I am so impressed with these tips I had to try this lip balm recipe at my own home

Sophie said...

hi, i've had several goes at making lip balm, and after a while, it goes sort of sour and salty. what is the reason for this? are there any ways to prevent it from happening?

Ansley Bleu said...

Lip balm can go rancid, but I am not so sure about salty. It will have a foul smell when the oils have gone bad and it is time to throw it out.

Anonymous said...

Another natural sweetener you can use instead of honey and stevia, is agave nectar. A couple of drops does the trick.

Thank you for sharing your tips on making lip balm. I appreciate how succinct your blog is, the website you gained the information from (not martha) was helpful yet overloaded.

Also, thank you to those who said not to use citrus essential oils, I was just about to make some with grapefruit EO. Phew!

I have been told NOT to use cinnamon essential oil as it will burn, not just warm.

Peppermint essential oil seems to be a favourite. Just waiting for my tubes to get here! :)

Jen said...

Would you consider coconut oil 76 a solid or a liquid oil?

Ansley Bleu said...

I have no idea about the coconut oil. Generally, if something is solid at room temperature (meaning it cannot be poured out of its container), it is considered a solid.

kate said...

works great!!!!!!!!!

Kate said...

love it!!!!

1mother2another said...

I'd love to try this recipe - but I can't find the actual recipe on the page, just tips and notes on types of oil, general ratios, etc. Am I missing something? This sounds by far like the best one I've seen so far on the web! Any help would be appreciated.

Ansley Bleu said...

I did create my own recipe, but was writing this post to share my research so you could make your own.

Anonymous said...

Do you have to use a double boiler?

Ansley Bleu said...

A double boiler is best so you do not burn the ingredients.

Anonymous said...

Hi! I want to make my own recipe but I have a question: Can I use Dr Bronners for the oil? I is pepperminty and I love it. Another site said it would work, but I want to know for sure?

Ansley Bleu said...

I am not sure about Dr. Bronners. Try it in a small batch. I created almost a dozen different batches before I got what I wanted.

Unknown said...

To the folks with honey concerns:

I've made balm with honey - you have to wait for the balm to start to solidify then when its thick like honey or molasses you whip the honey in so it doesn't separate out. Same goes for glycerine - but it's lighter so it mixes a bit better but you have to whip then pour quickly or the glycerine settles out.

I am going to try powdered honey in my next batch, I'll let you know how it works out.

Also, instead of a double boiler I just use a pyrex 1 or 2 cup measuring cup in a small pot of hot water on the stove.

The shea butter can't be heated over 160 deg. farenheit (sp) so if you use shea be sure to get a candy/frying thermometer and keep it under 160.